In the midst of the digital age, where everyone is trying to earn the attention of consumers, gain market share, and stand out in a noisy crowd, it’s important to go back to the basics of marketing and ensure you have a strong foundation.
Sure we all want to be high-tech and innovative, and when that’s all we study we can easily lose sight of the marketing basics that are required to function as marketers. Don’t let fancy buzzwords fool you into thinking the basics aren’t important. Before chasing the latest and greatest, leverage what you have and build a strong foundation in your marketing team.
Once you’re sure the basics are incorporated into your marketing team’s actions, explore more creative techniques to further differentiate your company from the competition.
5 Essential Marketing Basics
1. Give, then ask.
As Gary Vaynerchuk puts it: Jab, jab, jab, right hook. Give, give, give, ask. To give, be helpful, be educational, and deliver value to your audience. What information are you sharing that helps or teaches your customers? Offer a free ebook with useful information, share tips and ideas related to your industry on social media, and answer questions without expecting anything in return. Being helpful is generally a good thing, and these activities build trust with your audience. Thus, when you ask them to take action later on, they are more likely to do so.
2. Keep your message simple and memorable.
When you’re trying so hard to stand out from the crowd, you might start using verbiage that’s convoluted and fluffy. Keep it simple. Determine your marketing message in the most simple terms possible, and ask: Would a 5th grader understand this? Simple is memorable. Someone should be able to hear what you do and repeat it to a friend later on without losing the meaning.
3. Include a clear CTA.
Multiple CTAs in one marketing activity cause lower conversion rates because potential consumers are scattered in multiple directions. Decide on one CTA for each marketing activity and stick with it throughout the campaign. Either ask people to sign up via email OR visit the site to see current deals. Ask people to share the social media post with friends OR reply with their thoughts. While secondary CTAs can be extremely useful, first ensure you can create a strong, single CTA before venturing into a secondary one.
4. Remember your target audience.
You may have 6,000 fans on Facebook, but one marketing message probably doesn’t apply to ALL of them. Determine your target audience for each campaign, and narrow your marketing message to that market. (Take it a step beyond the basics by micro-targeting your social media post to just reach that group of people.)
5. Understand that marketing is the “long game” of customer relationships.
Your marketing activities might get people in the door of your retail shop or clicking around online, but what you’re really doing is starting a relationship that will, hopefully, last a long time. Quick wins might look good on paper, but consider how every marketing activity further expands the foundation you’re building. What you do now can have a positive (or negative) impact on marketing activities down the road.
What other marketing basics are foundational to successful campaigns? Share your thoughts in the comments below!