If you submit an RFP to digital marketing companies do you have any idea what kind of numbers you’re going to get back? If you have to reluctantly answer “no” to that question chin up; you’re not alone. The recent explosion in the number and diversity of delivery platforms has changed the way marketers do their job, changed the way we experience marketing and caused a heck of a lot of confusion about just what it costs to market a product or service today.
How to Get Marketing Quotes You Can Count On
The days when print ruled the marketing roost have gone the way of the dinosaurs. Today you’re more likely to market a product or service via web banners, mobile messaging, Instagram, Facebook or a hundred other social media outlets then you are by putting an ad in the newspaper. But with new media come new questions about cost, and if you don’t have your ducks in a row before you submit your RFP you could wind up paying for a bunch of things you don’t need.
Lining up the Ducks
Before submitting an RFP ask yourself these questions:
· Who am I trying to reach? – With the fragmenting of delivery platforms has come the fragmenting of the market. No more one size fits all TV ad. Some folks who live on Instagram wouldn’t be caught dead on Facebook and vice-versa. Many haven’t watched TV in weeks. For this reason you’ll need to have a clear picture of exactly who you’re trying to reach.
· What is the ‘story’ of my product or service? – You know those “about us” pages on nearly every website you’ve ever visited (porn excluded)? Well they work if they’re done well. People love to feel like they’re personally engaged in the success of a product and a origin story is the way to do that. If you have a story, write it down.
· Do I have a content strategy? – If you don’t you’re so 20th century you’re lucky anyone even talks to you. A content strategy encompasses any media created to get the word out about your product or service. If your content strategy is to hire some guy living in Thailand to write a few posts for your blog once a year you need help. Serious help.
· Why would anyone share my content? – Sometimes people will share something because it’s funny or engaging or otherwise great. Sometimes they’ll ignore your content like it was tofu at a Texas barbeque. Sometimes you’ll need to pay to promote your content and sometimes you’ll have to bribe people incentivize your content to get people to share it. Whatever you have to do is what you should be ready to do.
· Have you got good Silo Structure? – A really good way to get higher in Google’s ranking is using a technique called silo structure, in which you flow link juice throughout your own site.
I could go on but you get the point. Take a good long look at your product or service, your target audience, your existing resources, your content strategy (if you have one) and your budget before asking for marketing quotes. The legwork will wind up saving you time and money in the long run and ensure you get timely, usable quotes that you can build on, instead of arbitrary numbers that will leave you scratching your head.
In terms of off page SEO, and more specifically backlinks, Charles Floate has created a post about Black Hat World and their infamous black hat link building marketplace, which has made link sellers into the MILLIONS of dollars.