Why you should start with a Marketing Strategy
13th July 2011
There is a lot of tactical marketing activity you could initiate when it comes to starting your marketing, but where do you begin? How do you know what the best approach is without thinking it through? You don’t go on holiday without planning flights, accommodation, activities and so on. So why do that with your marketing?
The answer is not to start with tactical activity. You need to start with strategic activity – and the first strategic activity is to develop a Marketing Strategy.
The need to generate leads quickly can mean that strategy and planning is curtailed. This may be especially true in smaller organisations where the marketing function operates with limited resources. It’s important to resist the temptation to rush the strategy stage, and to dive in and initiate ad-hoc tactical marketing with no real plan of structured activity. Avoid this at all costs. Do your homework – get the strategy right.
Unless you have been through the process lifecycle, the wider implications of a Marketing Strategy are not completely apparent. There are a number of points to be aware of:
- A Marketing Strategy ensures that effective analysis is carried out that enables you to understand your business, target market, competitors and the marketplace you are in
- The strategy forces you to consider all the marketing tactics you could pursue ensuring your activity is spread across channels and media
- A strategy helps you plan your marketing month on month and creates the structure for regular organised activity that is the hallmark of effective marketing in today’s business environment
- The process of creating the strategy is a source of inspiration for campaign ideas, a launch pad to develop content for use in your tactical activities. This means that creative thinking flourishes up front
- This is highly efficient because it lets you evaluate the quality of ideas quickly. Poor ideas can be discarded early in the development process and effort concentrated on good ideas
- The perception of the ineffective performance of the marketing function can be the result of fundamental errors (stemming from a lack of understanding of the marketplace) that arise from not having a properly prepared marketing strategy