Why marketing is the number 1 thing right now?
At Pencil and Coffee, we believe that marketing is fundamentally important for any business to grow and succeed. Especially more so during this pandemic in 2020. There are many different types of marketing and they differ based on the consumer and their needs.
For most businesses, all aspects are in check and everything is perfect before going live, except with marketing and is often the department that gets left to the side. In my experiences, most of the time marketing has been put to the side until the business needs to sell in order to survive at which point any marketing is done than is done with panic and without any strategy.
Before you know it you’ve spent whatever marketing budget you had in a short period of time and not got much or any return from it.
Marketing is a long term game, and businesses need to understand the importance of incorporating marketing right from the get-go and have a long term goal of it. Just because you do any marketing does not mean tomorrow you will get a return (that’s more to do with sales), marketing and sales are not the same things. In order to create a long-term strategy, it’s important to understand the nature of marketing.
Often it seems marketing and sales get mixed up and it’s assumed that due to marketing there will be sales immediately after.
What marketing means for you?
Before explaining the nature of marketing, it’s important to point out that many of these successful businesses would not exist if it wasn’t for their successful marketing campaigns!
Think about Coca Cola at first as with every business they started off selling only a small amount during the first few years. Now they are one of the biggest brands in the world. They’ve only become one of the biggest through successful marketing campaigns. So much so that because of Coke, Father Christmas is red and not green as he originally was. Here are some Coca Cola’s ad campaigns – Coca-Cola 8 memorable campaigns.
Apple is another example of how they shifted their marketing to become focused on the general population through its iPhone rather than focusing on a certain niche.
The point being to reach the success you want to achieve for your business, you need some type of marketing it doesn’t have to be the services we offer at Pencil and Coffee, but anything that builds a relationship with your customers, all the way down to the way you greet them.
What is marketing?
The Charted Institute of Marketing and the American Marketing Association define marketing as determining the customers’ requirements and delivering value. Instead of using marketing as a discrete department, marketing should be used as a regional matrix organisational structure to allow marketing to operate within and across departments – Nike uses this system.
To add to it Nike’s marketing is so successful that if Nike was to create a hotel chain when you walk into it you would know that hotel was Nike without even seeing the iconic logo everywhere. Click here to watch a clip on YouTube from Seth Godin about Nike’s Brand Strategy.
Ultimately marketing is building a relationship with your customers and offering something of value to them and then engaging and building the relationship with them to keep coming back to purchase your products or services.
Most businesses would have some basic knowledge of marketing and heard of the 4 P’s but in the modern age, this has evolved to include customer trust, risk, commitment and co-creation.
Developing a marketing strategy
Something that we believe in at Pencil and Coffee is before creating your marketing strategy, it’s important to truly build and solidify your core values, then your purpose. Your values should never change they should be something you fundamentally believe in yourself and your business, anyone that becomes part of the business has to adopt these values or have a similar value set as well. You can see, Pencil and Coffee’s values in the about section here. Your purpose should be your ‘why’ you’re doing your business. This should be the reason why you set the business up in the first place, aside from making money which is what everyone would love to do, what is the reason you set the business up what mark do you want to leave behind with the business?
For Pencil and Coffee our purpose is simple enough – bring more customers to our clients consistently. So if for whatever reason we have to pivot (it’s not crazy especially in these times) and offer something different then it doesn’t matter what we provide as long as the service fulfils our purpose by helping clients to grow. The services are a means to our purpose and digital marketing was the services because that’s what we are good at and most interested in.
But if we ever need to add new services or change direction completely we can do because our purpose is not to be the best digital marketing agency but our purpose is to help you grow. So we can fulfil the former by fulfilling the latter.
Once you’ve identified that, then we can understand what your big crazy goals are for the next 20 – 30 years! This is your BHAG (big hairy audacious goals). These goals should be a challenge not something that can be easily achieved.
Once all this has been identified then we can build a marketing strategy around all this so that it is all in line with your values and goals.
Rather than using a scatter gun marketing approach and hoping for the best, building marketing around your values and goals will be in line with your values. When using this approach your building a long-term campaign that will nurture and grow your relationships with your customers. By doing so you will create an emotional connection with your customers making the relationships stronger, this will create customers for life that buy into the brands and values and then the product or service.
Now you can analysis the different ways to market your brand in a way that is aligned with your values.
Why do any marketing now
It’s probably more important now to do marketing than it has been in the last few years, during this pandemic in 2020 most businesses have been forced to change the way they work. Most employees have been working from home.
That means now more and more people are going to be looking online for value, products and services as the traditional ways are limited at the moment. We don’t know what’s going to happen and how the next few years will play out with the virus.
As a result, your online presence is going to be critical to get the visibility you need to build new relationships with potential customers and to keep your current customers engaged with new information and updates that can provide them with some value.
The e-commerce industry has seen a massive boost in new sales with more people shopping from the comforts of their home due to lockdown and social distancing. Now with Christmas on the way using strategies such as SEO (search engine optimisation) will massively improve a businesses chance of getting recognised and increasing sales.
Overall before thinking of spending lots of money on strategies like SEO or other marketing strategies, and since we most likely have more time on our hands with the change in the environment. The best steps are to first reflect and understand your ‘why’, values and purpose of the business and really nail it because that will influence not just your marketing but everything you do with your business. Then identify your BHAG. Once you’ve done that now you can start developing your marketing strategy not just for this period of COVID but for the next few years as well. Creating a solid plan will help you in creating strong and successful relationships with new and current customers.
With the marketing being aligned with your values you can start creating clever campaigns that work with your values like the Coke example above.
Hopefully, this article lays out the importance of creating a good marketing plan and using this period to make sure you can adapt to the circumstance and stand out using methods that traditionally didn’t need to be looked at.
If you need someone to talk about identifying any of the above for your business, get in touch we’d be happy to arrange a video call and understand your values to then develop a marketing strategy that works for your business.
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