What Is A Marketing Strategy?
People often mix up the function of marketing strategies with that of marketing plans and marketing tactics. So, allow us to clear the confusion.
The function of a marketing strategy is to describe the purpose behind why you do what you do for your business.
On the other hand, the marketing plan is ‘what it is that you will do’, and the marketing tactics are the ‘how you are going to do it’.
Simple enough, right?
You need to do all three to see success, but the first step is to establish your marketing strategy, which is what our post is about today.
Without a marketing strategy, you won’t have a clear focus.
And without a clear focus, how will you know what tactics to use for an effective marketing campaign?
Strategy is the foundation of everything!
These 4 key strategies we are about to share with you will help your small business create an effective marketing plan that can…
- increase your sales,
- boost your ROI,
Let’s get started with these amazing marketing strategy examples!
4 Tips And Marketing Strategy Examples To Inspire You
Starting with number one on our list, when creating a marketing strategy, you need to set goals for what you want to achieve.
Setting goals is not only advised when creating a marketing strategy but also in general when building your business.
Taking time to set goals for your business helps you focus more specifically, so you can plan how to achieve them later on.
The most important thing to remember when setting goals is that you need to be specific.
So, you don’t just want to ask yourself, “what are my goals?” and jot down vague ideas – you want to really narrow it down.
What are you hoping to achieve with your marketing?
What metrics do you want to measure? What is it that you want your audience to do?
If you don’t ask yourself these specific questions, you won’t know what you need to do in your marketing tactics later on.
With this, you also want to create short-term and long-term goals for your marketing strategy.
So, if one of your short-term goals is to drive more website traffic, don’t stop there.
Get specific! Use numbers, tactics, and more to focus your efforts.
So, if you want to increase website traffic fast, write down that you want to increase website traffic by 30% within the next 3-4 months using SEO.
See the difference?
Let’s look at a real-life marketing strategy example.
Check out one of our clients called Easy Diya.
They are an eCommerce business that specializes in organic and high-quality puja products.
And they came to our agency with hopes to improve their social media presence.
Aside from social media, their overall marketing strategy goals were clear.
They wanted to increase product knowledge, brand recognition, and sales within 3 months as their short-term goals.
In 12 months, they wanted to build their brand, establish trust in their brand, and improve their subscription services for the long term.
By setting specific long-term and short-term goals, we were able to create an efficient marketing strategy for them.
By setting clear goals, you can understand what results you’re after and then map a way to achieve them and generate results like this for your business.
Second on our list of marketing strategy examples is identifying your audience.
Identifying your target audience is one of the most important steps in a marketing strategy, in order to build your brand and increase sales.
Understanding your ideal customer is vital to your marketing strategy.
And this is because it tells you exactly who you are targeting and how to create your content and messaging as a result.
Doing this will help you answer questions like:
- Which platforms do my customers spend time on?
- What kinds of prices are they willing to pay?
- What are their other interests?
- What are their hobbies?
- What motivates them to buy?
Let’s take a look at Nature Valley. Nature Valley is a protein, nut, and granola snack company that prides themselves on creating on-the-go products.
Their website showcases sustainable and socially conscious business decisions, contributing to their branding.
Their landing page shows you their new recyclable bar wrappers that you can “learn more about” if you are interested.
As you scroll down, you can see a list of their different product categories and their philanthropic commitments.
After spending some time researching on their website, we can understand that their target audience is typically:
- Travelers, hikers, etc.
- Health-conscious eaters
- People with a busy lifestyle
- Environmentally and socially conscious people
Now, this is not to say that only these people who fit into these traits and lifestyles buy Nature Valley bars, but rather this is who their brand is targeting.
The best part about this is that you can zero in on even more specific categories of their target audience.
For instance, like, what age they are, what other brands they buy from, and more.
Because Nature Valley identified who they wanted to target, they knew what…
- kind of images,
- language, and
…to use on their website and throughout their branding as a whole.
There are many ways to figure out who your target audience is.
You can do this with a few Google searches about your industry or by studying the historical data of your customers to date.
Or, if you really want to be hands-on in your research, go for coffee with your customers, send out surveys, and talk to them on social media.
