Marketing is a field that changes and evolves. The marketing techniques and strategies that you were using a decade ago, or even just a couple of years ago are not necessarily going to provide you with the same results today. Companies need to keep on top of those changes among all three sectors of marketing. Let’s look a bit deeper at each of these sectors and how to make the needed improvements now and in the future.
Understanding the Three Sectors of Marketing
Marketing is complicated for a host of reasons. One of the reasons is that it is always changing, so it requires a lot of attention and care. To help make understanding marketing easier, you can break it up into three different sectors or segments. Below, you will see these three sectors and get a better understanding of what each of them entails. You will find that each of these is important and can’t exist without the others.
As the name suggests, strategic marketing is about planning. This is the first stage, naturally, as it will influence all of the other elements of your marketing campaigns. In the strategic marketing phase, you will find several phases. You can start to improve your marketing operations once you have an understanding of these phases and how to use them.
Phase 1: Planning
This is the most important step in putting together your marketing strategy. During this stage, you have to consider your business purpose and your needs, as well as the goals and objectives you have. Your marketing strategy should revolve around finding ways to accomplish those goals.
If you don’t take the time to go through this step, you will find that it becomes much more difficult to follow through with the other phases in the strategic sector. Take the time to think about your business and your goals, and you will find that it becomes easier. It also becomes easier for you to understand what it is that your company truly wants to do and be.
Phase 2: Analysis
Next comes the analysis phase. During this phase, you have to look outside of your company to examine your competition and the others who are working in your industry. Spend some time analyzing the competition and doing market research.
Check out the competitors. How do you stack up to them? What will differentiate your company from theirs? What type of marketing are they doing? Is that marketing working well for them or not?
Market research will help you to learn more about the current state of your industry, including trends and market share. It will give you a broad overview of what the field looks like and what you might need to do to differentiate yourself. This phase will also help you see whether the goals and objectives you developed earlier are achievable or not.
During this phase, you should also be thinking about who your target market will be and start creating buyer personas for them. This will help to guide the rest of your marketing and make it easier to create assets and content that works for your audience.
Ultimately, this phase should give you a better understanding of your company, where you stand, and what you need to do to succeed.
Phase 3: Development
This is the phase where you start to come up with your marketing plan and is one of the most essential parts of your marketing operations. You will need to determine your marketing mix so you can meet the objectives you have defined. Your marketing mix will include your product, price, place, and promotion.
Product refers to what you are selling, the price is how much you are selling it for, and the place is where you will be selling it, such as online or in a store. Promotion is for how you will advertise the product. You don’t have to get into the creative aspect of coming up with the marketing materials now—that comes a bit later. However, you will want to think about the basics of what types of materials you might be using, as well as where you will be marketing such as your website, social media, using PPC ads, etc.
Phase 4: Implementing
Next will come implementing the marketing efforts you have been developing. You will take your strategy and start to make it a reality. This phase is tied in with the other sectors of marketing, where you will be creating the marketing assets and materials, and how you will push out the marketing to the world.
After everything has been implemented and your plan is underway, you will also need to make sure that you analyze how things are going, reevaluate, and make changes if needed.
The creative sector of marketing involves the creation of the marketing assets and materials that you will be using. This is when you will start to develop the blog content, social media content, eBooks, whitepapers, videos, brochures, flyers, online ads, newsletters, etc. that are focused on your marketing.
The creative sector also includes the development and solidification of your brand. You want to make sure that your efforts align with the brand and image that you want for your company. This will help to inform the types of content, as well as the style and tone.
You will be focusing on several things during this phase. The branding, as mentioned, as well as the advertising and promotion tools and techniques, the products and services you are offering, and the customer experience. All of these areas are important, and you do not want to neglect any of them.
Creative marketing techniques are more important today than ever. Consider how much advertising noise people are exposed to in a day. What is it about your ads, your products, your brand that will help you to stand out from the crowd? The creatives on your marketing team will strive to create content that can help to differentiate you from the competition and that can cut through that aforementioned noise.
The operations sector of marketing comes next, but it is truly a culmination and combination of the previous two sectors. This is the sector where the implementation of the creations is made. It is also where all of the monitoring of the marketing efforts will take place. The key performance indicators for the marketing are watched and measured, and changes are made if needed to keep the plan on track to meet the company objectives for the marketing campaign.
