How do you create a successful business? While there are many functions to any organization —Administration, Production, R&D, Purchasing, Marketing (including the sales function), Human Resource Management, Accounting and Finance–marketing is the linchpin that makes everything work.
This is because you can do everything right in all the various departments of a business, but if you get the marketing wrong, the business will fail. Conversely, if you get the marketing planning right but the other departments of a business still need some improvement, the business may still succeed.
With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at understanding how marketing can help your business succeed.
Understanding Fundamental Marketing Principles
Marketing is an aspect of management science designed to promote goods and services to the consumer. It consists of three essential principles.
Develop a viable concept.
Products are developed based on research on whether they fill an unmet need in the marketplace. The iPhone was designed because Jobs correctly perceived that the Blackberry was not user-friendly enough for most users. In a nostalgic article about remembering Steve Jobs, a CNET article makes this comment about the iPhone: “It redrew mobile phone design and changed the entire phone industry.”
Price the product to increase sales.
Products are priced according to how much the buying public is willing to pay, while, of course, covering costs and returning a profit. Henry Ford’s Model T made him a millionaire because he got the pricing right. Other cars of his time were so expensive that only the rich could afford them. Ford’s car was so perfectly priced that 15 million Model T cars were sold between 1908 and 1927.
Choose the best way to reach your customer.
Usually, different marketing tactics are used to connect with different demographics. For example, if you have a business that depends on farmers and agriculture, you might set up inflatable dome tents at the local farmer’s market or fair to advertise to that demographic. If your target demographic is millennials, you would spend more time and money on digital advertising and marketing.
How to Promote Your Products
Assuming you’ve developed the right concept and priced your product right, how do you promote your product to the general public?
There are two essential strategies to choose from to create greater public awareness about your product: traditional marketing and online marketing. In addition, you can also use a blend of both strategies.
This uses marketing techniques that predate the Internet. They include radio, television, billboards, and print advertising. Generally speaking, traditional marketing does not work very well for small companies, works moderately well for medium sized companies, and work very well for large companies.
There are two reasons for this pattern:
- First, they are expensive. The better the quality of the advertising, the more it will cost.
- Second, it’s difficult to track response rates. For instance, when you buy a newspaper advertisement, you know the circulation of the newspaper, but you can only guess what percentage will read your ad. Similarly, when you buy a billboard on a highway, you have an estimate of how many cars drive by, but you have no idea how many people read your ad, nor how many respond to its message.
The main advantage of this form of advertising is that it reaches a huge section of the population. For this reason, it works well for large companies to reinforce their brand name.
This works in pretty much the opposite way to traditional marketing works. It works for all types and sizes of businesses, it’s comparatively inexpensive, and it’s easy to track how many people respond to your ad because they click on a traceable link to get to your website.
There are many way to do online marketing, but most include the use of a website as a place to drive traffic and increase conversions.
This type of marketing is a mix between push and pull marketing. Push marketing techniques includes influencer marketing tactics, search engine optimization, pay per click, and banner advertising. It also includes email marketing, mobile marketing, podcasting, and content marketing. Meanwhile pull marketing techniques include ways to get people to sign up for your newsletter, become a member of your website, or join your social media pages to receive more marketing messages from you.
There is no reason why a company can’t use both traditional and online marketing. For instance, a newspaper ad that mentions a website address can be used to increase website traffic.
Marketing is both an art and a science. It’s an art because you have to use creative thinking on how you’re going to promote your products and its a science because you’re following well-established theoretical principles.
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