A Better Marketing Strategy: Use a Conversion-First ApproachJan 25, 2023
Your marketing strategy is the foundation for all your marketing efforts–without a well-defined strategy in place, you'll end up throwing tactics at the wall and hoping something sticks. It's essential to align your marketing strategy with your business objectives because that's the whole point of marketing. This blog post will cover what a marketing strategy is, why you need one, how to create one and the benefits of having one in place!
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What is a Marketing Strategy?
A marketing strategy is a framework for all marketing decisions, and it's used to achieve your business goals. It should resemble your customer's journey, the step-by-step process customers take from becoming aware of your business to eventually becoming loyal raving fans. With your customer journey documented, you'll have a clear understanding of what marketing is required, where to position it, and what it should provide to prospective consumers. Many companies mistake their marketing tactics for marketing strategies and end up scattered and frustrated.
Your marketing strategy is NOT your marketing plan.
Your marketing strategy is the overall purpose and framework for your marketing activities, whereas your marketing plan is the outline of what steps you will take to execute your marketing. A marketing plan may include the details and objectives of a specific campaign or initiative, who you are targeting and how you will reach them. Your marketing strategy will provide guidance on which channels are best suited for reaching your audiences, whereas your marketing plan will outline the tactics that will be used in order to engage them.
Example of marketing strategy vs marketing plan
For example, if you’re a small local restaurant looking to increase foot traffic during lunch hours, then your strategy might include creating content that appeals directly to potential customers in the area (e.g., using geo-targeting). Your marketing plan will outline the social media campaigns, special offers or discounts available only at lunchtime, and the influencers you will leverage to spread the word about your restaurant among their followers.
Your social media marketing is not your marketing strategy;
Your brand values are not your marketing strategy;
Your inbound marketing, brand messaging, content marketing, and even your marketing objectives are not your marketing strategy.
Why Do You Need a Marketing Strategy?
A well-thought-out strategy helps you focus on your priorities, understand customer needs, and create consistent messaging across all channels. Here are some of the key benefits of having a marketing strategy:
Save Time & Money: Having a clear strategy in place can help you save time and money by avoiding costly mistakes or wasted efforts. You’ll be able to prioritize tasks that will have the most impact on your bottom line while also cutting back on unnecessary expenses.
Adapt Quickly: With an effective marketing strategy, you’ll be better equipped to adapt quickly when needed—whether it’s adjusting tactics based on changing market conditions or pivoting due to unexpected events like pandemics or natural disasters. This ability to respond swiftly gives you a sustainable competitive advantage over competitors who don't have a strategy in place and are focused on tactics alone.
Focus On Priorities: When creating your marketing plan, it's important to set specific objectives to know what success looks like for each campaign or initiative—and how best to measure progress towards those goals over time. This allows you to stay focused on what matters most and make adjustments as needed along the way without getting distracted by other projects that may not yield desired results in the end anyway.
By delivering consistent content throughout their journey with your brand, customers will feel more connected and loyal, potentially leading to increased sales in the future. Consistency is critical when building customer relationships, as it shows them they can trust your brand over time.
Key Takeaway: A well-thought-out marketing strategy can help you save time and money, adapt quickly to changing market conditions, and stay focused on your priorities.
Components of an effective marketing strategy
Strategy Then Plan: The first key to effective marketing is to build your strategy before your plan. Don't jump ahead and choose marketing channels or build your marketing campaign before taking the time to create your marketing strategy.
Document: Document the customer journey for each of your customer avatars or target audience segments, beginning with the point of sale and working backwards. When you reverse-engineer your strategy, each step will inform the next instead of making assumptions and hoping for the best. Knowing the customer journey allows businesses to identify key marketing opportunities and channels, remove marketing efforts that aren't in alignment, and identify bottlenecks that are holding back business growth.
Set Objectives: The next part of any successful marketing strategy is setting measurable objectives. You can't know if your marketing is working if you aren't tracking your marketing metrics. Actionable and measurable metrics should be identified for each step in your customer journey and tracked weekly. With weekly tracking, progress can be monitored and adjustments made quickly if needed, helping to ensure resources are being allocated towards achieving desired results rather than wasted on activities that don’t produce tangible outcomes.
A marketing strategy is a roadmap that helps you plan, implement, and measure the success of your marketing activities. It's essential to ensure you are getting the most out of your efforts and maximizing profits–so let's explore why it's important to have one.
Key Takeaway: A successful marketing strategy requires understanding your service, target audience and customer journey. Your marketing plan should include channels & tactics that you will use to achieve your business objectives.
How to Create an Effective Marketing Strategy
Creating an effective marketing strategy begins with understanding your customer's journey. Every step they take, from becoming aware of your business to making a purchase, should be mapped out and analyzed for opportunities.
Start by identifying the point of sale. This is where customers make their final decision to buy or not buy. Ask yourself: what made them decide? What were the factors that influenced their choice? Knowing this will help you create a more targeted approach when it comes to marketing efforts.
Next, reverse-engineer each step leading up to the point of sale. How did they become aware of your business in the first place? Was it through social media, word-of-mouth referrals, or search engine optimization (SEO)? Once you have identified these channels and tactics used in generating leads and sales, use this information as a framework for developing an effective marketing strategy tailored specifically for your target market.
Once you know how people are finding out about your business and what influences their decisions at the point of sale, choose a single priority and develop your marketing plan. Focus on optimizing one area with tactics like content creation, such as blogging or creating videos that provide value to potential customers while also promoting brand awareness. Additionally, you can clearly identify if it is worthwhile considering investing in paid advertising campaigns like Google Ads or Facebook Ads to reach your audience quickly and efficiently within budget constraints.
Finally, select and track important metrics related to each stage of your customer journey weekly so that you can monitor progress over time and adjust accordingly. By doing this weekly, you will be able to identify any issues early on before they become too costly or damaging long term, allowing you to maximize ROI without wasting valuable resources along the way.
Creating an effective marketing strategy can help you maximize your time and resources, resulting in greater success for your business. Next, let's explore the benefits of having a marketing strategy.
Key Takeaway: Creating an effective marketing strategy requires understanding the customer's journey, reverse-engineering each step leading up to the point of sale, optimizing channels and tactics used for generating leads and sales, creating content strategies that provide value while promoting brand awareness, and tracking metrics related to lead generation.
Having a marketing strategy is essential for any business, no matter the size. It's not just about having a plan or taking action - it's about having an effective framework that will help you make decisions and measure success. With the right marketing strategy in place, you can hustle less and profit more with templates and coaching to help guide your way. Take the time to create an effective marketing strategy today so that you can reap the rewards tomorrow!