Thirty years ago, a single question, posed by an 80 year old woman in a TV ad, sparked a resurgence in fast food burger sales.
You remember Clara Peller, don’t you? She’s the one who asked “Where’s the beef?” after getting a huge bun with a tiny burger on it. Even though Clara is gone and the Wendy’s hamburger chain no longer uses the concept in its marketing, there’s still relevance to the question.
In fact, that question forms the basis of my answer to the second biggest issue from our recent survey of readers.
It’s expressed in several different ways but the question is the same. The question: How can I grow my marketing effectively when I have a small marketing budget? was asked by almost half of those who responded in one way or another.
Here’s the thing: Marketing (done correctly) is an investment. A “small budget” implies that you see marketing as an expense to be managed.
Successful marketers always approach their marketing by focusing on the lifetime value of the client you’re trying to attract. If you determine that an ideal client will do business with you 10 times over their lifetime and the value per transaction is $100, then we can all agree the lifetime value is $1000, right?
If you said yes, then the only valid question is, “What would I invest to get $1000 in return?” If I asked you to give me $100 in exchange for $1000, would you do it? How about $200? What about $500? The answer is OF COURSE you would. Savvy marketers are often willing to spend $1000 to acquire customers because the ROI is 1/1 and when they add in the value of the referrals they get from happy clients, its a huge winner.
When you approach your marketing with a “small budget” mentality, you’d better hope that you’re not competing against someone who is acquiring customers by investing a fair amount based on their lifetime value. Why? Because they’ll eat your lunch, wrinkle up the bag and throw it in your face.
If your burger place decided how much beef was on your sandwich based on their budget, you’d stop eating there. When your marketing budget doesn’t reflect the lifetime value of your clients, you’re missing valuable opportunities.
But here’s the good news: When you begin to see marketing as an investment and make strategic investments in customer acquisition, you can be the one eating your competitors lunch.
One final thought on this: If you don’t know what the lifetime value of your ideal client or customer is, then this calculator will help you. Once you determine what one client or customer is worth, then plan a strategy to attract as many of them as you can with the idea of at least getting $1 back for every dollar you spend on your marketing. If all you have to work with initially is enough of a budget to acquire 1 ideal client, that’s fine. But by seeing your marketing as an investment instead of an expense, you’ll grow the amount you can invest with every new customer.
Then your small marketing budget will, over time, become a big budget.
If you’re interested in knowing more about how I can help you, contact me here and let’s talk.