Marketing is the process of understanding and attracting demand. it requires a trio-combination of research, strategizing, and action. Attracted demand is turned into conversions, which can be anything from sales to sign ups to donations.
Further, it is the study of how to positively influence decision-making to better serve consumer demand. Note the phrase “positively influence;” manipulation is not marketing. While brands might win short-term gains through black-hat marketing practices and manipulation, brands that survive for the long-term build customer loyalty and trust. That is true marketing.
Table of Contents
- The Meaning of Marketing
- Why Marketing is Important for Business
- Famous Marketers
- The Four P’s of Marketing
- Marketing Research
- Marketing Strategies
- Improving your Marketing Strategy
- Future of Marketing
- Careers in Marketing
- Conclusion on Marketing
The Meaning of Marketing
According to Brittanica, marketing’s principal function is to promote and facilitate exchange. Marketers look to how increase the number of positive exchanges for their company. Positive exchanges are exchanges that bring in value to the company, rather than lose value away from the company. This may be in the form of cash, technology, resources, or people. The best marketers look for win-win situations for both sides of the exchange. In win-win situations, positive exchange value flows both ways, leaving both parties satisfied and happy.
While a science, marketing is also an art. Promoting these positive exchanges, marketers can get creative and express personality about their company and themselves. Many of the most successful marketing campaigns focused on originality and shock; some campaigns developed entirely new strategies to market their products. In a recent famous campaign, a company offered a treasure hunt for customers in efforts to promote their product. It was widely successful. Local news and national media shared the story to their own audiences. Marketing is both a science and an art.
Why Marketing is Important for Business
Marketing is important for business because it is how you express your unique value propositions to customers. Without good marketing, companies blind consumers from seeing the value that their product or service could provide. Competition that can explain value more simply and effectively will initially win over customers.
However, good marketing cannot help a poor product. Sometimes, consumers may see over-marketing a poor product as manipulation. This will hurt your brand. Good marketing is about explaining product truth to help consumers make better decisions. If your product is better, customers will continue to come and become loyal to your brand. Almost no products are “if you build it, they will come” type of products, meaning marketing is very important for almost all businesses to communicate what is built.
You can look for inspiration in a variety of places. Some of the top motivational speakers use examples from famous marketers. Here are five famous marketers that you can get inspiration and guidance from:
Steve Jobs: Simplicity, perfection, and design were all cores pillars of Jobs’ vision for Apple. The company now is valued over 3 trillion dollars. However while Steve was a genius marketer for the companies he managed, he was perhaps better at marketing his own personal brand. Jobs’ large amassed following lives on today. Many now refer to this as the ‘cult of Steve.’
Gary Vaynerchuk (Vee): If you already know who this is, it speaks to this marketer’s success in modern day marketing. Gary Vee has been excellent on staying on the top of every social media platform. Tiktok, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube – you name it, he has a large following. Recently, Gary held a convention called ‘VeeCon’ – talk about personal brand marketing. The famous marketer also owns an advertising agency in New York City called VaynerMedia, which has exploded in dual with his personal brand growth.
Conrad Gesner: While an older marketer (born in 1516 old), Conrad was a swiss physician that had an obsession with plants and animals. Some called him the first ‘naturalist.’ His claim to fame is owning one of the most wide sweeping word of mouth marketing campaigns ever created: “Tulipmania.” As it sounds, Conrad Gesner first accidentally marketed ‘Tulips” into a luxury flower and product, later causing mania. At the height of “Tulipmania,” a single tulip was selling to value equal to a mansion.
Plato: Plato is most notably known as a Greek Philosopher. However, he also was a profound educator. He founder the first institution for higher education. His teachings and philosophy still attracts crowds and interest today, being one of the most widely read philosophers of this age. Plato did not even need the internet to have his content and teachings last forever.
Henry Ford: Henry Ford is known for making the first automobile. However, what is interesting about Henry is that he did not originally market for the general everyday person automobile. When Ford began, he marketed to high-status individuals about a new type of race car. Ford demonstrated the potential speed and power of his new vehicle. While amazing the high-status audience into investing in Ford’s vision, it also gave him the needed credibility boost to move towards a more average, everyday automobile. He showcased the potential of his automobile, and won over necessary support to move into mass production.
