If you have more time than money, one-to-one marketing might yield exceptional ROI.

How often do we think of marketing to just one person? Not mass communications tailored to one type of person or group but one single person. Sounds strange but not so fast, it could be just what the doctor ordered for your businesses stagnated growth. Marketing to one person at a time takes a lot of time but in many situations, proves to be extremely effective especially when your marketing budget is, essentially, zero

Elaine Fogel, MarketingProfs learned firsthand the effects of 1-on-1 marketing, while promoting the AMA’s 2011 Nonprofit Marketing Conference. “Though registration was steady,” she says, “I wanted more.” Here’s what she did…

1. Identified appropriate prospects with member lists for LinkedIn groups. Fogel sent personal invitations to the conference, and to join her network. She received a variety of responses. Some accepted one or both invitations, some asked questions and some sent “thank you” messages. In the process, she began a conversation that prospects were likely to continue with others. “What I was hoping for was to generate word-of-mouth from this group of influencers to their colleagues,” she notes.

2. Promoted the conference with an event hashtag via Twitter. At first, Fogel mentioned the conference only occasionally; after a few months, however, she upped the frequency, and began sending personal tweets to her followers. “Many of my followers retweeted my tweets, increasing exposure for the conference—and providing the opportunity for me to follow up with their retweeters.”

3. Used Google to research organizations within a 30-mile radius of the conference. Two weeks before the conference, she emailed personal invitations to strong prospects at local nonprofits. “The highlight,” she says, “was a telephone call from one organization’s vice-president of marketing inquiring how his company’s nine-member marketing team could register for the conference at the member rate.”

Have you ever considered one-on-one marketing? Why or why not? What were some of your experiences with this intimate form of marketing. Sound off others want to know.