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One of the most costly mistakes most businesses make is to start rolling out individual marketing tactics without a strong strategic foundation in place. Social media, blogging, website design, email marketing ... if you don’t combine these individual tactics into a cohesive Marketing Machine™ and fuel it with the right marketing strategy, your business is going to have a hard time moving the needle and getting the leads it needs.
The first step in realigning your marketing approach and establishing a strategic marketing plan for your business is taking the time to really understand your target buyer persona. We say “buyer persona” and not “target market” because, contrary to popular belief, people do business with people, not companies or demographics. That’s why it’s so important that you get to know your perfect buyer as a real live person before you build a plan to draw others like them to your door.
Close your eyes and picture your ideal client. Think of what makes them the perfect match for your business. Describe them in as much detail as possible. Think of how you talk with them, how you sell to them. Now name them. Say hello to your target buyer persona.
Now that you have identified the avatar that will help inform your strategy, you’re ready to start uncovering the key issues your buyers face – the pains and problems they have when purchasing your products or services. If you understand what pains people have and offer a remarkable solution, it becomes a lot easier to get them to do business with your company. They feel connected to you and trust that you understand their specific challenges.
Once you understand the pains of your target buyers, start matching your company’s solutions to each specific pain. This helps you identify which products and services really matter and have a meaningful impact on people’s purchasing decisions. Believe it or not, many companies spend a lot of time, money and energy promoting services that their buyers just don’t care about. This creates more noise in the conversation and probably won’t help drive sales.
Now, the challenge is that each target buyer probably has many pains and some pains are greater than others. Once you’ve established a solution to each pain, you can start to prioritize and rank them in order of importance. At this point, it’s critical to avoid imposing your own point of view. Try to put yourself in your buyer persona’s shoes. If you’re having trouble, talk to your sales team. Ask them to record and relate some of the most common issues they hear your prospects mention or complain about.
Then, using your most important buyer persona pains and solutions, you’re ready to start creating the sort of strong strategic marketing messages that connect directly with your target audience. Speak to these pains and solutions as you create everything from blog topics and social media posts to whitepapers and website designs, and you’ll start to see results almost immediately.
Ready to put the strategy-before-tactics marketing approach to the test? Give our marketing strategy consultants 30 minutes and we’ll show you how a cohesive marketing strategy could significantly impact your business.