Do you have products or services to sell? Do you want to build your own brand? You have tried various techniques but failing in your attempts continuously? You are not aware of the basic marketing fundamentals?
These are some questions that come to the mind of every beginner who has just started or is yet to start his career in marketing or digital marketing and is struggling and seeking answers. Let me assure my readers that after reading this article all your questions will be answered and you will get immense value. In this article, I will be revealing easy marketing strategies and revenue-generating tips. You will understand what really matters in marketing and at what stage marketing is started. These tips will help you to understand your marketing flaws and you will never have to worry again about how to reach your target audience and your financial goals. This resource is also useful for people who have started their journey as entrepreneurs, freelancers, business professionals, or bloggers.
So readers, are you ready to find your answers?
What is Marketing?
When I started my coaching services, I started asking the question “What is Marketing?” You must be wondering, Why? Because I wanted to sell my services. I wanted students for my classes.
My approach to answering my question was to try other people’s methods. I asked my parents for advice, interviewed marketing consultants from marketing agencies, and learned all I can from marketing mentors. I also read articles and blogs related to marketing.
The more I asked the more confusing marketing became for me. Everybody had a different answer. But I noticed one similarity among all the answers. I found that the people’s responses reflected the type of business they were in and all the methods or I would say tactics they used for marketing. By tactics, I mean the strategies used like social media, networking, newspaper advertising, website, video promotions, or whatever.
But the problem is that these tactics don’t answer the question “What is Marketing?”. These methods usually distract you from learning what marketing actually is. If marketing consultants don’t know what exactly marketing is, when it starts and how it works then how a beginner would figure it out?
Now here the problem lies, we don’t figure it out or try to understand marketing strategies and then we expect results from the random methods of marketing we learned and follow.
So let’s understand the real meaning of marketing.
What Marketing Actually Is?
According to Oxford Learner’s Dictionary, Marketing is defined as the activity of presenting, advertising and selling a company’s products and services in the best possible way.
According to American Marketing Association, Marketing is defined as the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.
There are a variety of definitions of marketing. In fact, Heidi Cohen published an article on marketing which provides us 72 definitions of marketing with varied specialties.
Now according to my perspective, Marketing is everything you do to expand your business. Everyone around us follows different ways of marketing so you can find marketing everywhere. We see marketing through advertisements like newspaper advertisements, billboards advertisements, radio channels, or pamphlets. Have you ever visited a food outlet that provides free samples of delicious food to taste? If yes, then you should know that these samples are used to generate leads that are likely to convert into a purchase. This is one of the clever marketing tactics used. Let me give you another example. Suppose a chain repair person uses the song ‘pass tum aane lage zara zara’ and then say ‘ humare pass aaye chain theek karwaye’. This is his method to market his services. The song and his voice modulations along with the song helped him to stand out from his competitors and gain customers for his services.
Till now you must have got an idea about marketing. Let’s move forward and things will become more clear for you.
Fundamentals of Marketing
Marketing education has a long shelf life because it is rooted in human psychology and understanding the market. It is the most valuable investment in a business because it gives direct returns. Everything else like production, manufacturing, accounting, and administration is an expense that doesn’t give returns. Marketing cannot be outsourced to a marketing agency. The founder should be a marketer as well. So readers if you are a founder of your company as well then learn the skill of MARKETING and build your own strategies for your company. Let’s look at the basic fundamentals that one should follow.
1. Let’s Research and Build a Strategy
You must have heard a famous saying that “The product or service you provide is the king of your
business.” But that’s not the whole story.
To achieve good results, it is not enough to provide a good service or product anymore, the product or service has to be relevant.
Now relevant product or service means know your customers and their needs and then build a product. To know your customer better it is important to perform market research.
“Don’t find customers for your products, find products for your customers….. – Seth Godin”
Marketing starts and ends with the customer. The customer decides what to purchase when to purchase and from whom to purchase. Everything depends on the customer. In other words, we can say that marketing is understanding target customers’ needs and behavior even before building a product. One who succeeds in understanding the needs of his customers will also succeed in his marketing plans to generate revenue. If you send the right message to the right person at the right time then you do not need to worry about selling your product as the product will sell itself provided it is a quality product.
Marketing is a game of perceptions and the product is rooted in reality. Never let marketing become more important than your product or service as marketing is a science and not creativity. Random creative ideas of marketing will never give results. Focus on building a quality product because a great product sells itself. Here the question arises, How to build a quality product? Now the answer to this question is based on market research which will help you to
– Identify the needs of your customers.
– Identify the gap in the market where the product can fit in.
Once you build a quality product that gets fit in the market, then it will convert your customers into brand ambassadors as word of mouth marketing is the best channel of marketing ever as it gives amazing results.
” The purpose of a business is to create a customer. – Peter Drucker”
People often confuse marketing as selling. Selling is an important part of marketing and not marketing itself. Marketing is treating your existing customers as if your world revolves around them and keeping them happy by communicating with them so that they remain a happy customer for life.
