Understanding Marketing Strategy and Why You Should Have One

Many of you understand the basic concept of marketing. However, to ensure we are all on the same page, here’s a brief refresher.

Definition of marketing: Marketing is the essential process of effective communicating the value of your product and or service to your target customer base.

The goal is to peak their interest enough, allowing them to take action and buy your product or service. You are really doing an amazing job if your customer then refers another customer.

If you are a business and you don’t believe in the process of marketing, I highly recommend you re-think your overall business strategy. You absolutely need marketing to attract a relevant customer base to sell your product or service and have a real chance at making a profit.

Now that you’ve taken a brief refresher as to what is marketing and the importance, the next step is developing a marketing strategy.

What is a marketing strategy?

A marketing strategy will help your organization to develop the most optimal process, focusing your scarce resources on convertible opportunities.

Your goal with a marketing strategy is to increase the total sales your organization achieves within the target customer base and establishing a competitive advantage that’s sustainable.

When you are developing a marketing strategy, you have to consider the comprehensive marketing goals of your organization. This includes long-term and short-term marketing goals.

You may have to take small bites before you are able to swallow the amount of success you are sure to achieve with an effective strategy. This information will allow you to develop a complete marketing plan. You can’t get anywhere without a solid plan.

Communication as part of a marketing strategy

In order to develop an excellent marketing strategy, you must conduct research within the target market to know exactly how your customer prefers communication.

Remember, marketing is effectively communicating the value of your product or service to the customer. If you don’t have a clear understanding as to how to best communicate with your target customer, your marketing strategy will be ineffective.

What does this mean? Conduct research to determine if your customers need a visual aide, auditory aide, and or things they can touch and feel in order to become connected to your product or service.

For example, I’m auditory. It’s helpful for products and services I’m interested in to have a jingle to their slogan to help me remember to purchase their item.

When I’m in the store, if I walk past an item I need and I can see the product and then recall the jingle, I find myself making a purchase more times than not if I need the product or service at the time.

In your strategy, you may have to develop a combination to meet the needs of your target market. Nonetheless, discover the way your customer needs you to communicate value.

Product mix as part of an effective marketing strategy

It’s critical to ensure your strategy has a keen focus on the product mix that will cause your customer to react. What does this mean?

A product mix will take into consideration the various lines of products offered to the target market. Let’s take it a step further to ensure an understanding is achieved. For example, if you operate an athletic shoe store serving the entire family, what type of products must you offer to ensure you have a profitable product mix?

Athletic shoes are a given. Then to compliment the shoes, you will offer shoe strings. Another relevant offering would be socks and shoe cleaner. It’s important to anticipate the needs of the target consumer. Athletic shoes require certain attire. Therefore, it makes perfect sense to add athletic apparel to your product mix.

Also, consider the type of athletics your target customers are interested in. Perhaps your customers are runners, basketball players, baseball players, and or football players. You must have a mix that is relevant to your target market.

Your product mix must be right. This will ensure you realize maximum profits from your target customer. You must be willing to put in the work as this knowledge will not come without conducting extensive research.

Why is a marketing strategy so important and why do you need one?

Regardless of the size of your organization, you need a marketing strategy. The benefits far outweigh the time and financial investments to be made to create the most effective strategy.

Change in the industry and target consumer needs

Aside from meeting the needs of your target customer with an effective marketing strategy, you will also learn your strengths and weaknesses as the market evolves.

The goal is to develop a sustainable competitive advantage, thus you need to know what you are good at. The marketing strategy should help you stay current with the changing trends of the industry and the necessary strategic adjustments to be made in order to remain connected with your customer.

For example, if you are a business and you have not already implemented social media as part of your overall marketing strategy, you are behind. Technology is ruling the world we live in. Your customers are online and in-touch via social media. You must get connected to stay connected.

Digital marketing is hot! Many businesses are taking advantage of the mobile lifestyle of their target consumer. Digital marketing allows for a business to advertise on mobile devices, tablets, smartphones, digital billboards (these are really cool), and other digital friendly devices.

This is a huge part of internet marketing and is only going to get bigger. This is a must have in your marketing strategy.

Email marketing is another strategy that is continuing to grow. This is a great way to stay connected with your customer on a permission basis. What does this mean? The customers you send your message to each month, specifically requested to stay in touch. These are high probability sales transactions!

Organizational growth

Your marketing strategy should also help to identify areas for business expansion. Every business has the dream of growing. It’s typically identified in their vision statement.

Your marketing strategy will then direct you in the right direction to help reach the potential new customers you will reach as a result of growth. Growth is great and sustainable if you are able to scale your business in a timely and relevant fashion.

As stated before, you may have general knowledge as to the idea and importance of marketing.

You may even have a basic understanding of a marketing strategy. Now, you understand why it’s critical to have one and you have been armed with ideas to get you started.

