The best marketing plan doesn’t end with one super secret method to grow your business threefold in a year. Ask someone who claims to have expertise in marketing, “how do I grow my business?”. If they immediately tell you about strategies for Google / Facebook ads, ROI, and pushing social media every day, then you can know that they aren’t a pro.
The first step to any essential marketing strategy is getting to know one another. If I don’t fully understand you and your business, then I can’t make the best decisions for marketing. Period. That might not make a lot of sense, as there should be effective marketing strategies that work for many businesses in many situations. This is true, but I have some thoughts:
The best marketing strategy utilizes the parts of your business that make you special. Wall Street Analysts call it your economic moat. Marketing-minded people call it branding
I can’t know whether a certain, frequently successful marketing method is the right one for you until I understand your brand as well as you understand it yourself
Customer’s can tell when a business is sending mixed messages with their marketing. This means it is very, very important to understand your own brand when you and your marketing specialist design your marketing strategy
With all of that being said, I do want to provide the reader with a rough rubric for developing a marketing strategy (without giving too much away [wink])
Key Parts of a “Perfect” Marketing Strategy
In general, developing a marketing strategy is about three things: defining messages, setting goals, and ensuring that you can meet those goals.
Defining your marketing message is probably the most important thing you can do in a business. A “marketing message” is the one thing that makes you unique in your business. I talked about this before. It’s your moat, your brand, your special something. If you’re interested in defining your marketing message but don’t really know where to start, reach out to me at the main company number (it’s my cell). I’ll be happy to help.
Setting aggressive, but realistic, goals is the next great part of my ideal marketing strategy. This means not only sales and ROI goals, but also social media follower count goals, and maybe even goals for your mental wellbeing (which is very important to the long-term success of your business). Don’t just set these goals though. You have to measure the success of these goals and revise new, bolder goals.
Setting bold goals for your business is easy enough to do, but achieving them is something else all together. Here are 5 ways to help ensure that you meet your aggressive sales and social media goals:
Devise new, innovative ways to brand your product, or a new product all together. Think about a new line of clothes, or a new album release, or a “remastering” of an old classic film (for a classic example: Cherry Coke)
Ensure that your marketing strategy is inline with your visions and goals by physically drawing out roadmaps to your vision, and connecting the places where your marketing strategy is helping your vision, not hurting it
Increase your market share by cutting prices. If a way can be found to produce or purchase the product cheaper, then growth can be found by slightly lowering prices to edge out competitors
Find new avenues to sell the product. This would include going directly to or calling stores and asking if your product can be sold there. Online markets can also be contacted for requests to become a vendor of products on the website
Communicate with customers to understand where your business can be improved. This is a very effective method to increase customer satisfaction, and by extension, sales
I hope this has been at least a little helpful to you. If you are like most, you will read this and think “how the hell do I do this?” You aren’t alone. Give me a call. My number is below.
Until next time.
Chief Executive Officer
Davidson & Hogan, LLC