2. Build A Strong Personal Brand
Building your brand is an essential part of marketing capabilities as people want to hear from other people’s experiences and not from brands. People prefer to trust people and not brands without a face. Personal branding helps in building a scarce resource which is trust. MassTrust should be built in the early stages of your business as it will help you grow. Now here the question arises, How is a personal brand built? Does building a brand includes choosing a good logo, pretty colors, or fancy words? Well no! Building a does not mean choosing a good logo, pretty colors, or fancy words.
“Branding is the Art of Differentiation. Brands Exist Because People Exist.- David Brier”
To build your brand, it must include the following:
– Your purpose
– What differentiates you from your competitors
– Your values
Having decided where to compete for and how to attract your customers is half your success.
Never try to be the one in many in the market instead focus on becoming the only one as people tend to remember ‘the only one’. Real success lies in being the only one in the market whom every customer wants as every market becomes a two-player market in the long run. Being the only one in a category might be difficult so always choose a subcategory for being the only one. It is not as difficult as you think to be the only one in a subcategory if you have talent, passion, and market in your identified niche.
Let’s understand with the help of an example how choosing a subcategory can make you win the game.
Everybody must have heard about Dominos. Imagine if Dominos entered the foodservice industry without having any unique services which can persuade the customers to buy its pizzas. Would Dominos be successful? Today dominos is successful because apart from pizzas dominos chose a subcategory defined by the name ‘must-haves’ around the ordering and delivery of pizzas. It offered various ordering options involving ‘Easy Order’, ‘Zero Click’, and many more. It also offered online ‘Pizza Tracker’ facilities. Remarkably, growth in any category is always explained by the creation of a brand subcategory.
Now let me share a useful resource The Mass Trust Blueprint. This blueprint will provide detailed steps on how a personal brand is actually evolved.
1. Learn: The first and the foremost step in the evolution of a personal brand is to learn a new skill. A new skill can be learned through concepts, facts, and procedures. Always remember the facts you learned, understand the concepts and practice the procedures. Practice makes the man perfect! If you don’t learn a new skill then you cannot build a personal brand. Learning a new skill is the foundation of your brand.
2. Work: Put your new learned skills to work. Practicing without work is of no use. Implement your new skills in the real world. You can start working for someone in a job or start your own freelancing services or take up your own projects. Implementing your skills in the real world will give you a better understanding.
3. Blog: Blogging is the best way to flaunt your learnings and experiences about your work. Writing about your learnings and experience will enhance your understanding and it will also play a crucial role in building your personal brand.
4. Consult: Now that you have created your own personal brand through a blog, have work experience, and have learned the fundamentals, start consulting other businesses rather than working for them because consulting is a rare skill that everyone wants.
5. Mentor: Now that your personal brand has started attracting attention from many people. There will be many people who admire you and want to become like you. Go ahead and start mentoring them. Share your knowledge and experience with other people because mentoring will help you scale your understanding to a whole new level.
6. Startup: Now that you have all the understanding about how to position and scale your personal brand in the market, go ahead and create your own startup and offer your products and services for any identified problem in the market that you have a solution for.
3. Understand your Competition
Always analyze your film and your competitor’s film. Once you are able to understand your own skills then you can observe how your competitor stand out within the industry.
By analyzing your competitor, you can make sure you are not wasting time marketing the capabilities that your competition does better. As I have also mentioned above that it is important to do market research and analyzing your competitor is a part of market research. You cannot determine what services or products you can market without understanding your competitors’ services and capabilities.
Understanding your competitor isn’t a one time job. It is important to keep a continuous track of your competitors capabilities, not only to measure them against your own services but also to make sure you are promoting the best relative to your competitor.
Knowing your own brand along with competitive research is important because without knowing your own worth competitive research will not be helpful. Brand knowledge and competitive research go hand in hand. You only need to combine your personal brand knowledge with your research to be the best.
4. Importance of Communication and Use of Visuals
We all need to agree on the fact that Good Marketing is all about good communication skills. Effective communication skills are the most vital skill we need to succeed. If you can convey the chain of thoughts to your customers then you are successful as a marketer.
Take a small example, suppose you are a student and you face difficulty in understanding mathematics as a subject. So, what is the problem? Are you a weak student in that particular subject? No, the problem here lies in how things are communicated to you by the teacher. There is a lack of communication as the thoughts are not properly conveyed. This example is not related to marketing but will definitely explain to you the importance of communication and how a lack of proper communication skills can make things miserable.
Now you understand how important communication skills are. If a marketer is able to communicate about his product or services to his customers then only marketing will fetch results. Otherwise how good the product is he will not be able to attract customers and will not be able to generate sales. Hence it is important to improve your communication skills and to interact with your customers daily for successful marketing results.
