Where’s that marketing strategy??

Go on, admit it, how many times have you looked at your marketing strategy and evaluated the work you do against it?

So many organisations have a marketing strategy and sometimes it’s beautifully produced with lots of graphs and diagrams and even – we’ve seen – a glossy cover. However, beyond its usefulness as a coffee table decoration, it is rarely referenced post-production. Instead the company waddles along doing the “same old, same old” time and time again. And that’s not to say this approach isn’t successful, but how much more successful would the strategy be if it was followed and the clue is in the name – followed as a ‘strategic’ part of the business?

Marketing and sales should work closely together and not antagonistically – as it all too often then case. Yes, marketing is about spending, and sales is about revenues, but you really must spend to receive and if done strategically the revenues return far more on the marketing investment. This is where the marketing strategy fits in – it defines the scope of marketing activity, within the framework of the business and therefore the sales function.

Marketing should be joined-up, which means the marketing strategy should not only guide the company towards its business goals but act also as a benchmarking device against which all activity is judged. Today’s marketeer has never had so many communication channels available to them including website; client newsletters; social media; press; conferences; exhibitions and even awards ceremonies and therefore these should all be built in to the marketing mix – defined by the key messages from the marketing strategy and not just filled with random content. Instead use the strategy to disseminate well-thought-out information and interesting comment that chimes with your target audience – the audience you have identified in your marketing strategy and with messages you have researched, yes, you’ve guessed it – as part of your marketing strategy.

So, if you haven’t looked at your marketing strategy for a while (if ever), then go dig it out that drawer (or folder on your computer) and see how well you are doing against it – it may be a more useful exercise than you think!