When we talk about the art of marketing, few people who use it would dispute its importance. Marketing is profitable, providing the rewards of learning long term and short term needs of the consumer who will pay for a periodic, or at times, a constant flow of product or service placement. In recent years, The New York Times classified it as “The Only Art Form in the Economy That Guarantees Advertising Money Keeps Coming.” That assessment understates the case of marketing, which is so much more than advertising money.
The art of marketing is a collective effort. It’s really not that simple, though, as any one person who delves deeply into the discipline will tell you. In addition to the collective intelligence of marketers themselves, there are also elements like geography, timing, and organization that come into play. For example, timing can make or break an advertising campaign, depending on whether or not the message is delivered at the right moment. For many businesses, geography plays a critical role in delivering products or services because there is no real off-site presence, unless one understands how to create an online presence that allows one to sell to a target demographic. In this way, social media marketing can be considered part of the art of marketing in the same way as delivering products and services is.
For many businesses, one of the biggest challenges in using social media as part of an overall marketing plan is the amount of time and energy required to remain completely objective. Most marketing is driven by emotions, and even when it’s done well, one’s emotional reaction to a product or service can cloud his or her judgment. That’s why marketing is often considered a service rather than a product. It should be viewed as a skill.
A major consideration when developing a marketing strategy is to look at each component of the plan in turn. Does the overall goal of the marketing effort to match the characteristics of the target market? Sometimes it’s easy to say yes, especially when it’s a popular product or service. But in other cases it’s much harder to make a differentiation. Here are 4 Ps that should be used to discern if a marketing plan is aligned with the characteristics of the target market.
A marketing strategy must use four Ps to be effective: production concept, production, concept and plan. Each of these Ps is equally important and each must be given equal weight. For instance, if a business’ marketing strategy includes a production concept, it will likely be more successful than one that doesn’t.
The second major consideration is whether or not consumers will purchase or sign up for the business opportunity. This is a difficult question to answer because in all likelihood, some consumers won’t buy a product or service simply because they aren’t interested in it. On the other hand, many consumers do have strong interest in the product or service being offered. Therefore, the social marketing concept is particularly important. In this case, consumers are considered the driving force behind the plan. It is their opinion, feelings and behaviors that will determine the success or failure of the marketing campaign.
Finally, the third consideration centers on how consumers feel about the production process itself. In most cases, consumers will evaluate the value proposition of a marketing concept based on how well the process has been designed and managed. They don’t want to be sold something that isn’t right for them. In order to successfully market a product or service, it is critical for the marketing concept to match the values, goals, and process of the company being marketed.
As you can see, there are a number of considerations that must be made when determining whether or not a social marketing plan is the most effective form of marketing. Marketing is an ever-changing field that requires companies of all shapes and sizes to adjust and evolve as the industry evolves. By closely analyzing your potential customers, you will be able to determine if a specific marketing strategy would be more effective than one that is utilized by your competitors.