Tag - Marketing Strategy

advertising and marketing

Advertising and Marketing: What’s the Difference?

Understanding the fundamentals of advertising and marketing

advertising and marketing

People often get advertising and marketing confused.

The fact is that there is a huge difference between the two terms.

Marketing is the process by which products and services are introduced to the marketplace. Whereas, advertising is the description or presentation of a product, idea, or organization, in order to induce individuals to buy, support, or approve of it. Marketing is the sum of all activities that you perform to get the word out about your business and attract the customers you want. Advertising is essentially spreading the word about what your company has to offer. Advertising is a component, or subset, of marketing.

advertising and marketing processMarketing takes time. It involves understanding who your potential customers are and what they want to get from your product or service. Think of marketing as everything that an organization does to facilitate an exchange between company and consumer. An effective marketing strategy involves use of color, logos, and how your products and services are sold. A marketing strategy creates the perception that you want people to have of your business. Is your company forward thinking, a fun company or a large stable business? It’s marketing that defines your brand and attracts the market share you want.

Advertising is getting the word out about your business, your products and services. It can involve several strategies including newspaper, radio and television ads. On the internet it can include banner ads, posting classifieds, etc.

To market your product or service, fundamentally you must:

– Study your target audience

– Identify their values and needs

If you’re trying to appeal to a quality-conscious demographic, you’d probably want to develop a campaign that showcases your brand as being high end. If you’re reaching out to a younger or more forward-demographic, develop an edgier approach to present the image of your product.

Once your marketing strategy has identified your target audience, you can now focus your advertising dollars on the specific types of media used by that audience to increase your likelihood of successfully acquiring new customers. Print, television, radio and the Internet are common venues that can communicate your brand to potential customers. Social media is also a powerful component of marketing, branding, as well as advertising efforts; proper use of Twitter, Facebook and Google+ (and others) can help spread the word about what it is you have to offer.

In the end, marketing and advertising campaigns are most effective when they are fully integrated.

digital marketing momentum

Maintaining Momentum is Critical to Your Marketing Efforts

A Consistent Marketing Strategy Keeps Business Flowing

digital marketing momentum

Too few small business owners realize the value of creating and maintaining momentum in their marketing strategy. Many think they can flip a switch and marketing will be busy producing results, but marketing doesn’t work like that.

Marketing builds momentum over time. This is true with online marketing, social media marketing or offline marketing. With each impression, people become aware of your brand and they begin to form an opinion of your business, products and services. If they like what they see, they will move from a disinterested by-stander to serious prospect and, eventually, a loyal customer.

So what is momentum? Webster’s Dictionary defines momentum as a “strength or force that keeps growing”. That means if you want to get your profits growing and keep growing month after month, your business needs to have the power of momentum working for you.

Inertia kills momentum. Marketing has been compared to rolling a heavy rock up a steep hill. Too many marketers give the rock a push, stop, rest, chat, give it another push, stand back, then too late they realize the rock has returned to the bottom of the hill and they must start all over again.

Many businesses struggle to maintain a consistent level of marketing activity. Energies and resources are often diverted to deliver work for paying customers. Indeed, many business owners don’t see the point in spending precious budget and time when they have plenty of work. It can create a dilemma that causes marketing efforts to slip to the bottom of their to-do list. If you want to grow your business, marketing must be maintained at a constant level.

Many business owners ask, “Why keep marketing when I’m already busy?”  Because marketing for growth means marketing consistently. Here are some reasons why marketing must be consistent:

1. Marketing builds a steady and predictable sales pipeline

Many small businesses constantly find themselves in ‘feast or famine’ mode. Consistent marketing can break this cycle. If you know how long the buying cycle takes, then you know for how long you need to be generating leads. When you forget to do your prospecting because you’re too busy that’s when famine happens.

2. Consistent marketing doesn’t waste resources by constantly repeating yourself

If you haven’t done any marketing for a while, people may not immediately recall who you are and what you do. But, a program of regular marketing can continually keep you in their minds when they are ready to make that purchase.

3. Consistent marketing generates the right kind of work for your business

You want to attract the right kind of work for your business – it’s more profitable, enjoyable and it builds credibility. Consistent marketing allows you to generate the right kind of work. The wrong kind simply takes up time and barely turns a profit. Being busy does not always equate to being profitable, or fulfilled. Consistent marketing allow you to present yourself as the expert in your field – leading to more of the right kind of work for your business.

4. Consistent marketing helps you maintain your marketing skills

Marketing is made up of many different skills and techniques. If you only practice them occasionally, you’re likely to need to re-learn what you once knew. What’s more, with digital marketing techniques are growing and changing at a staggering pace, if you are not constantly marketing new techniques may have passed you by. Regular, consistent marketing activities will embed the skills so that they become second nature.

Branding and Brand Integrity

Build Your Brand, It’s the One Thing You Truly Own

Take Control of Your Brand Identity and Brand Integrity

Branding and Brand Integrity

One of the facts of business life is that there is almost nothing about your business that a competitor can’t and won’t duplicate.  If you’ve created the proverbial “better mousetrap”, you can be certain that somebody will copy your model.  It’s just a matter time.  And eventually they may be able to do a better job or sell the product or service at a lower price.  So the question becomes, “What can I offer that can’t be copied by anyone else?”  The answer: your brand.

Creating a strong brand is one of the strongest competitive advantages your business can gain. When you do successfully build your brand, customers will think of you first when they need a certain product or service.  For example, when your child wants a hamburger, as often as not, she won’t ask for a hamburger but will ask if you’ll take her to McDonald’s. The reason: McDonald’s has built such a solid brand identity and maintained brand integrity.

A brand is the one thing about your business that nobody can completely duplicate. Everything else – including trade secrets, patents, physical plant and technology – will eventually expire, wear out or become obsolete.  But your brand can go on – even outliving your business.  Your brand creates lasting value above and beyond all other aspects of your business.

The importance and value of your brand becomes even more apparent if you want to sell the business or acquire investor capital.  It is often the brand that is your most valuable asset.  Your brand can be quantified.  For instance, potential investors often value your company by looking at the assets tied to your brand first. They then identify the value of your physical assets – office, patents, machinery and staff.  And often the physical assets are valued at a fraction of what you can sell your brand for.

So whether you hope to grow your company for yourself or eventually sell it, your brand is one of the most valuable assets your business can have.