The Four P’s of Marketing
The Four P’s of the ‘marketing mix’ are product, price, place, and promotion. The marketing mix can help you understand your offering strategy holistically.
The product is what you are selling. The product should include features and benefits that correspond with unique pain points of a potential customer. If the product is not designed to meet a specific demand of a target customer, marketers will have a difficult time promoting the product effectively. Great marketing cannot makeup for a poor product in the long-term.
The price is what you are willing to let the product go for. Price can be many things. It can be a set currency price, or even a set favor. No matter the ‘what,’ price is used to represent the seller’s perceived selling value of the given product. Setting the price too high can be a marketing mistake as customers turn away in disgust. However, setting a price too low could be a mistake, even if it is still profitable. It might demonstrate a “lower-quality as lower-priced” product. Customers may choose to pay a higher-priced alternative thinking it is higher quality. Think name brand versus generic brand.
The place is where you will be selling the product. Online, retail, doorsteps, and city blocks are all unique places your company can sell a product or service. Some areas to sell a product are more effective than others. A lemonade stand will be more effective in Miami, Florida than in Toronto, Canada because of the weather. Marketing is about meeting demand in the most cost-effective manner. Think of how the target customer would act, and find the best location to sell to the demand.
Promotion is how you will spread awareness and convince customers. Why is your product, price, and place perfect for developing loyal, reoccurring customers? Explain why customers should not only love your product, but your brand in its whole. Express who you are and your mission.
Marketing research is the stage of marketing where marketers learn about customer demand for a given product. Researchers learn more about the problem/pain-point and customer expectations. If the researchers determine the product can satisfy consumer demand, or also known as ‘product-market fit,’ marketers will move into the next stage of marketing: planning and strategizing.
Marketing strategy is the stage of marketing where marketers determine how to reach consumer demand in the most cost-effective and time-effective manner. Marketers narrow down what channels of marketing would make sense with the ‘product and market.’ For example, younger audiences may be reached easier on platforms like TikTok rather than Facebook. Posting content on the TikTok channel would be a better way to reach consumer demand in a cost-effective and time-effective manner.
Data analytics and tracking are a large part of how a marketer determines the effectiveness of their marketing strategy, especially on the internet. However, some characteristics like consumer sentiment are hard to measure with data or tracking.
Marketing strategy is the process of using research and trial-error to achieve a product, market, and channel fit. Below is a list of ordinary marketing strategies and channels:
- Digital Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Social Media
- Public Relations (PR)
- Big Data
- Content Marketing
- Influencer Marketing
- Inbound Marketing
- Outbound Marketing
Advertising Strategy: Advertising is getting more and more difficult, but the results still remain. Create interesting ads, make customers care, find ways to spark visibility in the clutter, and above all be relevant and credible. Advertising is a great way to express and convey product meaning to potential customers. However, do not fall into the clutter of ads and be forgotten.
Digital Marketing Strategy: Digital marketing is about increasing business awareness through online channels. One of the main benefits of a digital marketing strategy is scalability. Since the internet is so large, digital marketing efforts can have a larger and more viral impact than local marketing efforts. Below are ways to digitally market your products:
Email Marketing: Only 10 million people had an email account in 1997. Now, that number is in the billions with a ‘b’. Build an email list, turn cold leads into warm leads, and convert. Email marketing is more about consistency and value-add than promotional junk. Ask yourself, “What can I do to add value to my customers?” It can be as simple as cheering up their morning with a fun meme.
Email Marketing Is Like Dating: Ever share your phone number with a potential date? The worst approach you can take to attracting a date, or in this case a customer, is to blow up their phone with requests. “Talk to me now!”and “Why are you not responding” is a lot like “Buy now!” and “Are you receiving my promotional messages?!” When you get a phone number or email from a potential customer or data, be fun, light, and show off the best of your brand.
SEO Priorities: Search Engine Optimization is all about helping Google provide quality informational value to consumers. Understand search sentiment on key phrases, and provide value that matches your brand credibility and know-how. Four major SEO priorities are crawl budget, meta description and title tags, usability and speed, and content and likes. Focus on these four items to organize and advance your SEO strategy. Good optimization can lead to consistent organic traffic from potential customers who will be gratuitous for your informational help.
