12 ways to maximize the return on your marketing

The easiest way to waste your business time is by starting completely afresh every time you need something new – whether it’s a sales letter, presentation script or content for your website.

Don’t try to reinvent things and make them completely new every time.

To get the best return on the time and money you invest in marketing, you need to leverage all your activities in as many ways as possible.


Leverage is where we make a big impact by applying a small force. For example, the jack which you use to lift your car up to change the tire applies a small force to lift a very heavy piece of metal.

In marketing, leverage is taking a relatively small action that adds significant extra power to your marketing efforts. To achieve this, you need to make as much use as possible of the marketing activity you are already doing. And you should reuse your existing material as much as possible.

Here’s an example of how you can leverage one small activity into a major marketing success with a little extra work.

Suppose you are giving a talk to the local Chamber of Commerce, here are 12 steps you can take to get maximum leverage for the work you will put in to creating it:

1. Invite your contacts to attend: Asking prospects and customers to your talk is a great way to let them experience you in an informal way.

2. Use your talk as a pretext for research: People are often quite willing to give you their time to answer questions and quite often will take an interest in what you are working on.

3. Issue a press release announcing your talk: The media may even show up and interview you on the spot, or they may contact you afterwards. Even if they only put the release on file for future reference, it’s still a great opportunity to promote your message.

4. Follow up with those who attended your talk: People who attended your talk are also in a great position to suggest your name to others. So let them know you are available to do the talk again.

5. Issue handouts, notes or summary of your talk: Remember to include your contact information on anything you hand out.

6. Publish the transcript on your website: If necessary, you can rework the text slight for use on your website or on other peoples’ sites – and don’t forget to offer it to the organization hosting the talk.

7. Use the talk as the basis of a magazine or newsletter article: Many organizations which you speak for will be delighted to publish your talk in their newsletters, which benefits their readership with valuable content and gets you additional exposure to their audience.

8. Use the talk content as the basis for a workshop: The content can easily be developed as a workshop – perhaps even as a follow-up for some of the people who attended your talk. You can charge a fee or just use it as an opportunity to get to know them better.

9. Customize the talk to other audiences: Once you have given the talk once, you can make small changes to make it work with different organizations.

10. Make reprints of your talk: Issue these to people who attended or include them in promotional packs for your business.

11. Issue a press release after your talk: This can be issued after your talk with details of what you said – another opportunity for the media to contact you.

12. Collaborate with a client or business partner: You can do this either in the talk or in the way you develop the content afterwards. This provides a great opportunity to strengthen your relationship with them.

Using this as an example, consider how you can get more leverage from your existing activities.

You don’t have to find 12 ways but two or three additional activities – even just one – still gives you something you don’t have already for relatively little additional work.

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