By Viji Davis, VP Client Services
As head of the Client Services department of RM, I am often asked for guidance on how to create solutions for our clients. After putting some thought into this, I wanted to simplify the process as much as possible. The following will give you an outline of the process, but keep in mind there will be a lot of industry research that will need to be done in order to make your solution sound.
Before jumping into the process, I wanted to also add a disclaimer that this assumes that your client’s business goals have been vetted out, identified and agreed upon. If you are still determining what your goals are, you cannot start to create a solution for your client.
Step 1: Put the Consumer (or Customer) First
This step is key to creating a sound solution. No matter what your client’s goals, they are ultimately selling a product or service. Putting the consumer (or customer) first will allow you to focus on the right things. By focusing on who you are targeting and why they make the most sense to target, you will naturally flow into the rest of your questions: What to target them with? Where to target them? When to target them? How to target them?
With our current economic climate, clients not only want volume, they also want efficiency. The series of questions above flow into creating an optimal solution that accounts for both volume and efficiency. In creating the solution, putting the consumer (customer) first will allow you to think about:
- Who is most likely to consume the client’s products or services?
- Who should we/shouldn’t we focus on?
- How can we target spending to focus only on these consumers?
- When should we target them?
- What are their consumption behaviors like?
Step 2: Layer in Products and Services
Once you’ve identified your target, the next step is to layer in the products and/or services your client offers. Things to keep in mind here are:
- What is your client selling and how will each of your target segments respond to the products?
- Do they, the products and/or services, fit each of the segments?
- Are there specific pairings that work best?
- Are there segments that you should de-market to, based on their consumption behaviors and affinity to your client’s product/service?
Step 3: Get Tactical
Now it is time to get tactical and create the solution using the search toolbox: Target, Message, Placement, and Content. Focusing on each of these areas, keeping in mind who your target segment is and the products/services your client is selling will allow you to methodologically create an action plan of what will have the most impact to your client’s business based on their goals and objectives.
Using the three step process outlined above will provide a framework for how to create a solution. Now, get to researching!