No Marketing Strategy?
Then you don't have a plan.
You don't have any goals without a marketing strategy.
And by no means am I picking on you or making fun of you.
And to be honest, I admire you,
Because you dove in the ocean without knowing you needed to know how to swim,
I wish I had that kind of bravery, that self-belief that I could figure things out on the fly and get the outcome I want.
But you and I both know that a blinded action has outcomes that nobody will take credit for, especially when it goes wrong.
It is something you will have to live with.
But, it is possible to have that bravery and self-belief, no need to starve yourself of the results you want for your business.
You need to do it with a marketing strategy,
That's what I wish to communicate with you.
You deserve to have a solid plan to ensure your success.
That's why I wanted to make this guide for you to have the right frame of mind as you are piloting your business.
It's never late or early to have a plan.
What Is A Marketing Strategy?
A marketing strategy will involve several concepts, such as your ability to create content and copy as well as how you position yourself in the market as a business.
A solid marketing strategy will be responsible for strategically partnering with other businesses that will support your business.
And how you need to implement tactics to gain traction with media relations, making what you have to offer shareable amongst different channels.
Why Do I Need A Marketing Strategy?
Having clear objectives and tasks about what needs to be accomplished and when helps your business move in unison.
Step-by-step instruction on how to get traffic, what methods need to be included in your overall marketing strategy, as well as how to sell your solution to your target audience
Creating a marketing strategy will help you divide roles among your staff.
This makes it easy to enforce accountability in the working environment. Taking pride in you what you do can be established after you are assigned to handle X, and the quality and completion are through your efforts.
Your marketing strategy is a WMD (weapon of mass destruction)
Yes, I know; it sounds like war talk, right?
It is because if you don't have a marketing strategy, your competition will crush you with theirs. Most likely, whatever your offering to the market has already been created.
What will separate you from the pack will be your strategy.
How will you deliver your message to your audience?
How will you get their attention? How will you empathize with them?
And make them feel at home on your platform while digesting your content?
If you're not approaching the battle for your audience's attention in this manner
Then your losing.
What Marketing Strategy Is Not, But Kinda
Now that you understand what Marketing Strategy is, I wanted to turn some confusion into vapor.
Marketing Strategy is a house.
And that house has plugins essentially, like gas, water, electricity, and heat.
You need all those things to get the greatest benefits of the house.
A strategy is an equivalent of having a goal
And if the goal is to get more leads.
Then the marketing tactics have to support that goal by executing and finding results for the overall plan.
- Sending out 7,000 emails a week that offer access to a free pre-recorded webinar =more leads
- Create a Social media account to engage with your audience =more leads
- Publishing articles that speak to where your audience is on their journey to a solution =more leads
- Speaking at conferences to establish authority on the topic =more leads
Let's say Puma recently created a new shoe.
And they want to use their brand and money to promote this shoe.
You see this shoe on billboards, ads on the internet, buses, and park benches everywhere you go.
And it's all about promoting one product.
This is a marketing campaign; it's not leads or your overall strategy it's about using your resources to accomplish one goal.
Six components go into making a campaign:
- Content Format
Remember having a marketing campaign is similar to accomplishing a mission that encompasses marketing tactics.
Mistakes To Avoid
There are a couple of mistakes that professionals first starting out with their business will have a hard time avoiding. But luckily for you can find out before you begin on your journey.
Marketing To The Whole
This probably the most common mistake.
When you are first starting, the number one thing that comes to mind more often than not is
"I need customers."
What do you go out and do? You try to market your solution to anybody that will listen.
And I get it; you need results now, but ask yourself.
"Am I in this for the short term or long term."
You will be surprised how many people are looking for a solution that fits them, and I'm not talking about the product or service by itself.
But who you are as a business, how you communicate your solution to your ideal client is what matters.
Earlier I pointed out what makes you different is not what you offer because there are just not many original concepts. But it is who you are as a business, your core values, and why you do what you do.
Individuals identify with emotions and how they feel about something.
Logic comes after.
Don't Bet It All On Black
If you don't have empirical data that a concept you're researching will work 100% no matter what.
Then you need to distribute your efforts.
I'm not saying that you shouldn't use what is working, but it's important to understand and explore different tactics better than the other such as advertising vs. content marketing.
And know why one is working, and the other may not be, will one option show better long term results, the other show better term results.
