We have all seen them. They show up in the conference room, board room and client meetings. They wind up smack dab in the middle of projects. Teams get side tracked by them. We see them eat our time, ROI, budget and free time.
Some people even get addicted to them. Unfortunately they like the false sense of feeling they accomplished something.
Many business leaders know they have a problem with them but they simply don't know how to get rid of them. They feel stuck in an endless cycle of randomness.
What is a Random Act of Marketing (RAM)?
Random Act of Marketing Defined:
An attempt to drive revenue, grow market share, increase brand awareness, grow community, or other business benefit that is NOT integrated, can not be easily measured or justified and does not integrate with other marketing and business tactics.
Rammies are multiple RAMs that show up on a list or that are completed within a short time frame. They always lead to lost return on investment (ROI). They rarely offer benefit in the form of brand awareness, community growth, relationship nurturing or anything positive. The false sense of accomplishment often felt when crossing a RAM off the list is short lived.
They are highly addictive and can lead to medium and long term business decline and often failure if they are not dealt with in a timely and efficient manner.
How to Identify the RAM
RAMs usually start out as a simple project or task. They often start small and wind up growing bigger. A RAM may start out as a simple Facebook page update, Facebook page campaign, LinkedIN group, email blast or even offline event.
Top 4 signs of a RAM:
1. Not funded
2. Not in the plan
3. Not integrated
4. No defined metrics for success.
How to Stomp the RAMMIES:
1. Identify and acknowledge that you have a case of the RAMs. Remember to look for the top 4 signs which include not being funded, not in the plan, not integrated and no defined metrics for success.
2. Get the RAMMIE planned, funded, measured and integrated. Analyze if it should be a priority to get the project or initiative funded, in the plan, integrated and measured. If it doesn't, then KILL IT, fast!
3. Take Control of the RAMMIE! If you are a small business owner, chances are you have more control than some may at a larger company with more management layers. If you need to stop an activity, stop it! Don’t be afraid to hit pause on one thing to be successful with another!
4. Develop a plan. Business leaders who want to become RAM free can NOT skip the planning phase. It is absolutely critical. Without a plan you are going to have a hard time selling your RAMMIE kill strategy to those who have a life and paycheck dependent upon a list of RAMMIES. Develop your plan for how you are going to kill the RAMMIEs. Be sure to include the benefits, the goals, objectives and the big picture for where you are going and why. Make it clear you are headed to a better place without the RAMMIEs.
5. Fit social media into your business, not your business into Facebook. A big mistake many business leaders make is attempting to fit their business into a particular social network. Social media should support business objectives and integrate with your business, not the opposite. Don't put all your eggs in a social network basket you don't own.
6. Know your audience. If you have been internally focused and found yourself in a sea of RAMs, one of the best ways to get yourself out of the mess is to refocus on the needs of your audience. Prioritize your efforts for social media using an audience based approach. Figure out how you can best help your audience solve problems. What keeps them up at night? How can you help them? Download-> Social Media Audience Analysis Worksheet
7. Integrate. Focus on integrating across different mediums, projects, campaigns, and platforms. Think integrated online business platform, not silo'd random micro sites and landing pages. Do what is right, not always just what is easy. Taking time to slow down to speed up will often get you to the end goal faster and with much less frustration along the way. Read-> Slow Down to Speed Up for Social Business Success
8. Obtain buy-in from key stakeholders and management. Build your team of believers and RAM stompers. If you own or work for a small business this may be you and your boss. If you work in a larger company then you need to include your management, partner organizations, internal teams and other key stakeholders. Stay focused on your goals, objectives and metrics for success.
9. Commit to be RAMMIE free. Some of your peers or employees may be addicted to RAMs. This happens because they often provide instant gratification. Avoid the instant marketing fix. Focus on the long term success of your business. Take the time to learn your markets and get in the head of your customers. Commit to building an integrated platform for which you will conduct your business both online and offline. Trust me, it will be the best decision you can make for yourself and your business this year!
Get integrated, get focused and dare to make the hard decisions needed to drive your business toward success!
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- Worksheet: Download our POST audience analysis worksheet to help you identify and prioritize your top audiences. It is based upon the Forrester POST methodology.
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