marketing strategy

Marketing strategy is one of my favourite topics for two reasons: a well-developed strategy simplifies our everyday marketing job as it makes the implementation of different initiatives straight-forward. Secondly, that’s what I specialize in, and I love what I do.

Marketing Strategy Definition

As defined in a previous article, the go to market strategy represents the generic direction a company should follow in order to accomplish a specific business objective. It shows “road map” to achieving greater results, such as sales growth, worldwide brand recognition, and higher market penetration.

The Benefits for Your Business

Many business owners fail to see the benefits of incorporating Marketing strategy in the overall strategic business process. A well-crafted strategic plan:

  • provides the business with focus and direction by identifying the best opportunities worth pursuing as well as the threats to be avoided
  • identifies the tools that the company can effectively use to fight competition and gain market share
  • saves company time and money by focusing the resources on attracting the right employees and investing only om marketing initiatives that support the overall business objectives
  • differentiates a company from competition by identifying the distinctive advantage and the supporting elements
  • translates the company vision, mission, objectives, into effective Marketing initiatives
  • serves as foundation for all your communication campaigns
  • improves the effectiveness of the Marketing message to customers and partners
  • increases sales and profits
  • creates consumer preference for the brand

Marketing Strategy vs. Marketing Plan

These two concepts create a fair amount of confusion among marketers and business executives. Below are some important differences between the two:

Marketing Strategy Marketing Plan
  • a collection of medium to long term methods for achieving the company’s objectives.
  • a list of initiatives to be implemented in the short term (usually within one year).
  • will not change yearly, but only when a major change occurs that affects the business as a whole: the raise of a new strong competitor, implementation of new legislation that greatly impacts the business, a sudden change in consumer needs.
  • changes yearly based on competitive actions and short term opportunities and threats
  • supports business objectives
  • supports marketing strategy
  • generic, with loosely defined budgets and deadlines
  • the “to do list” that includes well-defined responsibilities, budgets and deadlines.

An effective Marketing strategy is realistic, easy to understand and practical to implement. It also makes communication initiatives easier to develop. In the next articles I will list the major topics to be addressed by an effective strategic document, as well as a well-written Marketing plan.

Photo Credit: Nick Southall on Flickr