Many times we will meet with clients who already have in mind which tactics they would like to employ. They’ve been told they need XYZ and they want us to produce it.
Imagine this scenario:
A client calls our office.
“Hey guys, I was just talking with my wife’s uncle’s friend who owns a business. He said he just created an online newsletter and is seeing massive growth in qualified leads. I need an online newsletter!”
This particular client manufactures and sells false teeth to predominantly elderly clients. A large majority of his target audience doesn’t even own a computer, let alone is active on the internet. So although we appreciate the client’s enthusiasm and we are happy to create any and everything for them, we feel situations such as this put the cart before the horse. We could go forward and create an online newsletter for him and it would be a gigantic flop. Guess who’s fault it would be? We need to start at the beginning and ask,
What is your goal?
So what is imaginary client’s goal?
“I want to see massive growth in qualified leads!”
Now this is something that we can work with. Our team can research his audience. Learn better who they are and what channels they are active in. Maybe we find that our client attends an annual tradeshow which used to account for a large percentage of his sales but has dropped significantly in recent years. We create a killer booth for our client with high-end, attractive print collateral. We give his sales people talking points and allow interested parties to sign up on-site for more information. From this event we end up with an email list of qualified leads to which we can create and execute an email marketing campaign.
We would have never come to this solution had we just got to work on creating the requested newsletter. A newsletter would have been a band-aid whereas our solution creates a process and system that will continue to strengthen this client’s lead generation for the foreseeable future.
By focusing on the fundamentals and identifying goals we develop a deeper understanding of the client’s needs. Armed with this understanding we are free to explore solutions creatively. This is when we innovate. Rules must be understood before they can be broken and you must know what’s in the box before you can think outside of it.