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3 Steps to Developing an Efficient Marketing Strategy

Marketing is the lifeblood of any organization. However, making your brand stand out isn’t easy. Competition is tight, and people’s demands and interests rapidly change with the times. Developing a solid marketing strategy attracts prospective customers and clients. To effectively market yourself, you’ll have to follow a structured plan with a reasonable objective.

Setting the Goal, Paving the Way

All great things started out as someone’s rough sketch of their vision. Setting a clear goal is the first step to creating your marketing strategy. But it doesn’t end there. You have to know what you want. More importantly, know how to get there. With a clear objective, you can start drafting your approach in drawing in your target market.

One of the most effective methods to achieve this is the AIDA framework. AIDA stands for the Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action of your audience. It can come in the form of presenting statistics, emphasizing your product’s features and advantages, or letting people experience your services firsthand. Outlining specific actions to address each of these aspects guarantees a return of investment.

Analyzing Strengths and Weaknesses

While having a fixed vision is great, don’t forget to make it attainable. One way to check if you’re on the right track is by analyzing your strengths and weakness. This analysis is part of the SWOT method which, aside from AIDA, is a valuable marketing tool. SWOT represents you or your organization’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats/Challenges.

Assess where you stand in terms of your internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as external opportunities and threats/challenges that are in your way. Evaluate each in relation to your existing resources to know how to move forward. For example, your strengths can include your customer service or your uniqueness in comparison to other brands. On the other hand, a weakness could be a lack of financial backing. Opportunities could include an inferior product from your competition, while a threat could be a revolutionary new rival.

Having a SWOT outlook will help you reconcile aspects of your situation to help reach your aim.

Forming the Right Relationships

Quality products and services can be overshadowed by a competitor’s established reputation and expanded network. Whether you’re still starting out or are a veteran in the field, never let your alliances fall behind. This means more than just partnerships with other credible organizations. It also means banking on individual human resources—employees, existing customers, and other influencers in the playing field.

Ted Rubin, Keynote speaker and brand evangelist, advocates the Return on Relationship strategy, which looks at the importance of creating a following that recommends your brand to their network. As a takeaway from Rubin’s idea, form meaningful relationships with everyone involved in your product. Treat your employees right and have them participate in your marketing. Encourage them to advertise your product or service to their friends and family. Similarly, pamper old customers so that they can recommend you to other people.

You can easily gain a wider audience if you market through those close to you.

Conclusion

With the right marketing strategy, your brand can stand out even among the toughest crowds. Envision your future in a clear, realistic way by looking at your strengths and weaknesses. Tap into your people to help you draw new clients in. It also won’t hurt to set a timeline where you can track your progress. You can make it per month or per year, as long as you can check how your plans turned out with each specific milestone.

More importantly, make sure you’re planning with the present in mind. This helps you determine the tools necessary for achieving your future. Need help with your presentations? Contact our SlideGenius experts today and get a free quote!

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Resources:

Rubin, Ted. “Brands Need to Focus on ROR: Return on Relationship™.” TedRubin.com. October 31, 2010. www.tedrubin.com/brands-need-to-focus-on-ror-return-on-relationship

“Create Your Marketing Strategy.” Info Entrepreneurs. www.infoentrepreneurs.org/en/guides/create-your-marketing-strategy

Featured Image: “White Knight” by John Morgan on Flickr.com

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WWE and Marketing: Exploring the Common Ground Between

Pro wrestling fans are everywhere. They’re prolific on social media, where they talk incessantly about their shared interest in sports entertainment. This community of fans is among the most unique and united in the world. In fact, the bigger part of them call themselves the “WWE Universe.”

World Wrestling Entertainment. WWE. It’s a name every digital native has heard before, regardless of race, social status, or personal preferences. Kicking off as a gimmicky show in the 1950s, the WWE is now regarded as an entertainment giant. It’s a billion-dollar industry with $700 million in annual revenue and fans in 180 countries. The company delivers content 52 weeks a year in 25 languages to almost 650 million homes worldwide. Indeed, no one can ignore the WWE’s encompassing reach. Its influence is so strong that the pro wrestling industry is equated with it.

As an entertainment powerhouse, the WWE has transcended generations. It has certainly left an indelible mark on pop culture. To many, it’s more than just a brand but a way of life.