The team focusing on marketing operations will utilize a range of different types of martech tools that help to make their jobs easier. They will use digital asset management (DAM) tools, as well as analytics tools, tools for collecting data, automation, and more. They will provide reports to determine how various campaigns are going, and how the overall marketing strategy is working.
Operations also help to ensure that the teams are working to their best ability. They work to align goals and tasks and to create deadlines. They establish protocols, communications channels, and methods, streamline processes, and manage any external resources that are used.
Remember to Reevaluate Using the Marketing Mix
After you have your marketing strategy in place, you still need to monitor it and make sure that it is working properly. This will let you know if there are changes that need to be made to help you meet your goals. The formula can be used to help you evaluate how things are going and whether you need to make any changes. These include:
You will notice that these were touched on when we discussed the development phase above and the marketing mix. Let’s get a closer look at each of these to see why you will want to continually analyze these areas. When you start to look into these areas, you will see where there could be some areas where you can improve your marketing.
You should look at the products you make as if they weren’t ones that you make. Look at them from the perspective of an outsider to determine whether the products are still the best option for your customers. Should some products be discontinued and other products created? Are there other ways that you can better advertise the products that you have?
The price is always important. Naturally, you want to make more money and you might be reticent at lowering the price of your products. However, you have to be realistic for your market. You might find that you need to lower prices to be more competitive. Other times, you may find that you should increase the price to ensure you are generating a profit and showing that your product and brand are a cut above the competition.
Consider how you are currently promoting and marketing and analyze whether it is working for you or not. Are there other ways that you could reach customers? Even small changes in advertising have the potential to help you garner more sales.
Where are you selling your product? Sometimes, a change in where you are selling can mean more sales. If you are only selling directly through your site, you might want to start selling on Amazon and eBay. Maybe you should try to get your products into stores. On the other hand, if your products are languishing on store shelves, maybe it’s time to focus on your online efforts.
In addition to these elements, you will also want to consider the quality of the packaging, your current brand position, and the people who are buying your products. Continually learn more about the people who are buying your products and your ideal customer. Market with them in mind and make changes whenever needed. After all, marketing continues to evolve, and you need to, as well.
Why Is Streamlined Marketing Operations Valuable?
The work of a marketer might seem as though it never ends. Simplification of the processes can make a big difference in the time expenditure, the cost, and the results. By streamlining marketing using the right strategies and tools, your business will enjoy a host of benefits.
Naturally, one of the biggest of these benefits is that streamlined marketing operations will help your company and your employees to save a substantial amount of time. Streamlining will help you find parts of the various processes that are unneeded and that are slowing you down. Of course, by saving time and helping your team become more efficient, it helps your company to save money, as well.
Streamlining can also make your marketing team more agile. With the right assets and tools, discussed below, and the right tech to put those assets to use, you can adapt your marketing campaign quickly. If you find that certain things are not working based on your analysis, you can switch things up with relative ease.
How Can Martech Help to Streamline Marketing Operations
Because you have a substantial amount of work to do at all of the various stages of marketing, it is helpful to bring in some tools that can help to make the processes easier. Fortunately, there are tools that are used for marketing operations that can help, such as digital asset management. This type of tool will help to keep all of the various marketing assets used easy to locate and grab by anyone who needs them whether they are in sales or marketing.
With the right Martech tools, you will find that it can make many aspects of the job easier and faster. Consider some of the types of tools that you would like to have available for your company and find marcom software that can meet those needs.
Some of the elements you should look for include:
Additionally, you will want to get a better sense of what integrations will work with your marcom tools. Some of the popular services that you will want to integrate with your martech stack include Marketo, Salesforce, and Google Analytics, for example.
When you are using quality martech tools, it will allow your staff to concentrate on the high-level work rather than the repetitive admin tasks that are usually taking up so much of their time. The tools can help you to understand your customers better, so you can create offers that are relevant to them and marketing that gets their attention. The tools can provide more accountability and transparency with the processes, and the content production will be consistent. Using martech can provide you with a host of benefits, so make it a point to get the right tools.
Take the time to think about what your business requires, the integrations you need, the assets you have, etc., and then make your choice. With the right tools, it can help to make it easier to handle all three of the various sectors of marketing.