How well do you know your clients? In marketing director Melissa Baxter’s experience, you don’t know them well enough. Legal services firms have had it easy for years, as far as marketing goes - clients have been loyal, specialisations have been apparent, and merely having a website has put you ahead of some competitors. But what’s been good enough for years may not hold up for much longer: it may be time to raise the bar.
We’ve already looked at lead generation (and how it’s not the be all and end all of marketing) and big ideas (which are useless without informed predictions to back them up). In the latest instalment of Marketing Mythbusters we’re looking at one of the biggest misconceptions around - Return on Investment. To put it bluntly: too many business leaders believe marketing is nothing but a cost, an expense that doesn’t pay off in real terms.
After a year or ten at the helm of your business, you’re wondering where to go next. What was a challenging, rewarding experience with new leads and new products every quarter has become a grind. You’re putting in the hours, but where’s the payoff? You have an exit plan, but how do you get there?
Financial services have changed drastically in the last thirty years. The sector has seen an ongoing drift from no regulation to voluntary regulation, and then to compulsory regulation governed by the Financial Conduct Authority. Prior to 2008 – with a few exceptions including First Direct, NFU and Egg – financial services companies received poor reviews from customers. The 2008 crisis exacerbated this problem, with banks going from trusted institutions to devious fat cats, and the challenge of marketing in the financial sector has only grown as consumers become more savvy.
When it comes to marketing, the world abounds with bad advice - soft soap and snake oil from self-proclaimed experts who don’t have the credentials, experience or clear process to back up their claims. On top of this, business owners are often unclear about the role of marketing in the business - what it’s for, how it works, and how to know it’s doing what it should. Between the outright fibs and the lack of understanding, there’s a perfect climate for marketing myths to flourish. That’s why our marketing directors have picked out the most commonly misunderstood aspects of marketing - the misguided or misinformed ideas we keep on hearing - to break down.