Starting Tactics without Strategy is just Spinning your Wheels

In marketing it only makes sense to start with a plan, but you’d be surprised how few firms want to start with one.

They usually call wanting help with a tactic. “Create a brochure.” “Revise our website.” “Send out a press release.”

(Don’t get me wrong, we do that kind of work. Happily do that kind of work!)

But if the client doesn’t have a marketing plan in place before they begin to execute all the tactics, they wonder why “it’s not working”. Or why they continue to re-do things over and over.

A good marketing plan has a strategy. It needs to be based on market research and analysis. And on competitive analysis and SWOT analysis. And on a thorough understanding of the target customer — what they need, why they buy at what price, and why they might switch from a competitor to your brand.

If you want tactics, that’s great. But if you have a plan, you’ll be so much happier when everything is all said and done… and you won’t have wasted any time spinning wheels!

Technorati tags: Tactiocs, Marketing, Branding, , SWOT analysis

Seven Steps to Building a Strong Brand

Is your New Year resolution to build a stronger brand in 2007? If so, these seven steps may help.

1. Develop your benchmark. Measure your client’s or consumer’s and/or customer’s experience.

2. Compare your organization to the various competitive choices available to your target market. (Don’t tell my you don’t have any competition!!)

3. Analyze your SWOT. (Outline your brand’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Hint: Strengths and weaknesses are internal. Opportunities and threats are external.)

4. Focus on the Opportunities. Expand on your Strengths. Capitalize on your competitor’s weaknesses.

5. Identify your message. Carve out your niche.
Create the branding images. Think visually. Your message has to communicate in a second or two. (Did you read Malcolm Gladwell’s book: Blink… if so, you know what I mean.)

6. Time & Money. Layout the timetable. Identify your budget components. Estimate your investment.

7. Implement the branding tactics.

This seven step program also provides strategy for rebranding your current brand by updating and honing your message to match your target market.

Tags: Marketing Branding Target Market Rebranding