4 Ways Marketing Can Affect Your Business

Marketing touches almost every aspect of your business. Most people not involved in marketing wouldn't guess at these 4 ways marketing can impact a company and its customers. The purpose of marketing is to influence a decision, preferably a buying decision. These decisions are intended to make someone's life better in some way. You can do the same for your company by helping them solve problems, but you need to sell the decision makers on your ability to help them in their jobs. It's very easy for people to pick the low-hanging fruit and work on only what is in front of them, but if their answer to the question "Why do you do it like that?" is "Because we've always done it like this," then there is your opportunity to assist.

Navigating between departments of a company as a marketer is more of an art than a science. It takes a heck of a lot of finesse to push some of your ideas forward. Not only do you need to have a detailed plan as to how you intend to help another department, but you need to be somewhat likable in order to get the meeting. At the very least you need an internal reputation for getting things done - even on a small scale. Just make sure people notice it. This can take some time, and as I've said in a previous post, it is a marathon and not a sprint.

Here is how you might prevent that "quick drink" with your boss where she takes your computer in the parking lot.

Operations If customer service is the new marketing, then the operations team is now your partner. If you can demonstrate why a new process (or and old one) is costing you customers and revenue, then perhaps the answer lies in what the customer is experiencing, which is no doubt initiated by operations. Find out what the experience is, trace it back to the kink in the chain, and solve it. 

Accounting Sometimes the budget isn't defined or even in existence. Start with the marketing budget. Does it make sense? What should it based on for your industry? Is it the same as last year's. Is your company attributing costs to the correct budgets, and so forth. For example, CRM  can be in the marketing budget or the sales budget. Sometimes they are one and the same, which can be frustrating, but get a handle on this before you make your case.

Employees Many employees think your job (marketing) is fun, but don't realize how much work goes into branding and messaging development, pipeline management, communications and overall promotion of the company. Constantly educate your peers in other departments about what marketing is and what their role in marketing is, whether consciously or unconsciously. Every employee represents the brand. Are they helping or hindering?

Current Customers Your current customers are your best brand advocates! Keep your customers or clients happy, and you will use less effort and spend less money to replace them. They will even help you gain more business by virtue of word-of-mouth. As I've said on my website, word-of-mouth is now social networking. Follow certain businesses, and your network sees who you follow. If they like you and trust you, they will likely do what you do. Many people even unconsciously check in to businesses on Facebook to let people know where we are or have been. Everyone is being leveraged as a marketer. Use that to your advantage!

Earning the trust of your colleagues - and customers takes time, so don't be afraid to promote your successes. Failure to do so will make you invisible, and you may never move forward and add more value to your company. Your goal should be to make yourself invaluable by virtue of solving problems. Otherwise you are disposable. I know the truth hurts, but I speak from experience.