When you understand why you can be more effective than putting all your marbles on the concept.
The Moment You Start Is The Moment You Track
Not tracking your results makes everything you're trying to accomplish pointless.
For the first month, I'm sure you're thinking, why would I track if I have nothing to measure it against.
And you would be right, but tracking will be a long-term benefit.
You will know whether or not your strategy is working by the 3rd and 4th months.
It is the mirror placed right in front of your business's face, and it can be tough to see that you are struggling. But this wasn't going to be easy.
Investing in something that tells you the truth will allow you to correct your actions and make adjustments.
Once you start seeing the trend in your analytics going up, you know you have something worth the rinse and repeat method.
How Do I Build A Marketing Strategy
I won't lie to you, building a marketing strategy can be pretty daunting.
Several steps make a marketing strategy successful, and we will be discussing them in this section.
But once you have a solid marketing strategy working, you will be able to reach your ideal client time after time with methods that work because you have prepared to be successful.
Swot? Do Know What This Is
SWOT is an unbiased look at where your business is right. It focuses on factors that can be why your success or the reason why your business is in the tank.
The S in SWOT stands for Strength.
As you analyze your business, ask:
- What makes us stand out and different from the rest of the market
- How can we use our base to extend our reach on the rest of the market?
- What is the right combination of resources to help you succeed?
- What tools do you need, and what tools do you have on hand to help you accomplish your mission
- What natural advantages do we bring to the table that give us a pillar to build upon
The W in SWOT stands for weakness.
Questions you should ask yourself
- What gains can you make within the business?
- What technological limitations are you experience?
- Are there any factors that are keeping you from accomplishing your goals
The O in SWOT stands for opportunities.
Questions you should ask yourself.
- What gaps are the competition missing in their overall strategy?
- What parts of the customer's journey that they
- What is working in the market, and how we can take advantage of our current vantage point.
- How can I get the best return on my investment?
The T in Swot stands for threat
- What is the environment within the market?
- Is our competition performing the same strategy?
- Is our competition doing anything better than
Figure Out If What You Have To Offer Has Value
Understanding the value proposition your product or service has for your targeted audience is the most important aspect of you making a sale or not.
A great starting point to this step is identifying the main benefits you provide your ideal client and follow that up with key differences that you and your competition have.
A value proposition should not be creed out of thin air.
You have the advantage of paying attention to what has been working in the market and what hasn't.
Hardline Your Goals
Don't negotiate with yourself about your goals.
I'm not telling you to be unrealistic, but once you set those goals, be relentless in your pursuit.
That means narrowing in on an objective that can be followed by you and professionals that work with you.
As your putting together your objectives, being targeted, measured, and giving a time frame will allow you to accomplish your goals.
Befriend Your Ideal Client
Your product or service is important to you.
But the everyday consumer does not feel the same way about your solution.
So how do you make nice with your ideal client?
Getting to know them would be a great start. Performing focus and surveys are a great way to find out what makes them tick. What gets them to take action.
Even successful that you worked with ask them why they chose you instead of your competition.
Finding out what platforms and how they would like to digest information is also a key factor in befriending your ideal client.
Create An Avatar
Pretend the exact person that you had a solution for is right in front of you, and you know everything about them.
And just work-related but
- What is their morning like when they wake up
- How many kids do they have
- Are they a single parent
- Do they travel to work by bus or by Uber, or maybe they have their own vehicle?
- Do they work from home?
- How short or tall is your avatar
- What are things they worried about
- What are things they get excited about
- What religious views do they have? If any
- Who are they affiliate with politically?
Understand all these characteristics and daily habits will help narrow the message to the people who will listen.
People make judgments and pick side every day, and sitting on the fence hoping to play both sides will get nowhere
Because nobody knows who you are talking to.
Target Audience Vs Target Market
There can be some confusion on this topic but once explained its simple
Your target market is the group of people who will buy the product or service no matter if you had something in the market or not.
Essentially the Market is the Ocean.
Your target audience is the fish in the sea; depending on what bait you use will attract a certain type of fish.
Your audience is the people you want to attract within the market.
Say your selling computers,
and a lot of people buy computers every year, but there are many brands of computers.
Depending on a customer, they may want a PC that is seen as more professional or buttoned up, or maybe your brand represents a lost personality is not just attitude but the clothes they wear.
This is an example of the audience that you have extracted from the market.
