Marketing has to be a driving force behind any business. However, too many business owners realize that but don’t take the time to deepen that understanding. They know that they have to get the business out there to drive its growth. But without more clearly defining the why’s, the how’s, and the who’s, they will find that they’re just throwing their money at a machine that isn’t working for them.
Every business decision should start with the audience in mind. Yes, profit motive is there but your target market will always play a role in that. Not only is it about thinking about what they want from your business and how to craft your message to fit those wants. Knowing your audience will also help you better understand which platforms they’re most likely to use and which connections they’re most likely to build. What social media networks are they on? What are they looking for on Google that can help them with you with the right SEO? We have to ask these questions.
The message should be malleable to the wants and expectations of the audience. But if you want a company that stands out and that has the potential to create not only customers but supporters and advocate, you need to create a strong brand and find your identity. It starts with your value proposition. But from there, you need to create an aesthetic, a voice, and core values. These should form your “brand bible” which is to be referenced and heeded every time you create a new marketing message.
The brand doesn’t exist in a vacuum. There’s a world of competitors and interconnected businesses to consider. First, you have to look at what your competitors do. While you should learn from what they get right, playing copycat isn’t going to make you look any more attractive. You have to think of advantages your business has over theirs and find some points to help differentiate the marketing. But you also have to think of the norms and the expectations of businesses in that world. If you’re in a manufacturing business, you will have more success creating a fitting site with manufacturing website design than using a more generic web designer. If you’re in fashion, then a more visual social media plan, like using Instagram, will play to the strengths of what it is you do.
Marketing is a part of the growth in your business, but what role is it playing? Are you aiming to grow visibility and traffic? Do you want more people signing up to your services and newsletters? Are you trying to sell more of your product? Setting marketing aims is one of the most important parts of all. Some techniques, like SEO, are better for visibility, while direct advertisements tend to work better for driving sales. Cost-effective marketing is about finding your marketing objectives knowing why you’re spending in the first place.
Defining your brand, your audience, the world you operate in, and your aims are all going to help you create marketing that really works to improve your business. But it also helps you gain an insight that helps you better understand the challenges and the path of the business in any aspect. Sit down and figure it out.