Of all the many factors that contribute to the success or failure of a business, marketing is easily the most essential. Where a quality product and service are paramount, advertising is necessary in order to get the word out to the public about what the business in question has to offer. Likewise, quality marketing can help to curate a company’s image to ensure that a business’s base of loyal customers is robust enough to maintain the business from day to day. In other words, marketing helps to establish the ability of a company to sustain itself with repeat customers while also allowing it to grow thanks to a steady influx of new clientele. These tips can help you and your team build the right marketing campaign for your business.
Know Your Audience
While “data” is a buzzword that fits into many business discussions, there’s also a very good reason for that. Knowledge is power, as they say, and modern business data exemplifies this principle to great effect. Using market data, a business is able to create more effective business and marketing strategies. At the root of this process is getting to know your audience. This means, however, that the root of marketing involves public relations. Typically, PR firms are deployed to conduct market research for businesses. This research takes many forms, from the humble survey to more advanced methods such as AI-driven sentiment analysis. This research can paint a picture for you of your target demographics that can guide your hand when developing new strategies.
For example, a real estate agency may need to adjust mortgage refinance rates to accommodate a lower class audience, and the opposite is true of a more well-to-do demographic. Simply put, knowing the makeup of your audience allows you to curate the products and services you have to offer to suit what they want and need. However, market research is also an essential component of marketing your company. Attracting customers to your business often entails making a compelling argument that you have your clientele’s best interests in mind and that it embodies their same ideals. Therefore, understanding your audience will allow you to speak to them in a language that they understand in order to best convey what you have to offer.
Keeping Up Appearances
While understanding your audience is the foundation of marketing, this is primarily because of how it serves other aspects of marketing. With that in mind, the importance of branding is perhaps second only to market research in terms of importance. Likewise, branding should be informed by existing research data for best results. Branding entails many things, typically a variety of aesthetic signifiers that can distinguish your company and products from those of your competitors. In a sense, this makes a company’s branding not unlike the face or personality of the business, and that becomes much more literal with the introduction of a mascot or spokesperson. Again, this illustrates the overlap between marketing and PR, because spokespeople fall into the latter category, while mascots are more a matter of marketing.
While the nature of branding is highly subjective, there are a few universal rules that can help you arrive at the best possible results. For example, color theory is incredibly important when it comes to deciding on your company’s color palette. Many companies, such as Walmart and Facebook, make heavy use of the color blue in their branding, and this is because blue is associated with a calming effect on the human mind. Because blue tends to make people feel good, it serves to create a positive frame of mind within customers and users. On the other hand, Target and Coca-Cola use the color red in their branding, and red is associated with passion, the idea being that it can inspire a more intense attachment to the brands in question. In both cases, the psychology of color can help businesses create the ideal environment to encourage their customers to spend freely, theoretically resulting in greater profits.
Telling a Story
While the average has a basic sense of what advertising is and how it works, something that is often overlooked is the importance of narrative in marketing. Throughout all of the many advertisements and other promotional materials that a given business can employ, it’s inevitable for certain conclusions about a given business to be drawn by consumers. By the same token, this means that a team of professional marketers can harness the power of a consistent and curated narrative to increase the potency of a given marketing campaign. By tackling marketing from the perspective of telling a story, you can make sure that the story consumers are receiving is the kind of story you want to tell.
Typically, this mindset produces marketing campaigns that seek to credit the business in question with certain values that are, ideally, shared with the audience. A great example of this is, again, Coca-Cola. Thanks to some crafty marketing, Coca-Cola was able to associate their brand heavily with the Christmas holiday, and part of this marketing strategy was adopting and transforming the myth of Santa Claus. With the association with this widely celebrated and beloved holiday comes additional associations with generosity and love, and those ideals have carried over into the overall marketing strategy of the company, even outside of their signature holiday ads. This is because those values resonate with the vast majority of people, and the sentimental value of the holiday season helps to cement those associations in place.
Marketing is one of the most foundational elements of doing business. Without a competent marketing campaign, your business’s own merits will simply fall on deaf ears. However, not all marketing is created equal, and it takes a certain set of skill and knowledge to capitalize on the full potential of marketing. It’s important to invest in the expertise of professional marketers, or even a marketing firm, to get the best possible results. However, these tips can help you follow the broad strokes of your team’s efforts, allowing for more effective results when all is said and done.