I get it. Marketing can be overwhelming. From print ads and commercials to voice search and chatbots, there are a million different channels and activities that you could do to market your business. In fact, I often hear from clients and friends that they know they should be doing marketing, but they don’t know where to start. My reply is always the same: I recommend starting with a marketing strategy.
Marketing strategy is important for your business. So important, in fact, that businesses that have a documented marketing strategy are 538% more likely to report success than businesses that don’t have a documented strategy. Your marketing strategy is Step 0—it’s the first thing you should do before you allocate funds or invest time in marketing activities. It’s your guide to who you target, how you talk about your business, and how you differentiate yourself from all other businesses in your industry. It is the strategic foundation of your marketing house.
So, why should you have a marketing strategy? I have seven reasons why.
Marketing Strategy is Important for Your Business Because
1. You Know Who Your Customers Are
We can’t be all things to all people. From a marketing and sales perspective, there has to be a certain type of person or business that is the most likely to become a long-term customer. When you have someone specific in mind, you can take their fears, wants, needs, and desires and show them how your product or service will alleviate their fears, meet their needs, and solve their problems. Marketing strategy defines your target customer/market so that you know exactly who needs your business.
2. You Know What Your Business is and Why It Benefits Others
A major component of marketing strategy is determining who benefits from your product/service, how they benefit, and reasons to believe that benefit. Your business is better than your competitors’ businesses in some way and it uniquely benefits the people you serve. Defining these items strengthens your reason for being in business and enables you to stand out among a sea of competitors.
3. You Communicate Your Value In a Consistent Way
Marketing strategy is important because it defines how you communicate your value to others. You can give your marketing strategy document to anyone: colleagues, marketing agencies, contractors, salespeople, etc. and they will know exactly who you are, what you do, and why you do it. This gives you a consistent face in the marketplace and the confidence that your business will be accurately represented in all areas of sales and marketing.
4. You Have a Guide for Your Marketing Plan and Budget
A marketing plan is how you promote your business throughout the year, and your marketing strategy informs your marketing plan. Your strategy defines what marketing channels you’ll use (print, social media, commercials, digital ads, direct mail, etc.) and your plan defines what activities you will do throughout the year within each channel and the timeline for doing those activities. Your marketing strategy ensures that the way you promote your company aligns with your overall goals, and it enables you to achieve the greatest value from your marketing.
5. You Know What Success Looks Like
Paraphrasing Peter Drucker, you can’t manage what you don’t measure. Marketing strategy will help you define what success looks like for your company and how you can measure that success. The goals you set within your marketing strategy will inform the metrics you use to measure the success of the marketing activities in your marketing plan. You’ll know which activities were successful for you and which need tweaking for the future.
6. You Know How You Stack Up Against the Competition
When you have a marketing strategy in place, you know exactly what you do, who you benefit, how you go to market, and how you can measure success. You also know your competitive landscape and how you can best compete against similar businesses. It gives you a leg-up in your industry, especially if your competitors haven’t documented their marketing strategy. You have a clear vision of who your company is, its strengths, its weaknesses, and everything in between. You know where you win and how to promote your company to win.
7. You Exude Professionalism
When you have a clear understanding of who you are and know exactly how to talk about your business, you exude confidence and professionalism. When you are certain about who your customer is and how you will benefit that customer, you are able to focus your time, energy, and money reaching that customer. Your business will seem more professional because it is more professional with a marketing strategy in place.
With marketing strategy, every activity you do, every action you take leads towards helping your customers solve their problems. Marketing strategy builds brand loyalty and customers for life while giving you a clear path to follow and a concise way of explaining your value to others.
Interested in learning more about marketing strategy? Contact Starza Thompson today to schedule a free 30 minute consultation.
Content provided by Women Belong member Starza Thompson