How do you use the internet to increase your marketing dollar return on investment? Is it possible to put up a website and instantly see an impact into your market? Does using the internet help or hinder your other marketing efforts? In today’s environment not using the internet to help promote your product line is tantamount to disaster.
A marketing strategy is a comprehensive set of goals that are combined to create a plan of attack for your marketplace. Through market research and a good product mix, your company can produce a set of goals that will enhance the profit potential of your company and deliver a sustainable competitive business.
Any good marketing plan looks at the SWOT analysis to determine if their marketing efforts will be met with any sort of success. Identifying the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats to your marketing efforts will allow you to get a good feel for the level of competition and effectiveness of a campaign.
Identify your strengths, look at what you might do better than your competition. Then use the online community to verify that these are in fact accurate representations of your product or brand. Do you have a targeted market? You can tap into this market online with surveys, give-aways and focused information that can allow you to determine if your strengths are perceived as you think. It is possible that a sampling of the millions of online consumers will agree with your assessment but it is equally possible that they will not connect with your presentation. An online sampling of the community can bring a new understanding of what the market is looking for in your specific brand or product line.
Look at your weaknesses. Examine what your competition is doing online. Are they connecting with the marketplace? How are they competing better than you? Look at how the market is responding to the competition and make a decision as to whether you compete directly with them toe to toe, or are there weaknesses in their strategies that you can capitalize on. Test the water and see if the online community responds. This is a cost-effective way to determine how the market will respond before you launch a full-blown marketing blitz.
As above, analyze the opportunities that you discover in your strengths and weakness testing. Do the analyses of your test market online meet what you perceive to be the needs of the marketplace? What opportunities present themselves? Are there changing trends or market adjustments that might benefit a change in plan? If your company is fluid and can respond to these opportunities you will benefit by modifying your marketing strategy to focus more effectively on the changing picture that your online sampling has identified.
What sort of threats may crop up in your marketing efforts? Does your competition do something better than you? What can you do to overcome the weaknesses that you identified in the previous sampling? Is the online marketplace demographically different from your chosen demographic? These are all questions that need to be answered before you commit funds to a full-blown marketing campaign. By addressing these issues up front while your monetary commitment is small, you can plan an effective response to these problems before you have spent your entire budget on a failed campaign.
The Internet Demographic
The internet does provide a good place to test your demographic. It can be a godsend to small companies that don’t have a huge marketing budget. It may be the only avenue that you target. But keep in mind that there may be significantly different demographics in your online sampling than in your true customer base.
Traffic is the other gorilla in the room. Your sample needs to be of sufficient size to provide you with good intelligence. A mix of organic traffic that is provided by SEO and SEM and a paid traffic base provided by PPC advertising may be sufficient to provide a good sampling of your demographic. You need a good mixture of people to get valid results.
There are many skilled Internet Marketers that can help you with your traffic but if you are new to the field you may need to find help. I have found that connecting with an active community of marketers can be a beneficial move. There are a few out there that can be useful, some forums are helpful but the best community that I have found is at Wealthy Affiliate. Many of the members are new marketers but there are a few that have a wealth of knowledge about how to impact a market and draw out the intelligence from the marketplace. The community is more than willing to provide the knowledge that you need. Any question large or small will find someone that has experienced your problem and most likely can provide you with a solution. Join us, we will help you to succeed.