Effective marketing is crucial for business success. Unfortunately, there are a large number of business leaders who still may not give marketing the attention it deserves. Marketing is complex and nuanced. Whereas sales can be intuitive and relatively straightforward, marketing marches to the beat of a different drummer.
Business markets are competitive, and it’s necessary to be grounded. There are several principles that you should definitely be aware of.
Winner Takes All
Even though markets will always expand and shrink at any given time, markets are still considered to be static. Along with a company’s market share. If your company is at the top of its game, it will likely enjoy all the perks of success, like pricing flexibility, higher salaries for employees, and future development and growth.
It may be time to put the so-called feel-good wisdom that winning isn’t everything to bed. Winning is important, because if you’re not winning—you’re losing. You have to keep pushing the envelope to make sure that your products, perks, pricing, and marketing efforts outstrip your competitors.
If you’re winning, your customers are winning.
Customers will always be in a position of winning with the best possible products offerings. Just make sure they’re in your corner and winning with you.
Know Your Value
Regardless what you think about yourself or your product, what counts is what your customers think. If you can’t convince them of why they should pay attention to you and buy from you, your competition most likely will.
Know the persuasive reasons customers should take notice and complete the action you’re asking them to take. Once you know this, you’ll make better marketing decisions. You’ll be able to fine-tune your marketing messages to resonate with your customers. With a weak value proposition, you can start waving goodbye to valuable customers.
Having a strong value proposition doesn’t mean that you have to be the best at everything you do either. You just have to be the best at something that people value and respect. If you have more than one amazing attribute, so much the better.
You have to become their best option. Gaining market share is a result of strategic planning and focused strategy execution. The world is competitive, but you already know that. It’s going to take a lot to win and keep winning. But, no one can lay claim to all the variables that determine success.
Find your niche!
Turn Your Idea into a Needed and Useful Product
You may not be the inventor, but you can find new ways to innovate a product that is unique. Or, utilize it in ways that have never been done before. Innovation isn’t necessarily inventing a product, but rather coming up with a product that people can use. You’re also aware that companies struggle to be first-to-market.
That’s not always a good thing because new technology requires time for people to figure its functions, features, and usefulness. Think about it. Where are the first movers of any major market. Remember the name Atari, or take it back a number of decades and recall RCA Victor—the most trusted name in electronics.
Atari gave way to Nintendo and Sega. Now where are they? Without constant innovation, companies wither away.
Advance Your Power to Differentiate
This is really about your ability to define and segment your market. The market is flooded with apps of every kind imaginable. For your product to stand out, whatever it is, it has to serve a unique purpose.
As such, you’ll need to focus on both development and market segmentation. In essence, it’s David slaying Goliath all over again.
Positioning your product and being able to segment your market are still two of the most powerful tools at your disposal. The concept should be simple enough. It’s actually doing it that presents a problem for most businesses.
Establish a niche that you can call your own. Then, you can expand your operations out from this point.
Here’s your test. If you can’t distinguish your own products and services from those of the competition, you’re in trouble. Just because you think you’re different—doesn’t make it so. If your customers can’t accept your beliefs, it’s time to rethink your proposition.
Retain Your Customers
Losing just one customer should send an alarm throughout your entire company. Companies lose customers for a reason.
The fact remains that far too many entrepreneurs and companies think that life is all about them. It’s about the customer. It always has been and always will be.
In any company, there are only three major stakeholders; depending on the size of the company: the investors, employees, and customers. The customer being the most important. Without customers, there is no company.
Just keep in mind that gaining new customers, and keeping your present ones happy, should be the sole purpose of being in business. And yes, providing a service or product that people need or want is at the top of the list. You can focus all day on achieving your own professional goals, but if you fail to create customer value, you might as well hang a sign outside the front door, “Closed for Business.”
The need for effective branding will always be there right in the mix. High-quality marketing material is the key, whether it’s print or digital. You’ll have to do an exceptional job of explaining your product/service features, benefits, and whey they’re helpful for your customers.
In fact, you should audit your brand marketing and brand collateral to make sure it excels over your customer’s branding efforts. A simple way of doing this is search online for your keywords. Analyze the top 10 or 20 search results.
Completely analyze their website to see if they offer videos, testimonials, media appearances, case studies, and how they engage their social media networks. There’s a reason that they occupy one of the top ten search positions.
Video Can Dramatically Increase Sales
Video is an effective and relatively inexpensive way to engage with customers, increase ranking, and boost sales. The fact remains that most people would rather watch a video than read text. Video can help your company gain an edge over competitors.
They quickly serve to explain products and services, convey testimonials, and provide all the important details that customers need to make well-informed decisions. They can also be used grow your mailing lists. The leads you generate can become future customers. Video can tell your story and convince customers that your company can deliver on a promise.
Don’t Rule Out Virtual Event Marketing
Webinars still matter and start a grass roots movement on your behalf. Hangouts, such as Google, can be a great way to establish authority in your niche. You can demonstrate your ability to educate prospects, current customers, individuals looking for information, partners, and other key influencers.
Consider the Effect of Mobile
If you haven’t invested in creating a mobile-friendly website, it’s not too late to get on the bandwagon. Today’s customers are on their mobile devices 24/7. If they click on a link that’s to your website that doesn’t appear mobile friendly, they won’t be back.
That could be a customer that you’ve lost for life. Google penalizes sites that aren’t mobile-friendly. Partner with an SEO expert who can help you navigate the concourse. They know everything there is to know about optimizing your site for mobile search.
SEO Is Alive and Well – Don’t Believe the Hype
Your goal is to dominate your market by all the relevant means possible. You may hear that SEO is dead. That couldn’t be furthest from the truth. There are still plenty of opportunities for you to increase your web presence through tried and proven techniques.
Continue to Utilize Social Media
Get help from an expert to develop a marketing plan. Then, stick with it. Get to know each social media platform and how it will impact your business. You will soon learn where your customers are and how best to reach them. Today’s business success is all about reaching a customer exactly where they are.
You’re going to make mistakes, so learn how to embrace them. Any mistake is acceptable as long as you can learn from it. Keep tracking performance metrics. Keep track of posts, website page views, your tweets, how people are responding, and shares, etc. Invest in software or a professional that can help your company stay on track.
Dominating a market is a full-time job. There is no such thing as coasting with marketing. When you take your foot off the brake, your marketing vehicle stops dead in its tracks.