Understanding Your Marketing MixMy name is Jordan Trask and I specialize in providing businesses with conceptual processes that build sustainability and brand recognition. Here, I expand on brand development by discussing the understanding of a marketing mix. I'm committed to ensuring businesses spend their money wisely when branding and marketing a product or service. About PreFocusContact Jordan
When it comes to developing and promoting products or services, many businesses don’t exactly know where to start. From my experience, a majority of business owners look into paid advertising or an SEO strategies before they even consider defining their brand. This can hinder their short and long term goals due to lack of clarity. Understanding a marketing mix and all it entails gives business owners an sense of direction and purpose. Positioning a brand effectively on the front end enables growth on the back end – no matter how sticky the competition is.
So, What is a Marketing Mix?
As defined by the Business Dictionary, a marketing mix develops the overview of your product or service’s location, price, and promotability. Simple market research can help you determine a general snapshot of what this looks like and how you should approach it with a plan. You can pay someone to analyze the market for you, but it’s important that you understand the findings. Not taking this seriously can literally leave opportunity on the table – or under it.
Understanding your marketing mix helps you solidify your brand voice and provides the framework of your brand culture and vision. Solidifying a market mix helps create transparency and brand standards that’s cohesive and makes sense. Knowing the purpose behind every plan creates a peace of mind for internal employees and customers.
Consumers are beginning to value genuine campaigns and the brands that represent them. If you’re looking to achieve your business goals and reach sustainability, it’s important to identify with the market you currently dwell in. Jumping right into persuasive tactics can leave you disconnected with your audience. If you’re not in tune with the people in your market, then failure is inevitable. Let’s look into every facet of the mix in order to explain the why..
Although it sounds cliche, location is everything. For example, pitching flip flops in the Alaskan wilderness can be an uphill battle. But, if you provide specific value in that location (like creating a campaign for Alaskans traveling to Hawaii), you’ll be happily surprised by the results. Considering the location plays a big role in the messaging of the campaign. You just can’t market the same value in different areas and across different cultures – it’s just not intelligent.
When developing your marketing mix, take advantage of geographical targeting and relevant content. If your product or service is offered in different parts of the United States, define the elements of each location. This gives you a clear picture of how each market acts, thinks and even believes. A poorly curated message can detour trust and close the sales funnel altogether. Once you have an understanding of your locational marketing mix you can create a marketing plans that caters to every location your product or service is prevalent in. The results you’ll garner will be well worth the time you invest.
Determining the pricing of a product or service is one of the hardest steps a new company endures. Many factors reside in price positioning. Within this process, you’re forced to consider manufacturing, development, promotion, salaries, and even your goals. Overthinking your pricing strategy can make or break your business quickly. Your ability to plan with contingency is imperative during this process.
Although some of you may be looking for a definitive solution to this problem, every business (industry and market) is different. There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution. Product pricing can range depending on value, functionality, uniqueness and quality. When you think of the service industry, almost everything has the potential to be customized. Although this is the step where competition really factors in, it’s important that you position your business with realistic standards. When building your market mix and establishing pricing, consider these three questions:
- How am I going to scale? Is there an opportunity to drive down costs in the future?
- Am I selling affordability or quality? Do I need to price high or can I afford to wait?
- Is there opportunity for return customer sales or is my foundation new acquisition?
Either way, if you take the time to develop value propositions, you can position above average pricing – no matter what the competition is doing, In other words, be confident in the outcomes that you plan for. If you don’t plan with purpose then your expectations shouldn’t be too high.
Promote Your Brand Accordingly.
Your marketing mix cannot be complete without an attempt to promote your product or service accordingly. Even if your locational message is precise and your prices are on point, your marketing strategy needs to make sense. This is the final piece to the marketing mix puzzle. Although a lot of things play a role in promotion, we’ll focus on some of the obvious areas.
If you’re looking for a starting point, social media is a strong promotional tool. The key to successful social media marketing is understanding which platforms best represent the customer base you serve. Although it may sound odd, not everyone is on Facebook. Even though Twitter is growing, a lot of it’s users don’t even understand the structure and algorithms within. You could publish hundreds of posts on each platform and never gain any traction. Finding 1-2 channels that your target audience enjoys is enough.
If you’re a print publication believer, then don’t invest in stuff because you like the columns or the salesperson. I’d also recommend that you don’t invest in publications that are convoluted with your competitors. I see this a lot in the medical industry and it drives me crazy. Find a publication that has really specific readership and ask what their subscribers look like. You may find that most of them aren’t even looking for you! If the return isn’t making sense then pull out because it can get really expensive.
My point is, every promotion has it’s purpose and every brand has it’s place. Finding the best spots to reach your location based customers with the right price and messaging is the key to sustainability. Throwing too big of a net or fishing in the wrong places causes you to work backwards and lean on chance over reason.
Lastly, consider identifying relevant dates or holidays that boost the relevance of your product or service. If you’re going to pay a social media manager, then make sure they’re tracking relevant trends and topics that support the message you relay. Forcing a marketing campaign just because it’s a holiday can be super wasteful and confusing.
Making Sense of it all..
Although brand promotion is a key factor of success, you must align this strategy with the locations you serve and the prices you provide. If you’re unable to make sense of it all then you’re setting yourself up for failure. Why wouldn’t you want to ensure profitability? If defining and understanding a marketing mix is important to you, then you’re already on the right track. Now, it’s up to you to set aside the time to develop your purpose and align the right strategy.
Want to Learn More?
I’m passionate about helping my clients understand their marketing mix so they can develop a brand that makes sense. Far too often, new business overlook the power of these foundational elements of business development. I’m here to help you prefocus on opportunity by leaving no stone left unturned.