Turn prospects into customers through marketing strategy.
While a marketing strategy plays a critical role in shaping your marketing plan, a strategy is meant to be something with a longer shelf life. While a marketing plan is a living, action-oriented document that is adjusted throughout the year and updated annually, marketing strategy is usually rooted in long-term elements such as core value propositions, products, positioning, target audiences and brand.
Don’t confuse marketing strategies with marketing tactics
Marketing strategy is frequently confused with marketing tactics. They are different but interdependent. Marketing strategy is a big-picture view of how to achieve marketing objectives. On the other hand, marketing tactics are the tools used to execute the strategy.
For instance, segmenting a very specific audience is a marketing strategy. Using social media to reach that audience is a tactic. Identifying referrals as the way to build revenue is a marketing strategy. Employing direct outreach via email to referral partners is a marketing tactic.
Sun Tzu, author of The Art of War could well have been talking about marketing when he said, “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy are the noise before defeat.” Start with your marketing strategy before deciding on your marketing tactics.
“Marketing strategy is the big-picture view on how to achieve marketing success.”
Marketing strategy in action - Apple
Long acknowledged as one of the great marketing organizations in the world, Apple has been driven, during its periods of greatest success by strategies based on its two central philosophies of authentic understanding of customer needs and creative, professional presentation of products.
Apple has used the following strategies to get a leg up on the competition in marketing, brand awareness and loyalty.
- Identify and respond to trends
- Analyze competition and adjust
- Product innovation
- Emotional branding
- Enhanced distribution systems
- Excellent customer service
- Product placement
Our approach to marketing strategy projects
While it’s easy to get lost in the weeds developing marketing strategies, we follow a simplified yet thorough process that involves gathering and digesting information and then providing clear analysis and recommendations. Along with our clients, we want to be able to clearly answer the following questions: what are we selling to whom and, how will we get the upper hand on our competitors?
These are the steps we follow:
- Identify company objectives, review mission, vision and core values.
- Conduct an environmental scan that includes trends, markets, audiences and competition.
- Build out a strategy that considers budgets, resources and products
- Identify tactics and channels to support the strategy