With the needs, wants and desires of the customer continuing to change and evolve there is a corresponding impact on the company looking to get its message through to intended market segments. Those of you have watched some of my videos in the past or read my writings will be well aware that I form marketing campaigns and programmes around three main pillars i.e.

  • Categories
  • Channels
  • Market Segments

… of course within each pillar there are many variations to be considered but for the purposes of this article let’s focus in on the ever increasing important role that Digital Marketing has to play in promoting, branding and advertising the company.

With that said; it is important to note that I consider Digital Marketing as what it actually is and that is “another [ok it is a critically important one] channel to market [means of connecting with the customer] such as …

  • Direct Mail
  • Flyers
  • Billboards
  • Telephone
  • Phone
  • Radio

… and others in order to gain market intelligence and to educate and nurture the customer taking them through the marketing funnel each step taking the closer to become a paying client.

So back to the customer and the challenges that the company has when it is looking to continually develop and execute marketing campaigns.

First we have the larger companies that [may] have fully staffed marketing departments with marketing professionals that are able to keep up with the ever changing digital marketing landscape as well as looking at how the customer reacts to content, information, marketing and advertising so that however they end up viewing the brand of the company along with the associated products and services culminates in them favouring them over the competitors.

On the other hand we have organisations that maybe do not have a defined marketing department or, whose marketing is being taken care of as a side job or in addition to someone’s task; it may also be that the marketing’s task has been given to someone who may not be defined as a full blown marketing professional [not that someone who is not a marketing professional cannot perform the marketing task] – but the point being made is that at times we are need of falling back on disciplined marketing fundamentals in order to deal with the constant change within the [digital] marketing landscape.

When it comes to Digital Marketing we conveniently divide the activities into Search Engine Marketing and Social Media Marketing. Within the two we have to deal with trends, content creation, video marketing, email marketing, podcasting, image / graphics marketing, blogging and more activities that have to be executed on a daily basis in order to keep up. In addition to this if a company [without a dedicated digital marketing professional] comes up against a company with a fully functioning marketing department it may be fighting  losing battle.

 

Any business must have paying customers in order to actually well, stay in business. We can readily classify client into various formats

those who:…

  • are doing business with us today
  • have already done business with us
  • need our products and services but have no relationship with us
  • are actually in our market funnel

Whatever the case all customers that fall into each category will need to be nurtured accordingly. Let’s take a look at each classification of customers in turn.

 

Current Customers

This category of client has somehow gone through the marketing funnel and one is providing services and / or products to them already. In terms of this lead the question is ‘how can we get them to come back and do more business with us’ ? in this case it makes sense to consider complimentary services or creating solutions that can be added to the initial purchases. In many cases developing a continuity based program is a great way to ensure consistent ongoing revenues..

No Relationship

These are referred to as cold leads and therefore the lead generation will be based on criteria pertaining to their search engine or social behaviour; bringing them cold will need good content, relevant content that will enable us to contact them again using retargeting this time looking to exchange their contact details.

Previous Customers

Unlike the current customers – this classification have experienced business with the company but some time has passed since they have experienced our services. With all of the contact information in hand a reactivation campaign can be made to be very targeted with an offer based on their previous purchase decision in order to bring them back as a customer. Direct Email Marketing may work well with this.

Previous Customers

Unlike the current customers – this classification have experienced business with the company but some time has passed since they have experienced our services. With all of the contact information in hand a reactivation campaign can be made to be very targeted with an offer based on their previous purchase decision in order to bring them back as a customer. Direct Email Marketing may work well with this.

Google is expected to release an early version of the operating system for computers and cellphones next year and the final version in 2017, according to The Wall Street Journal. This makes interesting reading while we look at Google’s decision and that which lies behind it so, let’s take some time to consider and expand. There is of course method and marketing strategy behind all that Google does, the company continually accumulates data and the profile of end users that interacts with its products and services.

The Android operating system being developed for smart phones and mobile devices represents one of the growth areas in terms of hardware device purchases which directly relates to the widespread usage of the Android operating system. Android of course is utilised by many mobile phone manufacturers such as Samsung which gives it a truly wide market acceptance and penetration.
The move marks an effort at Google to reduce the number of independent platforms it has to maintain, sources said.

