Over thirty percent of new businesses fail within the first two years after their opening. However, developing an effective marketing strategy within your business plan and understanding its importance can help keep your new business among sixty-six percent that are still around after the first two years and with the forty-four percent that are still around after four years. You have worked hard to gain the working capital you need to start your business and you can avoid losing that by creating effective marketing.
Most business owners have the misconception that marketing is just another synonym for
advertising, but there is a big difference between the two. Advertising is often part of marketing, but marketing is ultimately a strategy - your strategy for defining the way your company is seen by potential customers. An effective marketing strategy describes the ways in which you will reach your niche market and it defines your objectives.
Your marketing strategy is part of your overall business strategy, but it focuses specifically on understanding who your target customers are and how you can market your company to them. Your business strategy is broader and encompasses many other aspects of your business such as quality control, manufacturing and distribution, finances and technology used by the company.
An objective of your business strategy may be to increase sales while an objective of your marketing strategy would by ways in which you can achieve your business objective such as ways to reach new customers, launch a new product, start a sales campaign or promote repeat buying from your existing customers.
Just as a marketing strategy is a more focused directive of an over all business plan, so is
marketing mix to your marketing strategy. It is an important element of an effective marketing
strategy and includes the tools you will use for your marketing. However, there is much more to
a marketing strategy than just the marketing mix. It is just one component that works with the
rest to create an overall marketing strategy.
Any marketing strategy is only as good as the market research you do. Many companies fail to
see the importance of learning all they can about their niche market, so they tend to do blanket
marketing and try to make it appeal to anyone and everyone. An effective marketing strategy will target the focus on the customers who have a need for your product or service and will find the best ways in which to reach them. Just remember, no matter how great your strategy is, it will not help your business if you cannot implement it.
There is no doubt that an effective business plan is the building block of any successful venture,
and within that business a plan a clear cut marketing strategy is imperative. Defining
your marketing strategy, planning a means to reach customers, defining who you are as a company, and discovering your niche is a key point in finding success.
Sara Mackey has over a decade’s worth of experience in the marketing and financing of start
ups. She currently works with several health insurance companies in the marketing of their products and services.