Being an entrepreneur is, by its definition, a risky strategy. Unfortunately, most business ventures fail because they are unable to mitigate the range of risks they face. In this article, we will show you how you can increase your chance of success by utilizing effective marketing strategies.
When entrepreneurs think of different types of marketing strategies, they often completely ignore the risks involved. Their entire focus is on how many new customers their new marketing strategies are going to win. Instead, they should be analyzing the ROI (return on investment) of their strategies to understand the cost and potential financial risk. To help you determine your online marketing strategies’ ROI and financial risks, use these five tips.
Planning Your Marketing Strategies
The best marketing strategies start with a thorough and in-depth marketing plan. A well-thought-out plan will force you to examine a range of different scenarios and different paths leading to your goal. All businesses should be developing both 1-year and 5-year plans. The basis of your overall business plan should be a sales forecast. You should look at target numbers, market size, and strategies to reach those numbers, as well as potential challenges. Your marketing plan and strategy will form a part of your sales forecast.
Set a Realistic Budget
All effective internet marketing strategies need to have a budget. When you first create a marketing strategy, this budget will have to be a little fluid as you won’t know the exact costs of different services and software. However, it is best to check industry averages to get a rough idea. You can also view marketing budgets and strategies of publicly listed companies that include the information in their annual reports. If your budget is well over the industry average, this is a warning sign you are overspending and a recipe for your marketing strategy to be doomed.
After you have determined a rough yearly budget figure, it is time to create a monthly budget. How you divide your yearly budget is based on your desired strategy, but if your business is seasonal, you will have to factor that into your budget for different months.
Once you have your yearly and monthly budget, it is time to spread the money across different campaigns and utilize it for different services and software.
Use the Data
If your B2C or B2B marketing strategies are not based on data, then you are guessing. In the competitive world of online business, you can not afford to ignore all the valuable data you have right at your fingertips. By studying even simple data like your customer’s age, country and gender can have profound impacts on your marketing ROI. Here are a few data sources that should form the basis of marketing strategies for small businesses and large companies:
- Google Analytics – Great for tracking the success of your website
- Email marketing data – See the value of your email list, check who is opening your emails and what actions they are taking
- Internal customer data – Find out who exactly is purchasing your products (age, location, gender) and who your most valuable customers are
- Facebook and Google – Checkout how your ads are performing and your ROI
- Internal performance data – This can help you make sure you are providing excellent customer service by making deliveries on time and handling customer support requests efficiently
Even the best marketing strategies cannot overcome poor customer service. If you provide customers with faulty products, delayed shipping, and do not respond to customer support requests, your entire marketing budget and strategy have gone to waste. Word of mouth is the most powerful form of marketing. Therefore excellent customer service must serve as the foundation of all marketing strategies.
To provide superior customer service, here are some things you must do:
- Keep your word – Whatever promises you make, you must keep.
- Be easy to reach – If something goes wrong, customers want to be able to reach you immediately via a variety of methods. A 24/7 chat function is a great option.
- Solve issues and practice empathy – Customers want issues resolved ASAP! Even if you think the customer is wrong, empathize and admit their point of view and also understand their perspective.
- Audit your customer service – You should constantly be striving to improve your customer service. You need to examine your processes and find areas to enhance routinely.
We hope our tips will help you effectively plan your marketing strategy, which will reduce your financial risk and increase your chance of building a thriving business for many years to come. We want to hear about your successful digital marketing strategies. Please comment below on what strategies worked and what didn’t.