Social media: Social media can be an extremely valuable marketing strategy if used correctly and consistently. A couple tips for social media use: Be aware of your target audience when using social media, measure content, create a virtual community on social media, optimize each channel, and make social media an extension of your overall digital strategy.
- Overall Digital Advertising
TikTok is social media app focused on short-viral clips, while it has recently been expanding into longer clips. The algorithm recommends content based on user interests and viewership retention. Copying viral content and viral sounds is the best way to cater towards the TikTok algorithm.
Using TikTok: With more than a billion young users on the app, businesses are missing out on the untapped potential of TikTok. Create original content, utilize virality, use monetized advertising, and hire influencers.
Tips for TikTok: Tips for TikTok include creating a branded channel, collaborating with those who have alot of clout, launching a hashtag competition, and using promotional features to boost performance.
Instagram is a social media app primarily focused on pictures and individual profiles. However, Instagram has expanded elsewhere. Into the TikTok realm with new features like Reels. Into the Shopify realm with new features like built-in shopping on photo content.
Using Instagram: Instagram allows users to quickly, easily and widely share snapshots from their own lives. With a variety of paid and unpaid avenues, building an Instagram strategy takes some thought and preparation. Use trial and error, and make use of built-in analytics to understand how the algorithm and audiences react to content.
Twitter is short, sweet, and witty. Similar to TikTok, Twitter favors content that is viral and has traction. However, different than TikTok, Twitter uses user-input (likes, comments, retweets) to a greater extent.
Using Twitter: There are many routes to using Twitter effectively as a brand. However, some actions are ones all Twitter users need to follow. Get other influencers to tag you in their posts, be active during viral events (Oscars, Superbowl), run giveaways, focus on high quality content above all else, and collaborate with other Twitter influencers.
Facebook is social media app focused on connecting people, communities, and businesses. Facebook groups is a great place to start marketing and connecting with likeminded individuals or your target audience.
Using Facebook: Facebook has a variety of benefits, from ads to company pages to groups. Here are some of their most significant perks: staying relevant, more dynamic creatives, easier content management, and better storytelling with stories ads. Facebook groups are a great place to get quick feedback on a new business idea. Create and share a survey in a group that matches the potential target market and analyze the results. Get creative with how you utilize these massive platforms. It is not all about content but also how you utilize resources already developed.
LinkedIn is a professional network where businesses, individuals, and ideas can connect. Similar to TikTok, LinkedIn follows an exponential recommendation system where the best content is shared throughout the platform, and negative, poor preforming content is barred.
Using LinkedIn: With various tools to market on LinkedIn, marketers need to find what is most cost-effective and accurate to generate actions. Lead-gen forms are a great way to bypass landing pages for low-informational products, but many products may need a fully developed landing page to help convince a customer. The best feature on LinkedIn is the advanced targeting for companies. Conduct A/B tests on audiences, see their responses, and find the best CTR to focus in on. Linkedin is all about experimenting both on the ad and content sides.
Digital Advertising: Digital advertising falls into the many categories of social media platforms and beyond to search engine’s like Google. Segment your audience and serve personalized, relevant messaging, contextualize your ads, and go omnichannel.
Public Relations (PR)
PR Strategy: PR is about gaining credibility, awareness, and authority for your brand, Use social media to strengthen your PR, enhance the skills and abilities of your people, provide exceptional customer service, try environmentally friendly approaches to PR, and offer engaging promotions.
Big Data Marketing Strategy: Built-in to most other marketing strategies. Big data marketing is all about using data analytics and collected information to make smart, planned decisions. Big data is what separates good marketers from excellent marketers. Less of a channel or marketing action, the strategy is about setting up all marketing efforts to be analyzed and evaluated. It is an important preliminary step before going all-in to one marketing strategy or channel.
- Machine Learning
- Artificial Intelligence
- Website Tracking
- Lookalike Audience Matching
- A/B Testing
Machine Learning: Machine learning is all about predictive analysis, and continued rehashing. After every campaign, the ML algorithm will learn more as new data is added and performance is analyzed. Overtime, ML will help optimize your campaign for better results, such as CTR. Some machine learning algorithms are built-in to social media platforms. Both LinkedIn and Facebook have options for automatic optimization with their algorithms. However, still, many worry over different opinions between marketers and the algorithms. Some might be setup to increase revenue for the platforms rather than the brands themselves. Find ways to use data and predictive analysis to optimize campaigns and understand audience performance.
