Why do I need a Marketing Strategy?

Marketing strategy diagram

When I meet new business owners, one of the first things I ask them is, do they have a Marketing Strategy or plan for their business. Invariably they have a general idea of who their customers are and that they would love their business to grow.

Not having a Marketing Strategy for your business is like setting off on a long car journey without a map to follow. A Marketing Strategy will help you focus and gives your business a proper direction and goals to reach. It will identify the different ways you can talk to your customers and help you concentrate on the ones that will develop the most profit.

So what should a Marketing Strategy include?

What are you business objectives?

  • It is important to set measurable goals for this year, next year and five years time. This could be twenty more customers or £50,000 more profit in the next year for example.

Who are your customers?

  • You need to research your current customers, which ones are the most profitable? Which ones are the least profitable? Who then is your perfect customer?
  • Are there similarities between customers’ backgrounds?
  • Can you segment your customers into different groups?
  • Would your different groups of customers benefit from different Marketing communications?

Do you understand your customers’ needs and motivations?

  • Why do customers want to buy your products or services?
  • What is driving your customers to buy products similar to yours?

Who are your competitors?

  • Are there company names that keep cropping up?
  • Are you competing directly with businesses selling the same product and service?

How do you position yourself against your competition?

  • How do you measure up against the competition? Are you cheaper or is your product or service technically better or stronger?

What are the weaknesses of your products or services?

  • Why might customers choose your competitors?
  • Identify your weaknesses so you can plan to improve them

What are the strengths of your product or service?

  • When thinking about this it is very important to focus on the benefits as well as the features.

What are you unique selling points (USP’s)?

  • Your USP’s are what differentiates you from the competition.
  • If you don’t differentiate your product or service then you have to compete on the lowest price, rather than on value.

Are there any new opportunities for you to take advantage of?

  • What new trends are in the your market?

How will you entice your customers to buy from you?

  • What initial offers can you give? Can you give a free trial or a discount?

How can you communicate your offer?

  • You need to consider which of the marketing mix, i.e.; events, social media, adverts, emails, promotions etc. is suitable to communicate to your customers and prospects.

When developing your Marketing Strategy it is very important that everyone involved in making decisions in your company is involved. So make sure you share the working document and ask for feedback or suggestions from them. Do not forget to review regularly, what is working and what is not. Do you need to make changes as time goes by?

If you find that you need help putting together your Marketing Strategy, then please feel free to contact us.

Good luck with growing your business.

Helen

 Helen Cameron B.Sc. ACIM PRINCE2
Marketing Consultant & Project Manager

Please check out my other blogs for more helpful marketing tips! Or take a look at us on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter for more marketing insight.

 

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