Fundamentals of Marketing – A 4 Step Guide
Marketing is often seen by many business owners as a luxury rather than a necessity. We often hear prospects and clients say things like “I don’t have time to focus on my marketing” or “once I have enough money I will look at building my brand” and our favourite “I need to focus on increasing my sales not creating brochures”.
Do any of these statements sound familiar? Are you guilty of saying the same? (don’t worry if you are, we understand).
We appreciate that you are busy however, if not now, then when?
We agree with Ryan Blair statement; “If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.”
Marketing is not a luxury, it is a fundamental part of any business and you do not need a huge budget to get started.
If you are struggling with marketing and do not know where to start, then you may want to follow our simple 4 step guide:
1. Identify your target
Who are you trying to reach and why?
- Have you identified your niche market?
- What do they look like?
- What do they do?
- Where can you find them?
You should be able to answer all of these questions.
Imagine you are a fisherman casting out your net, would you set sail into the great ocean and cast your net before researching where the best places to fish are? You can try, and you may get lucky but why cast off blindly when you can take a little time to focus on areas that you know are rich in fish.
Spend time researching your audience and you will be in a better position to tailor your message to their needs and pain points. Be confident in answering the question – “Why should they buy from you?”
2. What benefit/s are you offering?
So, you have clearly identified your target market and can tick step 1 off your list, well done! Now you will want to focus on the benefits and features of your product or service you are offering your audience.
Businesses tend to struggle with features vs benefits.
- A feature is a factual statement about your product/service.
- A benefit is the meaning the feature provides to your customer.
Here is an example. Let us take Apple’s new Series 3 watch with Cellular Connectivity. What is the feature and what is the benefit?
If you offer several products and/or services, then we suggest you start writing these down and create a column for feature and benefit and start listing these.
If one of the benefits of your product/service produces a cost saving for your client, then you may want to add a column to include this.
Then review your list and see if it passes the “so-what” test (what you’re doing for your client, how you’re helping them). If so, that’s great! Two more steps to go!
3. What will your ‘Call to Action’ be?
You have identified your key audience and you have mapped out your features and/or benefits.
Now, what do you want your prospects to do? We call this a call to action (CTA).
- Do you want prospects to contact you? If so, how? E.g. phone, email or via a web form.
- Do you want prospects to buy something from you?
Start mapping out what action you would like your prospects to take and once you have done that, make sure you have made it extremely easy for prospects to complete them. For example, if you want prospects to call you directly, can your phone number be easily seen on your website? If you want your prospects to fill in an enquiry form, have you tested to make sure it works?
Make the process as simple as possible and test it to make sure your actions work! Think about the last time you made a purchase online, did you come across any difficulties? If you did, how long did you wait before giving up and began looking elsewhere?
4. Monitor, Measure and Report
How will you monitor, measure and report on your campaign? This is an important step as monitoring what is working and what does not work will allow you to tweak your campaigns whilst they are live.
- What results will you measure and why?
- Did they meet your expectations? If they did then why? If not, why?
Knowing the answers to these questions will help you improve future campaigns. Learn from each campaign you run and use the data to support your marketing efforts.
We hope you found this post useful. If you’re struggling with marketing or not sure where to start, then contact us for a consultation.
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