This forms two main functions as we see it, a) helping Google with its operations b) providing excellence for its target market sectors and users. Points that can be raised can be centred around what functions and processes exist within your business that can be streamlined for the purpose of making your business processes more efficient, this will enable the business to get more done with a given set of resources as well as producing more, operational savings are often seen leading to increased overall profits.

As for your target market sectors, Google can be seen to be making steps that will result in a more pleasing customer experience with the impending merger of the operating systems mentioned. Irrespective of what one thinks about Google itself or indeed the decision to merge the Chrome & Android operating systems.

DigitalMarketSegmentation

One of the areas of focus for many companies is that of reputation management marketing, this essentially focuses on what is being said about the company at large in the digital media sphere by the company itself, the media as well as the consumers of products and services sold into the marketplace by the marketing organisation. This ties directly into the widespread employment and usage of digital marketing and social media agencies that company’s use to execute services such as reputation management marketing on their behalf.

There are for sure lessons that we can learn for serving the customer better and for getting more out of the operations that exist within our businesses; we believe it makes good sense to learn from the likes of Google when it comes to business, operations and marketing excellence.

“It is great that they also notice that electric cars will be cheaper to run,” Pearson said to Go Ultra Low, which conducted a survey of 800 teens, who indicated a preference for electric cars. So interesting to see how things are shaping up for the future as we continue to push forwards the boundaries of technologies and its applications come to play in our every day lives. Of course, one of the main driving forces behind the current and future increases in the use of electric cars is that of the capacity of batteries, its ability to charge and to release its energies.

Technological advances have also been shown to affect our lives with the increase and reach of the usage of the internet, this has lead to the redefinition of what call channel marketing … we can now add a new marketing channel to the marketing mix which we term the digital marketing channel …

Channel marketing comes in two forms

  • A channel to communicate to target market segments
  • A channel to deliver products and services to those target market segments

The evolution of the internet has given to the social media & digital marketing agency that sits alongside the other ways [marketing channels] that companies had been using to reach clients. In considering the title of this post, it makes sense to consider what marketing will look like in 11 years time !!

Will there be a need for businesses to sign up for a digital marketing newsletter and will there be such a need for the expert business strategy consultant that companies bring in to help them to accelerate with their business growth ? For sure we assume that in the near future there will be an increased need for branding digital strategy development and execution as we see that the digital marketing channel has grown and will continue to be one of the major marketing channels that businesses all over the world make use of to use their products and services to make an impact with their chosen target market segments.

So as the demand for electric cars look set to increase we can also consider how the consumer will develop preferences for how companies communicate with them and how they consume that which they purchase from companies, how much of a part will digital media and social social media marketing have to play in that which companies do as dictated by the wants and needs of the consumer.

One thing is for sure, channel marketing will continue to evolve, and companies will continue to look for the most effective ways that they can use to most effectively increase their business through sales of products and services and the wide spreading message of the brand.

One of the most common questions that I get asked by those who are starting out in business; also by those who have been involved in business maybe for some time who maybe running a functioning business and making a decent living is : ‘just how to I actually go about developing a marketing strategy’ ??

At a recent networking event when speaking a business owner who by his own admission if well versed in the technology of his business (but not in the marketing) I spoke of the three pillars that I use when thinking about, explaining and developing a marketing or business strategy. They are :-

  • Product/Service categories
  • Channels To Market
  • Market Segmentation

… that is to say, we work on defining the category of the market that the Product or Service fits into, we then work on the marketing Channels. When it comes to channels we consider the channel that we use to deliver the product or service to the marketplace and secondly the channels that we use to push the message to the marker place through. And finally, we have to ensure that our preferred market segments are at the end of the channels that we use. That is the essence of the framework that I work through when refining and developing a marketing strategy.

Now, let’s assume we are you are selling massage therapy services [as one of my previous clients were]. For sure the channel for delivering the service would be in the therapist’s salon but they business owner will have many options in terms of channel marketing for delivering the branding message and services of the business to the market place at large. They can use direct mail, blogging, mobile, articles, newspapers, radio and more to deliver their message to the target market.

