How to Create Your Small Business Marketing Strategy

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What is the difference between marketing strategy and advertising strategy? 

Well, both terms essentially refer to the same concept. However, these terms are very different, each leading to a different kind of marketing plan. Your marketing strategy, therefore, is always ongoing. The bottom line of your entire marketing plan is to figure out how you are going to reach your target demographic and convert future customers into paying customers.

For example, let’s say that you are opening a new dollar store and your marketing strategy focuses on gaining local exposure. In other words, you want to position your store in a prime location so that people walking in will be interested in what you have to offer. Your marketing strategy, therefore, would include placing yard signs, having bulletin boards in local grocery stores, and hanging brochures in local stores. Your ultimate goal is to increase foot traffic through these various marketing channels.

In contrast, your go-to-market strategy actually does the opposite. 

Your go-to marketing strategy will be to capture the attention of your customer so that they will remember you later. For example, let’s say that you are opening a dollar store and one of your main goals is gaining local exposure. If you were to use your go-to marketing strategy, your ultimate goal would be to place banners or posters in local businesses such as laundromats, restaurants, etc.

Another example may make this clearer. Let’s say that you are opening a dollar store and your overall goal is gaining national exposure through various media outlets such as radio and television. You may want to incorporate email marketing into your overall marketing strategy. For example, you may want to create a website for your business, create articles and distribute newsletters on a regular basis, and develop a new offer that you want to introduce to your audience.

Now, when it comes to implementing this strategy, you have several options. 

First, you could spend thousands of dollars on an outside company to help you create and distribute the materials. Second, you may want to consider creating your own brand identity and following your customers wherever they are. Third, you can use traditional marketing techniques such as direct mail, magazine advertising, newspaper ads, television commercials, etc., but without spending any money to promote your new product or service. (In other words, spend lots of money on the go-to-market strategies, but forget about the go-to-market strategies.)

The truth is, there are seven steps that you need to take when developing a marketing strategy. First, you need to identify your target market. Next, you need to know your competitors’ marketing strategies. Next, you need to know what your target market will think about your product or service. Finally, you need to figure out your go-to marketing strategy.

In order to be successful at developing your go-to marketing strategy, you will need to test marketing ideas throughout your project. 

Some companies like to focus on launching one new product or service at a time. Others like to test marketing approaches throughout their product development process. One of the most important things to remember when developing your marketing plan for a small business is that you must be willing to take the risk and to adjust your approach as your business experience changes. It is much easier to make a mistake the first time around than it is to change course mid-way through your product development process. If you don’t change your strategy as your business grows then you might find yourself with a product that is flat and not helpful to your customer base. On the other hand, if you test different approaches in the beginning, then you will have a better idea of what works and what doesn’t.

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