When I meet with clients to discuss marketing strategy, many times I hear, “What should we do, we have a limited marketing budget,” or, “What else can we do, we have met our marketing and advertising budget but we feel we can do more?”
I typically respond with, “What are you doing in the community?”
Unfortunately the typical response is, “We are members of the Chamber of Commerce!”
Ugh, I hear that too often. That's not community involvement. The lack of creativity at this point is killing me. “No, what are you DOING in the community? What have you done to give back, to be involved, to get noticed as a leader of change and influence,” I ask.
At this point, I usually get “crickets” (silence). I only like silence when I'm drinking a voluptuous martini after a long day at work. Shaken, not stirred please. Ugh again...
For companies on a lean budget, event marketing that focuses on community involvement and giving back is a no-brainer with multiple benefits:
A great example of this type of marketing project would be something as simple as an annual food drive. Right now, we are developing an annual food drive for one of our clients, Pacific Vista Landscaping Services of Santa Clarita, Ca. (PVL) In discussing their marketing strategy, PVL stated they wanted part of their strategy to have a community component. After a discussion with the local food pantry, we discovered that the pantry in that area gets hit hard at the start of summer as school kids who rely on the free meals at school are now home needing lunches. So, late spring is a great time for a landscaping company to give back to the community (local food pantries) because:
The Pacific Vista Landscaping Services Food Drive is a perfect example of a low cost, feel good community project that garners press annually while developing and maintaining relationships locally.
It is key to remember the following ingredients when developing your community project:
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