Marketing Lessons from the Squared Circle: Storytelling

Marketing Lessons from the Squared Circle

What many businesspeople don’t realize is that some marketing lessons can be found in the unlikeliest of places. We’re talking about the wrestling ring. Brands who want to be as successful as the WWE should follow its footsteps by using progressive marketing tactics and public relations strategies.

By looking at the pro wrestling industry from a marketing perspective, you’ll uncover secrets that you can apply to your business. Here are some of them:

1. Storytelling must sit at your brand’s core.

The WWE calls itself “sports entertainment,” so it’s not really a legitimate sport. All matches are driven by predetermined storylines, and most of what happens inside the ring are choreographed. The business relies heavily on developing great personas and crafting winning storylines. In essence, the squared circle is where athletics marries theatrics.

Since storytelling lies at the core of the WWE, they market each superstar’s brand individually. Everyone gets his or her own entrance music, ring gear, signature pose, signature moves, and even a unique moniker. For example, when Bray Wyatt makes his entrance, people take out their flashlights and wave them through the air. When AJ Styles performs, fans pray for an Ushigoroshi. If none of this makes sense so far, perhaps you’d be familiar with John Cena, the grown-up man famous for his denim shorts, or The Undertaker, who’s always menacing in his Dead-Man costume.

But how exactly does this translate to your business? It’s simple: tell an authentic story that will make your audience care about your product. Give meaning to everything you do so that your audience will have a reason to invest emotionally in your brand. The only way to differentiate yourself from competition is to constantly bring something fresh to the table.

Marketing Lessons from WWE: Audience Dictates What Comes Next

2. The audience dictates what comes next.

What the WWE has that you should have too are data-driven storytellers. The company listens to fans to determine what to do next. As WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon said, “Our fans are the secret to our success. They tell us what they like by cheering; they tell us what they don’t like by booing; and worse, they tell us what they don’t care about by being silent.”

The WWE conducts extensive analyses to determine what appeals to their target market. They use quantifiable means of measurement to construct portraits of fans based on variables. You should do the same in your business. Gauge your audience’s sentiments so you can provide relevant content. Know what makes them tick so you can please or surprise them at will.

3. Digital media is the king of communication.

The WWE’s social media team is composed of only ten people, but that doesn’t hinder them from performing at the top of their game. In fact, the WWE garnered three Shorty Awards in 2014 for its innovative use of social media, YouTube content, and mobile apps. Podcasts are also a good form of content to promote the WWE brand, and so are YouTube videos. However, what really pushed the company to the top is its own streaming service, the WWE network. Reaching over a million subscribers in under a year, the network has inflated WWE’s international popularity.

So, what’s in this for you? As you know, social media is a must for all brands. You can use different digital platforms to appeal to your audience’s emotional side. Provide sneak peeks into behind-the-scene actions, and give your followers something to hold on to. Interact with them the way you would with a friend. Also, try to create a medium of your own—a company blog, for instance—to cultivate a loyal customer base.

Marketing Lessons from WWE: Adapt to the Changing Times

4. Adapt to the changing times.

If there’s one thing the WWE got right, it’s that they constantly evolved with the times. One of the most important decisions they made was the improvement in the portrayal of women. Until recently, female wrestlers or “divas” were considered accessories—no one took them seriously. When the Four Horsewomen came, however, women’s wrestling was revolutionized forever. Instead of “divas,” female wrestlers are now called “superstars,” like their male counterparts.

Another progress they made was the blurring of the lines between kayfabe (i.e. the fiction that happens in the ring) and shoot (i.e. reality). Before, it was considered a sin to break kayfabe, but today, the injection of reality in storylines makes the turn of events more interesting. Fans love the gray area where reality meets fiction.

The WWE’s adaptive nature enabled it to reach audiences outside its demographic. From a majority of male audience, the company’s viewership has now grown to include kids, females, and non-sports fans. Its versatility opened huge opportunities for mainstream sponsorship deals and merchandise sales.

So, what has this got to do with your brand? Obviously, you can take this lesson of versatility and apply it to your business. You can’t keep playing the game unless you constantly find ways to be relevant. If one thing doesn’t work, try another. Don’t stop until you succeed.

5. Nothing sells better than passion.

WWE superstars are just people living their dreams every day. For most of them, pro wrestling is life. They joined the WWE because they were fans as kids. You’ll rarely see a lifeless superstar in the ring—everyone shows charisma in his or her work.

