At FR Marketing we apply what we term ‘Marketing with Intelligence’ to all the work we do for our clients. For us, this term helpfully encompasses the way we think about a business, and is an approach that anyone can apply, to a whole business issue or focused in on a specific area.
But what do we mean by Marketing with Intelligence and how does it work in practice?
The word ‘intelligence’ can be understood in a variety of ways. Amongst definitions, it is
- the ability to apply knowledge to manipulate one’s environment or to think abstractly
- the ability to learn or understand or to deal with new or trying situations
- the skilled use of reason
And it is also:
- Information (in itself)
- information concerning an enemy or possible enemy or an area
- the act of understanding
All of these make sense as a way to approach marketing your business, but what does it mean in practice?
Applying Marketing with Intelligence
We apply Marketing with Intelligence for our clients by taking a holistic approach, considering all aspects of what they do as a business, with the aim of helping them to sell more, profitably. This approach is broken down into three main aspects:
1. IDENTIFYING YOUR RESOURCES
Whilst this includes analysing market and company information, it is much broader than that. We look at all aspects of your business and maximise the use of all your resources to achieve your goals. Depending on the work we’re delivering, we will look at some or all of the following:
- The data and information you have, and don’t have, available
- The systems and procedures you use
- Your people, their knowledge, skills and connections
- Your physical assets
- Your online presence and what that says about you
- The marketing collateral you hold and how you use it
- Your business relationships
- The time and money available
Once you know what you have which you can work with, you’re better placed to use it to best effect.
2. FOCUS ON YOUR CUSTOMERS
“The absolute fundamental aim is to make money out of satisfying customers.” So said Sir John Egan, a British industrialist associated with businesses in the automotive, airports, construction and water industries. And the same is true whatever market you operate in. Without customers, you don’t have a business, so we place your customers at the heart of all our thinking and aim to help you do the same in every decision you make.
One of the most important things to remember in doing this is that you are not your customer. Consider your offer, means and place of delivery, pricing, communications, packaging, advertising, messaging and so on from their perspective. Whilst you can put yourself in your customers’ shoes to some extent, if you use your personal perspective, likes and dislikes to make choices on their behalf then you are unlikely to get it spot on.
You are more likely to succeed if you know and understand your customers, continually get feedback from them and use it to shape what you do. We help our clients do that.
3. HAVE THE RIGHT INFORMATION AND USE IT
Whilst clients can be keen to jump straight into delivering activity, whether that’s email marketing, social media, updating your website, new print, advertising or something else, for us, that isn’t the right place to start. We don’t want you to waste your time and money on activity which isn’t going to deliver for you, so we help clients build their knowledge and use that to guide their decision.
“Do you know who your customers are? What can you tell us about them? Why do they buy from you? Which customers and products/services are the most profitable? Do you offer anything which sets you apart from the competition?” are some of the first things we will ask you.
If you have the answers to the key questions, then that’s great. We’ll help you use that information to make decisions about direction and focus for your business and your marketing. If not, we will help find them, either by analysing the information you already hold or can easily get your hands on or by planning work which will help you get the information you need.