To answer this question, let us consider a scenario. The scenario is simple. Yet, the fundamental principles of marketing strategy are embedded in the story:
- Assume a universe of individuals or organizations – each with a specific need or want.
- A business owner, who we shall call “Joe the Plummer,” seeks to satisfy the needs or wants of this universe by offering his product or service.
- Joe recognizes that it is not effective to try and satisfy the needs or wants of everyone in the universe. Therefore, Joe aims to serve a specific part or segment. How does Joe decide what segment of the universe to serve? This could involve a quick decision or, on the other hand, it may encompass a more rigorous, strategic analysis of the various segments in his universe. Whatever the case, Joe hopes to realize a positive economic return on his investment of time and resources.
- There is an important issue for Joe to evaluate: other people or institutions may choose to target the same segment that Joe targets.
- These other people or institutions would then be considered Joe’s competition. For example, Joe may face competition from Jane the Plummer or Bob the Plummer.
- How will Joe differentiate his plumbing services from the competition?
- Joe wants to elevate his “brand” of plumbing above Jane’s Brand and Bob’s Brand of plumbing. Joe does not want to “brand” his services in an arbitrary fashion. Rather, he seeks to create a connection — an emotional connection — with his target customer. In fact, what Joe really wants to do is to build a relationship with his customers.
- Joe must decide how to price his plumbing services. How to promote his services? How to package his operation? How to communicate with his customers? Joe wonders: should he use print advertising, e-mail marketing, social media, or some combination of all or none of these communication channels? Hmmm … what should Joe do?
- Joe the Plummer knows he should not make these marketing decisions in a random or half-hazard way. Joe’s decisions need to be based on market research and an understanding of his target audience. All of which comprise the very fundamentals of developing a winning marketing strategy. So this brings us back to the original question. Why marketing strategy?
Marketing, and specifically a marketing strategy, will help Joe the Plummer create a plan to sell his plumbing products and services. Like most of us, Joe does not have time and money to waste. A sound marketing strategy and plan is critical to Joe’s success. Joe turns to S.B. Lemons & Company to help him grow. You should too.
Contact us. We look forward to serving you.
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