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Did you know that 20% of small businesses fail within the first year of launch? Also, 14% of businesses fail due to poor marketing. While marketing is the heartbeat of any business, it only yields return if executed correctly.
Upcoming entrepreneurs frequently get so over-excited with the launch that they fail to accurately collect or interpret feasibility studies and market trends. These chilling statistics should shake you back to reality and encourage you to be a problem solver, not just a seller.
A winning marketing strategy should capture the following areas:
- Value proposition – What are you offering to the market?
- Marketing goals, e.g., market awareness, market share, consumer behavior, and public relations.
- Competitive strategy – Enables you to earn cost/price leadership, differentiation, and niche focus.
- Brand loyalty – Building a following who will unquestioningly purchase your products or services.
- Market approach – How will you conduct marketing campaigns?
Remember, your marketing strategy must embrace the 4 Ps:
Key Factors to Consider When Selecting Marketing Strategies
1. Content Marketing
Content marketing entails researching, creating, and publishing valuable content that resonates with your target audience. It aims at earning more conversions and sales. It’s usual to post content on your domain, i.e. your virtual legal address.
Survey shows that 96% of B2B clientele prefer content that references industry experts.
“In a world where consumers are exposed to too much content, they’ve resorted to listening to experts to filter out the chaff .” Michael Brenner, Forbes.
- Increased consumer trust;
- Builds brand awareness;
- Drives organic traffic; and
- Establishes brand authority.
How to Execute
- Create informative blog posts for your audience. Long-form blogs (2,000+ words) rank better on search engines. However, you must know how to optimize the content, e.g., using keywords and specific phrases.
Use tools like Ahrefs, Semrush, and SurfeSEO to find these terms and phrases.
- 85% of businesses use video as a marketing tool to promote brand awareness. Videos are also an asset in content marketing. Share them on all social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and YouTube.
- Infographics also boost social media shares and backlinks, and complex information.
2. Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing entails using social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn to create awareness and promote your brand, product, and services.
Choosing the Right Platforms
The table below compares three social media platforms. This information should help you decide on the one you’ll give more prominence to depending on your business.
|– 2.91 billion monthly active users as of September 2021
– Target a broad audience
|– Visual-based platform
– Ideal for product-based businesses
|– B2B marketing
– Professional networking
Tips for Success
- Post consistently;
- Engage with followers; and
- Utilize influencers and brand partnerships.
3. Email Marketing
This marketing strategy involves sending newsletters, promotional emails, and messages to potential clients. It’s a highly effective, time-serving, cost-effective way to drive sales.
- High ROI. According to DMA, email marketing has an average ROI of $42 return for every $1 spent.
- Direct communication with customers.
- Segment audience for targeted messaging. This helps send relevant and targeted messages to specific groups of subscribers, potentially leading to conversions.
- Personalized subject lines;
- Mobile-responsive design;
- Use task automation for drip campaigns; and
- Analyze the marketing campaigns.
4. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Incorporating SEO into your marketing strategy involves optimizing web content to improve its ranking and visibility on search engines. SEO is a sure-proof way of gaining organic growth like websites like Shoethority – and generating leads if done correctly.
Optimizing SEO to rank better on search engines. You can do this by:
- Optimizing title tags, meta descriptions, and headers; and
- Using relevant keywords.
- Building quality backlinks; and
- Guest posting and collaborating with others to help acquire more leads.
5. Local SEO
It involves intentionally optimizing websites to increase ranking locally. This marketing strategy suits startups that still don’t have a huge marketing campaign budget.
- Optimize Google My Business listing;
- Optimize for “near me” searches; and
- Collect and respond to reviews.
6. Referral Marketing
People ask around and read product and company reviews before buying from you. Many websites specialize in writing reviews like these. Your exceptional service will bring in more conversions and sales. Your customers will market you.
- Low-cost marketing; and
- Leverage existing customer base.
How to implement
- Create referral program;
- Offer incentives for referrals;
- Make it easy to share; and
- Promote the program through email and social media.
7. Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
Here, you pay anytime someone clicks your ad. Facebook ads and Google ads use this technique. It’s a fantastic approach when the goal is to generate immediate results like boosting traffic to your website.
8. Influencer Marketing
This marketing strategy is where brands partner with influential social media personalities to publicize the brand or its products. Should you resort to this means, ensure the influencer’s brand aligns with your business.
- There’s already an established audience;
- Increased trust and credibility; and
- Possible high rate of conversions.
9. Podcasts and Webinars
Using podcasts and webinars is also a good marketing strategy. Listeners can always refer back to them whenever they want to contact you.
Why they’re effective
- Showcase expertise; and
- Connect with niche audiences.
Tips for Success
- Collaborate with industry experts; and
- Promote on social media and email lists.
10. Guerrilla Marketing
Guerilla marketing is a timeless and subtly shrewd marketing tactic. It sometimes uses unconventional approaches to ensure products move, like flash mobs, pop-up events, and street art.
Guerilla marketing is ideal for small businesses with little or no marketing budget.
- Low-cost and fierce marketing tactics; and
- Creates buzz and word-of-mouth.
Starting a business without a well-structured marketing strategy has sunk many businesses. Operating on impulse has never yielded any success.
Here are three questions to guide you during drafting:
- Who’s your business serving?
- What do they do (your target audience)?
- How is your business or strategy going to solve their problems?
A good business strategy should attract potential clients, convert them, and bring profits.
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