Your 4-Step Guide to Building an Effective Marketing Plan for 2018

With 2017 coming to an end, it’s the perfect chance to take a step back, reassess your goals and set plans for 2018.

Having a suitable plan in place is the most effective way to have a clear marketing focus and to be able to track results throughout the year.

Better yet, creating a marketing plan doesn’t even have to be complicated. Here’s a straightforward four-step plan to get you on the right path. Read more


Why You Should Be Using Video In Your Marketing

I received an email last week about a smartphone app called Chatbooks.


What’s clever about Chatbooks is that it takes your pictures from your phone via your Instagram or Facebook account and makes them up into photo albums.


Now while it all sounds very clever and convenient it isn’t the service that I want to talk about but the promotional video.


Not only is the video amusing and engaging but it uses so many classic marketing techniques that I want to use it as a bit of a case history.


You can watch the video below:

I really liked it (although my daughter tells me it’s annoying) – just a matter of taste I guess. What do you think?


So what can we learn from it?


  1. Copywriting

It follows the classic copywriting approach:

  • Pain
  • Agitate
  • Solution


It identifies the initial pain – the fact that making photo albums is very time consuming and that busy mothers don’t have the time.


It then agitates the problem by highlighting the costs and formatting difficulties of traditional photo albums.


Then, of course, it provides the solution in the form of Chatbooks.


  1. Precise Targeting


Accurate targeting is vital to the success of your marketing.


The video is absolutely clear on who it wants to target –  busy, frazzled mothers.


  1. Everything’s Easy


The easier you make something sound, the greater chance you have of selling it.


Chatbooks is shown to be very easy and quick to install and setup.



  1. Engaging


To communicate your message, you have to engage your audience. I was totally engaged and watched it all the way through.


  1. Money Back Guarantee


If you can guarantee your product, you remove the risk for your customers. Taking away the risk via a guarantee can massively grow your sales.


  1. Call to Action


You need to tell your audience what to do next. This video both tells you and shows you exactly what they want you to do and even spells out that it’ll take you no longer than 30 seconds to do it.


These are the kind of elements that I use for my clients in order to produce standout marketing that generates loads of enquiries and new customers.


If you want to grow your business and know that your marketing isn’t up to scratch, get in touch on mikejennings@marketingsurrey.co.uk , or call me on 01483 200387.


Low-Cost Marketing For Small Businesses

I’ve recently started working with a lovely new client called Becca.


She currently has a tiny business where she provides cleaning and companionship services for elderly people and she wants to grow it.

Read more


Why You Should Offer A Guarantee

We’re going away in a couple of weeks.


Although my kids are all in their twenties with busy lives they all still come which I absolutely love.


One thing I don’t love is sorting out travel insurance.

Read more

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The Importance Of Planning

So here we are in late August.


The kids are still off school and half the world is on the beach.


I regularly hear people saying that it’s not worth doing too much marketing as so many people are away.


Not surprisingly I don’t buy that one but if that’s your opinion I would urge you to use the next few weeks to plan your marketing for the rest of the year.

Read more


START Marketing Right in 2017

So we’re now well into 2017 and hopefully you’ve got a multitude of marketing opportunities.

But, how do you ensure your marketing plan is both right and achievable?

Read more

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How to Use Christmas in Marketing

Christmas is the peak selling time for many businesses, which also means it’s incredibly competitive.

As the holidays approach, I hope you’ve got a plan to help you take full advantage of the festive season.

Read more

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The Basic Principals of Marketing

As you can probably imagine I talk to plenty of business owners about marketing and what I can do to help them grow their businesses.


Quite often the business owner will tell me how my plans just wouldn’t work because “their business is different”.

One in a Million

Sometimes it’s “our customers wouldn’t like that” or maybe “that’s not how this market works” or even “You just don’t understand – this business is different”.


Sometimes I think they’re scared I’m going to try and sell them something and so it’s just a smokescreen objection, but often they have genuinely convinced themselves that the normal rules of marketing genuinely don’t apply to them.


Of course all businesses have individual characteristics because people like me are always telling them they have to stand out and find their points of difference, but what these people are missing is that the fundamental principals behind all marketing, irrespective of the sector are just the same:

  • Find someone with a problem
  • Highlight the problem and emphasise the pain
  • Show them how you can solve the problem and remove the pain
  • Do it

One in a Million

That’s how it works irrespective of your industry or size of business.


I’ll show you what I mean and I’ll take a couple of very different sorts of businesses as examples.


Let’s look at someone selling logs within the local community and someone selling top end holidays.


