It goes without saying that every company should have a strong marketing presence, but do you know where to begin? Our Marketing Manager, Jake, walks us through the core principles of every great marketing strategy.
An important note: this blog was written with B2B marketing in mind, but these core principles are applicable to you B2C readers, too.
Laying the foundation for success
Before we even begin to discuss marketing, an agency or marketing professional has to understand a couple of key things; your business overview, structure, founding principles and overall goals. Whilst people usually bring these to us, it is an absolutely essential step for context.
"In fact, this is one of Mint’s founding principles; 'business first, marketing second'. For us, it's critical to understand your business structure and your economic drivers so we know what success looks like through your lens.
If we want to achieve success for you, we have to know what’s important to you and what success looks like through your lens.
Unique selling points
Once we’ve had this discussion, we are best placed to understand your USP, aka your unique selling point. A USP is usually a mechanism, process, product or piece of technology that sets you apart in your field and to your customer. Unique selling points are success stories in marketing when they’re placed into a wider narrative, defining your business and the value-add you provide for customers.
This all links back to providing you with a competitive advantage; if both parties have a deep understanding of what sets you apart from your peers, we can capitalise on this aspect as part of your wider marketing strategy. It seems a simple step, but you’d be shocked by the number of marketing strategies that overlook this.
Customer personas and marketing segmentation
To sell your product or service, you have to have a strong grasp of exactly who you’re marketing to. This is where customer personas and marketing segmentation come into play.
For example, in B2B marketing we know there are usually 4 key stakeholders:
- A technical buyer
These can also be the end-user, who has a vested interest in the purchase beyond their day to day role.
- A financial buyer
- The decision-maker
For SME’s, this persona is often the financial decision-maker too.
- An influencer or coach
More often than not, this is someone outside of the day to day operations of the company.
When we’re designing our marketing strategies, we’re doing so with these individuals in mind. We build them into customer personas; it’s all very well to know who these people are, but what do they look like, from a wider sociological perspective? How do we get our marketing efficiently and effectively in front of them?
Marketing segmentation works much the same, breaking down your customers into characteristics or qualities that can then be adapted into marketing targeting. As a rule of thumb, segmentation becomes more important for very niche products, while broad, everyday products, like cellphone contracts, require less segmentation.
Now, we want to target these users even further by understanding where they are in their current journey, and the steps we need to take to move them to the next stage.
Here at Mint, we use a custom made marketing flywheel. This provides a robust approach to analyzing customer journeys, and is built off all of the best elements of marketing theory, such as audience funnels. Our Marketing Manager, Jake, explains this marketing magic;
"Marketing funnels such as the AIDA model, which is typically taught at universities, have been sound practice for a long time. They all have a common flaw though - they don't focus on a customer's lifetime value. I developed our marketing flywheel to look beyond a single enquiry or transaction and focus on creating long term, sustainable revenue and brand advocacy."
Through this flywheel, we can see the critical areas where we need to take action. What are their motivating and justifying factors, their limitations, their larger concerns? This macro analysis tool puts us on the front foot to move users effectively and efficiently towards a client's key goals, and create long term success.
The summary of all this work is a marketing strategy our clients can use, creating a prioritized list of marketing activities, which lead back to the clients wider marketing and business goals. We pride ourselves on building marketing strategies that achieve real results, and the above set of principles are a well-used and trusted mechanism in our work. Check out some of the results for yourself on Our Work page.
There you have it! If you’d like to talk further about developing your own marketing strategy, our experts are always happy to have a no-strings-attached chat.