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The Whole Enchilada: why a la carte marketing
won’t give you full results

If you have ever embarked on a fitness or weight loss regimen, you can agree that doing it halfway will only get you halfway to your goal. Buying the miracle “lose your love handles” pills never works. There are no shortcuts. You have to eat right, increase your activity level and make some sacrifices. You can’t give a little to get the total result you expect. And, putting zero-calorie sweetener in your coffee while you indulge in chocolate hazelnut torte just isn’t going to do it. Trust me, I know.

Why is commitment to the complete program so hard? Do the work. Stay the course. If there were an easier way, we would all be fit and healthy—and, those miracle pill companies wouldn’t be making money, over and over again.

The same scenario carries through in marketing. You have a goal in mind—launch a new company, increase brand awareness, update your company image. You contract with a marketing company to define the strategy to get you there. Now that you have your roadmap, the key is to follow it. Don’t get detoured or distracted, second-guessing and searching for a fast, easier, cheaper solution.

Like erecting a pyramid, the building blocks are interdependent, gain strength from one another and rise steadily together to achieve the pinnacle. If you choose to leave out some of the blocks, your project will be unstable, at best, crumble or never reach fruition. For every “Valley of the Kings” there are dozens of rubble piles of the never-followed-throughs.

Investment in the right team for you, commitment to development time, and patience to allow the program to do its job are critical to your marketing success. Shortcuts don’t get results. As an example, I’ve had clients ask me, “What would it cost to just make roughs for a logo?”

In the case of a logo/identity program, the research, concept development, industry and competitor analysis are all the magic behind the curtain—and 75% of the work—in developing roughs that will be refined into the final logo. So, there really is no way to decrease the investment and shortcut the project without compromising your goal. Anyone who offers to do so, isn’t doing the marketing groundwork to build a strong brand for you.

Establishing a clear program and sticking with it will preempt the lure of quick-fix, miracle solutions that won’t deliver on your long-term goals. It will eliminate the temptation to pick apart a program and choose initiatives a la carte which will yield disappointing results.

So, if you want a satisfying outcome, commit to a program and see it through. Go for the entire enchilada—just make it a healthy one.

Next Issue:

The tail wagging the dog: Making your tagline effective

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