How to Segment Your Target Market
Segmenting your target has never been more important than it is today.
Consumers expect you to know at the very least general fact about them if not detailed.
So when creating an email marketing strategy, you want to make sure that you're meeting the audience where they are
Some may be ready to make a purchase, and others may need to consume more content.
The last thing you want your audience to think is that you're not paying attention to their actions because subconsciously, they bow out and say, "they don’t understand what I'm going through.
How to Run A Competitive Analysis
Determine The Challengers
- Direct Competitors are businesses that can replace you within the market. These competitors you can recognize and see exactly what their intent is
- Indirect Competitors are businesses that could provide the market with the same benefit your solution could, but their solution is completely different.
An example of indirect competitors is two businesses supplying the market with clothes, but one business sells women's clothes, and the other sells men's clothes.
What Do They Have To Offer To The Market
- Do they offer affordable pricing, or are they more in the high price tier?
- Do they focus on building relationships with one-to-one purchases ore they focus more on the volume of sales?
- What kind of market share do they have, if any
- What is their ideal client like, what are their needs
- How do they appear unique to the market?
- Do they have any overhead when it comes to how they distribute their products/services?
Research How Your Competitors Perform
- What is actually included in their sales cycle?
- What platforms are they using to sell their solutions?
- Are they planning to scale up or scale down
- What are their expense each year?
- What is their revenue month in and month out
- Do they do mostly automation selling, or do they actually work with a salesperson?
What Are There Prices And Perks?
When the prospect gets to this point of the decision-making process, this really where you can make or break the purchase.
No matter what you're offering and how much they need it, the price will scare people, and I'm not just discussing that your price may be too high.
Professionals, especially those that work at bigger companies, will not buy a service or a product if the price point is too low.
But the more your willingness to ask can communicate value, but you have to prove that you are worth that price through performance.
Perks can be the reason why they say, "Hey, let's just give it a try."
I'm sure you had done that yourself when you were on the fence about making a purchase.
Free one on one coaching for the first 4 months of your service."
What Is Their Process For Marketing Their Products?
- Do they have a blog in place?
- Are they using a FAQ page to answer general questions visitors may have?
- Have they done any investing in visual media, like webinars and YouTube videos?
- Are they featuring other businesses to create more traffic on their website?
- Are they currently publish data sheets and guides that help buyers make decisions?
- How often do they run campaigns?
- How about slide decks (PowerPoint presentations)? Do they have content invested in this marketing tool?
Please pay attention to how they are pushing their content and whether or not it is working, and when did they start seeing results for their efforts.
What Content Strategy Do They Have In Place?
- Is there a tone that they're using that you can immediately point out
- Do they produce content that is off base or right on target?
- Do they have email walls and paid subscription, or is their content free for everyone to read
- Can you recognize levels to their content... Intro, Intermediate, Advanced
- Is there consistent spelling and grammar errors in their content
- How is their content structured, is it more for google search, or is it more about the readers' experience and readability?
- Have they chosen to outsource their content, or do they have somebody in houses handling most of the content creation?
Is Your Competitor's Audience Engaging With Their Content?
- Are you noticing that most of the comments they receive are positive, negative, or constructive?
- What topics are getting more feedback and is relating to readers?
- Are you finding that readers engage at higher rates depending on the platform?
- Do they have their content segmented using Silos, categories, or tags?
Marketing Strategies for B2B and B2C
There is a difference between what marketing strategies work for B2B and B2C.
And it all has to do with the audience and the mindset that each has when making a purchase.
What Marketing Strategies work for B2B
Business-to-Business marketing strategies, on average, have a longer buying cycle because when you are making a purchase for a business, many sign-offs need to occur
Even if its two sets of eyes instead of one, that could be the difference between a yes or a no,
- Content Marketing
- Inbound Marketing
- Social Media Marketing
- Search Engine Marketing?PPC
- Industry Event
- Conversational Marketing
What Marketing Strategies work for B2C
Business-to-consumer marketing is the opposite.
This type of marketing has a much shorter buyer cycle.
Because it is usually only one person making that decision and most of the time is for their own personal use.
Using emotion is the best path to receiving a purchase, along with benefits that the consumer can see their lives getting better from using immediately.
- Paid Advertising
- Social media marketing
- Email Marketing and Internet marketing
- Co-branding and cause marketing
- Point of purchase marketing
- Conversational marketing