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"The Onion Marketing Plan" (My Free Gift to Businesses Small and Large)

Posted May 19 2013 8:02am

Tired of getting 50-page marketing documents from expensive agencies that require two hour meetings filled with PowerPoint presentations to understand, and that then never get implemented? 

Lost your marketing staff or agency due to the economic downturn but still need professional communications efforts that give you as much bang for the buck as possible? 

I'm giving you a gift today--a simple marketing strategy that you'll be able to "get" in about twelve seconds. For free.

I call it my Onion Marketing Plan, and it looks like this (pictured above). Rings of an onion on a plate, with ways you can harness the power of various customer touchpoints (starting with local and moving outward to global) in a strategic, integrated way. That's it in its entirety.

I use a local gardening center as a sample. I could do yours as well. I can also write the content needed to populate all these bullets (see links to the enormous amount of content I wrote for that garden center during a six-month relationship here ), so you don't get left hanging with ideas that never see the light of day. 

I can bill you by the hour or by the project. My rates have remained exactly the same for 17 years. You get a discount for being a B-Corp or non-profit, or if you contract with me for 10 hours a week or more. And you get the benefit of my boatload of corporate experience from before I went rogue and started my business (named Fresh Baked Copy; I now go by Sustainable Pattie ) after I got sick of dropping off my infant at daycare at 7 AM and picking her up almost 12 hours later. (That baby graduates from high school this week. See "Roots and Wings" here .

My office is currently based in the metro-Atlanta city of Dunwoody, which is in the area called home to the largest concentration of Fortune 500 companies in the southeastern United States. I will be spending enormous amounts of time in the Decatur area as well, starting in August. You can be located anywhere in the United States. I have had many clients whom I have never met in person, and that seems to work just fine (although you know how I love a "work walk"). It's truly that simple. Let's talk .

Want to start small? Every business needs customer/client success stories and I've written over 100 of them for Cox Enterprises', an online search tool for finding local service companies recommended by your friends and neighbors. I research, interview, and write the stories in a way that moves your target audience to action. These testimonial success stories can be used by your sales staff and on your website. They are about as powerful a marketing tool as you can create. And you can't put a junior writer on it. You need someone with the experience to see the big picture, who can get the job done efficiently and effectively, and has the ability to connect with people at all levels in a wide range of industries. And you need someone who truly loves to tell people's unique stories. Like me .

As a result of the intensity and depth of some of these conversations, I uncover powerful overarching themes in your client experiences (such as that Kudzu has literally saved more small businesses than you can imagine and given many business owners back not just their livelihoods but their lives, while boosting the economic sustainability of communities) that can be used to more fully inform your marketing messaging. Here's an example of the kinds of quotes I've gotten for Kudzu (this one is from about two weeks ago):

"In 2006, I lost my job, my house, everything, and I was even homeless for awhile," Jackson explained. "I started Evolution Bikes in 2006 with practically no money. The reviews on Kudzu helped me build my business, and now our expanded online presence brings in a steady stream of customers every single day.  I recently doubled my store's size due to our business growth, and I started taking Sundays off for the first time in seven years. I see my family now, I can take a vacation if I want, and I have some job security. There is no price I can put on that." 

See that full story, and more, here , under "categories" on the right hand side in that link. And think about what the power of real-life customer stories can do for your business. June is almost all spoken for already (assignments for articles like this one , plus an investigative journalism trip to the cork oak forests and factories of Portugal: see my Talking Cork with Pattie Baker series ), but I have some bandwidth in July, and I would be honored to serve your business.  

Learning as I grow,
Pattie Baker
Member, Metro Atlanta Chamber

eclectic food-for-thought for a changing world
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