A notable superstar who has entertained the crowd for the last eight years is Naomi. Like others before her, she has given her sweat and blood for the business. When she won her first WWE title in 2017, the crowd erupted into chants of, “You deserve it!” When she had to relinquish it only nine days later due to injury, the crowd again erupted into a reverberating, “No!” The WWE Universe empathized with Naomi because she was a passionate and talented worker. It was what gave her story a genuine touch.

Like the WWE superstars, your brand should exude charisma in every possible way. You should communicate a certain energy to your audience—an infectious aura that will draw them closer to you. Remember, if all else fails, passion will carry you through.

In today’s business environment, brands are constantly wrestling for attention. In order to thrive in your industry, you must look for new ways to keep your title. Look for inspiration in unexpected places, and you might just find true gems that will make you an undisputed champion in your field.

 

Resources:

Cooper, Lana. “4 Lessons Digital Marketers Can Learn from WWE.” Seer Interactive. August 21, 2015. www.seerinteractive.com/blog/4-lessons-digital-marketers-can-learn-wwe

Evans, Zachary. “How the WWE Has Retained Its Marketing Dominance.” Spin Sucks. August 1, 2016. spinsucks.com/marketing/wwe-retained-marketing-dominance

“Company Overview.” WWE Corporate. n.d. corporate.wwe.com/who-we-are/company-overview

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Are We There Yet?: How to Measure Marketing Success

Triumph may seem easy enough to identify, but there are actually different measures and indicators of marketing success.

Don’t compare yourself to bigger and more established organizations’ achievements if you’re still starting out. Good marketing strategies take plenty of time to enact. Ultimately, they depend on the goals you’ve set and how long you’ve been going.

But how do you really know if you’ve made it big? Here are three ways to make it easier to find out:

Set a Goal and a Timeline 

Like we’ve said, different businesses peak at different points. You can’t say you’re progressing or declining without definite proof.

If you want to measure how well you’re doing your job, look at your goals. Maximizer.com recommends you think of them as the Key Performance Indicators of an effective marketing campaign.

Some of the common KPIs to watch out for, according to Carolyn Edgecomb of Impact Branding and Design, are sales revenue, customer value, and conversion rate. But remember to measure your objectives alongside a specific timeline.

How much return on investment do you expect after three months? After five years? Visualizing your goals this way makes it easier for you to track your improvement.

Don’t expect to achieve everything overnight. You need to invest in your goals, and that effort takes time.

Know Where You Stand

One way to avoid unrealistic expectations is to know where you are in your marketing campaign.

Looking at your target beside your current position makes it more realistic. That’s where your timeline comes in handy.

At the end of every mark, see if you’ve reached the goal you set out with. This will let you know if you’ve attained a definite amount of success.

But remember that progress is continuous. You have to strive for further growth once you’ve gotten to where you want to be.  One success should only generate more ambitious pursuits.

Create new marketing strategies to address these. Development should only challenge you to keep on top of the competition.

End Action Rate

One way to avoid unrealistic expectations is to know where you are in your marketing campaign.

Looking at your target beside your current position makes it more realistic. That’s where your timeline comes in handy.

At the end of every mark, see if you’ve reached the goal you set out with. This will let you know if you’ve attained a definite amount of success.

But remember that progress is continuous. You have to strive for further growth once you’ve gotten to where you want to be.  One success should only generate more ambitious pursuits.

[easy-tweet tweet=”Progress is continuous. One success should only generate more ambitious pursuits.” user=”SlideGenius” hashtags=”marketing, biz” url=”https://www.slidegenius.com/blog/are-we-there-yet-how-to-measure-marketing-success/” template=”light”]

Create new marketing strategies to address these. Development should only challenge you to keep on top of the competition.

Conclusion

There are different indicators of a successful marketing campaign. It can be tricky to measure how well you’ve done with something that can seem so subjective.

However, this also means you get to move at your own pace. Work steadily and diligently through your goals.

Set a specific timeline that will help concretize your vision. What matters is that you prioritize your audience’s feedback to your promotions by monitoring their end action rate.

