Most people think that great marketing starts with amazing creative… nothing could be further from the truth. The key to great marketing actually happens before your marketing team begins any content creation. A lack of fully understanding your brand, customer, market, competition and appropriate channels for exposure are fundamental flaws in the marketing transformation process.
Do you know what your brand stands for? What value it brings to the customer and why the business exists? These are not easy questions to ask, but they must be answered before marketing content creation and planning begins. Many companies, especially smaller businesses do not take the time to figure this out. In most cases, the blue print for marketing success is in the creation of this foundational information that the company is made of. Here are several key components you need to dive into so that your marketing is based on the identity of the brand, its product and services.
Value Proposition: Why does your company exist?, what exclusive benefit does the company provide that is not currently in the market? What does the company do uniquely well? Why should a prospective customer decide to do business with your company when there are other options for them?
Perceived Value: This is very important because if you do not have a clear understanding of what your customers are thinking when your brand crossed their mind then you may never be successful in marketing to that customer. The perceived value is also related to what motivates the customer to buy.
Personas: I like to call my customers personas, not a target audience because the more I can define what that person is and what motivates them to purchase from my company the better I will be able to market to them. As a marketer, you will want to fully define 3-5 personas and describe them as if you are trying to explain everything about them and what makes them unique.
Distinctives: What is unique about your company that is an attribute that can be used in marketing to attract the customer? (An example of this is: Audi has new fuel-efficient drive technologies that are different than any other auto manufacturer. Starbucks has successfully created a global coffee brand that also is also known for their music, comfortable, living room style environment and the casual ambience)
Primary Competition: Like every company, your competition is always nipping at your heels and making business growth difficult. Can your marketing team honestly say they know who the competition is and also define their strengths and weaknesses? Can you talk about their products and services that are the biggest problem for your company and also who their primary customers are?
Here’s the biggest part that most marketers do not typically understand. How can your sales team overcome the objections they face when a prospective customer prefers the competition to your company? In some cases, there could be several objections and several ways to overcome those. Make sure you clearly define both of them for your sales team.
Mobile Accessibility: Like most businesses, prospective customers are probably visiting your website on their smartphone at astronomically high levels. Even if mobile visits have not reached the level of desktop visits, they are probably trending higher each year and soon will overtake the once mighty desktop. Your marketing team needs to be ready for this seismic shift in how content is created and displayed. If the large screen laptop or desktop are no longer the primary viewing devices, you will need to think about making your content shorter, your images smaller to fit smartphone screens and breakup your content so viewers can skim through it. These are just a few content creation tips that will help your marketing become more effective on mobile devices.
Taking your marketing from good to great takes time and effort. Even if your marketing team has already worked on all 6 of these, make sure your paid, owned and earned media all reflect the narrative of your brand’s DNA and how it is positioned. Don’t forget, your brand may have several other tertiary brands that are under the parent company name. This makes your marketing more difficult because they are all a little different, but the process is the same.
YourBrandExposed.com is a digital marketing and strategy consultancy that works with businesses big and small to solve their most difficult questions surrounding digital, brand development, generating qualified and business growth.
Scott MacFarland – Chief Content Marketer | Digital Strategist
Photo Credit: CC0 License, Pexels