Many of us can agree that The Cheesecake Factory is a handy eatery. Where else can you go and be in the mood for almost anything and know there is an option available for you? Want a burger? They got it. Are you feeling like seafood? Find it on the menu. Maybe Chinese is more your flavor, well, the Factory can hook you up.
Choices are not in short supply at The Cheesecake Factory. However, sometimes too many options can be more overwhelming than helpful. Have you ever walked into the famous restaurant, not knowing what would satisfy you? It's the worst! The 250 menu items can feel daunting when you are unsure of what will fulfill you best.
There's another menu that can have the same effect. That's the list of marketing channels and initiatives available to you. Your goal is to get your message out and your product and services in front of your customers. You know the desired end result. It looks similar to needing to eat to get rid of hunger. Yet, there is this looming question that goes unanswered when you enter La Café Marketing. What channels and what strategy works best to help you arrive at your overarching objective?
Is it an ad campaign?
A social media story?
A series of emails?
No, no. Maybe it's traditional media?
A drip campaign using ads and emails?
Shall we keep going? We can do this all day. ;)
We think you get the point. So, how do you know? Whitney Houston asked this same question regarding love. And yes, we marketers and business leaders feel the same pain as we approach the many different roads of reaching our target audience.
To calm the panic that may loom when we stand at these crossroads, know that there is no one right answer. Many roads can lead you to your aimed destination just as more than one food choice can satisfy your need for a good meal. What matters most in these moments is how you begin.
What do we mean by this? Well, do you have a basic understanding of what is informing your decisions? You need a set of ideas to assist you in taking the first step, and you should have a firm grasp on what has formulated those thoughts. This understanding becomes the starting line. Your best way to arrive at this place is through an audit.
An audit is an official inspection of your landscape. You take the time to examine the world around you. Evaluate your audience, review your industry, analyze your competitors, deep-dive your current marketing environment, and identify vital goals. Without an audit, you will remain lost and unable to determine the best way forward. Your options and endless choices will direct you instead of you directing them.
When we slow down to survey all the elements impacted by our selections, the answers become apparent. They paint a crystal clear picture of the ingredients necessary to cook up a magnificent dish. This meal not only satisfies but achieves its intended purpose.