Where Do I Begin With My Marketing? - Overall Map
Where Do I Begin With My Marketing? - Overall Map
by James Destinas
Where Do I Begin My Marketing? - Overall Map
Looking to market your business? Once you start a business, one of the main questions you may have is going to be, “where do I begin my marketing?”
Before you can start marketing your product or business, you need to understand the key concepts of marketing and how it actually works because unless you understand it, you won’t be able to get to the depth of the process.
To me, marketing is about informing your customers what you do. And when we talk about the target customer, we are directly referring to the business, and service we are offering. Now, the question is, what constitutes a business and why do customers buy what they buy?
Why Do Consumers Buy Anything?
For me, a business is an exchange of value. Your customer wants something you have and they are willing to spend money to get it. In other words, customers buy solutions, not services or products and the only reason that someone is going to make this exchange with you is that you have offered what they want.
Keep in mind that the exchange only happens if what you're giving them is deemed worth more than what they're giving you in terms of money. Now you may not always know where your target customer is, you may not always know whether they're ready to buy from you, but what you can be certain of is that the person who is looking to spend money has a problem which you can solve.
Who is My Target Customer? How Do I Get Their attention?
Your marketing efforts won’t be successful if you don’t know who your target customer is and ‘why’ should they pay you for what is offering. Answer some of these questions to figure out how you want to brand your product or business.
- What is the main problem your product or service solves, and how can it help your ideal customer?
- How does your service differ from your competitors, and why should they buy from you instead of someone else?
- What is the biggest motivation for your customer to buy your product and what kind of positive change would it make in their lives?
- Define demographics (age, education, occupation, business) of people who will gain the maximum benefits from your product or service?
Answering these questions will help you understand the motivations of your ideal customer and how you can offer real value to them in the form of your product to be deemed worthy of making a business exchange.
Marketing Basics: Where Do I Begin My Marketing?
When we talk about marketing, it's about finding your target audience and getting your company in front of them. You are also looking for people who think what you're offering is worth more than the dollars in their pocket, and not everyone thinks that way. So, the strategy or the purpose of marketing is to find those individuals that think that way.
The essence of marketing comes down to finding those individuals that believe that you are the person to deliver what they want, who admire what you do, in fact, who needs what you do. And once you find them, marketing allows you to get your message in front of them, followed by a possible business exchange with you.
Often, people are under the impression that marketing is something you just do once you have a product to sell, which is wrong. Marketing is a combination of three elements: Branding + Content + Promotion.
Branding and brand identity
The goal of marketing is to find customers and branding helps you make that possible, by allowing you to identify yourself visually and creatively. Branding is much more than a logo, rather it is a culmination of a lot of things including your brand and business philosophy. Your choice of colors, fonts, website design, and logo, as well as the language you use to communicate with your audience, are all part of branding.
Your brand personality tells your customer who you are and what you stand to offer and if it successfully grabs their attention you are one step closer to the business exchange. Your beliefs, your approach to the work are also part of your branding. What motivates a customer to choose you instead of someone else is the fact that you are offering something others aren’t and great branding is your chance to showcase it to the world.
So, once you identify who you are, branding the next step is to now attract by creating something your target customer will find helpful in the form of content.
Content is one of the main driving forces behind successful marketing strategies. Having useful content under your name helps your customer find you via search results but also help build trust. Content can be videos, images, articles, blogs, courses, and even podcasts. The main reason for creating content is to enter the conversation that a potential client is having. If your product or service solves a problem, focus on creating content around that problem.
Ask yourself what are some of the questions my customers have regarding my niche - are they worried about costs, are they worried about quality, are they confused about where to start? Figure out your audiences’ pain points and create content to provide solutions.
All you need to do is to create something that makes your customers lives a little easier. The sooner you can enter into conversation with a customer the better chance you have for them to trust you with their business. By offering them value for free you increase your chances of getting found by your customers.
Create quality content that actually makes a difference in your client’s life and make it accessible for all. Your content should reinforce the brand personality you have established. It should also be consistent with your beliefs, approach to work.
Promotion is the last step of the process; however, many people begin their journey here, without a strong foundation that brand identity and content should set. Once you have content and a strong brand identity you can begin targeting the audience via social media ads, search engine ads, and other marketing channels.
In the beginning, marketing requires some trial and error to figure out which channels help you achieve your business goals the most. Based on your target audience you’ll have to target various platforms and various content types.
For example, if your target audience is between the age of 18-25, you might want to focus on creating content for platforms like Instagram and Snapchat, whereas, if your target audience is business owners and CEOs you may find mediums like articles, blogs, and newsletters to be more lucrative.
Finding the right platform is an experiment and you have wait and see which channel is going to get you the most eyeballs. Be strategic and patient. Keep an open mind and test different things like paid ads, guest blogging, cold emails to see which ways are the most lucrative for your brand.
Track the results and double down on the channel that works the most.
In this day and age, finding people isn’t the main problem. Technology has made it easy to find and target customer. Before you set out to market, be sure to establish a brand, develop your content strategy and then distribute it on channels which gets you the biggest bang for your buck.
And when people raise their hands to have a conversation, be there to support and help them and you should have no problem finding clients and closing business.
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