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Defining Your Marketing Strategies

 

If someone asked you to define your marketing strategies, what would you say? Just as importantly, why would give that particular answer?

The ability to clearly articulate your marketing strategy and provide evidence-based support for your response is fundamental to your business success.

Well constructed marketing strategies, based on research rather than opinion or assumptions, are a must for businesses who wish to remain relevant in a competitive environment and enjoy profitable growth.

How to Create Your Core Marketing Strategy

 

Here we highlight some of the different steps required to create your core marketing strategies.

Once your core marketing strategy has been established, we can then look at some of the main secondary strategies that can be selected as part of the overall strategic planning process.

Marketing Strategy Research

 

The process of marketing strategy research can take many forms from desktop research to focus groups to one on one interviews to mystery shopping to large sample surveys.

Whether the research is exploratory or for testing specific propositions, its purpose is ultimately to allow the voice and minds of customers, to provide objective input into the strategic planning process.

Useful market research sheds light on a particular subject, stimulates imagination, innovation and commercial instincts. All of this can result in the development of powerful marketing strategies.

Marketing strategy research is best conducted by experienced practitioners who not only understand the research process but also how best to incorporate research into the strategic planning process.

To understand more about Baker Marketing’s unique skills and experience in using market strategy research to create profitable marketing strategies, read more here………

 

Target Marketing Strategy

 

By now, most businesses understand the concept of target marketing strategies but how do you know that you’ve selected the best target market for your product or service?

Target market selection is the most important strategic marketing decision a business can make and the cost of making the wrong decision in the early stages can be costly in terms of lost time and money.

Its importance lies in the fact that all further strategic marketing decisions are made with the needs and desires of the primary target market in mind. Product development, pricing, distribution and communication decisions must all be made from the perspective of your target audience.

The process of selecting your primary target market begins with segmenting your overall market into groups of customers with common characteristics. Typically, demographics are used for segmentation purposes along with socioeconomic and lifestyle preferences.

Once you have identified the different segments within your market, the next step is to prioritise them based on their potential for long-term sales and profits. Research is quite often used to identify potential heavy users of your product or service based on different criteria.

To discover more about how Adelaide based Baker Marketing helps its clients to develop target marketing strategy, read more here………….

 

Market Positioning Strategy

 

Once you have defined your target marketing strategy, the next most crucial element of marketing strategy development involves deciding how to position your brand in your market.

Market or brand positioning is quite simply how you wish your brand to be perceived by the people you are targeting. In deciding how you want your brand to be seen, it’s important to understand the needs of your target market.

By tapping into the needs and desires of your target audience and understanding how you can satisfy those needs, or satisfy those needs better than your competitors, your brand positioning strategy will develop.

Again, market research can play an essential role in understanding the current needs of your primary target market, their attitudes, perceptions and desires. Ideally, a gap in the market can be identified that presents an opportunity to differentiate your brand from the competition and serve as a sustainable platform for profitable sales growth.

Read more on how Baker Marketing helps clients to define their brand positioning here….

 

Product Marketing Strategy

When creating your product marketing strategy, it’s essential to refer back to the decisions you made concerning target market selection and market positioning strategy.

Your research helped you to develop these key elements of your core marketing strategy by identifying the needs and opportunities of your market with the performance of your competitors in mind.

Therefore, when it comes to making decisions regarding the development of your product or service, consistency is required concerning the following interrelated factors;

  • The needs and desires of your target market
  • How you wish your product to be perceived by that target market
  • Your point(s) of difference

Concerning the latter, it’s critical that your points of difference are relevant to the needs of the market and sustainable to allow long-term advantage. A point of difference should never be created just for its own sake or just because it seems like a good idea.

Finally, it should be remembered that product strategy has a direct influence on your pricing strategy. Generally speaking, the more you offer regarding features and benefits, the more it costs, so it’s crucial that your product and pricing strategy is consistent with your market positioning strategy. If you are offering the best quality product on the market at the lowest price, you have a strategic alignment problem.