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References

Edgecomb, Carolyn. “The 10 Marketing KPIs You Should Be Tracking.” IMPACT Branding and Design. March 1, 2013. Accessed October 22, 2015. http://www.impactbnd.com/the-10-marketing-kpis-you-should-be-tracking

“End Action Rate.” Klipfolio. Accessed October 22, 2015. http://www.klipfolio.com/resources/kpi-examples/marketing/end-action-rate

“Key Performance Indicators For Marketing Professionals – Maximizer Blog.” Maximizer Blog Key Performance Indicators For Marketing Professionals Comments. June 24, 2015. Accessed October 22, 2015. http://www.maximizer.com/blog/key-performance-indicators-for-marketing-professionals/

 

Featured Image: “Success Key” by GotCredit on flickr.com

Email Marketing Tips: The Art of Pitching through the Inbox

It may seem old-fashioned, but email marketing is far from becoming obsolete. While social media channels are helpful for reaching out to prospects, there’s no reason to discount the power of an email. Unlike other methods, email marketing allows you to deliver content directly to a space that’s personally curated by your prospects.

As blogger and entrepreneur Jen Fitzgerald points out, “your audience is giving you permission to be in their email inbox – that’s a pretty giant leap in the sales process.”

Make sure you won’t let a great opportunity go to waste by following these 10 essential email marketing tips:

1. Give prospects a reason to subscribe to your mailing list

How can you convert a casual blog reader into someone who’s genuinely interested in what you have to say? Promise them access to things they might not find by simply browsing your website or social media profiles. Use your emails as an avenue to promote special deals like discount coupons or downloadable resource materials. You can also provide access to insider information like product updates and industry news.

2. Always come up with a compelling and descriptive subject line

Crafting a clever subject line is crucial to email marketing. According to Copyblogger, making use of “power words” can help create an immediate connection. Clever gimmicks will urge your readers to open your message, but avoid click-baiting techniques. A good subject line is able to describe what the audience will see once they click through the link.

3. Keep content brief and straight to the point

Your subscribers will come across your email while they check their inbox for something else. Most likely, they’re probably corresponding with business contacts and thought to spare a brief moment to check out your content. Because of this, it won’t do you any good if your email is too long. Like you would when writing a speech, keep your emails brief by focusing only on key points.

4. Incorporate great visuals

Email marketing is similar to presentations, except that you have to deliver content directly to a prospect’s inbox. Aside from writing brief and compelling copies, you’ll also need eye-catching visuals. Make use of high-quality images to illustrate your emails.

5. Make it personal

Email marketing allows for a direct line of communication between you and your prospects. Try approaching your readers with a more personal touch. You can make use of software like HubSpot Email to personalize your content and organize your subscribers according to lists.

6. Be mindful of how spam rules work

No one wants to be bothered by a flood of unsolicited emails. To make sure your emails don’t get marked as spam, read up on the CAN-SPAM Act and be mindful of what you send out. You should also avoid typing subject lines in capital letters or using trigger words in excess.

7. Double, triple check before hitting “send”

This might seem obvious, but it bears repeating: always re-read your emails before hitting “send.” Check for spelling or grammatical errors you might have missed while writing your content. Make necessary adjustments. Trim out repetitive sentences or add some more details. If you can, try to get another set of eyes to check your work.

8. Make sure you email is optimized for mobile

A growing majority prefer to read emails using a mobile device. And according to statistics gathered by Return Path, 63% of Americans will quickly disregard a message when it’s not optimized to be viewed on their smartphones. Email marketing tools like MailChimp can help you create messages that read well on a variety of devices.

9. Integrate social media sharing

Reach a wider audience by allowing your subscribers to share your content through various social media channels. Provide share buttons and include links to your own profiles.

10. Track your stats to improve your strategy

If you’re making use of email marketing software like the ones mentioned above, you can get reports and updates on how your campaign is faring. Take note of the different statistics provided to you use it to your advantage.

It’s important to communicate your message to prospects clearly and effectively. Email marketing is just one of the ways you can share compelling content. Other techniques include delivering a presentation using a PowerPoint deck.

References:

“37 Tips for Writing Emails That Get Opened, Read, and Clicked.” Copyblogger. 2013. Accessed September 15, 2014.
“CAN-SPAM Act: A Compliance Guide for Business.” Federal Trade Commission. Accessed September 15, 2014.
Fitzgerald, Jennifer. “Guest Blog: How to Target Different Personality Types.” The Client Angel. Accessed September 15, 2014.
White, Chad. “Click-Baiting: Frowned upon by Facebook and in Email Subject Lines.” Salesforce Marketing Cloud Blog. 2014. Accessed September 15, 2014.

Featured Image: Wilson Alfonso via Flickr