Developing a comprehensive marketing strategy is neither easy, nor does it come naturally. Although you may have had some ideas about how you wanted your business to perform, once you’re actually in the thick of it, you realize that there are a lot more variables to consider. This is why we’ve gone ahead and created this guide to assist you in the process. Here, you’ll discover the ideal approach to take when developing your marketing strategy, along with some practical advice that can help you along the way. Let’s get started.
Set A Goal
As was mentioned above, developing a comprehensive marketing strategy involves so much more than just brainstorming ideas and concepts. To start with the basics, you need to develop the right mindset. What we mean is that you should approach this task with a clear goal in mind, namely, to grow your business. Now, that doesn’t mean that you have to choose the path of least resistance or settle for what already works. Quite the opposite, you should be driven by what you know will give you the best opportunity to achieve your goals. In order to set the right foundation for your strategy, start by setting a goal for your business–something that you know will take some work but that you believe will be worth it. Once you’ve set that goal, everything else will start to make sense. For example, you might say that you want to increase your customer base by 20% within the next 12 months. With this in mind, you can start to map out a course of action, knowing that you’ll have 12 months to make it happen.
From there, you can work on developing a clear vision of how you’ll get there. To better understand what we mean, take a look at our example above. Perhaps you’re familiar with the expression ‘The more you know, the more you realize you know nothing’. This is very true in the context of marketing. When you have a clear goal in mind, working towards it will give you the opportunity to identify the gaps in your knowledge, and close those gaps. The more you know, the more you realize how little you truly know. That’s the beauty of having a goal. On the other side of the coin, the more you realize you know, the more you realize how little you know, and this can sometimes lead to feelings of despair or even helplessness. This is why it’s important to keep in mind that there is always more to learn. While it’s true that there are some things which you won’t ever need to learn, for the rest of it, you’ll always be able to benefit from new learning opportunities. By realizing that you don’t know everything, you give yourself the opportunity to learn something new, and in turn, grow yourself and your business. This is why we say that setting a goal will give you a clear starting point for your strategy.
Understand The Roles Of The Different Stakeholders
Just like any other important part of your business, knowing who the different stakeholders are and what they need is critical to developing a successful marketing strategy. In this case, we’re talking about understanding the roles of the different groups of people who might be affected by or interested in your product or service. These could include current and potential customers, existing employees, suppliers, retailers, and community leaders.
For example, you’ll want to make sure that you’re addressing the needs of your customers, otherwise you could waste a lot of time and effort trying to attract people who aren’t into what you sell. Similarly, you won’t want to neglect the people who work for you, as they might have suggestions about how to make your business more effective. In the same way, your employees might have ideas about how to improve the workplace culture, as well as your customers, who are also your potential future customers. This is why it’s important to understand the roles of all the different stakeholders in your business–so that you can choose the right person to speak to about each issue (or group of people, in some cases).
Do Your Research
As we mentioned above, one of the major tasks that you’ll have to perform in order to develop a marketing strategy is research. Whether you choose to do this through informal interviews with industry experts or by taking a more formal approach through focus groups or surveys, you’ll want to find out what your competitors are doing, and how they’re getting results. One of the best things about this step is that it allows you to identify some pretty cool techniques and strategies that could be used to grow your business. This is something that you could share with your team, who could then begin implementing these techniques and strategies, giving you the competitive edge that you need to succeed.
However, this kind of research could take a while, so be sure to plan. You could spend a lot of time exploring different marketing channels and experimenting with various marketing strategies, only to find out that what you’ve spent all that time doing isn’t working. So, it’s important to have a clear idea of what you’re going for, and how long it’s going to take to get there. Also, doing your research in advance will give you a much better chance of choosing the right strategies to grow your business. Rather than scrambling to find the right answer when you need it, do your research first, and then choose the best strategy for your needs.
Form A Marketing Team
One of the things that could help you along the way to developing a successful marketing strategy is forming a team. Although you might be tempted to do this part individually, forming a team could actually prove to be one of the most effective ways of bringing together the right people with the right skills, and being sure that everyone is on the same page, when it comes to what your strategy is, and how you’ll go about executing it.
For our example above, maybe you have a business owner who’s been operating for a while, and has realized that he needs help managing the business. Or maybe you’re just starting up, and don’t have the money or the experience to hire people. In either case, forming a small marketing team could prove to be extremely beneficial. Aside from having the right people, having a diverse team is also beneficial, as it provides you with multiple perspectives, and ensures that no one perspective dominates the group. A diverse group of individuals will better enable you to develop a comprehensive marketing strategy, and help you choose the right tactics to achieve your goals.
Choose The Right Place For Your Business To Be Found
Now, we’re not going to get too technical here, but the place that your business will be found is known as ‘Google’. If you’re reading this, there is a good chance that you have a Google account, and if you do, then you know that the world’s largest search engine can be accessed from nearly anywhere–with the exception of some countries, where Google Search isn’t available. So, if you want to choose the best place for your business to be found, then Google is the place to be, as it is the most popular search engine in the world, and it is pretty much accessible everywhere. With that in mind, here are a few tips on how to choose the right place for your business to be found online: