How many acronyms, charts and consultations have you gone through just trying to find the right marketing strategy? While it is true that every product and business needs an individualized approach, there are some universal truths that pop up in every marketing campaign. Tyler Tate, marketing expert (see some of his work at tsquaredsports.com), offers his advice on taking your marketing strategy to new levels:
1. Understand how you sell and detail your product.
It is okay to find one medium to market your product on. Not every business belongs on social media. Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are best used to connect directly to the public, which may not be your goal if you want sales to a manufacturer or large supplier. For these types of businesses, you should focus on strong logos and infographics; conversely, find the right image.
2. Perfect how you sell something from an emotional standpoint.
If you are going to use an image to do this, you must tell a story. Depth, movement and functionality are all goals you should strive toward when using pictures to market. Understand how a person wants to feel about your product and emphasize it. Go beyond initial emotions and market to what people want and think they want. There is a professional and personal side to every individual you will attempt to market to, so choose one persona to appeal to and run with it.
3. Take the hate people are going to give you and use it to improve.
Rather than becoming discouraged when receiving negative feedback, analyze it. Is your product or service unsatisfactory? Was your marketing not effective? Why are you receiving this criticism, and how can you improve? It is okay to fail, in fact, according to Tate, there is a lot of need to fail. Allow this process to spur curiosity and guide you to make changes.
4. Invest in acquiring accurate data.
Concept and theory are great, but data is perfect. Compare your simulations to data constantly. Do not let your wishes or preconceptions blind your actual results and, consequently, your business plans. After the initial launch, marketing is about reaction, which cannot be accomplished effectively if you are misinformed.
5. Allow your business to reflect the consumer and adapt, but never stray away from your core values when marketing.
People will oftentimes Google the name of the person who owns a business before their company name, so do you really want to represent something that strays away from your core values? You will be easier to find and more likable as an entrepreneur and business if you are consistent with your values in the way you run your business and sell it to others. You should never try to reach an audience you do not want to sell to in the first place. In the end there is more money and happiness to be had from the niche as opposed to the masses.
In general, trust your gut. Marketing can become complicated and clouded with details if you allow it. However, the most cost-effective and easiest way to market your startup oftentimes is the simplest.
Photo credit: Courtesy of Edubirdie.