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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Publicity, networking and branding

The SMPS Marketer is just one of many benefits of The Society for Marketing Professional Services -- if you are responsible for marketing for the architectural, engineering and construction sectors, membership is a 'must' especially if you are in one of many U.S. cities with local SMPS chapters.

This is a posting about multi-faceted and multi-purpose communicating and marketing. I'm writing it to show you can multi-source a single marketing initiative and leverage it far beyond the initial obvious objective.

We'll start at the beginning. Last fall, noticing the trend to Social Networking sites, I proposed an article on the topic to SMPS Marketer editor Randy Pollock. Pollock accepted the idea -- and went a step further, he invited me to participate with about 12 others on the SMPS Marketer Editorial Committee.

I began researching the article, achieving direct and immediate communication with several of the best established AEC marketing experts in the U.S. They are quoted in the article. I also communicated with younger people, rising stars, and the like. The result is, I think, a pretty good piece of writing.

Today, on learning that Chase had set up a Facebook page for The GTA Construction Report, I decided to send out an email note to our Canadian readers telling them about the innovation. In it, I also offered readers a copy of the draft SMPS Marketer article about Social Networking. By day's end, seven or eight people had requested the article -- each clearly identifying who they are, and several, relevant prospects for our business. I of course sent them the article -- and forwarded their names to the relevant sales representatives. (Marketing is largely about lead generation for the sales team, of course).

But there's more. While I now have the PDF advance file of the article, it hasn't been printed yet. In a few weeks, however, some 6,500 SMPS members in the U.S. will see it -- and my name, email address, and business description. Nothing like effective branding, eh.

I realize this is bragging, but hope you can see a productive example which you can apply in your own business. When you are reaching out for new clients, when you are seeking to expand and develop your business, a mixture of generosity and efficiency go a long way. I'm freely sharing the article -- and more to come -- without expecting compensation, and you won't find any 'sales pitch' for our services within its pages.

Consider your own areas of expertise; and how you can share your knowledge and insights. Can you write a newsletter, or contribute articles to your community newspaper, or provide useful, unbiased and straightforward advice and tips on your website? You may find one article, one piece of writing, can be multi-purposed five or six times -- and, if all goes the way it should, generate meaningful and useful sales leads for your business.

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