Marketing Strategy

Marketing Strategy Made Easy

Does the thought of creating a marketing strategy seem daunting to you? Are you uncertain if you are doing everything right? Are there opportunities you are missing? If any of these thoughts have crossed your mind don’t worry, you are not alone!

Many of the small business owners I talk to express the same fears and concerns. So here are three easy steps to help you create a marketing strategy for your business. You can do this!

Step One – Get Your Bearings

Before you do anything, you have to get your bearings. So the first item on your agenda is to define three things:

  1. Who you are and what you offer
    • What is your overall goal/mission? (Ex: help our customers by giving them access to affordable pain medication and make a profit so we can continue to operate)
    • What you do for people that gives them value (Ex: our product helps people feel better and enjoy life pain-free)
  2. Who your ideal customers are and what is important to them
    • Who makes the buying decision for your product? (Ex: health-conscious parents make the decision to buy cereal for their kids and want to know it is healthy for them and a good value/price)
    • Who is the end user? (Ex: kids eating the cereal want it to taste good and have a fun factor)
  3. What you want those ideal customers to think about you
    • Do you want to be perceived as a high volume/lower-cost provider? (Ex: Timex)
    • Do you want to be perceived as a low volume/higher-cost provider? (Ex: Rolex)
    • What is your biggest differentiating factor(s)? (low cost, high quality, convenience, one of a kind, etc.)

Follow the steps above and create your own identity in the market. This is critical and will significantly increase the benefit you receive from creating a marketing strategy in the first place.

Step Two – Set Your Direction

Now that you know where you are, what you have to work with and who you are trying to target, you need to point yourself in the right direction. Figure out what steps you need to take and what it will take to get you where you need to be.

  1. Clarify your message 
    • Simplify! Simple sells and complexity confuses your customer!
    • Write a compelling sales letter with your complete core message in as concise a form as possible. Then use this to pull from for your other marketing content.
  2. Where you need to be to reach your target market
    • Are your customers on social media? LinkedIn or Instagram? Do they check email or twitter more?
    • What are they ‘Googling’ that you want to show up for?
    • Do you need to do trade shows, events, open houses, or mailers? Etc.
  3. What you are going to do to reach them
    • Craft a clear action plan (Ex: 1 blog post a week, 3 social posts a week, 1 email blast a month, send a print mailer every 6 months, rent a booth at your annual industry trade show once a year…. etc.)
    • Create an intentional editorial calendar (try to build in synergy with your content in such a way that is flows naturally… for example, a pet groomer might post the following: “10 ways to show your pet you love them” then “Did you know 70% of dogs don’t have fleas… if they go to a professional groomer?” then “We are sharing the love! Get 15% off your next pet grooming service!” etc.

It is important to have a clear message that connects with people. Don’t worry about saying everything you can. Just say what they need to hear. Don’t spend 30,000 words talking about how great you are and only 10 words about what you can do for them. Once you have your message down, then create a doable plan of action that fits your audience. If your target market hasn’t heard of twitter… don’t waste your time with it!

Step Three – Follow The Plan

Now that you have a good picture of what’s going on, the most important thing to do is… follow the plan! No matter how good a plan is, if you don’t follow through and measure your results, you won’t get any results. The steps above should get you headed in the right direction but if you are looking for something more, contact us to set up a consulting appointment. We work with businesses every day to bring clarity to their marketing so they can be more effective and grow their business.

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