Thursday, September 1, 2016

Marketing Materials 101: Part 1 - Questions

August and September are some of our biggest booking months. Showcases happen. PTA parents have returned to school and are choosing which artists will visit them in the 2016 - 17 school year. They call to check on everything from availability to pricing.

The David spends weeks on the phone and in email correspondence trying to hammer down dates all over the country for the entire year, making sure my touring schedule doesn't kill me, sending out marketing emails, explaining our block booking program, helping people fill out grants, and trying to convince me to teach residencies.

Watching him jump about gave me an idea for a quick blog post.

My plan this morning was to discuss marketing materials!

It seemed like a really good idea. Then, I started photographing my marketing materials so I could make this one of those really colorful posts.

After I did that, I uploaded the pictures.

I have a lot of marketing stuff.

Then it occurred to me I could do one of those 'then and now' type of posts.

To that end, I rooted around until I found my first business card and stationary. I photographed those too. Much less material...technically, since I don't actually have my first ever attempt at a brochure, and I was pretty sure I didn't have any of my old marketing sheets. Then, it occurred to me that I might have them...digitally.

What was meant to take me a few minutes because I could just post my own pictures and say a few things about marketing has turned into a quandary; what's the best way to talk about all of this stuff?

So, I guess that means I'm doing a multi-part blog series on marketing.

I know! Who doesn't want to do that, right?

Me. I don't really want to!

I realize that I talk about marketing every now and then. Most of the time I say things like 'it is very important', or 'you need to work hard at it', and random things like that, but I've never gotten down in the weeds and done a review of the different types of materials we use, and how they are deployed.
So, that is what I will attempt.

I offer this up with the usual caveat that this is what I do, you may have no need for most of this stuff, and you may have more effective marketing for your business. I hope, that if you have interesting things in your marketing process that you will be willing to share with me in the comments section of these posts. I am always looking to learn new things!

As always, I will explain my thought process behind each piece, explain what we do with it, and give some idea about its efficacy.

Since I'm not doing it all in one post, I will even do a piece about the things we don't do anymore, and why.

To that end, I put together a list of questions about marketing materials that this multi-part series will attempt to address.

In no particular order:

What materials do you use in your marketing?

Have you got a brochure? Do you need one?

Have you got a business card? You need one.

Do you have a press packet? What is that, anyway? Do you need one?

Do you have a logo? Do you need one?

Do your marketing pieces work together?

What are you trying to accomplish with your marketing?

Do you send out postcards? Why? Why not?

What message are you sending with your marketing?

How professional is your marketing? Does it matter?

What is your marketing budget?

I am going to attempt to do this in six or seven posts. I listed the subjects below.
I'll combine a few if I can. I don't know if I could write a whole post for some of these.

-Business Card
-Press Packet
-Ghosts of Marketing Past
-The Whole Picture

If you have questions of your own about any of this or suggestions for things I could cover about marketing in the next month and a half, let me know.

So, that's what I have planned for this space.

I can't wait!

Happy Marketing!

1. Marketing 101: Questions

2. Branding: Do You Have A Logo?

3. Your Business Card: Is It Working Hard, Or Hardly Working?

4. The Brochure

5. The Press Kit

6. Cohesion: Why Does It Matter?

7. In Conclusion

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