To find out more about how Baker Marketing helps its clients to develop highly competitive product marketing strategy read here.

Marketing Communication Strategy

Once your product or service strategy has been created, it is time to consider your marketing communication strategy. As we discussed before, defining your primary target market is the most important strategic marketing decision to be made as it guides all subsequent strategic marketing decisions.

This is certainly true when it comes to creating your marketing communication strategy. Knowing who you are trying to reach and persuade with your marketing messages will help dictate the following key elements of marketing communication strategy;

Marketing Communication Channel Selection

In selecting your channels for marketing communication, it’s important to know where to reach your desired audience. For example, what social media do they use? When do they use it and from what device?

Reach is an important consideration but so too is affordability because affordability will in turn impact on another key communication factor, frequency.

The ability to continue to reach your audience over a period is critical for your message to have an impact. So there’s no point in selecting a communication channel where the costs prohibit suitable frequency of exposure.

Marketing Communication Messages

Developing a powerful marketing communication strategy involves knowing what your messaging must deliver to your target audience. By understanding your target market, your messaging will take the form of conversations that address relevant questions, provide key benefits and answer the key issue, what’s in it for me?

Crafting powerful marketing communication messages will not only take into account the needs of your target audience but also the communication channel(s) you select. Your messaging must suit the ‘environment’ of your communication channel.

To find out more about how Baker Marketing helps its clients to develop highly competitive product marketing strategy read here……

Distribution Strategy in Marketing

Once you have researched your market, defined your target marketing strategy, created your marketing positioning strategy, product marketing strategy and marketing communication strategy, it’s now time to discuss distribution strategy in marketing.

How are you going to deliver your product or service to your target audience?

As with all other aspects of marketing strategy, the answer lies in the needs and desires of your target market and your desired positioning. Perhaps the delivery you propose for your product or service might represent a unique selling proposition in itself if for example, no one else was delivering what you do online and your target market saw value in this.

Either way, your marketing distribution strategy should meet the needs and expectations of your particular audience.

As per the product development strategy and communication development strategy, a key consideration for distribution channel selection will be cost.

If you have, for example, a multi-tiered distribution strategy involving importers and retailers, then you need to factor in the margins required by these sales partners, the cost to produce and freight your product, and the price your target market is willing to pay, before you can determine whether or not there is any reasonable margin left for you.

To find out more about how Baker Marketing helps its clients to develop highly competitive marketing distribution strategy read here……

Types of Marketing Strategy

With the recent growth over the last 10 years of the internet as a marketing vehicle, a number of online types of marketing strategy have developed including the following;

Digital Marketing Strategy

Digital Marketing Strategy is a very broad, all-encompassing term used to describe any marketing strategy that involves the use of the internet. It can be employed in order to achieve the following key strategic marketing objectives;

  • To attract more qualified traffic to your website
  • To turn prospects into sales leads
  • To convert sales leads into customers
  • To build or maintain relationships with existing customers
  • To build brand awareness
  • To gain a greater understanding of your target audience

One of the main benefits of digital marketing is the fact that the internet provides a more affordable and targeted approach for small businesses to grow their brand.

Apart from market access this also means less wastage and a better (and more measurable) return on investment, than if marketing dollars were spent on traditional media such as radio and TV.

To learn more about digital marketing strategy, read here……

Social Media Strategy

Social media strategy as the name suggests involves the use of social media to engage with customers and potential customers.

As with most forms of digital marketing, social media requires a more softly, softly approach when it comes to communicating with your target audience, certainly when compared with disruptive, traditional communication formats such as television commercials.

The main reason for this comes from a need for understanding and respect for the environment in which you have chosen to enter. People do not go on social media to be sold to. They use social media for escape, entertainment, information and social interaction.

Therefore, for social media marketing to match the landscape and look like it belongs, it had better inform, entertain or provide some other form of value suited to both the environment and target audience’s current mindset.

