Marketing strategy can sometimes feel like an abstract concept. There are so many layers to marketing that easily get overshadowed by the “sexier” (and more easily acquired) creative aspects of marketing such as social media, graphic design, website design and content creation.
These are all worthy tactics if they affect your sales – but to work effectively they need the right tools and more importantly, people. Add to that, a management hierarchy that creates accountability and focus. This also counts for outsourcing.
Marketing management and resourcing should be the major focus of a marketing strategy.
I have worked in the SME market for long enough to identify the common pitfalls small business owners face when they seek marketing solutions. The biggest is the expectation that a marketing agency or a freelancer is going to wave a magic wand and immediately increase sales.
Relationships with an agency or freelancer can quickly turn sour. I know this from experience – it’s through no fault of either party. Many small businesses do not have the management processes or hierarchy in place to keep both business and agency/freelancer on the same page. This can also be true in a scenario where a small business hires their first full-time marketing staff member.
My mission as a strategic marketing consultant is to ensure finding the right people are at the top of the list – along with an understanding of the skills gaps they need to fill. I will then guide the business over a transitional period, ensuring marketing processes and resources are in place. My long-term goal with any business is to assist in continual marketing management, ensuring marketing threads itself firmly into the organisational structure.