Next, we need to ensure that our product/service is positioned appropriately in terms of location, offering and pricing – a particular segment of the market may wish to pay say $15/hour for a massage but other high end clients may be perfectly happy to pay $100/hour if they see the value in what it is that you have to offer. The question is – which market segment is it that you will choose to target ? If this discussion we have covered the market segments and the category of the market that we wish to be positioned in.

So there you have it – an insight into my methodology for developing marketing strategies whether working with $multi billion clients in China [Swatch Group] or with a wedding reception services business such as http://www.lowcostchaircovers.co.uk/ that I consulted for last year.

In summary we want to be thinking of Channels, Market Segments and Product/Service categories.

To your marketing strategy development success,

Let me know if you wish to engage with myself and the team to assist you in your business.

-Success,

-Stephen C Campbell

 

I have found that there is so much confusion around when it comes to developing and executing an effective internet marketing strategy. I use the word strategy deliberately as in discussion with various business leaders in London who have interfaced with many of those offering social media [with no experience working in marketing & developing marketing strategies] & internet marketing services; there seems to be a notion floating around that putting up a few facebook pages, twitter account and linkedin pages constitutes an internet strategy.

Having worked with and consulted for organizations such as Swatch Group China, Black & Decker, Iveco Trucks & Genworth Financial our business discussions centre defining markets, segmentation, branding, products, services and utimately revenue generation. Where the internet comes into play is how being used as a channel to market – that is either to :-

  • be used for communicating the message of the company
  • be used for delivering the product / service to the end user client

… of course, depending on the product or service offering the internet may be used for both of the above. If you are selling lathes or ball bearings then the internet will fit into your strategy for the purpose of promotion and communication of your message.

The internet is a very ‘big place’ and potential clients can be found

  • in forums
  • in vertical directories
  • via white papers
  • via podcasting
  • through organic search
  • via paid search
  • through video content
  • social media

… and the list could go on and on !! The question to be answered is – where do we find your potential clients on the internet – and how do we best service them in terms of delivering quality, relevant content [as opposed to spamming people after you’ve gotten them to “like” your Facebook page !!]. I say this tongue in cheek but, the point still remains that many organizations are doing themselves a misservice by relegating the internet marketing activities [in some cases] to those who have the most technical understanding.

To further drive the point home – the industrial purchaser looking for specifications on sopecific building materials, lubricating liquids, ball bearings, metals or such product – where do they have to go to find out about your products ??  If you are expecting them to visit your website then maybe you need to revisit your internet strategy as the internet is a bit bigger than your website !! Revisit the list above and determine whether or not they will find you in these internet locations.

I say – bring internet marketing into the boardroom, executive level managers – this is not just about social media. When you are looking to hire someone to assist with your internet strategies, have a business level strategy discussion that does not include the internet. As about

  • market segmentation
  • business to business marketing
  • branding fundamentals
  • new product introduction
  • price elasticity
  • channel marketing

… and if your [potential] consultant can engage with you at this level, and she has a firm grasp of the internet, she will most likely be able to assist you in using the internet in your business.

If you would like to discuss internet marketing consulting in your organization – feel free to get in touch.

To your internet marketing strategy success.

-Stephen C Campbell

I had an interesting conversation today with a colleague [Mark Stonham] and we were discussing strategy development and the conversation, for a while became centred around the internet. It was then that I started to talk about my concept of how I feel the internet should be viewed and positioned as a key component of a company’s marketing strategy.

Those of you have read my thoughts before will know that I position the internet as a [nother] marketing channel that organisations can use to get their message out to the world at large, this channel can be used to collect market intelligence, survey customers as well as being used to deliver the products and services of the company to the client.

I also went on to stress the point

that I believe that not enough

attention is paid to segmenting the

internet itself as a channel to market.

What do I mean by this ? well – the internet itself provides multiple sub channels that can be used to communicate with – some of them are :-

  • blogging
  • article marketing
  • video marketing
  • email marketing
  • social media marketing

… it is through these marketing channel that we as marketers and business leaders need to make sure that we communicate effectively with those who are to become our customers. For that to happen those clients must be interfacing with us through specific sub internet channels.