Five Business Mistakes to Avoid in 2012

You want to be successful in your business but feel you aren’t moving fast enough or are stuck at your current revenue level. Maybe the problem isn’t the business or lack of opportunity. You may be unconsciously sabotaging your success with one of these small business mistakes: Fear of change, Lack of focus, Going it alone, Not playing to strengths, Thinking small.

Fear of change. That big contract or client looks attractive but is going to take you out of your comfort zone. You won’t have the safety and security of having a track record with that size client. You may have an unconscious fear that you are not totally prepared to handle the new responsibilities or have the skills to succeed in the job. Conquer this by letting go of your current identity and creating a vision of yourself as successful with this client. Reflect on the successes that you’ve had and how much you’ve learned with your current clients. Recognize that you have the skills to meet the new challenges.

Lack of focus. You don’t have a business plan or marketing plan and accept each client as they come to you. This gives you an excuse to complain about the quality of client that you’re getting and becomes a reason for not making your revenue goals. To conquer this mistake, take ownership of your business plan and marketing plan. Write your business goals down and create a marketing map which identifies who your ideal clients are and what you need to do each month to achieve your revenue and business goals. Each new client should support your long term business and revenue goals.

Going it alone. This fear masquerades as false confidence. You think you know everything that is required to achieve your goals so you don’t ask for help or you are embarrassed to ask for help. The danger of not asking for assistance is the loss of objectivity as well as missed opportunities. Leveraging the wisdom of others help you accelerate your learning. You don’t re-invent the wheel. To conquer this one, build a support team inside and outside of your company, to include trusted mentors, coaches and business advisors who will give you constructive feedback, information and recommendations.

Not playing to your strengths. We each have aspects of our business that we love and are experts in and other areas that we don’t like or have average skills. It’s a mistake to offer clients solutions based on less than average skills where we have no desire and perhaps no ability to become an expert. Rather, focus on those areas that you are really good at and become known for them. Be the person that everyone thinks about and asks for to handle that particular job. It may seem counterintuitive but the more you specialize in a narrow set of solutions, the more sought out you will be and the more you can charge for them.

Thinking small. This one is a variation on the Fear of change. The author and lecturer, Marianne Williamson says “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?”

To conquer this fear, look at the leaders in your industry. Watch what they do and how they do it. You’ll probably discover a few things that you do better than them. Perhaps it’s your ability to provide more personalized attention or perhaps there are aspects of a solution that they overlook but that you include in what you offer. Take what you learn and highlight that when you are targeting that ‘big fish’.

To conquer the fears of success, acknowledge both the positive and the negative consequences of playing a bigger game. Think about how your business will be transformed if you are successful. Get guidance and support from mentors and coaches. Most importantly, identify a business goal, actively work towards it and measure your success.

How to Select Best Project Management Software?

Project management software is focused around a work breakdown structure. It means that each project has a particular set of tasks that need to be completed for the project. There is also a diversity of other components to a project which the project management software helps to manage. These entail issues, budgets, documents, notes and resource availability. The overall goal of the project manager is to plan, execute, track and accomplish projects. This software assists the project manager to do this job. It allows you and your most pivotal asset, your employees, to get up-to-date, stay up-to-date and organize the data on all of your projects. A project can not be executed properly if even one person is working with the wrong plans. No matter what your business is This software will assist you keep track of the assignments, tasks, files etc.

The best project manager is sustained by a software tool for management that meets specification of a single project. While selecting it you need to perform some important tasks. The main points of selecting the software is as follows:-

• Project Planning – As you see firstly you need to plan the software acquisition project to secure you have overall agreement on the objectives, scope, time, approach etc. for selecting the software. You should also establish the work plan that you will execute the project. This planning step is just for any project that you manage.
• Project Management Priorities – To determine the project management software company, it is appropriate to understand the day to day management activities of the project and its needs. Software project management capabilities priority is time well devoted in the process of project management software selection. Breakdown by software needs, a manager actualizes a clear picture of how a greater fit between the business and software to actualize.
• Evaluation Of Future Project Requirements – As you can see that it may be difficult for managers to anticipate exactly how the software requirements management project may adjust over time, it is possible to the affability of the software that offers understanding. Malleable management software empowers the company to grow and change over time. This is easy to use, whether or not the accommodation to the changing needs of society as the volume increases or decreases has.
• Project Management Software Vendor / Client Relationship – The substitution of management and client relationship should be one of the mutual supports. While selecting the software to execute business and information, project manager must aspect that how grateful and responsive the project management software vendors.
• Reviewing The Software – It entails that you should avoid spending too much time looking at the reports that the software vendors presents you. It is more pivotal to ensure that the software has the data possibilities for information that you wish to record. When you are reviewing the software, you do not focus on examining to find something that will duplicate.

Although, it is difficult to cover the cost of moving to a new data management software. Project without knowing in advance what is new software project. In case of the selection process to criticize software projects to determine how such diversity in the systems will be discussed, such measures should be taken in the future.