Are your Marketing Messages Consistent? This 4 point checklist will ensure you’re not wasting your marketing investment dollars…

It concerns me that so many small (and some large) businesses waste their marketing dollar on inconsistent marketing.

It’s like the business owner was sleeping when they decided to spend money on communication with their customer… Let me give you some recent examples so you know what I mean:

– the local butcher recently won an award and took out an ad in our local paper to announce the fact. On entering the store the following day, there was no mention of the win across the front window and the award was tucked behind the cash register almost out of sight.

– Dining in a Chinese restaurant that advertised ‘authentic chinese’ whilst we ate listening to ABC talk back. Nothing authentic about that!

It is no wonder we don’t immediately recognise the business or believe their key message.

So how do we make sure our customers immediately connect to our business when they see our logo (brand recognition), believe every word we say about our business and happily build a strong relationship with our business that continues for many years to come?

It starts with marketing consistency…

Marketing consistency begins with a strong brand identity and key message. The brand identity is made up of three elements – a logo being the focal point, alongside specific colours, and a specific type face (font style).

Lets begin with a 4 Point Checklist too see how consistent your marketing is:

1. Do you have a company logo?
Is it text only or does it include an image? Do you use the company logo in the exactly and format every time? Are there multiple formats to choose from? If so, how do you choose which one?

2. What are your company colours? (PMS & CMYK)
Are your colours consistent across all marketing material? For example, is the blue the same on your business card as it is on your website?

3. What is the key message for your business?
Is the message and branding consistent? Does your website talk about ‘one topic’ (example opening time of 7am-3:30pm) and your magnets ‘another’ (example 24 hour service)?

Seems simple right? RIGHT… but if that’s the case, then why aren’t more businesses communicating a consistent message to their customers?

And you know what, it’s not just you who needs to know these rules. It’s any graphic designer you work with or any new (office) employee. This is communicated with a Style Guide.

A Style Guide is a set of standards for design or writing of documents to be followed by the entire team. It seems like a no brainer seeing as you could simply provide the graphic designed with your logo and assume they will follow the colour scheme and format, but let me tell you, it is amazing at how they can ‘tweek’ your logo until it no longer looks the same… the Style Guide provides the boundaries on not only your company logo, but also company colours, and the key message of the business.

This Style Guide should be then applied consistently across all marketing tools. Including…

– website

– business cards

– letterhead

– email signature

– newspaper advertisement

– vehicles

– invoice books

– thank you cards

– invoices

– uniforms

– building signage

– and all other means of marketing…

Ensuring your marketing is consistent is one of the most important things you could do for your trade business. Without this, there is no clear brand or message, and you will actually be losing money by marketing instead of increasing sales!

So what are you doing to ensure your marketing is consistent? Do you have a Style Guide? You better get cracking…

Interested in learning more about marketing? Specifically low-cost marketing techniques you can implement in your trade business? Check out Episode 7 of The Tradie Show, ‘6 Low Cost Marketing Ideas for Trade Based Businesses’. CLICK HERE to gain FREE access. Just remember, keep it consistent.