“You can have the best product or service in the world, but if people don’t buy – it’s worthless. So in reality it doesn’t matter how wonderful your new product or service is. The real question is – will they buy it?” Noel Peebles
What Is Marketing Anyway?
According to the American Marketing Association, marketing is the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.
When you ponder Peebles’ remark, it makes a lot of sense. Maybe your company does have a fabulous product but if it doesn’t sell, who cares? With that thought in mind, you may be wondering how to best market your product so it does sell. Maybe it’s time to consider hiring a virtual marketing department.
This new marketing strategy, known as virtual marketing, allows experienced marketing consultants to perform the duties of a full-time marketing department for approximately half the cost of a full-time employee.
Cost effectiveness is just one advantage of hiring a virtual marketing consultant. Others include savings on benefits as virtual marketers don’t require paid time off, sick days, vacations and office space. Companies can also cut overhead in the area of production because a virtual marketing firm can assign a team to represent the company so it receives an entire marketing division as opposed to one employee for the company. Business owners also save on technological equipment because a virtual marketing consultant uses their equipment to produce results.
Virtual marketing companies work remotely from an office and communicate with their clients via Skype video chat, telephone conference, and webinars. When a marketing consultant is needed at the client’s location for a special event or big meeting, a virtual marketing consultant will make arrangements to attend. According to PKP Marketing Consulting, marketers who hire an out-of-house organic search/ SEO expert report a 110 percent jump in site traffic, vs. 38 percent for those who do SEO in-house.
Believe it or not, marketing affects almost every aspect of your daily life. All the goods and services you buy, the stores where you shop, and the radio and TV programs you listen to and watch are there because of marketing. Consumers pay for the cost of marketing activities. In advanced economies, marketing costs about 50 cents of each consumer dollar. For some goods and services, the percentage is much higher.
Even traditional organizations like hospitals are turning to virtual marketing. Hospitals starting to experiment with this marketing model are finding the method has a number of benefits. At the 145-staffed-bed Children’s Hospital & Medical Center in Omaha, NE, the marketing department’s in-house staff handles various marketing functions, including online marketing and media relations. Outside consultants (mostly small outfits that specialize in a single area, such as media buying or graphic design) round out the team. “We have all the elements of a full-service agency, but they’re not located in one shop,” says Martin W. Beerman, vice president of marketing and community relations at Children’s.
As David Ogilvy once said, “You now have to decide what ‘image’ you want for your brand. Image means personality. Products, like people, have personalities, and they can make or break them in the market place.” If a virtual marketing department can do this for you better and more affordably, it’s probably worth a shot. Isn’t it?