How to Ensure a Successful Marketing
Marketing is of pivotal importance to a business where it helps to increase sale, maintain reputation, keep the business competitive, and create referrals. Marketing in business is defined as satisfying consumer through products or service at a profit. A successful marketing depends heavily on various aspects such as price, place, product, and promotion. In general, there are five important steps in ensuring a successful marketing, namely discovering relevant data, determining the most appropriate strategy, implementing the chosen strategy, measuring performance, and lastly, taking a corrective action (refer to Figure 1).
Firstly, marketers discover and collect relevant data that assist in attaining organization goals. Marketers will initially explore all target markets and audiences available and then select those with the highest potential. By understanding the ideal market and audience, it allows an organization to set up the entire business' product and services. All marketing tactics applied must contain the messages that are designed to please target market and audience. According to Tellis (1988), it is vital for decision-makers to understand the concept of price elasticity; where a raise in price will eventually lead to a decline in demands. The steps in guiding marketers toward discovering the ideal target market and the audience are essentially 5 steps: start with the smallest possible market, create a hypothesis on the initial value, establish trial discovery sessions, sketch demographic information on the ideal target, and apply a strategy model in the process (Entrepreneurial Insights, 2015). Besides from market discovery, it is also critical for marketers to carry out the product discovery process. Product discovery is the process of discovering products that are attractive and brings value to its users. In order to ensure the effectiveness of a product discovery process, close collaboration is needed between product management, experienced users, and product designer. Apart from that, a successful marketing must also include discovering data about competitors. Information tracked can be used as an advantage in order to empower competitors. Procedures in discovering competitors include examining selling point, identifying differences, specifying weaknesses, and creating opportunities (Ruekert, 1985). Information gathered through discovery is a necessary blueprint in planning strategies that can lead to a successful marketing.
Another step in ensuring a successful marketing is through determining the most appropriate strategy. Marketing strategy is a process of decision making through planning, developing, and implementing to set a clear direction towards the competitive market (Entrepreneurial Insights, 2015). Strategy making is done through reading and mapping of information gathered through the discovery phase. Strategy is important in an organization where it leads toward the attainment of organization goals and objectives by overcoming the limitations arising from a marketing problem. According to Wind and Robertson (1983), marketing strategies require involvement from consumers, business competitors, and stakeholders. Not surprisingly, there exist diverse requirements and choices of those people who are involved. Since peoples' preferences are always changing, it is essential that the organization adopt the best marketing tactics to deal with today's market. The tactics available nowadays can be simply overwhelming and it is up to decision-maker to pick the best alternative. If the strategy applied is unable to keep up with those of competitors, an organization might end up facing a downturn in business. Thus, when marketing a product, the marketing team needs to know their customers' demands to provide satisfaction as well as discovering new opportunities in the international market.
The third step in ensuring a successful marketing is through implementing the chosen strategy. In this step, implementation means putting into action of selected marketing strategies within a specific timeline (Dess & Robinson, 1984). Implementation is the heart of a marketing process due to its heavy role in leading things according to plan. During implementation, the biggest boundary faced by management is where the process requires teamwork from various departments and not only the marketing group. This is explained by Wind and Roberson (1983), which stated that better understanding among team members is a vital element when carrying out activities according to marketing strategy. The procedures during implementation include analyzing given data, allocating recourses according to planned strategy, and doing a trial before taking things into action. Implementation effectiveness depends on the ability of a marketing team in managing their skills such as time management, teamwork, task organization, and workforce motivation. Plans go out of control when those responsible for getting things done aren't held accountable for their part in the execution process. The implementation phase requires close monitoring whether monthly, weekly or even daily by managerial staff to maintain an excellent performance of an organization.
The next step is that the organization needs to measure the performance of implemented strategies to ensure a successful marketing. There are a lot of alternatives available to measure the effectiveness of marketing performance. Return on Investment (ROI) is commonly used to determine the net return of cash from investment (Wyner, 2008). Higher ROI generates a higher rate of return and profit to both the organization as well as investors. Moreover, higher ROI is more likely to attract investment and therefore, marketers must bear in mind to always refine strategies that can not only generate a higher return but also maintain the cost of production at the same time. The process of measuring marketing performance is essentially three steps: establish measurement standards and metrics, measure performance with different techniques, and compare actual performance to planned achievements. From the outcomes of marketing performance measurement, a proper corrective costing method can be taken and eventually, major leaps can be obtained in customer satisfaction, shareholders and stakeholders' profitability as well as production effectiveness.
The last step in ensuring a successful marketing process is taking corrective action. A corrective action plan is a document that explains the changes made to a specific situation in order to bring the process back in line with its goals. Corrective action depends on the level of deviations and the ability to take necessary action. Before taking corrective actions, decision makers should first determine the source that causes the problem. Once the problem is identified, and the corrective action method is determined, the process will be initiated as soon as possible. The effectiveness of the action is analyzed and done in a short period so that further action can be taken to solve obligations confronted during implementation. According to Ruekert (1985), the effectiveness of corrective action can be measured with respect to customer serviceability, customer loyalty, product attractiveness, and the ability to acquire market share. Marketers are suggested to focus on aspects such as productivity, management and cost reduction to improve the outcome of a process.
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