It is here that I can see where many companies are potentially making costly strategy development errors in not taking the time up front to develop their internet channel marketing strategy. It is here that they will be told which internet sub channels their clients are interfacing with most and direct them with respect to how much effort, time and energy should be directed towards any one or multple internet marketing sub channel.

Having said that, I do understand that there are many social media marketing experts that push the idea that using this form of marketing on the internet is all that is necessary – needless to say, I disagree as …

Strategy should precedes execution

… and this stands true for marketing on the internet as it does if you were to be selling products and services into a new country.

As always, I hope you find this useful – and do feel free to hit the contact button above and get in touch if you would like to discuss business consulting, training, coaching, speaking or mentoring services.

To your business success.

-Stephen C Campbell

Business to business marketing and branding is at the heart of society considering that the majority of goods and services that we purchase are in fact a subset of what goes on in the b2b branding and marketing realms. This aspect of business development is being given a lot of attention and for good reason when we consider that in some cases the sales process can take years but – securing a business to business supplier contract could means many tens of thousands of dollars of revenues.

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In my training and consulting I have developed a framework from which to move on to craft a business strategy in marketing and branding products and services to another business. Much of this comes from my experience when managing in the OEM [original equipment manufacturer] business unit for Hewlett Packard [in Europe, Japan, the U.S. and S.E. Asia].

Some things to consider :-

  • purching frequency
  • purchasing quantity
  • brand equity
  • brand positioning
  • brand relevance

… and many other terms which need to be understand and worked on in order to develop excellence as a business to business supplier.

When we consider that the strength of the business that we are selling to is directly proportional to the strength of the brand of the weakest component – we want to ensure that our brand is not the cause of say –

  • the production line stopping
  • end user customers having to make returns

The above is when we consider product quality but what about sales and marketing ?

Of course we will take steps to market our products to our business partner but whose responsibility is it to create pull in the market place ? Could we take steps to co market our business partners product ? Considering that the more that they sell the more revenue we will generate – depending on our product and/or service, maybe we could move from simply selling product to a business partner and leaving them to perform all of the marketing promotion.

Maybe we could move to education the market place, training our business to business partner and many other specific activities depending on the development of the strategy.

Strategy development can take many months but in the first instance I would typically run a day’s seminar on the topic [anywhere in the world – based on demand]. Hopefully, I have touched on a few points which can serve as food for thought so you can take and use in your business.

Should you wish to make contact to explore working together – do not hesitate to get in touch.

To your business success,

Stephen C Campbell

This is a critical question that is being answered on a daily basis by the most successful corporations around the world. This extremely important topic is one that is relevant for every business …

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… no matter what industry or size of organisation. In other words the question to be answered is :-

what is you Promotional Channel Marketing Strategy ?

… of course, we know that Channel Marketing can readily be split into two main categories, that of delivering your product and/or service to the market place and; the specific channel used to promote your company’s products / services.

In some cases you can use the same channel for both consumption and delivery but in many cases there will need to be a careful blend of pushing the message of the organisation through specific channels and, using various channels more that others and therefore driving customers to take specific actions in order to get them into the marketing funnel.

One of the best things you can do today is to stop and take a blank piece of paper and consider the blend of channels that you are actively using the promote your products and services to the world at large.

The blend is critically important as the blend that you use will be based on the results of your market segmentation activities in line with who you are selling to and where they congregate in terms of what the best medium is to use to deliver your message to them.

This is but one small part of a component of developing a business strategy.

Thoughts, comments ? want to work together [nationally or internationally] ? feel free to get in touch.

-Stephen C Campbell

Niche Marketing is one of those terms that is bounded around all of the time. The definition of niche marketing is critical when working on your marketing strategies tactics and deciding upon your fundamental niche for the working of your business.  

When working with my clients I work on the pros and cons of niche marketing during the very first session. I work with them closely on their defining their business and developing marketing strategies with a focus on their Ideal Client Profile.

It is indeed critical to define which segment of the market each of your product and service fits into, this in turn will lead to finding, attracting and attaining your target. The reality is that, niche marketing is critical to your business success. 

Thanks for reading, let me know if you have any comments.

Stephen C Campbell