When it comes to marketing, many start-ups and small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) approach marketing without deviation from the marketing “best practices” that plague the Internet. Working as a strategic marketing consultant with a client portfolio in vastly different industries and markets throughout Europe and the US only reinforces this belief. I’ve seen executives’ copy and paste quotes saying “that if you aren’t on Facebook, then you’re not doing marketing.” As a marketing consultant this is troubling, as it’s quite difficult to come up with a Facebook strategy for a start-up real-estate company that insists on a Facebook campaign, when the truth is, the human and financial capital necessary to generate demand or increase brand awareness just doesn’t pay off from an ROI standpoint.
This begs a few exceedingly critical questions that all-too-often marketers ignore, the most of important being: Is my company using the right marketing channels to attract my audience?
What Should Be Considered When Developing A Marketing Strategy?
I am currently working on developing a marketing theory to answer this key problem, which is called Clinical Marketing and is defined as:
Every market, industry and enterprise is unique. Therefore, to develop or optimize an effective marketing strategy, a company needs to undertake a prescriptive analysis in order to properly diagnose the communication (and content) strategy that will maximize return.
The five core tenets of clinical marketing, which are employed to generate a marketing strategy or analyze the effectiveness of a current marketing strategy are:
1. Marketing, as a whole, is an ever-increasing complex system.
Unless you are Apple Inc. there is most likely not going to be a steady stream of consumers flocking to your product without an “integrated and multi-channel” strategy, which focuses on both demand and brand. If you perform poorly on one channel (or area of marketing), it’s going to hurt your performance somewhere else, and vice-versa. For example, if you run a successful Facebook campaign for a quarter with the intention of increasing brand awareness, this will also affect website traffic, Google “authority” (ranking, Adwords), open-rates for email or newsletters, other owned social profile performance.
2. Differential diagnosis is key.
When developing a marketing strategy, it’s necessary to undergo the due-diligence necessary for determining the channels you should be creating and promoting content for. For each industry, size of company and business goals there is a customized checklist that is necessary to complete before determining where you should spend your resources.
3. Understand the ecosystem of a network before dedicating resources.
There are many external factors that play into whether you are going to be successful on Facebook, Google, Twitter, etc. It’s absolutely necessary to know whether your branding or advertising campaigns stand a reasonable chance of success with the resources at hand.
4. Monitoring and analysis is essential.
Launching onto a new channel is just the beginning. You should continuously monitor your performance via analytics (primary) and qualitative (secondary) analysis in order to emulate content and campaigns.
5. Provide your audience with real and true insight.
Especially relevant for business-to-business (B2B) enterprises that are employing any type of educational marketing. Getting your audience to listen is just the first step. Providing them with something relevant, helpful and factually absolutely critical. This is not only the right thing to do but it will also attract larger future audiences and improve your brand perception.
Now Once You Have That Information, What Do You Do With It?
Asking questions like these should automatically make your mind start to really evaluate your current and future marketing strategy in order to really nail down the channels that you should be on. For a more in depth blog post on clinical marketing, please check out this blog and make sure to stay tuned for the book I will be releasing on this subject later this year.
On a last note, I’d like to mention that I’m currently providing strategic consulting via a highly reputable Austrian ad agency, Moodley. If you would like to get in contact, then please write to firstname.lastname@example.org.