If you want customers, you are going to need to actively get out there and find them to let them know that you exist. The only way to do that is with a solid marketing strategy.
Read on to learn several tips on how to develop a marketing strategy for your business.
WHAT IS A MARKETING STRATEGY?
Your business’ marketing strategy simply defines how you are going to market your products, business or service to your customers. It will lay out your objectives and how you are going to execute them. A marketing strategy is a business forward-looking approach that combines all of its marketing goals into one comprehensive plan. A marketing strategy will help a business move closer to its short-term or long-term strategic goals. It includes an evaluation of market dynamics, demographics and the competitive industry to create a plan of action.
When is a marketing strategy developed?
A marketing strategy should be created before you start your business. You may not be able to effectively market your business without understanding how it fits into the marketplace, how you will compete, what you need to achieve in order to reach your financial goals and your competition. This information is needed to design and implement your marketing strategy.
HOW TO BUILD A MARKETING STRATEGY?
These tips will help you develop an effective marketing strategy for your business.
Know your target audience
The first step in developing your marketing strategy is to know who it is that you are marketing to. This is one of the biggest and basic principles for a marketer to follow. One common way to know your target audience is to create a buyer persona. A buyer persona is a representation of your ideal customer based on market research and any data about any existing customers you have. When creating your buyer persona, consider including your customer demographics, motivations and goals. By creating a buyer persona, you can be sure that you are marketing to people who are actually interested in what you have to offer.
Creating a list of demographics that your customer falls into can help create buyer personas. Ask yourself these questions about your target customer when outlining a buyer persona:
- Location: Where do they live?
- Age: What is their age range?
- Interested: What are their interests?
- Job title: What fields of work do your customers work in, and what job titles do they have?
- Buying motivation: What are their reasons for buying your product?
- Buying concerns: What are their concerns when buying your product?
The more time you put into developing your buyer persona, the more effective your marketing strategy will be in the end.
Identify your business goals
To continue developing your marketing strategy, you need to identify your business so you can then define a set of marketing goals to support them. Some business goals may include:
- Increasing awareness of your products and services by using social media
- Selling ten additional products a month
- Increasing the number of customers and/or clients each month by twenty
When setting goals, it is crucial to be as specific as possible so you can effectively measure the outcomes against what you set out to achieve. The SMART goal setting method can help.
- Specific: State clearly what you want to achieve.
- Measurable: Set tangible measures so you can measure your results.
- Achievable: Set objectives that are within your capacity and budget.
- Relevant: Set objectives that will help you improve particular aspects of your business.
- Time-bound: Set objectives you can achieve within the time you need them.
Research your market
Research is a crucial part of your marketing strategy. You will need to gather information about your market, such as its size, growth, demographics (population, age) and social trends. It is important that you keep an eye on the market so your business is aware of any changes over time so your strategy remains targeted and relevant.
Profile your potential customers and competitors
Use your market research to develop a profile of the customers you are targeting and identify their needs. The profile will reveal their buying patterns, including how they buy, where they buy and what they buy. While you are trying to find new customers, make sure your marketing strategy also allows you to maintain relationships with your existing customers.
As part of your marketing strategy, you should develop a profile of your competitors by identifying their products, supply chains, pricing and marketing tactics. Use this to identify what sets your business apart from your competitors. You may also want to identify your strengths and weaknesses of your internal processes to help improve your performance compared with your competition.
The Seven P’s of Marketing
The seven P’s are marketing tactics that can satisfy customers in your target market. Your business can use this model to continually evaluate and regulate your business activities.
Product refers to what you are selling, including all of the features, advantages and benefits that your customers can enjoy from buying your goods and services. When marketing your product, you need to think about the benefits your customers want or need.
This refers to your pricing strategy for your products and services and how it will affect your customers. You should identify how much your customers are prepared to pay, your profit margins and payment options. To attract and retain what sets your business apart from the competition, you may also want to consider the possibility of discounts.
These are promotional activities you can use to make your customers aware of your products and services, including advertising, sales tactics and promotions. These are generally known as marketing tactics.
Place is where your products and services are seen, made, sold or distributed. Access for customers to your products is key, and it is important to ensure that customers can find you. You can set yourself apart from your competition by using effective visual marketing techniques. If you are starting a new business, finding the right business location will be a key marketing tactic.
People refer to the staff and sales people who work for your business, including yourself. When you provide excellent customer service, you create a positive experience for your customers by marketing your brand to them. Existing customers may spread the word about your excellent service, and you can gain referrals. Give your business the competitive advantage by recruiting the right people, training your staff to develop their skills and retaining good staff.
Process refers to the processes involved in delivering your products and services to the customer. Having a good process in place ensures that you repeatedly deliver the same standard of service to your customers and save time and money by increasing efficiency
Physical evidence refers to everything your customers see when interacting with your business, which includes:
- The physical environment where you provide the product or service
- The layout or interior design
- Your packaging
- Your branding
Consider how your business’ layout can build and increase your sales.
Choose your mediums
There is a wide variety of ways to get your marketing message to your prospects. You can go the traditional advertising route and use ads in newspapers and billboards, or you could go the modern route like content marketing and search engine optimization (SEO), which is a marketing discipline focused on growing visibility in organic (non-paid) search engine results. These channels will be used in order to turn your audience into prospects and then into customers. It is important to make informed decisions about what channels provide the best ways to reach your targeted customers.
Visit our blog to learn more about SEO!
INNERACTION MEDIA | DEVELOPING A MARKETING STRATEGY
Building a solid marketing strategy is essential if you want your business to be successful. Once your marketing strategy is complete, you will know exactly which direction to move forward and how to get there.
If you need help developing your businesses marketing strategy, our team can help. We help our clients develop a 10+ page Marketing Blueprint document that outlines a business's unique audience, geographic targets, key messages and priority business segments while also recommending actionable items including building landing pages, pillar pages, video concepts, lead magnets, content calendars and much more.
Give us a call at 304-241-4959.