Your marketing strategy is sort of magic. It can make you famous because it puts you right where your fans and clients are looking. It can also make you rich, as it tells your audience why they should buy from you.
But, as any good magician, you need to know how much of each ingredient makes the dream come true. A good marketing strategy can turn the frog into a prince. On the other side, even the smallest mistake can turn the princess into a witch.
To cut a long story short, a marketing strategy is the plan that will allow you to reach your marketing goals. These can vary, depending on what you sell, but we’re usually talking about:
- Building brand awareness
- A higher conversion rate
- New customers
- Higher revenues
- Selling more products
- Increasing market share.
How Does Marketing Strategy Work?
Once you’ve set your goals, you need to break them into smaller objectives. Getting new customers is a good goal, but it’s not enough to make an effective marketing strategy. Because it doesn’t contain anything specific.
Objectives, on the other side, are specific and easy to measure. Let’s say you have 100 customers. A good objective is to double this number.
Now, you need to break the “100-customer goal” into smaller chunks, because reasonable numbers make marketing easier.
So, you’ll start with 10 new customers a month.
This objective is:
- Time specific
Once you have your objectives, you need to come up with a good plan to turn them into reality.
A Marketing Strategy Consists of Four Major Elements
1. Your Product
This is the centre of your marketing strategy. Going back to magic, it’s the main ingredient of the potion you’re trying to prepare. That’s why you must define the features that make your product unique. They’ll help you promote the product to attract new customers.
Don’t say ‘my product is cool’. Your competitors have cool products, too. Instead, build a message around the public’s needs. ‘My product does this, which makes it special and useful’; it gives people a real reason to buy.
All products need promotion. The greatest product can’t sell itself alone. Think about Coca-Cola and their campaigns.
Now, let’s get back to your product. There’s probably plenty of similar products on the market, most of them one click away from potential buyers. You need to contrast competitors.
People tend to look at the bigger picture when buying. Especially millennials need more than their immediate satisfaction. You need to prove yourself socially responsible, to stay on the market.
Becoming part of a bigger thing makes your product worth buying. It doesn’t have to change the world. But, it should try to make it a better place for everyone.
Details are important because they tell so much about who you are and how you do business:
- Make sure your product doesn’t harm the environment.
- Support a cause in which you believe. Almost 50% of millennials are more willing to buy from companies who invest in a cause.
- Choosing sustainable packaging solutions. Don’t ruin your brand by working with irresponsible companies or by choosing unfriendly materials to wrap your products. Environment-friendly packaging will add costs, but you need to find a balance between quality and payment.
This brings us to the second element in your marketing strategy.
Everybody knows magic comes with a price. When doing business, the price is more important than you think.
Calculate your costs and try to remain realistic when it comes to profits. Evaluate your product honestly. What does it do for the user? And, importantly, how much would you pay to have it?
Look at what your competitors sell. If similar products have lower prices, it’s going to be hard to convince new clients. Ethics are important, but as much as 80% of consumers look at the price when purchasing a product.
Yet, you can’t sell under your costs either. Because you won’t be able to recover your money. Even more, some countries have rigid regulations about dumping and unfair competition.
If your prices are too high, try to cut costs. Come up with a simpler version of your product. Something that asks for less material or fewer working hours. This way, you’ll sell better and cover a larger target public.
Finding the right places to sell your products is an essential part of your marketing strategy. There’s a reason why supermarkets don’t sell fancy women shoes.
You need to know your target public well to put your product where potential clients are looking. With all the possibilities online, finding better places to sell is easier than ever before. You can build your own website or sell directly on Facebook. Or, if you’re still testing your product’s potential, you can try special platforms in your niche.
If you have large amounts of products to sell, you can try influencer sites. You will have to find the right people to work with. If you sell clothes, you should go to websites that write for people who like shopping. If you produce tools, you’d better look for a more technical website.
If the first three elements were the ingredients in your potion, promotion is the magic formula. It connects things together to make your product successful.
To start, you need a clear message. Something easy to understand and to share. Information should be accurate, yet wrapped in a beautiful story. In addition, it’s useful to add a few words about customer help. No one wants to buy a product that can’t be fixed or replaced in case something goes wrong.
Marketing campaigns are ongoing stories. Once a campaign is over, you need to start building a new one right away. This way, you keep your audience connected to your brand and engaged in your story.
You must mix offline with online marketing, to increase visibility and brand awareness. Digital marketing is essential to grow your brand, but it can’t bring you the best results outside a complex marketing strategy. Offline channels can generate as much as 40% of online searches, so you need to find the right balance between online and offline.
A Word on Digital Marketing
Everybody asks Google when looking for information. As a matter of fact, 81% of internet users search online before buying. If you’re not online, it’s like you didn’t exist.
So, you need to make sure you have a good online image to convince possible customers about your product. Here are some major elements you should consider when building your internet marketing:
- Content. It’s the most important element in digital marketing. High-quality content drives traffic to your website, engages visitors and establishes you as an authority in your niche.
- Social media. There are almost 5 billion people using social networks every day. You can use them to communicate in real time with potential clients through a wide series of tools specially created for business.
- Email marketing. It’s still the most efficient method when it comes to converting simple visitors into clients.
Digital marketing allows you to target audiences for efficient results. It also costs less than traditional marketing. And you can measure both effort and results, to continuously improve your techniques.
Tricks for A Successful Strategy
Marketing is a complex area, a mix of science and art. You can build strategies and write hundreds of ‘how to’ manuals to help people sell easier; there is no such thing as a perfect recipe.
Each client is different. You can’t come up with a strategy to attract everybody. Instead, you can use some guidelines to customize your strategy for efficient results.
- Keep clients in mind. Create your buyer persona – that person who describes best your clients. Once you know whom you’re talking to, you’ll be able to tailor your marketing campaigns to fit your audience. You need market research to define your actual public. This is hard and expensive work, and you may need professional help to reach relevant results. But, having a clear image about your target public will make your marketing more efficient.
- Give value. Nothing can compete against a valuable product. Whether you sell expensive jewellery or wood toys, your products need to help people. Yes, you do business to make money, but you need to find a balance between your interests and your public’s needs.
- Pay attention to business partners. They say a lot about who you are. So, try to work with people who share your values. This way, you’ll manage to send a consistent message and to gain trust, online and offline. Check all the information spread about your brand. It’s a hard job with so much stuff flowing on social media, but you have to do your best to stay in control.
- Learn and improve. Listen to what your customers have to say. Their feedback can help you create better products and improve the way you do business. Ask for honest reviews and use them as a marketing resource and as inspiration for new projects.
Putting together a marketing strategy isn’t easy. But it’s not that complicated either. It’s all about having clear purposes. Write down your goals and then try to make them measurable, time specific and realistic.
With your objectives in mind, you can start building a cost-effective marketing strategy that is in line with your company. This can include one or more of the following:
- A better version of your product
- New places to sell
- Original marketing campaigns
- Promotion in social media
- Email marketing
- A better price – special offers
Test various ideas and see which works better for your audience. Measure results periodically, to make sure you’re not investing valuable resources in the wrong methods. And, most important, never stop learning.
About the Author:
Ema is a Freelance Copywriter with a demonstrated history of working in the writing industry. Skilled in blogging and creative writing. Specialized in web content about SEO, content marketing, social media marketing, and entrepreneurship. Strong media and communication professional with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Communication Science. Get in touch with Ema …
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