• Determine if a Marketing Campaign is Necessary.
Depending on the situation of the firm, a concerted marketing campaign may or may not be necessary. If the firm
is just starting up, strategic marketing efforts should focus on general brand awareness. However, if the firm has
a stronghold in the industry, campaigns serve as a great
way to emphasize a new product, new service, new sector served, new geographic location, etc. Campaigns, by
nature, are short-term whereas general brand awareness
efforts can be continual. Based on the context, a campaign may last a week, a month, or a quarter for instance.
Campaigns require a specific plan related to, for example,
a particular message, a specific target, a select service,
etc. A marketing campaign is a component of the overall
strategic marketing annual plan.
• Understand Strategic Marketing Tactics Available.
There are a variety of tools available to consulting firms
seeking to leverage contemporary marketing opportunities. When it comes to digital marketing, simply having
a website is not enough in today’s society. Here are several examples of tools that are available to firms:
• Landing Pages
• Search Engine Optimization
• Online Reputation Programs
• Social Media Platforms
• Podcast Opportunities
• Expert Interviews
• White Paper Development
• Create a Marketing Plan. Consultants understand the
value of ideation and the need for plans when it comes
to client projects. However, these same planning initiatives are necessary for a firm’s business development
success as well. This plan will look different for every
firm, but consider developing an annual plan, split by
2. Create tailored messaging per audience
3. Identify relevant communication mediums
4. Implement appropriate marketing tactics
The marketing plan must take into consideration
budgetary investment and desired ROI to determine effectiveness.
• Measure the Success of the Marketing Investment.
Along with all this planning and implementation, contemporary consultants must measure the success of the
marketing investment. The tricky aspect of marketing
is that it is challenging to measure Return on Investment (ROI) for brand awareness initiatives. Though still
complex, it is more achievable for firms to identify ROI
on specific marketing campaigns. When attempting to
measure ROI, it is necessary to understand the typical
sales cyclical for a particular service/product. For example: If the sales cycle is typically 12 months for a service
and a firm attempted to measure ROI on a four-month
marketing campaign two months post-campaign, the
firm would not generate an accurate ROI. Firms must be
aware that depending on the situation, they may only be
able to determine a trend, not an exact number.
• Seek Ways to Improve Continuously. There is
not one exact marketing equation that works for
every firm in every industry. Instead, strategic
marketing is about understanding the organization’s vision and the target audiences to influence
the marketing messaging, planning, and implementation. During this process, there will be opportunities for improvement and lessons learned.
There are just a few of the essential considerations
for contemporary consulting firms that seek a strategic marketing approach to business development.
These principles provide an initial framework to be
expanded to fit the exact needs of a firm. Reflect on
ways to integrate a strategic marketing approach to
your firm’s business development.
Sarah Skidmore is pursuing a Doctor of Strategic Leadership
(DSL) at Regent University and Chief Strategist at Skidmore
Consulting. She brings innovative and transformative thought to
both non-profit organizations and for-profit businesses. Her work
is grounded in a values-based application of practical theory
to bring the most impact to organizations. Guiding executive
leaders, she delivers forward-thinking strategies. E-mail Sarah@