Marketing is how potential clients learn about your business and get the information they need to decide whether or not to give you their hard-earned money in exchange for your products and services. So, is marketing necessary for a business? You bet.
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What is marketing, exactly?
You’ve probably heard the word a million times before, but what exactly does “marketing” encompass? At its core, it is the process of identifying sales opportunities wherever they occur and making the most of them.
For ecommerce and web-based companies, digital marketing strategies might be the primary focus, while owners of brick and mortar stores may choose to concentrate on traditional methods like print and radio. But regardless of your business model or goals, marketing is necessary for your business to succeed.
What does marketing accomplish?
Marketing is designed to attract customers, but the benefits of marketing don’t end there. Particularly for new businesses, marketing helps accomplish multiple goals, from gaining a social following to increasing market share.
So in addition to generating sales, what should a successful marketing do for your business?
Increase brand awareness
Marketing is necessary for a business that needs enhanced visibility in both digital and physical environments. From attention-grabbing signage posted on a busy street to branded blog posts published on authoritative websites, marketing tactics help customers mentally link your brand with a valuable product or service.
Promote brand loyalty
In addition to gaining new customers, marketing can be used to enhance brand loyalty among existing clients. Establishing a loyalty marketing campaign helps retain existing customers and strengthen relationships with new customers.
Provide information and education
To elevate your brand’s authority and provide value to customers, some marketing tasks focus on providing information and education about a particular topic. Regardless of your industry, distributing content that helps solve a problem, add clarity about an issue, or explore a topic in-depth contributes to your business’ credibility.
The goal of marketing is often to drive conversion rates, but the process by which this occurs remains a mystery to some business owners. By focusing on the sales funnel and creating campaigns to target buyers at each stage, marketing impacts purchase decisions and increases sales.
Between content marketing, experiential marketing, and social media marketing, engaging customers wherever they are has become easier than ever before. Now, brands can use both digital and print media to get customers excited about a brand and encourage conversation.
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How to successfully market a business
If all of these goals sound good to you, but you’re wondering how you can achieve them—read on. These guidelines will help you make sure that your marketing strategy is set up in a way that will help you meet all of your advertising goals.
Be specific and realistic
If your business is less than a year old, your marketing goals might be focused on gaining new leads versus retaining existing customers. Outline marketing goals by identifying specific metrics, methods, and processes by which each goal will be achieved.
Give goals a deadline
Establishing a specific goal isn’t enough; you need to make each marketing goal time-sensitive. Will you earn 4,000 visitors a day by next month, next quarter, or next year? If your goal is to increase email opt-ins by 50%, how long will that take and how often should progress be evaluated? To keep things rolling, assign a deadline to each marketing task.
Avoid aspiring to accomplish the impossible
Overarching ambition is what sets successful entrepreneurs apart from everyone else. But, aiming for an impossible outcome will result in disappointment nearly 100% of the time. Instead of stressing out your team and not reaching goals, designate desired results you’d like within 30 days, six months, one year, and five years.
How to win with marketing
In addition to being specific, deadline-oriented, and realistic, here are some additional strategies that will help you maximize your marketing potential.
Document your marketing strategy and goals
It’s difficult to review what went right or wrong when you don’t have a clear picture of where your marketing journey began. Documenting and updating your marketing strategies is the best way to create a starting point for marketing initiatives.
Concentrate on your customer’s needs
Every marketing message should speak to a specific need or concern your ideal customer is experiencing. Without fail, a marketing tactic focused on the customer will receive more attention and higher response rates than a tactic designed to strictly promote your brand. Keeping messaging customer-focused produces better results.
Choose marketing tactics suited for your audience
Where do your customers spend their time? If targeting professionals or C-suite execs, your marketing tactics may include LinkedIn outreach, publicized membership in industry associations, or the distribution of video content. Alternatively, marketing to a younger audience may merit an emphasis on social media and mobile marketing. Whichever tactic you choose, make sure it’s relevant and appropriate for your audience.
Measure and analyze results
Proper measurement of marketing initiatives, progress, and outcomes is critical to your marketing plan’s success. Whether you’re tackling marketing in-house or outsourcing the job to a firm, tracking each marketing campaign, its reach, and results is the best way to monitor your success, identify weak areas, and make changes as needed.
Unless part of your business plan involves stagnation, marketing is necessary for a business to flourish. As the competition among businesses continues to grow, investing in the creation of a strong marketing team is an investment in your company’s future.
Need help creating a marketing strategy? Don’t hesitate to contact us! Our dedicated team of Internet marketing professionals will work with you to generate leads, make sales, and grow your business.