Identifying the Right Marketing Strategies For Your Company
What is a marketing strategy, and what marketing strategy steps should your company take? These are critical questions to ask if you want your business to grow successfully! If you want to see loyal business growth, don’t overlook the importance of this step in your business development.
Have you ever heard the metaphor of throwing spaghetti at a wall to see which ones stick? That’s what it’s like to try to grow your business without a marketing strategy plan. You’re experimenting with various methods to reach out to and connect with people, and you’re just waiting to see which ones work. Instead, starting with a solid marketing strategy can help you define exactly where and how to reach out to your potential customers, making it less of a haphazard game of chance.
This is not a textbook article that will walk you through specific types of marketing strategies one by one, but rather a resource to help you determine what YOUR strategies should be and how they connect to your marketing strategy.
We’ll go over four specific marketing strategy steps below to help you narrow down what your marketing strategy should look like. There is no right or wrong approach at the end of these four steps, but going through them should help you understand how you want to proceed with your marketing to reach your target customer base.
Marketing Strategy Steps:
Where does your target audience congregate?
What channels can I use to reach my target market in that location?
How do you want to be heard?
How do I connect my voice and my outlets to reach my target audience?
1. Where does your target audience congregate?
Again, if you haven’t already defined your target market, make sure to read my post on that here before proceeding with this step. Once you’ve determined who your target market is, consider the following questions about them:
- Where does my target audience spend their time?
- What are the voices of my target market?
- What sources do my target market believe in?
2. What channels can I use to reach my target market in that location?
Once you’ve narrowed down where your target market spends their time and who they listen to and trust, consider different channels you could use to meet them where they spend their time and/or influence them through the voices they trust and listen to. For example, if your target market consists of stay-at-home moms or college students, they are likely to spend a significant amount of time on social media sites. You can run into them there. Moms in their local circle may also listen to and trust other moms. You might run into them there. Students can trust campus news sources and local radio.
It will look different for each business and target market, but consider how you can connect with your target market in the places where they spend the most time and through the voices they listen to and trust the most.
What does meeting your target market in their circle look like? Again, it will differ depending on the business, but it could look like any of the following:
- Being active on social media and sharing your life there (think about which ones!)
- Participating in a local or online club or group
- Participating in interest-based online forums
- Creating a website that will appear in search results
- Displaying flyers in local businesses or handing them out in person
- Joining a reputable referral service
- Collaboration with other reputable businesses for referrals
- Having a booth at a local fair or a table at a craft fair
- Purchasing advertisements in a local newspaper, online news source, or television/radio
These are just a few samples! Think via your target market and where you can:
- Get the most exposure with them.
- Build their trust.
3. How do you want to be heard?
If you haven’t already established your business’s purpose and goals (or “why” and “where”), make sure to read this post first. It’s difficult to define what you want your business voice to be unless you first know what your business’s purpose is and where you want it to go.
Once you’ve determined your purpose and have a vision for your company’s future, consider the following questions as you consider what you want your voice (or message) to be:
# What is my “sell”?
What am I attempting to sell to my clients? Is it something I want them to buy? Is it a service that I want them to subscribe to? Is the content I want them to read? Before you communicate with your customers, you must know what you want them to do. Otherwise, they may be interested in what you’re offering but unsure where to go with it. If you’re trying to sell a product, having a lot of social media views from people who are interested in your life isn’t enough. You must ensure that your “voice” directs them to your product.
# How do you want people to connect with you?
This is related to where you will meet your target market. Consider how you intend to use your voice. Make sure your voice is heard in a way that your target market can relate to. Do you prefer digital or in-person communication? Or perhaps both? And do you need to maintain a relationship (or communicate frequently) with your target market? Or would it better serve your needs to be more transactional, leading target customers to a sale and then being done?
4. How do I connect my voice and my outlets to reach my target audience?
In the preceding two steps, you’ve already determined where you can meet your target market and what you want your “voice” to be. So it’s time to put them together and devise a marketing strategy. This is not a detailed plan of what you intend to do in your marketing (that comes in your marketing plan). This is simply an outline of the general methods you intend to use to promote your company.
Consider where you can meet your target market and whether you want your voice to be relational, transactional, and short or long-term. Where do your responses to those two steps intersect? That is where you should focus your promotional efforts!
For example, if your target market spends a lot of time online and you don’t need a relational voice to sell to them, simply having and promoting a website is a great strategy. If your target market values and trusts face-to-face communication and you need a more relational voice to sell your product to them, joining a local community group in their area of interest would be an excellent marketing strategy.
Some other examples are:
- Creating an email list to send out regular emails (relational interaction, digitally)
- Making and running a Facebook group (relational interaction, digitally)
- Distributing flyers in neighborhoods (transaction-based interaction, in-person)
- Investing in digital advertisements (transaction-based interaction, digitally)
Consider your company’s requirements as well as the locations of YOUR target market. Consider who they listen to and where you can meet them. A dynamic business may not necessitate a plethora of marketing strategies. You might only require one or two. Discover the channels that are best for your company and target market, and you will be well-equipped to expand!
As I always say, there are no correct or incorrect answers. You simply need to know who you’re trying to sell to and how to get their trust and attention.