Marketing: Understanding What’s Possible

Online Marketing

marketing understanding

There are many buzzwords and a lot of jargon when it comes to marketing and, indeed, digital marketing.

So it’s not surprising many small business owners feel completely overwhelmed about what to do and how to improve their marketing understanding. What typically ends up happening is that they do something, anything, just to feel that they aren’t remaining stagnant, to garner a sense of progress.

However, shotgun actions are often more damaging in marketing than doing nothing. Not that I’m suggesting that you ‘do nothing’. Taking action when it comes to marketing is important but, here’s the rub, for it to be effective and to maximise any gains, it needs to be part of a coordinated and deliberate approach.

This is where things start to get hazy and the headaches begin for many small business owners. With so many possibilities, and often a vague understanding of many of them, creating a cohesive approach is usually not possible without calling in specific marketing understanding and expertise.

While marketers are good at, well, marketing what that can mean is they are great at pitching to small business owners what they are offering but it’s not necessarily what the small business needs. Small business owners then find themselves in the position of trying to select the best provider of a service. But they may not really understand what they are getting and what it will mean for the direction their business is heading in the longer term. No wonder many are confused and vow to avoid dealing with ‘marketing types’.

Marketing Understanding – Why You Need It

Business has only two functions – marketing and innovation

Peter Drucker

Marketing is an inescapable aspect of running a business today. Whether it’s digital marketing or offline marketing, few businesses can grow and prosper without some marketing understanding. For your marketing to work well for a small business all the parts need to flow and operate as a seamless system that takes into account your target market.

For example, setting up a Twitter account and putting resources into that for three months and then switching your effort to Instagram, because ‘everyone’ says that is the hot new place to be, is a waste of resources and effort and can be confusing for your customers.

A better approach would be to:

  1. Analyse your target market
    Knowing who you’re trying to reach is an important first step
  2. Find out where they like to hang out
    There is little point in trying to be everywhere, particularly for small businesses with limited budget. A better approach is to target who you want to reach and where you will show up.
  3. Focus on building a profile on that social media platform
    This could include creating a content plan that includes scheduled updates around key areas of interest for your potential and existing customers.
  4. Put in place some metrics
    Some targets and timeframes are impartial guidelines so you can measure whether that strategy is working for your business

If its not working like you hoped you can then decide what action to take to improve your results. This could be posting different types of content, including more curated content, changing the times of day you post, responding differently to comments from your audience, using tools to help find more like-minded customers or automating the process.

Having a coordinated approach to marketing based on business needs and capabilities is the best strategy for building market awareness and growing sales.

Do you need help to better connect with your audience?

Check out this free storytelling training.

marketing understanding