What is a Marketing Strategy for Small Business?

We find it is always helpful to start with a clear definition. If you Google ‘Marketing Strategy’, a myriad of different results and definitions will appear. 

Get Started!

What's The Definition?

These are some of the definitions you might find if you do a google search for 'What is a marketing strategy?':

As you can see, not all academics agree. Everyone has a slightly different spin. After 25 years in the field, I like a simpler and more pragmatic definition: 

"A marketing strategy clearly defines the market segment and target audience, where your solution is uniquely positioned to meet the emotional and rational needs of the target audience."

Why Does a Small Business Need a Marketing Strategy?

I cannot overstate the importance of a marketing strategy for a small business, whether online, offline, or both. It is like driving to a new destination without GPS. You might eventually find your way, but you have a good chance of getting lost. However, you will get there faster if you have the right map or a trusted system to lead the way.

Contact Us!

How to Create a Marketing Strategy for a Small Business

After 25 years in marketing, I've found that the following process is the most helpful in developing a comprehensive and, more importantly, effective marketing strategy. It may look a bit overwhelming all at once. But, like any challenge, it can be tackled by taking some basic steps.

Now, let's go through each step of our process in more detail. It's easiest to think of our process within the framework of two key concepts: Brand Strategy, steps one through three, and Brand Messaging, steps four through six.

Components of a Marketing Strategy

What is Market Segmentation?

Market segmentation is all about relevance. The target market is the group or groups within the larger market where your product or service has a unique advantage and/or where it will be perceived to be providing its greatest value. This is where a little market research is required because it is best to be as data-driven as possible.

The first step in marketing strategy development is to review your business strategy to ensure that your business and marketing goals align. The next step is to perform a market segmentation. The concept behind market segmentation is relatively straight-forward. It is about dividing the market for your products and services into smaller, more manageable groups. This is our process:

Find Out More!

Defining The Target Customer

If you’ve segmented your audience correctly, the target audience will be defined by the selected market segment. If they all honestly respond to the market in the same way, then your target audience is defined by membership within the chosen market segment. If not, you will need to find the largest group within the segment where your product or service has a meaningful benefit.

Book Discovery Call!

Building Buyer Personas

The classic definition of a persona is the public face a person presents. It is a role that the target customer plays. The character isn’t real, but he or she is relatable and believable. It is different from a stereotype in that it is based on observed behavior, not just assumptions. A persona is a relatable person. A stereotype is simply the lowest common denominator of traits a group may or may not possess.

Get Started!

How to Build a Persona - Quick Video

As I mentioned, the digital tools that we have at our disposal today have leveled the playing field significantly. Historically, you would spend months doing a proper segmentation. This would be followed by more months of customer research using focus groups or interviews, for instance. Market research would cost so much time and money that only the largest businesses could afford it. With the advent of social media, this is no longer the case. Social media monitoring can be as cheap or as expensive as you want it to be. It is a choice regarding how many dollars are spent on either people or software.

We apply our trademarked process to any business with any reasonably sized market. We follow these three steps, using digital platforms to gather, sort, and synthesize the data into several personas to test to find the best one(s) for you.

What is a Good Marketing Strategy for a Small Business?

Every business needs a marketing strategy, regardless of size. The methodology is the same, whether you are a corner mom and pop store or a mega Fortune 500 company. The end target remains a human being. Human psychology is the same. It’s probably the only long term constant. The only real difference is the amount of available data to you and the resources you have to analyze it.

So, what is a good marketing strategy for a small business?  First, it needs a clear target, a solid understanding of what motivates them, and a marketing message. The marketing message communicates your solution to them in a motivating way within a competitive context.

For some, it may be simple signage with a strong message. For others, it may be a website with different online marketing strategies driving your target to it.

Find Out More!

Ready To Transform Your Business?

Schedule a time to chat today and find out how you can improve your brand strategy!

Book Discovery Call!