The term marketing implies the word market. It describes entrepreneurial planning and action that is market-oriented in order to promote sales.
You can achieve a lot by carefully observing and empathizing with your potential customers. The aim of marketing is to design and offer your products or services in a customer-oriented manner. And let’s not forget, marketing also helps them outperform their competition. Long before they start their business, they should determine the competitive advantage with which they can position themselves in the market.
Competitive advantages that you can determine through marketing are, for example, that your product or service is unique on the market. But you can also be successful with a product or service that is already available on the market. The benefit for the customer can be better than that of the competition with your product or your performance, for example through a special service. Maybe they offer their service or product at particularly low prices or your company image radiates something special. Whatever the advantage, you can use marketing to work out it and advertise it in a targeted manner. However, marketing does not only begin in good time before it is founded, it is also understood as a permanent accompanying process.
At the time of the founding, you should first deal with the competition with the aim of defining your own competitive advantages. At the same time, basic considerations must be made about your target group so that they can do effective marketing. With the knowledge of who you want to reach, you can adapt your offer to the needs and wishes of your customers. Therefore, make the following considerations in marketing:
- What needs and wishes do my customers have?
- What are the expectations of my offer?
- Who are my clients?
- Are you trading with private customers? (Differentiation e.g. according to age, gender, income or marital status)
- Are they business customers? (Differentiation e.g. according to fallow land, size, region, etc.)
- Where can I find my customers?
Also, note that you need to ask yourself these questions not only before setting up a business but also after you have successfully set up and are in business. Marketing is a process that you will not only accompany before you set up but throughout your business activities. Do you, therefore, use marketing to check which products or services are preferred or which are selling poorly? Are there any complaints or tips about prices, payment terms, or promotions? Question your marketing activities in order to find meaningful opportunities for improvement.
Make sure you have a balanced marketing mix because this is the only way to be and remain successful in the market. Of course, it is not enough just to know about your customers. Successful marketing also watches the competition. Your customers will only buy from you if they have an advantage over the competition. Therefore, investigate which competitors are your main competitors. What do they offer at what prices? What special features or unique selling points can they show? Once you’ve figured this out, you need to respond to it with your marketing. Adjust your prices or services, try to build advantages over your competitors.
If you now know who your potential customers are and what advantages they offer them, you have laid an important foundation stone for your marketing. However, there are other points that you have to consider in marketing. Because it doesn’t just work to have the cheapest prices or the best product. You will only be successful with a mix of different areas of marketing. In general, the marketing mix can be divided into four groups:
- Price – for example: discounts, pricing, terms of payment, discounts
- Product – for example: quality, design, packaging, service.
- Communication – for example: advertising, events, trade fairs.
- Distribution – for example: transport, distribution channels, points of sale.
You should combine these groups of the marketing mix as ideally as possible in order to achieve high sales. For example, try to determine which communication channel you use to address the most potential customers. Increase the quality of your product, check whether your prices are competitive or you can offer discounts. For example, in the area of sales of the marketing mix, ensure that the products are delivered quickly. However, you should always ensure that the individual elements of marketing are coordinated with one another. It does not make sense to place an advertisement that advertises a cheap product in appearance if its packaging and the product itself are intended for a higher-priced segment. So deal with marketing to avoid mistakes.
Because unfortunately the area of marketing is neglected and avoidable mistakes are made again and again. One of the most common mistakes is that the company lacks a “face” because marketing is not just about advertising. For example, a customer not only sees your product or service but the entire corporate identity. This is also part of marketing. This includes, for example, a meaningful name for your company and a meaningful logo. Business papers such as letterhead or business cards, which you can use to communicate with your customers, are just as useful. Make sure your stationery is ready in time for your establishment. But there is more to marketing!
Do not forget that the way you represent yourself, be it clothing, external appearance, or how you speak to the customer, is part of the corporate image. Again and again, marketing is not seen as a regular component, which usually turns out to be a mistake after a while. It is not enough just to make yourself known, you also have to stay known. Consider and plan carefully, with a sufficiently calculated budget, which marketing campaign to start and when. Make a plan for a year, exactly when you will carry out which action with what budget, and regularly check the success of these actions. Always change the marketing advertising media that are suitable for you in order to reach as many potential customers as possible. Plan enough capital for the marketing campaigns, because customers will always be completely or temporarily absent. Not only then do they have to start further acquisition efforts, but rather beforehand in order to prevent sales from flattening out. So plan and think carefully about how marketing can help you.