Thursday, April 05, 2007

Become a pro at promotion offers a piece on planning a promotional camaign in 7 "easy" steps. I'm always suspicious of claims that marketing functions can be done in easy steps (they're not easy at all!), but this summary isn't bad. I'll add a couple of additional notes, and feel free to do the same.

When determining your budget the best, but probably most rare, way to do so is by determining what you want to accomplish and then developing a budget that will let you reach that goal. Instead, I'm assuming that most of us, unfortunately, have a fixed promotions budget. To stretch those dollars, consider the lifespan of the promotion vehicles you select. For instance, a patron might keep a flyer for a day or so, but she may hold onto a pen for months. If your campaign is intended to raise awareness for an upcoming event, a flyer might do. If, however, your goal is to increase the visibility of your library in general, put your dollars into something with staying power. Since those items will cost more, be sure to carefully target your intended audience to get the most bang for your buck.

I was taught to develop promotions objectives so that they have a verb, a number, and a time frame. Here's a sample goal: To increase behavioral intention to try X database by 5% over 6 months. Also, be sure your target audience understands what action you want them to take.

Finally, I tend to favor using multiple vehicles to reach your audience. It may take more than one exposure in one vehicle to get the message across. Given the state of today's marketplace, those vehicles should also be as interactive as possible so that your audience can talk back and engage in conversation. Try not to think of promotion as a one-way street, but as a dialogue that respects the fact that there is a human being on the other end of the channel.

Good luck!

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