The 4 Step Marketing Strategy
An easier way to think about marketing strategy
Business traditionally is very complicated, there was a vested interest by the individuals at the helm of the big businesses to keep it complex to deter people from "doing it themselves". With the advent of the internet, instant communication worldwide, we can see what other people are doing in similar situation all over the world, thus in may respects, simplifying business.
The simpler the idea, the better the odds people will understand it. Your business model should be very obvious as to what you are trying to accomplish, if your best intentions are aligned with your customers your business will grow while you help your customers solve a problem. When goals are aligned, success is much more effortless and more so a natural occurrence..
@Jephmaystruck: Welcome to Marketing Strategy Methodology
Hi, I'm Jeph, great to meet you. I like to think big, I like big ideas and like people with big ideas. If any of those three interest you we're probably going to get along.
Let me know what you think in the comments at the bottom, or don't, completely up to you.
Think about it...
How will you get their attention?
Quotes from Extreme Trust
Three laws of the new marketing strategy
1. It no longer can be set in stone
Your strategy can't be set in stone, it's not static and it doesn't live on a document in a file folder in your office cabinet. Your marketing strategy has to be nimble, effective, and efficient. Not in a cliche either way either. Customers change too quickly for you not to be adapting your strategy to the current trends of the market place.
2. It can't be made in a vacuum
You need more input into your strategy. You should be involving people from all parts of the company, everyone needs to get on the same page. With collaborative software (or Google Docs) you can communicate in a very efficient manner with a large amount of people without bombarding people with e-mail.
3. It must be tested constantly to ensure effectiveness
If you're not measuring results you're going to fail. You have to measure. You have to set goals and try to achieve them. You must have something to strive for, to work towards, hopefully a brilliantly articulated vision (but I'm not holding my breathe) (just kidding). ABT - Always be testing, that way you'll always know what works and doesn't work.
Who was the most influential business mind of our time?
Who was the most influential business mind of our time?
"If you ain't first you're last." -Ricky Bobby
How did the methodology come to be?
After working with clients for four years and not really "hitting it out of the park" so to speak, you learn a lot. After failing in project after project you learn a lot about the things you shouldn't be doing. We didn't fail at everything, we were in fact very good at a few things. Over time you get a better understanding of how you are helping clients.
This methodology is the best way I've figured out how to frame your marketing strategy. I really hope it can help you, and please, ask any question you may have about it.
Any marketing project begins with research. You must have an intimate knowledge of the business you're helping and the industry they're in. You can never rush the research phase. You must ask questions like:
If you went out of business tomorrow, would your customers care?
Who are your best customers? Why?
How do you proactively acquire feedback?
How much training do you provide your staff?
Do your own staff have a way to give ownership/management feedback?
Is your business strategy changing as fast as the market is?
What signs can you get from other markets about your own?
When the last time you asked your staff if they're happy?
How do you celebrate wins?
Do people lineup to work for your company? If not, why is that?
The next step is to put your plan together. You should have identified key audiences, you should have established a proactive feedback mechanism (from your customers and employess) now you can put together the bread and butter of your plan.
You must determine:
Why you exist as an organization? A a very elementary level, why will your business exist in 10 years?
How do you intent to win in this business? What's your competitive advantage? Why do you stand out amongst the competition? What's your purple cow?
What are you doing today to ensure success in the future? How are you helping employees feel more ownership in your company?
Do you have a customer service strategy? Have you heard of a measurement tool such as Net Promoter Score (NPS)? If not, how do you measure customer sentiment?
These are the types of questions you should be asking. Remember, don't ask the easy questions. Everyone can answer the easy questions, it's the difficult questions you must ask, those are the ones we don't want to answer but must.
The third stage is engagement. You must implement the plan you've created. Not finished yet? Don't worry, the sooner you implement the sooner you can start measuring the impact. Lets face it, the market changes daily, technology advances faster than ever before, how can you assume your "plan" is going to work flawlessly. That's it, you can't. You must assume your first and atleast second iteration of your plan is going to fail. Similar to what Claton M. Christensen talks about in the Innovators Dilemma, any new business strategy is almost bound to fail, so go into the project realizing this. Set yourself up to adapt early on, done properly you're setting yourself up for long term success.
You must, must, must determine how your customers want to be communicated with, nothing like have a hundred thousand email addresses in your CRM and your marketing department deciding on spamming them. Remember, people only go online to solve a problem or entertain, nothing else. If you aren't solving their problem in your newsletter, you better be entertaining them or else you're wasting their time.
Ahh the most important part of your strategy outside of shipping. You must measure. If someone tells you can can't measure social media, please punch them in the face from me. Not only can you measure social media but you have no choice but to. Without measurement how will you know if what you're doing actually works or not?
Set a goal or goals.
Get to work on them.
Assess your progress every three months and adjust as necessary. Gone are the days of "the master marketing plan", develop a framework, a marketing model, and begin testing it. To those who test the most, will learn the most and the companies that learn the most in the next 10 years will be the companies that are still around.
Or as Avinash Kaushik would say, MEASURE OR DIE!