For a marketing strategy to be effective, it must have a solid foundation and foundations. Your target audience, brand, website, and business all need to be aligned with your business’ overarching goals.
However, as businesses grow and evolve, changes may not always be reflected in established marketing foundations, which can create barriers to future growth and stunt your top line progression.
If your current marketing strategies are not producing the expected results, you need to review your foundations to better start with a new strategy. So how do you improve a flawed marketing strategy?
Here are the two main flaws that we usually observe in the foundations of a marketing strategy:
- Poor alignment between marketing strategy , product value, and sales strategy can lead to poor targeting and siled efforts, leading to a disjointed buying experience.
- Incomplete progression through the funnel, even targeting the right audience with the right communication channels.
Fortunately, there are various tactics and means that you can use to hone your marketing foundations and market your business, which we’ll look at below.
Align marketing and sales
No matter what the nature of your marketing strategy is, you need to make sure it is aligned with sales. If your marketing effort is not aligned with sales, you end up with two teams working in different directions, which can make problems worse as you grow your business.
One of the signs of poor marketing-sales alignment is feedback from salespeople that indicates poor quality leads.
In principle, sales teams should dictate who should be targeted, while marketing dictates how you target and how you deliver your marketing messages and overall communication.
Perform a gap analysis of your marketing funnel
If you are trying to analyze your marketing foundations to understand what you could do better or why you are struggling to be successful, the first place to look is the marketing funnel.
So, you’ll need to look at your conversion rates throughout the funnel and ask yourself the following questions:
- What is your rate of MQL (Marketing Qualified Leads) transformed into SQL (Sales Qualified Leads)?
- What is your conversion rate from SQL to closed transactions?
By performing a gap analysis, you will be able to see where the gaps are.
For example, if you have an extremely low conversion rate at the top of the funnel, it might mean that your website is lacking effective conversion points or that you are attracting the wrong kind of leads with your SEO content.
Once you get a glimpse of your shortcomings, you can start looking for solutions.
Addition vs correction
How to fix the flaws in your flawed marketing foundation will depend on the underlying issues, and some changes or fixes are easier to implement than others.
For example, it’s much easier to add conversion opportunities to an existing strategy than it is to redo all of your communication or target a different target audience.
For example, suppose your message and marketing communication targets the wrong people, so you only generate a small amount of qualified leads. Before you think about reaching out to new buyers who seem better suited, you will need to answer the following two questions:
- Does my solution address this person’s problems?
- Does this person have the purchasing power to acquire my product or service?
Next, the marketing and sales teams need to come together and clarify who are the potential customers they should actually target. The next question for marketers to ask is how to improve the tools and tactics that are used to reach these targets.
However, adjusting your marketing strategy to target a new audience doesn’t mean you have to dump all your existing content and start from scratch.
It is therefore very rare that all of the content you offer is unusable.
Here are the questions to consider:
- Have you done a recent audit of our content?
- Do you have a list of solutions that could allow us to reframe your content to capture the attention of your new target audience?
If you have a blog titled “5 Reasons You Should Change Your IT Infrastructure”, you can reposition it as “5 Risks Your Current IT Infrastructure Is Exposed to”. Most of the information and your content will not need to be changed, you just need to present it in a slightly different light, while keeping the key themes.
Similar adjustments can be made to other strategies of a business that are implemented, so that you don’t have to completely abandon work that has already been done.
Connect tactics to strategy
A primary factor to consider when reworking the foundations of your marketing strategy is that all of the elements of that marketing strategy are supposed to work together as a system. However, it often happens that the tactics and methods used to implement a marketing plan are completely disconnected from the initially planned strategy.
Whenever you are planning a new campaign or implementing a particular tactic, you need to consider not only the goal of that individual effort, but also how it will contribute to the larger goal of the business, which is mostly about nurturing leads throughout the buying journey and closing sales with potential customers.
For example, if you are starting a marketing campaign with the aim of increasing traffic to your website, you must also have a strategy in place to convert this new traffic into leads. If you are running a paid media campaign to generate leads, you must have a plan to nurture those leads and turn them into MQL and then into SQL.
What to do when your marketing foundation has several problems?
The physiognomy of a marketing funnel has a linear progression, and you should follow the same progression when trying to prioritize the problems to be solved.
First, it is always important to understand who you are talking to, and why you are talking to that audience.
Before you even get in touch with your leads in the funnel, you need to know what type of lead should be in that funnel. If you don’t have a clear understanding of who should be in your funnel, then you absolutely need to fix this loophole.
Only then can you start thinking about how to attract your target audience to your content and make your content more engaging to the community that follows your blog or social media.
You should also check that the content planned for the top part of your funnel, and whose role is to develop your brand awareness, is not too aggressive in the way you present your products or services.
Finally, it will be essential to confirm the following two points:
- Do you provide enough follow-up resources capable of promoting the added value of the products or services you provide?
- Are you able to guide your prospects to a decision-making perspective, which should lean them towards your sales teams?
What matters is tracking the progress of your funnel and then using it to prioritize. So, if you don’t have a good strategy for getting people to your website, blog, or Facebook page yet, you shouldn’t be focusing right away on how you plan to convert them when they are. actually on your site, because it fixes a problem you don’t already have.
As they grow, companies can of course go beyond their marketing foundations, or even change them drastically, if necessary to grow their customer base.
In reality, all businesses are in a constant state of evolution and growth. Identifying a loophole or gaps in your marketing foundations often correlates with a development within your business that marketing simply has not followed.
However, to experience continued growth, your business will need to erase these imperfections before they become a major source of problems. It is for this reason that it is essential to regularly review your marketing bases in order to be able to detect any future difficulties as early as possible.