The importance of a strategic marketing strategyPosted on: June 28, 2021
As competition between businesses grows, digital technologies evolve, and sales targets are increasingly important for company survival, strategic marketing plans have never been more crucial. In order to gain competitive advantage, marketers and the teams they work in are required to hone in on their marketing outputs now more than ever. There is an increasing need to successfully and effectively elevate their company’s profile, reach their target audience, and convert their audience into buyers through smart and strategic marketing.
By incorporating the full spectrum of marketing techniques, teams are expanding to include various specialisms, each bringing a different skill whilst working in a strategic and collaborative manner for optimal results. Despite marketing teams varying in size across companies, external marketing agencies often plug the gap with smaller businesses, allowing these companies to develop strategic marketing plans and implement them just as well as larger corporations and larger teams can.
What is strategic marketing?
Strategic marketing is a marketing strategy with clearly defined goals and objectives, and carefully planned activity across a mix of marketing channels to meet those goals and objectives. By marketing strategically, companies who adopt the approach are ensuring their efforts and marketing budgets will result in the best outcomes possible, as they deliberately target the right channels to reach their intended audiences – audiences who are most likely to convert into paying customers.
There are many channels that can be explored when it comes to marketing, both in the form of traditional marketing or digital marketing, but strategic marketing makes sure the plan is tailored to using the right channels for the product or service that is being sold, and that the content going out on those channels is effectively and efficiently created and delivered. It is an intricately well-thought-out plan to make sure messages reach the right people, and that the messages resonate with those that they reach enough to make them buy the product or service being sold.
How to write a strategic marketing plan
When a marketing team starts to write a strategic marketing plan, the first step is to always identify the goals and objectives you want to achieve to ensure everyone knows what they are collectively working towards. When this is established, the second priority is to identify the target audience and where to find them, and to review what competitors are doing to see where your product or service can differentiate and stand out in the market.
In order to refine marketing objectives, it is beneficial to delve into the marketing mix which is composed of the four Ps: product (what your business is selling), price (the cost of your product or service), place (where you will be selling – online, in-store, or a combination of both), and promotion (how you’ll market your product or service). Getting a deep understanding of the product or service being sold is important, as it enables the marketing team to know exactly what they’re selling through their strategic marketing plan, making sure the messages going out are clear and concise.
When deciding how to promote what you’re selling, there are a wealth of platforms to take advantage of and by adopting a strategic marketing approach you will have focused efforts on the space where your audience is.
Digitally, this could include social media, a website, pay per click adverts on search engines, and email marketing campaigns. You may also choose to focus on a content-led approach, writing blogs and adopting a focused search engine optimisation (SEO) approach to make your website and digital shopfront as strong as possible. Establishing the content going out on these channels is of high importance as you’ll need to ensure your tone of voice resonates with your target market. One key way to achieve this is through case studies, using an existing customer to speak to your audience about your product or service in their own language, taking the customer experience to the next level. Using public relations to push your message into your target market’s channels may also be an effective marketing tool for the product or service you’re selling.
If your product or service suits traditional marketing methods, your strategic marketing plan may well incorporate print materials such as leaflets and brochures, phone calls, or outdoor advertising like billboards.
A strategic marketing plan is never something that should be set in stone at the start of the process. Despite much marketing research beforehand, it could well be the case that some of the avenues you’ve chosen to exploit aren’t as lucrative as you once thought. Regular reviews of metrics such as marketing-led sales figures and analytics on your digital platforms are essential to see whether your activities are attracting customers, as is the ability to refocus efforts elsewhere if needed. It may also be useful to constantly review your initial strategic marketing plan to ensure you’re still on track with the initial goals and objectives, and to see if there are changes to be made to the broader plan based on the results of regular reviews.
Having a strategic marketing strategy is important for all businesses. It allows you to focus your marketing efforts in the right places, and ensures you’re constantly reassessing where your resources and budgets are going to enable optimal success for conversions and sales.
Why study marketing?
Marketing is a fast-paced and exciting career, especially now with the rise of digital marketing over the last decade and trends which are constantly evolving and developing.
Whether you already work in a marketing role or you’re looking to change career path and move into one, an MBA Marketing will develop you into a strategic thinker and expert communicator – invaluable assets in today’s job market. By studying an MBA Marketing, you will be prepared to head into, or further progress, a career where you’ll be constantly learning and cultivating your skills, whilst being creative, innovative and analytical in your day-to-day role.
Study part-time and earn while you learn with the North Wales Management School, as you learn the skills you need to take your marketing career to the next level.