One of the biggest problems with businesses today is that they are more focused on technology and trends that they lose sight of the core objectives. It makes no sense to apply the latest technology and trends, just for the sake of using it, especially when it does not align to the underlying core strategies.
An excellent example to illustrate this point is the inability of VR technology to catch up. A few years back, a large number of businesses adopted VR in their marketing techniques, as it was the “in” technology at that time. However, this didn’t provide ROI or help businesses meet their marketing objectives, especially when the VR technology was not aligned with the products or services.
Marketers have to first and foremost develop their strategy and then choose technologies and tools that align with their objectives, and not the other way around.
First, let’s clear up the air,
Marketing Strategies Vs. Marketing Tactics – What’s the Difference?
There’s enormous confusion – among entrepreneurs, startups and corporates about marketing strategies and tactics.
Most items associated with marketing like – social media, PPC campaigns, SEO, email, websites – are the details or tactics in marketing speak. These are tools that help companies reach their marketing goals. But, they are NOT the underlying marketing strategy.
Marketing strategy is the destination, while marketing tactics are the tools.
A business cannot rely only on tools to achieve their goals. All businesses have to start by defining their destination, and then decide on the right tools to reach the destination.
Businesses often make the mistake of focusing on tactics without investing in the right strategy. Marketers need to outline their organizational goals and then detail the steps to reach these goals by using the right tools and tactics.
Marketing Strategy – The Cornerstone for Marketing Success
Long gone are the days, when marketing success was a static measure. Today, to achieve marketing success, businesses have to focus on improving customer experiences (CX). All companies – big and small – have to focus on each aspect of customer engagement to ensure that their marketing tactics are successful.
Marketing requires a strategic approach. Businesses have to focus on what they want to achieve and not how. That comes later.
Marketing Strategies is NOT a One-Time Process: It’s Continually Evolving
Marketers have to remember that marketing strategy is not a one-time process. It’s a fluid undertaking. The strategy has to be revised and evolved to keep up with the changing needs of the customer.
Businesses have to start by asking the question – who is our customer, and what do they do? Start by mapping customer journeys based on their profiles. Businesses have to work on finding more about their customers – what they eat, where they shop, the stores they visit (physically and digitally), the apps they use, the interactions they have with competitors. All this information helps in building a solid marketing strategy.
Apart from marketing strategy, businesses also have to focus on marketing operations – the procedure of targeting and retargeting potential customers. Marketing ops is an essential part of all marketing plans and helps to boost the effectiveness of the marketing strategy.
The Bottom Line – Marketing Strategy and Ops are the First Steps of all Marketing Campaigns
Figuring out the tools and technology before strategy and operations is a futile exercise and don’t give the best marketing results. Marketing strategy and operations are the foundations of any marketing team, on which the rest of the marketing mission is built on.