Marketing Materials Audit: Do You Have What You Need and Need What You Have?

Marketing Materials Audit:
Do You Have What You Need and Need What You Have?

Marketing materials and client communication and information are critical components of any successful business. So many firms, however, spend enormous amounts of time and money for the “wrong” materials and communications.

Many firms that solicit our help offer the multitude of information and materials as “proof” that they are communicating with their prospects and clients. Yet, the recipients of the information often offer that they feel uninformed, uneducated and not respected or listened to about their issues and concerns.

Marketing materials alone do not “sell” a product or service and ongoing written materials alone do not keep clients up-to-date and informed in a way that they can easily respond to and appreciate. These materials can become a crutch for a firm and may actually prohibit the firm from exploring new ways to provide interactive and experiential information for their clients.

We recommend to every firm we work with to do an annual “Marketing Materials Audit”. The audit consists of the following steps:

  • A review of the sales process and ongoing client management process
  • A review of the materials currently used in the sales process and ongoing client service process
  • A survey of clients to understand what they are receiving and how they are, or are not, using and understanding the information
  • An examination of current competitive materials in the marketplace

This audit can help to determine what materials to invest in for next year and how to best utilize existing materials. It is critical to complete before the marketing budget is finalized.

Many firms view the materials and ongoing information as necessary pieces in the process to “sell” their products and services. The materials must support the sales process and ongoing client process, but they cannot control or otherwise lead the process. A clear sales process and client support process must be articulated and understood before materials can be used effectively.

When a firm understands its process—pre and post sales—and recognizes where and how to best use materials, the cost savings can be enormous and the commensurate ROI increases dramatically.