Business is really good right now. Supply chain is really bad. Trying to find a way to generate more market share and/or penetration without spending money that is not fully guaranteed is quite the battle.
We have identified four key characteristics to creating a marketing plan and budget for today that can handle the uncertainty of supply chain while not wiping away potential for gaining more revenue in the future.
Have you been hitting your 5 year goal in revenue over the last 4 months? Did you even have one?
If you didn’t have a 5 year goal you now have one because you have seen what happens when our industry is the thing everyone wants to buy.
Once that is done, realize that there will be a retraction but as business owners we now know something that we never have before…what our REAL breakeven is. Then begin building your ad budget out from there and begin increasing it incrementally as sales begin to get more consistent. Advertising is not winning you sales TODAY but advertising without a sound budget strategy will LOSE you sales tomorrow due to business retraction.
Cash is king! And so is the ability to downsize the marketing plan. As we learned in March and April, the market and the industry can change very quickly. We want to be able to flex our muscles with different media mixes at any given moment that allow us to overcome and capitalize on these changes. Work with medias that charge you after the fact for services rendered and require a limited lead time to submit information. You can always ADD more but you can never TAKE it back.
MASS MEDIA WILL HELP YOU GROW
At any point, only 2% of the market is ready to buy furniture. We need to take a few steps to make sure that this small group thinks of our retailers when that time comes. It begins with a large reach, which is done thru Mass Media (TV or Radio). We like to allocate a good portion of our budget to this. The message is focused around an offer that appeals to the whole 2%. Consumers today absorb a lot of content. We need to go to a vehicle that she is likely to consume, not as frequently, but can consume it at any time.
DON’T LIVE IN THE BOTTOM OF THE FUNNEL
We believe bringing in a more qualified buyer is more valuable than door swings. When we are fighting for the customer who has made up her mind and is now deciding based on price, availability or convenience we subject ourselves to the all of the players in our vertical (online or not). However, if we focus on the consumer when she is in the consideration and research mode of her purchase cycle it will allow our offer-oriented mass media approaches to stick out to her more. The best way to do this is through running more brand/category focused digital through Facebook carousel ads, targeted display ads and store centered branding video on OTT.
These steps are not sure fire. However, what they do is allow you to realistically win in today’s hot market while still getting your chance to get what is yours if demand starts to dip.