The particular social media platform(s) best suited to an individual business will depend on who it is you are targeting. If your target audience is not using Twitter, then the use of Twitter will not be included in your social media strategy.

Other popular social media platforms include;

  • Facebook
  • YouTube
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

To find out more about how to incorporate social media strategy as part of your digital marketing mix read on…

 Content Marketing Strategy

 

Content Marketing Strategy quite simply involves the approach you decide to take when it comes to creating original content of perceived value to your target audience.

The value will be judged by its ability to educate, inform or entertain. A good way of judging the value of your content comes from metrics such as downloads, views, shares, likes and time spent viewing.

Great content helps build a closer relationship between you or your brand and your target audience. By doing so, the following strategic marketing objectives may be achieved;

  • Build awareness
  • Build trust
  • Build a brand’s positioning
  • Turn prospects into leads
  • Maintain customers

Typically, content marketing strategy plays its most significant role higher up the marketing funnel where it helps turn targeted prospects into leads. That’s not to say, however, that direct sales cannot be attributed to content marketing, it’s just that it usually plays a more indirect, although deliberate, role in the sales process.

Examples of digital marketing content include;

  • Blogs (Including video blogs or vlogs)
  • Case Studies
  • White Papers (Special Reports)
  • eBooks
  • Templates
  • Reviews

To find out more about the secrets of content marketing strategy read on…

 

SEO Marketing Strategy

 

SEO Marketing Strategy is probably the least understood and most confused form of digital marketing. In part, this is because search engines like Google keep changing the rules but more to the point, there is no definitive set of proven rules that guarantee success. It is still very much a matter of test and measure, or trial and error.

Regarding a definition of SEO marketing strategy, it boils down to the planned approach to getting found on search engines such as Google, when your target market types in specific search terms when looking for solutions to problems you can help solve.

The goal of SEO is to be found as high as possible on the first page of search results in the organic or non -advertising section.

In broad terms, there are two primary forms of SEO being on page SEO and off page SEO.

  1. On-page SEO involves the way you incorporate your selected keywords or search terms into the various sections of your web page, including the heading, subheadings and main body text.
  2. Off-page SEO includes all other SEO activity you undertake which doesn’t directly involve how you initially set up your web page for keyword optimisation.

SEO Marketing Strategy today is very much related to the quantity and quality of your content marketing.

High-quality content will attract target traffic to your website and keep them there as they read or watch your web content. Google can see how people are interacting with your web content and will reward you with higher rankings if and when it perceives your web pages to be a good result for their “customers”, i.e. people using their search engine.

Just as SEO Marketing Strategy is closely linked to content marketing strategy, it is also associated with Social Media Strategy. Having targeted traffic comes from social media platforms as a result of strategically placed content, linked back to a web page, can significantly help that web page rise in the search engine rankings for selected keyword(s)

To find out more about how to incorporate SEO Marketing Strategy as part of your digital marketing mix read on…

 

Inbound Marketing Strategy

Inbound marketing strategy is a relatively new term used to describe many of the practices already mentioned on this page.

Much of inbound strategy is not so much as new, but newly packaged. It does however, represent many important principles and tactics that over time, can significantly grow your business.

So what exactly is inbound marketing strategy?

Inbound marketing strategy has been founded on the premise that it’s better to have customers and potential customers come to you at a moment in time that suits them, rather than you disrupting them at a time that may suit you but not them.

It’s also all about individualisation, whereby individuals are approached on the basis of their specific needs instead of using a blanket or one size fits all approach.

Key to inbound marketing strategy is the building of long term relationships with customers who as repeat buyers, grow your average customer value and therefore your business as you continue to attract new customers and retain existing ones.

Content marketing and inbound marketing are intrinsically linked as it’s valued content that helps both nurture long- term customer relationships and attract new customers.

The good news is that much of this process can be automated with state of the art CRM programs such as Hubspot.

To learn more about inbound marketing strategy and how it can help grow your business, read here……………

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