Marketing - 1This is a down and dirty post. As financial marketers, we’re always looking for quick and easy ways to improve. This post is designed to provide quick suggestions on improving your marketing. Some of the tips are obvious, some are no-brainers, all are short and hopefully some are helpful.

So here goes.

(1)    Always use a target market. Always. And your target market is not “every customer or member.”

(2)    Calculate a return on investment (ROI). Don't have an ROI? Then don’t do the promotion. Here are some free worksheets to help you.

(3)    Use e-mail. Yes, mobile and social media are hot. But people still read and respond to e-mail offers.

(4)    Get staff buy in. If your staff hates the promotion, you are toast.

(5)    Tell a story. People love stories.

(6)    “Features tell, benefits sell” not only applies in front-line selling situations. It’s also a marketing principle. Are you listing product features or benefits?

(7)    Use video. The number one search engine for people under the age of 30 is YouTube. So use it.

(8)    Cut the copy. Stop writing so much. People aren’t reading as much as you are writing.

(9)    Conduct a marketing audit this year. Your marketing will improve greatly with a full review.

(10) Make the visual element the most prominent part of your promotion. See point number eight about copy.

(11) Take a risk. This is marketing for crying out loud. Don’t be so conservative. Don’t worry about offending your board of directors (see point number one and remember that your board is not your target audience).

(12) Use targeted messages inside your home banking, bill payment and mobile platforms.

(13) Capture testimonials. And use them. Make it a routine part of your marketing efforts.

(14) Ditch your brochures. No one reads them and your staff uses them as a crutch.

(15) Focus your social media efforts on two or three channels max. If your website has icons for Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Vine, etc. that is way too many.

(16)C lean the clutter on your website. Do you really need ALL that information? Make it clean and crisp.

(17) Only focus on one product or message per promotion. Stop lumping ancillary products (insurance, checking, etc.) when you are doing a loan promotion. Let your staff sell those instead.

(18) Reduce the length of your promotions. Two months? Too long. Try six weeks max.

(19) Personalize messages. Ditch anything that says, “Dear Valued Member/Customer.” If you don’t know or use their name, they must not be all that valuable.

(20) Remember the importance of frequency. It’s more important to hit a smaller audience multiple times than a larger audience only once.

So there you have it. Short, easy and simple marketing tips. You may know them all—but are you actually doing them? There is a difference between knowledge and implementation.

What other tactics and suggestions would you recommend?