In many respects, owning, and running, a business entails a completely different approach to seeing the world, and nothing exemplified this unique perspective like a business owner’s marketing strategy. Enough cannot be said about how paramount a strong marketing strategy is to the success of a business in both the short & long-term.
Still, there are many business owners out there who may have misconceptions about what a marketing strategy actually means to their business other than sounding very marketable in conversation. This is a critical error and one that will undoubtedly affect their bottom line.
It begins with something every business owner has – a mission statement. Every business you see has a crafted mission statement as its foundation. After all, if you’re going into business without an idea of what you wish to accomplish or what your business stands for, your business is essentially living a day-to-day existence & prone to volatile financial swings. The mission statement lays the groundwork for the type of general business strategy that gets things moving, but it also paves the way for a marketing strategy to always serve as a roadmap for when things get misaligned.
Business owners must also keep in mind that strategizing is not a one-dimensional concept. Simply saying, “We can make money if we find the right customer” doesn’t take into account the amount of work it takes to understand who “the right customer” is supposed to be & how your business can use that information to its advantage. Business owners need to study & understand market demographics, identify ‘holes’ in terms of needs a prospective product or service may serve, and business owners also need to understand the significance of crafting financial goals that both serve the target customer base but also lead to profit.
Finally, business owners must understand the difference that exist between a marketing strategy and a marketing plan. It is a fairly common problem across the board to see the nomenclature of an industry be awash in confusion simply because distinct terminology is used interchangeably. A marketing strategy is the overall approach to meet business goals in the long-term whereas a marketing plan serves as the short-term paths by which businesses navigate along the way. The strategy is static, creating continuity in the tumultuous business world. The plan, as you could predict, is dynamic and is built for flexibility. For any business owner, it is imperative that he or she understand the difference between these two concepts. Why? In essence, if you spin your proverbial tires working through how something will be accomplished without first understanding what has to be accomplished, you’re sunk.
A marketing strategy built on sound research, along with clear goals, is something all successful businesses have in common. It is the clearly defined marketing strategy that helps guide a business through thick & thin, and without a solid marketing strategy, a business cannot effectively self-assess in order to avoid potentially disastrous missteps.