Prep Data for Machine Learning: Preparing data before using it for a machine learning model is important because feeding faulty data to a model can lead to performance issues and false predictions. View distribution of data within each column, identify data types for each value, understand how the sets will be combined or separated within the big dataset.
Artificial Intelligence: Use AI to make your marketing life easier and more automated. Analyze existing content for content gaps and opportunities, choose keywords and topic clusters for content optimization, create buyer personas on needs, goals, intents, and behavior, develop data-driven content, and discover insights into top performing content and campaigns.
Customer tracking: One of the biggest changes to marketing now is that everything is trackable. Companies can learn more about each individual’s customer buying journey, and learn how to optimize for that demographic of customer. Zone tracking, hot and cold maps, click maps, and customer journey recording are all new innovations to learn about how a customer is interacting with information on your website.
Lookalike Audience: Building and advertising to a lookalike audience is all about using past customer conversion data. Use past demographic information on conversions to find lookalike individuals that provide higher conversions than ordinary targeting. Great datasets of conversion data can significantly boost CTR and conversions. However, poor datasets may have a reverse impact on targeting.
A/B Testing: Split testing or A/B testing is used in a variety of contexts. Marketers are looking for improvements or differences in interactions between test cases. One common use is for testing ad copies. Before using the full budget, researchers will put an A/B test of ad copies with a limited budget onto the desired channel. Researchers will look at the best-performing ad copy, and use that with the full-budget campaign. The company saved money by using data and preparation.
Influencers Marketing Strategy: People trust people before brands. An influencer marketing strategy can help amplify your brand credibility and awareness. Influencers are predictable, scalable, targetable, and a fast ramp to growth.
MicroInfluencers: Typically with 50,000 to 200,000 followers, micro-influencers are a good sweet-spot for influencer marketing. Rather than looking like a recommendation from a far away famous person, a micro-influencer may appear more relatable and down to earth to potential customers.
Content Marketing Strategy: Content marketing is all about providing value to as many potential customers as possible. Distribution and creation of quality content is at the heart of great content marketing. Define and demonstrate your brand voice, make use of commercial keyword phrases, exchange content for contact information, make landing pages simple, and amplify content via social media.
Why Content Marketing is Significant: With content marketing, you can create value for your audiences. Value-adding content will build trust and credibility for your company, which will turn into sales and leads.
Tools for Content Marketing: Tools include AI, machine learning, natural language processing Technology, document clustering, and the semantic web. Use these tools to develop your content marketing strategy. Ensure to use new SaaS tools or Google Sheets to organize your content for editors and hiring writers.
The Keys to Content Marketing: The three keys are produce genuine content, distribute content to get the most eyeballs, and, finally, keep track of how well your posts are performing. Tracking may be the most important key. If you can find content that resonates with your audience, double-down efforts and focus on what works.
Inbound Marketing Strategy: The strategy focuses on creating and displaying content that attracts or draws in potential customers. This is in opposition to outbound marketing where you go out to convince potential customers directly.
Outbound Marketing Strategy: Outbound marketing refers to more traditional advertising avenues. Act of directly approaching potential customers and pushing them to a brand, service, or product.
- Trade Shows
- Cold Call
- Direct Mail
Trade Shows: To succeed at a trade show, keep two things in mind: preparation and execution. Before the show, do your research and focus on value. During the show, use smart targeting, be engaging, and understand your location. After the show, build new relationships and start nurturing new relationships into positive value for your company.
Cold Calls: While cold calling produces the least ROI of any phone marketing application, there are many ways to improve your odds for making a sale. Do pre-research on the website of the potential customer before the call. Stop pitching, and start asking meaningful questions. Understand and explain why your companies are a good fit for each other.
Telemarketing: Online marketing has increased the number of low quality leads coming into a companies funnel. The great thing about telemarketing is the ability to pre-verify and pre-quality potential leads. To succeed with a call-verified campaign, confirm the contact data is real, verify the interest of the lead, and quality the lead using data. A large pool of leads can turn into a few high-quality, ready-to-convert leads.
