Not a lot of business owners today inquire about what marketing strategy entails. A lot of entrepreneurs are only interested in the best marketing technique that will help sell their products. Many sellers have assumed marketing strategies are all about the posters in neighborhoods and billboards. This has led to a high percentage of failure in small businesses. Before getting into the details of techniques involved in marketing strategies, it is important to understand the meaning of marketing strategy.
Marketing strategy encompasses long-term activities that are applied in creating awareness of organization goals and also techniques needed for the proper utilization of resources in achieving more sales over other competitors.
Who is a marketing consultant?
Understanding what market strategies mean alone is not sufficient to produce an effective result. Marketing consultants are needed in creating marketing strategies when:
- A company needs to develop brand awareness or promote a new product/service.
- There is a need for a skill that is lacking in an organization.
- A new perspective is needed to develop marketing strategies for a business.
- An external view on customer needs and product development is needed.
- A solution to internal challenges in a company is lacking.
Thus, marketing consultants are external people who work with a company or an organization in developing marketing strategies. They help to identify areas of improvement and opportunities that will help increase sales. They also help with mapping out marketing plans and identifying appropriate tools that are suitable for reaching the target market.
What functions and skills are required of marketing consultants?
- Engaging with customers appropriately and wisely to earn their loyalty. Excellent communication skills should be considered when hiring a marketing consultant.
- Microsoft word skills like Excel and powerpoint – A marketing consultant should be creative in developing content about any product or service.
- Search engine Optimization – This is required to help research and gather useful materials that are needed for marketing a product.
- Understanding of consumers’ behavior and psychology – A consultant should be able to convince customers on why they should buy and use a supposed product over others. It will also help identify people’s needs for possible adjustments.
- Marketing consultants should provide suggestions on modifications that will yield advancement.
- They help create a detailed marketing plan and sometimes implement marketing strategies.
How to create marketing strategies
1. Set a goal – After making a decision to market a product, it is necessary that you set a realistic goal that is achievable in a specific period of time. Setting time allows you to plan activities along with life activities that happen around you. The goal should be clearly stated to your team. This will make them conclude if the goal is reasonable or not. It is important that you never set marketing strategies without your team agreeing to reach the same goal that you have set.
3. Make research – Research can be done within the society, to identify the level of acceptance of what you are trying to sell. With your research, you can make predictions of how sustainable your project will be. It will also help you to identify the target groups that should be focused on when making awareness.
4. Audience – Identifying your target audience will help you know a specific group to direct your marketing effort to. Your target audience could be a sector of a population. E.g. Age group, gender, religion, ethnicity, social class and level of education. However, marketing could pass across other sectors that could have an influence on your target group.
5. Discover channel – Knowing your target audience will help discover appropriate channels for communication. Understanding your target group will also help you identify their preferred mode of communication. For example, if your target group is the teenage group, most of your awareness will probably be through social media.
6. Create a budget – It is important to examine your finances and expenses before you can determine the marketing strategy to employ in achieving your goal.
7. Review – This is done to evaluate your result and measure with the standard set in achieving your goal. This should be done after every completion at certain stages to allow for appropriate correction.
Techniques used for effective marketing strategies
- Target Audience – Knowing your audience will help you identify the proper marketing strategies to use for easy communication and will be more understanding for them.
- Publicity – Online marketing techniques is the most effective way of creating awareness in the current market system. However, newspapers, flyers, posters, TV, magazines, and newsletters should not be considered outdated. As said earlier, your means of communication is mostly dependent on your target audience.
- Unique attribute – Having a distinguishing characteristic in your product/service will make it stand out among what other competitors have to offer. Emphasis should be placed on that which is unique, which will make customers eager to want what you have to offer. This will make you more specific in advertising and will be more productive.
- Value proposition– This is about how your product or brand will help solve a consumer’s problem, the benefit of using your product, and being able to convince your customers on why they should buy from your company and not others. This should be stated when advertising the brand.
- Convenience – The purchase system should be convenient for consumers. It should be noted that, for offline businesses, the location of purchase/distribution should be easily accessible to your target audience.
- Customers value addition – This is a factor that helps determine a customer’s preferred choice between you and your competitor. This could simply be a discount or a reward for a referral. This doesn’t have to be a sugar-coated promised thing. You just have to work around what the customers want. This should also be highlighted in flyers, posters or billboards.
- Feedback – Customers will appreciate it more when a platform is given to them to express their feeling as regards your business. Means of contact could be a mail, text message or phone call. This should be indicated when selling your product. Also, for service providers, a space on how the customer knew about your business should be provided. It will help you identify the most effective tools that you used in marketing strategies.