So if I want to sell logs, I’ll focus on my local area and I’ll drop leaflets through people’s door or knock on the door. I’ll probably put a poster up on the local notice board and I may also do a Google Adwords campaign within the target area. I might also do a deal with a local chimney sweep to offer a discount on chimney sweeping to all potential customers as an added incentive.

Once I’ve got my customers I’m going to email them a couple of times during the winter and then again in Autumn to resell them next year.


For the top end holidays, I’m going to locate my prospects through specialist mailing lists, through pay per click advertising, by blogging and maybe some remarketing.


I’m going to need to drip feed information over an extended period of time as the decision making window for an extravagant holiday may be several months.


While the specifics may differ the principals and the process is the same – get the right bait, cast it out in the right pond, continue doing it regularly and then haul in the fish.


This process works in every market.


How do I know – because I’ve been in this business as a marketing consultant in Surrey for over 11 years now and I’ve had clients in all sorts of different businesses.


If you don’t believe me, just email me on mikejennings@marketingsurrey.co.uk or call me on 01483 200387 and I’ll show you how it works.

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How to Excel at Mobile Marketing

During my time as a marketing consultant in Surrey, I have come to the realisation that all too often people are focussing their online presence to meet the needs of customers solely using desktops and laptops; there’s a distinct lack of attention paid to mobile devices.

I am here to help you and your business to excel at mobile marketing, understanding the need to be accessible on more than just the traditional world wide web.



According to recent studies SmartPhones have overtaken laptops as UK internet users’ number one device. UK internet users, on average, spend two hours online on their smartphones every day; twice as long as laptops and PCs.

Furthermore, superfast 4G has changed the way we shop, bank, watch television and interact.

Ofcom’s Communications Market report stated that a third (33%) of internet users consider their smartphone as their most important device, compared to 30% who still see their desktop as their device of choice to go online.

By 2020 it is expected that there will be 20 billion devices connected to the web and that 80% of people will own a smartphone. It’s therefore vital as a business owner to get your business mobilised.

If your business is not mobilised, you are missing out on huge market potential.

Make Your Site Mobile Friendly

To attract mobile users, it’s best to create simple apps and calls to actions that are straight forward to navigate through.  The most purposeful apps like Facebook and Instagram are task driven and easy to use.

Simple apps are quicker to build, easier to navigate through and most importantly are easier for the user to load.  Your content shouldn’t take more than 3 seconds to download, if it does than you increase the chance of losing your potential customer. The mobile user is an impatient breed.

Infographics vector illustration of smartphone utilities, people character, multi-ethnic, simple and flat design style.
QR Codes

Include QR Codes or Quick Response Codes on your business cards and ads, flyers and your email signature.

A QR Code is a matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code) that is readable by QR scanners which can be downloaded free of charge to any smartphone gadget.

Once a QR Code is scanned, the code allows you to send your customer to a specific page on your website or to a specific special offer.

Text/SMS Messaging

After you have the consent to contact your customers, you should create the right message to get them to click on your link/ad or opt in to a precise promotion using text messaging.

Mobile Search Advertising Programs 

This is similar to traditional Pay-Per-Click advertising but just for your mobile phone.

Google allows you to bid on what you are willing to pay, either pay per click or pay per call from a potential customer. There’s lots of choices for mobile search campaigns, from locally targeted ads to call ads.


mobile-searchMobile Apps

There’s a growing amount of smartphone users who prefer using apps rather than using mobile sites. You can create an app that has exclusive content, that creates newsletters, sells services and drives traffic to your business.

Mobile Directories

You can get on a mobile app by joining a couple of mobile directories; make sure all of your directory listings have a description of your business.

Furthermore, it should have the hours of operations, contact details – such as address and post code – and, of course, a link to your site.

ISTANBUL - SEPTEMBER 18, 2015: Apple Iphone 6 screen with social media applications of Whatsapp, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Periscope while a male finger is about to touch on Facebook app.Social Media

Nearly everyone has a Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter account, and they’re free to use! Just make sure you keep all your social media channels up to date.

It’s a great way of reaching people on the go – particularly as Social Media is so mobile friendly.


There are many ways in which you can excel at marketing your business through a mobile phone.

It’s important to offer your customers and potential clients an accessible way to find and interact with your company; with laptops and desktops being exponentially left in the wake of mobile phone technology, it pays to understand how you can target your demographic.

If you need further information on how you can excel at mobile marketing, or marketing your business as a whole, all you have to do is get in touch! Let’s work together and grow your business.