We’ve finally wrapped up a tough year, and many business owners are hopeful for a more stable year in 2021.
Before we get there though, we first need to understand these truths: 1) Marketing is critical for a business’ success. 2) Marketing budgets are tight.
So, what should we do?
In times like this, we need to go back to the basics, which means setting clear goals for your company, understanding your market, and measuring your success.
When the budget is tight, you can be tempted to take shortcuts and jump right into action – running Facebook ads, sending out emails, designing print materials…
Those are all great marketing tools, but without a solid marketing strategy, you run the risk of not getting the ROI (return on investment) your company needs.
A marketing strategy should include a comprehensive plan to reach and engage potential customers with a goal of converting them into loyal customers. Developing a plan that works requires a research process to gain insights from both your team members and customers into your company’s differentiators, target audience, S.W.O.T., benefits, competitors, and other information that will inform your specific marketing tactics.
If you have a marketing strategy already, take a moment to evaluate it and see if it includes the following, and then adjust it as necessary. If you don’t have one or are in the process of making one, make sure to include these:
- Your marketing goals and objectives
- Analysis of your target audience
- Understanding your customer buyer’s journey
- Solutions for your customers’ pain points
- A game plan to deliver those solutions
- Awareness of your competitors
- Tools for performance measurement
Why are these elements so important? Without data-driven research, you are bound to make assumptions and miss the opportunity to attract your ideal customer. Research- and data-based marketing strategy should inform your marketing action plan and guide your marketing efforts for every customer touchpoint your customers interact with as they move through their buyer’s journey. Here are some of the outcomes of a well-made strategy you can expect to enjoy:
No company has unlimited resources, so effectively utilizing your team’s time and skillsets is imperative. A marketing strategy helps determine various roles and responsibilities across your departments, keeping your marketing team accountable to where and how their expertise can be implemented.
From lead to loyalty, customer retention is one of the awesome benefits you can reap from a well-planned marketing strategy. A thorough research-based marketing strategy targets the right audience, keeps your company and marketing relevant, and continually engages customers throughout their buyer’s journey.
Generating Return on Investment
Different marketing methods require different levels of investment. Your marketing strategy should include how you should allocate your budget to various marketing tactics for the best ROI. Again, a good marketing strategy is largely a research process that helps you focus your strategy on the right audience, resulting in lead generation and conversion.
Gaining Brand Credibility and Reputation
You have to show up in front of your target audience with the right message at the right time to gain recognition and trust. Your marketing strategy should include detailed information about your target audience as well as how to target that audience. Content marketing and SEO strategies also play a significant role in building credibility and discoverability. The stronger your reputation is, the more likely you are to convert leads to loyal customers!
Measuring how your marketing efforts are performing is one of the most important aspects of marketing. There are many different metrics you can collect, and each informs on critical information like whether a campaign was effective and worth the investment, how you can improve it, if you are on the right track to meeting your goals, etc. During a strategy development process, decide what information you want to collect and what tools you will need to achieve that.
A well-planned marketing strategy is necessary to help your business thrive, but researching and then developing, implementing, and improving it can be easier said than done. Is your team hoping to win more customers and drive your business to success this year, but not sure where to start? Element212 has the solution – contact us for a free consultation here.