Direct Mail: Direct mail can catch your customer attention, but being weary of cost is important as you send out mass mail to many customers. While direct mail has developed into an alternative marketing channel as online channels grow, the power of direct mail to attract and flex your marketing creativity is still there. Use commercial pricing if you are looking to continue direct mail long-term. When addresses cannot be reached, use special addressing services to instruct what to do if the potential customer cannot be reached. This can save you from paying for sending mail to invisible homes.
Improving your Marketing Strategy
Importance of an Effective Marketing Strategy
Importance of a great marketing strategy: A great marketing strategy positions brands as offering convenience, grabs consumer attention in a saturated market, tells customers how their products fit their lifestyle, sets the stage for business owners to sell their enterprises, spurs customers to make purchases after viewing media-rich ads, and helps brands effectively reach customers. A great strategy is important for all brands and businesses.
Tips to Improve Your Strategy
Improving marketing strategy: Implementing more of the unique strategies above is a great way to start improving your strategy. However, suppose we had to name a few great tips. In that case, these are our focus points: create and share high-quality content now, consider rebranding to match your audience better, build your network and community, and start using viral video content.
Marketing By Your Personality Type
Marketing by your personality type: The new generation of consumers buy from companies that share their values, personality, and beliefs. Market who you are, but also understand who you aim to connect with. Brands can be more than a product, but also a community of beliefs and personalities. Be the creator of this community feeling.
Future of Marketing
The future of marketing is …
- The Metaverse
- Augmented Reality
- Enhanced Interactivity
The Metaverse: From recreating irl products for a virtual world to building virtual billboards for your brand, the Metaverse is an entirely new space to market. While like social media there will be likely multiple ‘worlds’ or platforms to market on, many of the same strategies apply. Marketers will be evaluating the cost of the the virtual ad-space, and its effectiveness to draw attention and conversions to their goals.
Augmented Reality: Different from the metaverse, augmented reality is bring the virtual world to life. Big tech companies have long flaunted the possibility of augmented reality glasses. Augmented reality will take place as you walk down the street and the supermarket. Marketers will have the ability to put augmented billboards and displays in the sky or right in front of your eyes.
Enhanced Interactivity: Our devices give us enhanced interactivity with the world around us. Take your phone out and play around with an interactive billboard in downtown New York. We already see enhanced interactivity in movie theaters and ball games, as viewers take out their phones and play games with each other on the big screen. These campaigns are only going to increase because of their ability to grab attention and engage audiences.
Careers in Marketing
Top Marketing Jobs
Marketing jobs come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Below is a basic list of jobs in the market field.
- Marketing Leadership jobs
- Digital Marketing jobs
- Sales/advertising jobs
- Big Data jobs
Marketing Leadership Jobs
Marketing leadership jobs: A marketing leadership position includes marketing manager, chief content officer (CCO), chief marketing officer (CMO), marketing executive, vice president of marketing, and other positions managing marketing outlook.
Digital Marketing Jobs
Digital Marketing positions: These positions include content creation, editorial, video production, graphics and visuals. content strategy. social media marketing, digital advertising.
Sales/Advertising positions: These positions include sales representative, radio advertising, advertising creative, TV ad director, sales manager, door-to-door sales.
Big Data Jobs
Big Data jobs: Big data jobs include big data engineer, data architect, data security analyst, database manager, business intelligence analyst, data scientist, data modeler, database developer, database administrator, data analyst.
Landing a Marketing Job
Landing a marketing job comes down to doing. Learn unique strategies and how to implement them in full effectively. Knowing the full scope of a strategy versus a single task will make you more hirable. Demonstrate your skills to potential employers and explain ROI. Show how your marketing skills and expertise can make an impact, and you will land a marketing job.
Conclusion on Marketing
Marketing is always developing, creating new channels for new and old marketers to tap into and learn. With so many ever-growing and ever-changing channels, individuals who enjoy learning and figuring out new opportunities are a great fit to be a marketer. However, with many channels, it is important not to get caught up in the fads of marketing. Realize, at the end of the day, the goal of marketing is to attract positive exchanges for you and others. Try new strategies, learn what works, and, above all, stay true to your product and brand. Be yourself!