Not all are good at communication but trying and improving is always an option. You can improve your communication skills by reading. Writing also helps in improving your communication skills because it slows down the thinking process and gives you clarity. Also, starting to think in English will help you a lot.
You must have heard a popular saying before which is true, ” A picture is worth a thousand words”. This will be the first thing that people will notice before diving deep into your content. Visual Communication is the most effective way of providing information because the human brain processes things in images. The majority of customers will respond more quickly to images than text.
Today technological advancements have led to the evolution of communication in new ways, one of which is Visual Communication. The use of visual communication is massively growing among businesses. Many marketing strategies use images, graphics, videos, etc. to pass information to the customers. It is more impactful to pass information. Visuals grab attention, improve the clarity of the information, and saves time as well.
Today when everyone around is busy, communicating with people and especially the younger generation sometimes become difficult. Everyone has a shortage of time and you as a marketer have to make yourself relevant within the seconds. So we have to get creative with these seconds and for doing so visuals help us the most.
5. Use of Right Marketing Channel
First, let us understand the difference between Traditional Marketing and Digital Marketing and choose the best channel to reach our target audience.
Marketing is done by the means of the newspaper, television advertisements, radio, billboards, etc. is called Traditional Marketing. It refers to any type of marketing which is not online.
The newspaper has a reach of 465 million people. Television ads have a reach of 800 million to 1 billion people and radio has a reach of 65% of the Indian Population. The reach of traditional marketing is very high. But as we know that every coin has two sides so traditional marketing has its own disadvantages as well. Although the reach of traditional marketing is high it is useful for the marketing of a generic product only.
For Example Kent RO. Everybody can become a user of Kent RO. But when it comes to non-generic products like website designing courses offered by an institute then traditional
marketing is not useful because here we need to send personalized messages to our customers which is not possible with traditional marketing.
On the other hand in today’s scenario, we find our target audience on various social media channels and this is the reason why digital marketing is taking over the market stage to a huge extent. Although the reach of digital marketing is nowhere to traditional marketing it has many advantages. Digital marketing can be started with just a computer system and an active internet connection with very little investment so it can be used by small businesses that cannot afford many marketing expenses. We can also send personalized messages to our target audience. There is much more scope in Digital Marketing in comparison to Traditional Marketing with many people moving to online platforms. In India, there are around 20 – 25 Million Online Shoppers. To learn more about Digital Marketing check this out.
Now that you know the difference between Traditional and Digital Marketing, you should choose the right marketing channel for yourself.
Now I would like to tell you about the tested framework which is used to generate revenue.
There is a concept called The CATT Marketing Funnel and Framework which is used to create wealth.
Wealth = n ^ CATT
Let’s dive deeper and understand The CATT Marketing Funnel and Framework in a detailed manner.
[n]Niche: Your success and wealth solely depend on the niche you choose. Here you might be thinking about how to select the niche? Let me tell you that selection of niche is the combination of Talent, Passion, and Market. Other factors of the marketing funnel will only work if you have the right niche. While selecting the niche you must keep in mind that talent and passion are required but most important is to identify the market which can be explored for your niche and you can showcase your talents.
[C]Content: Create useful content that attracts people from your niche. You can create content in the form of blog posts, videos, social media posts, live webinars, etc. Your content should be relevant because your content is your asset to attract people.
[A]Attention: Writing useful content is not enough. You need to drive attention (traffic) to your content by using various strategies like Search Engine Optimization, Social Medis, Paid Ads, and Referrals separately. You can also use these strategies in a combined form to generate better results.
[T]Trust: After attracting customers we need to build their trust. Building trust is a difficult task. If you want your customers to buy what you offer to them then they must trust you. Email Marketing can be used for building trust. In email marketing, we can send personalized messages to our customers who have provided us with their email ids. One can also build trust using tripwires, market automation, and retargeting.
[T]Transaction: After generating leads with the help of this framework, one needs to convert leads into customers with a natural sales method that is selling the product once trust has been built.
Integrated Digital Marketing
Many people who use the Digital Marketing channel to market products or services often complain that they are not getting the desired results. But tend to forget that digital marketing is an integration of different components like content marketing, email marketing, social media, paid ads, SEO, and sell and convert which when are put to action together gives the desired results.
Integrated Digital Marketing is a kind of engine that drives the CATT Marketing Funnel following each and every step of the framework and giving the desired results if implemented in a step-by-step manner.
Now we have come to the end of this article but I want my readers to set a financial goal for themselves which can be achieved with the above-mentioned fundamentals of marketing.
I want to conclude by saying that marketing is an essential skill which should be learned. Mastering the skill of marketing will ensure a safe career for individuals who are working in this field or planning to do so. Investing your time and energy in learning marketing will never disappoint you as it is a valuable skill that one can possess. You can also check my article 7 Steps To Identify A Profitable Niche In Digital Marketing if you want to start your business in digital marketing.
If you like this article let me know in the comments section below as your feedback will help me improve my future articles.