Marketing and promotion strategies
Marketing is the process of getting your business noticed by the people who need or want your products or services. Many small businesses come up with a fabulous business idea but then fail to market it successfully. You need to get out there and spread the word about your products or services to the right people to build your customer base. Advertising and selling are part of the process but there is much more involved.
The six ‘Ps’ of marketing
There are generally six key aspects that you need to focus on when marketing your products or services. These aspects are sometimes referred to as the six ‘Ps’:
Product refers to the goods or services you are offering. You might consider a range of factors such as packaging, labelling, branding and quality when developing your product.
Setting a suitable price for your products or services will help you to be profitable and stay competitive. Start by including all the costs associated with producing and delivering your products and services,then research your target market to determine how much they would be willing to pay. If there is a gap you have more work to do – perhaps reducing your costs or focusing on a different market.
Promotion refers to the methods you will use to advertise and sell your products and services. Promotional methods may include:
brochures and flyers
TV, radio or print advertising
word of mouth
loyalty and reward programs
mail-outs and letter drops
PR activities such as media releases and events
This aspect of marketing refers to how your customers will be able to purchase your products or services. Distribution channels may include:
retailing direct to the public through a store or outlet
selling goods via wholesalers
using distributors, consultants or agents to sell your products
When deciding which channel to use, consider your target market and the logistics involved in getting your products and services to them.
You will most likely have to engage with suppliers, distributors, wholesalers, stakeholders and employees to get your product or services to market. These groups all form part of your team. You need to ensure they understand the importance of providing quality products and customer service.
The right customer service and business processes are essential to support your marketing goals. They may include procedures for ordering new stock, ensuring products or services are delivered in a timely manner, providing opportunities for customers to give feedback and regularly reviewing sales and financial reports.
To have an effective marketing and promotion strategy, we need Conduct market research
Market research is a key part of developing your market strategy. It is about collecting information that provides an insight into your customers thinking, buying patterns, and location. In addition, market research can also assist you to undertake an initial sales forecast, monitor market trends and keep an eye on what your competition is doing.
Profile your target markets.
Trying to promote your product or service to everyone can be costly and ineffective. Grouping or segmenting your potential customers based on certain characteristics will help to focus your marketing efforts.
Generally segmentation is based on factors such as:
geography – location
demographics – age, gender, education level, income, occupation
behaviour – loyalty, attitude, readiness to buy, usage rates
lifestyle – social class, personality, personal values.
Your target market should have a need for your product or service and be willing to pay for your offer. Set your goals and budget Marketing goals will help you to define what you want to achieve through your marketing activities. Your goals should be SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-based.