The better you understand the person you are trying to target, the better job you can do to promote your brand to them.
The biggest thing you want to learn about your target audience is what makes them want to buy your product or service.
Do you solve a problem for them or help them accomplish a goal?
What makes your product or service different or better at providing that solution than your competitors?
By doing this research, you can effectively promote your products to your target demographic which will increase your sales and overall ROI.
They sell a wide variety of embroidery products but were struggling to advertise to their niche target audience.
Our agency researched their target audience’s buying habits, the platforms that they used, what their other interests were, and more.
By conducting in-depth research and advertising their business using Google Ads, they were able to generate over $15,000 in revenue with almost 100 conversions.
This boosted their ROI by 162%!
This marketing strategy example shows why it’s so important to understand who your target audience is.
When it comes to understanding your target audience, it pays to do some research.
The next one is to identify your competition. This is traditionally done through a competitor analysis.
What is a competitor analysis? A competitor analysis occurs when you assess the strengths and weaknesses of your competitors.
Everyone is in the competition of marketing to shared audiences, so it’s important to know which companies you are up against.
Identifying your competition has many benefits.
For instance, it can help you gauge what strategies or tactics your competition is using that you can then use too to improve your business.
Or maybe you noticed something that your competitor is not doing well, so you take notes to make sure you avoid making those same mistakes.
Note that there are three main types of competitors:
a. Direct competitors
These are the companies that offer the same product or service and are targeting the same customer base as you.
They will also have similar business goals and growth models as you do, making them directly your competition.
Say, you own a seafood restaurant.
Your direct competition would be the other seafood restaurant that exists 2 streets down and sells the same kind of food as you.
b. Indirect competitors
Indirect competitors are companies that have the same goal or pain point they are trying to solve for your shared target audience.
But, they sell different products or services.
Using the last example, your indirect competitor could be a sushi restaurant.
This is still your competitor because you are both looking to solve your audience’s pain point of being hungry and giving them a fine place to dine.
c. Replacement competitors
These competitors do not sell the same product as you and are not in the same industry.
But, people can choose to spend their money on their product or service, instead of yours.
Your seafood restaurant’s replacement competitor could be anything like Lunchables or Smucker’s Uncrustable.
By doing a competitor analysis, you want to identify what your competitive edge is.
Here, you want to identify the things that differentiate your company from your competition.
How can you make yourself stand out?
What are the things that your competitors are not doing that you can do?
What makes your company different?
Let’s look at another marketing strategy example.
One of our eCommerce clients that sell batteries for cordless phones came to our agency wanting to drive targeted traffic.
After putting together their marketing strategy, we saw that they had something different about their company that sets them apart from their competitors…
…their product was extremely affordable!
Using the information we gathered from our competitor analysis and using Google Shopping Ads, we were able to showcase this competitive edge to their audience.
Because of the way Google Shopping Ads are formatted, by picture, price, description, etc., the audience could clearly see that our client’s product was the most affordable and effective option for their needs.
Without researching their competition, we would have not known that our client had something special that the competition didn’t have.
Instead, we were able to leverage that into our marketing efforts and generate profitable results.
And last on our list of marketing strategy examples, is choosing the most effective platforms to advertise your business on.
When creating your marketing strategy, choose platforms based on where your target demographic spends the majority of their time.
And then, use that to your advantage.
For instance, if you already have a sizable existing email subscriber list (or even better, a list of your customers’ emails)…
…then Facebook Ads might be an effective platform for you to use.
The reason for this is because, in Facebook Ads, you can upload your entire email marketing list onto Facebook to either:
- retarget them directly and bring them back to your website, or
- make what is called a Lookalike Audience
A Lookalike Audience is where Facebook finds new customers to target, who look like your existing customers.
For example, our agency helped an eCommerce shop improve their:
- social media advertising,
- broaden their ad reach, and
- secure quality leads
…through creating Lookalike Ads and retargeting ads.
Our agency used Lookalike Audiences to target users who showed similar interests and behaviors as their current customers.
And then, we used retargeting ads to bring back previous website visitors to our client’s website.
So as you can see, choosing the right platform to advertise your business can generate extremely profitable results.