Archive for learn marketing
I am frequently asked questions about how to develop marketing strategies for small businesses, entrepreneurs and solo-preneurs.
So, in today’s post, I’ll share a few tips with you.
How to Develop Marketing Strategies – Step 1
The first thing you need to do is determine the basics – the 3 M’s of marketing – your market, your message and your media. You can read more about these items in my ‘Marketing Concepts‘ posts and articles.
Once you are clear on who your target market is, what the message is that you want to share and some of the media through which you can reach your target audience, you can start to build your strategy.
How to Develop Marketing Strategies – Step 2
The next step is to take a closer look at the media options you have selected. Now you want to determine, step-by-step, what you will do to get your message out through the different types of media.
As an example, lets say you’ve chosen direct mail as your media. Now you have almost unlimited options about what you can send and when you will send it.
Since most strategies will work best with multiple steps, the process of developing the marketing strategy will really be about figuring out the steps and touch-points you want in your direct mail campaign.
What you include will, in part, depend on the product or service you are marketing. You could include 1 or more post cards, letters, gifts (which could really include anything)…and basically anything from a rock with a message and postage on it to a prescription bottle with a message in it. The more creative you are the more likely it is that your mail will be opened and your message will be seen.
As you plan out the steps, you also should determine the timing for each piece, creating a calendar to follow as you implement.
How to Develop Marketing Strategies – Step 3
Now all you need to do is work on creating the marketing pieces themselves, with or without the support of others – including copy writers, graphic designers, direct mail specialists, etc., and begin to implement your marketing strategy.
If developing marketing strategy for your business is something that challenges you, you can work with a marketing consultant or coach to help you not just create them, but learn how to do it moving forward. Then, you can take what you learn and implement those strategies on your own or with your team.
When it comes to knowing how to develop a marketing strategy, it’s really pretty straight-forward. It’s a step-by-step process, like most other things in business and in life. You have choices and decisions to make, and once you put things out there, you will want to track the results and make incremental changes to continue to make your strategies more and more effective.
If you are curious about building strong marketing strategies for your business, then you’ll want to check out my upcoming Marketing in the Morning™ webinar – it’s live and free – you can register here.
As I was walking up 5th Ave the other day I came across a new store with a very splashy entrance… it’s just a few doors away from another one of the stores I’ve thought about including here on the blog, so I’ll do this one first, then get to the next one…
It is a new Hollister location and the entrance to the store includes video screens that run at least 6 feet high and a minimum of 12 feet across, with the door in the center, which you’ll see in the video. As you watch you’ll also get to see what’s in the door…
It will be interesting to see if the two very scantily clad models (and 2 people with winter coats on – after all it was only about 30 degrees when I shot this) are still there over time, or if that is part of the big opening.
What works well with this store front (and you can search YouTube to see what I mean – my video is just another example of it) is that they are getting free media from other people, people like me sharing the name and images because it is new, interesting and unique. Whether it actually translates into more sales, I don’t really know. They are also using some of the same techniques their neighbor a few doors up has used for quite a while….
Abercrombie & Fitch. Here’s an image I took over the summer, and this ‘line’ of people waiting is a daily occurance. It’s a brilliant strategy when you think about it, a lot of people are very influenced by lines and the appeal of something that is ‘exclusive’.
Abercrombie & Fitch manages to keep a line of people outside the door during most seasons of the year – which makes people stop and wonder what is going on, take pictures, and often, get it line.
As you think about your business, how can you create ‘Buzz’?
What is it that you can do that will attract unusual attention?
What can you do to help your customers and clients feel like they are part of an exclusive and fortunate group that gets to use your product or service?
It’s just a piece of an overall marketing strategy, but making yourself exclusive can be a very successful way to bring in clients. And, creating something, like the ocean view and the pool of water on 5th Ave in the middle of winter, can really make you stand out. But, before you spend a fortune creating something beautiful or unique, make sure you have a way to track the results, and test it in a smaller way to see if it has an impact on the bottom line. Once you are sure, you can consider rolling out a bigger, flashier version.
While there were many people milling around the new Hollister store, taking pictures and enjoying the ‘scenery’ (both digital and real…) I didn’t see very people going inside. It may have been the day and the time, but an installation and investment like that really needs to pay off, so go slowly into it as you chose how to use your marketing and advertising budget. There are many ways to create buzz or an air of exclusivity without spending a fortune.
While I don’t have the exact quote (I will keep looking for it), Earl Nightingale is credited with saying essentially that if you read or study for juts 1 hour a day for 1-3 years you will become a world-class expert in that area of study. There are other versions of this saying out there – another I’ve heard is 20 minutes a day for 3 will make you an expert, and if you continue for 5 years you will be one of the top experts in the world.
So, you say you want to learn how to do marketing for your business? Well, here’s the answer… schedule just 1 single hour a day toward beginning to master the skill of marketing. You can learn in whatever format you want these days too… whether you prefer to read, listen to audios, watch videos and DVDs or go to live seminars and lectures. If you watch TV daily (which, as most statistics tell us, most of us do… I’ll admit, I unwind pretty frequently to funny sitcoms and relaxing movies), imagine taking just one of those hours and devoting it to learning how to do marketing, or sales, or anything else that you find interesting… or perhaps NECESSARY to the success of your business.
Ok… here’s the assignment. Start out by finding just 20 minutes a day. Then decide how you will proceed… do you want to learn how to do marketing by reading blogs like this one or by other marketing minds? Are you disciplined enough not to let them take you off in some other direction? If not, then start with some basic books on marketing – some of the best include the ones by Dan Kennedy or the Guerrilla marketing series by Jay Conrad Levenson. As you begin to dig in to learning how to do marketing, you’ll find that each of the resources points you to more. You won’t run out of options… and if you keep going, you can not only build your business with your new knowledge, you can begin to share it with others as well.
Celebrating a holiday is a standard 101 marketing strategy you say?
Well, you would be right, but I would recommend you get creative with this very ‘standard’ of 101 marketing strategies… either choose a unique or obscure holiday, or even create your own.
I passed a bar a few days ago here in NYC, and when I saw this sign I just couldn’t resist sharing it. It’s a terrific way to create a unique reason to celebrate – and in their case, a unique way to bring in the customers (which is what you should be trying to do too…)
So, if you usually send out Holiday greeting cards in December, wishing people a Happy Holiday Season and Happy New Year, you might very well be wasting your time. People receive SO many cards they may not even notice who they’ve come from… but, if you send a card for Halloween or even Thanksgiving, your card will stand out because it will be the only one in the mail at that time.
Consider what you can do for a unique communication with your prospects and clients – even if it means creating your own. And, if you are looking for some unusual holidays to consider, here’s where you can find a great list (and if you Google ‘unique holidays’ you’ll find many more): Holiday Insights