marketing strategies pro tips for beginners
When. I talk to marketing leaders the subject, of pricing, almost always comes up they, lose sleep wondering if their prices are too high or too low it's. A constant, ongoing challenge. For every, marketer, of the. Four PS of marketing product. Price. Place. And promotion. Setting. Prices is the quickest, but that doesn't mean it's the easiest in fact, making, a mistake here can be very costly, in terms of lost revenue as well, as sending the wrong signal to, the market about your products and services so. How do you overcome this, challenge the. Key is to understand, the role of pricing. Then. You need to understand the most common, pitfalls, companies, make when, setting prices let's. Start with some definitions to. Be successful. At pricing, you, need to understand, the difference between a products cost its. Price, and its, value, the. Cost of the product is all the, direct, and indirect expenses, that you experience, as the manufacturer. To make the product things, like raw materials, and labor for example, price. Is what, a consumer, has to pay to acquire the. Product a price. Is a signal. A piece. Of information about, what. You might ask about. The value. Value. Is what the consumer, gets out of the product the collective, set of benefits delivered, by the product. The. Most common, mistake in pricing, is setting, it based on your costs. It may. Seem counterintuitive but. Price is unrelated, to cost your, customer, doesn't care what it cost you to produce the product they, don't compare your, cost to, what they pay, instead. They, compare, what they pay versus. The total value, they get out of it if value. Exceeds, the price then, they'll buy the product, but, if not they'll, ignore it value-based. Pricing, then, is the, process, of calculating the, total delivered. Value from using the product and then, setting the price at or, just below, that, amount, think. Of price as a shortcut. The, price quickly tells a customer, a lot about the quality and value, hey. But what about the competition in their prices, well. First, look, at your value, proposition if, you're, positioning. Your product is superior, to the competition, then, you should set the price higher than theirs if your. Product is equivalent, to the competition, make, the price the same and if. Your product is inferior, to the competition, set, the price lower, that's. How price becomes, a signal, of value, when compared to a competitor. Now. Pricing, can be a very, touchy subject because, everyone. In your company will, have an opinion about it sales. Teams tend to want lower prices, because, it makes their job easier, finance. Teams tend to want higher prices, to cover the fixed costs, they're, driven to meet targets around profit, margins but. You as the marketing, leader need, to take a customer, centric view and not, be unduly, influenced. By your colleagues and other departments, focus. On value, and see, pricing, as a way to help customers, understand, what, your products and services are truly worth hey, people don't mind paying higher prices if they, get high value, in return in my.
Experience, Price is without, a doubt one, of the top 10 marketing, challenges, for any business the. Trick is to balance financial, impact with, good common, sense about customers. Expectations. You. Perhaps. The most important, role of the marketing leader is creating. A competent, team and for, that reason alone it's, one of the most challenging it's. A constant, fight for talent hey, you may have the best products, and services in the market but without a strong, and talented, marketing, team behind them you'll, start losing ground to the competition, so. Let's look at ways to win, this battle but. Before I start let, me share an insight you. Read a lot in the media about the generational. Aspects, of business and the many differences, between Millennials, Gen. X and Baby Boomers but, guess what for. My experience the, same things that excite Millennials, are the same things that excite my generation, so. Don't get too caught up with the demographic. Shifts so. How do you attract and retain, great, marketing talent it, starts, with great products, and services back, by the reputation, of a global brand coca-cola. Apple. Amazon and, so on but. What do you do if you have a wonderful reputation, but no one's ever heard of you here's. An example the global fortune, 500, company with over 50, unique and successful companies. Within it if, it's going to win the fight for talent it has to raise its prominence, in the job market especially. In business schools so. You do that with promotional, efforts, attending. Job fairs and having. A great website about, careers, at your company. Next. Look at how you communicate. Opportunities, at your company what, is it that you're stressing, are. You telling them how amazing they need to be or, are, you telling how amazing, it would be to work at your company now, here's why that matters if you, stress why they need to be super, talented those, who are super talented already, know it if you just reinforce, that you're looking for superstars, they're, likely to react by saying well duh I know that. So. Instead focus. On why it's amazing to be at your company promote. All the perks the, cool spaces in your headquarters, the types of challenging, work you do the value. You bring to society, overall, that's. What really matters to the superstars, of all, ages, sure. You need competitive, pay and but, it's the intangibles. That matter so much in recruiting, talent now. One area that I think is often overlooked, in recruiting, is telling. The candidate, about how much autonomy. They'll have their job if the. Message comes across as will. Tell you what to do when, to do it and how to do it hey forget. It marketers. Especially want, some degree of autonomy, in their job and, finally. You need to assure potential, candidates, that they're joining an elite team, thoroughbreds. Like to run with thoroughbreds, give. Candidates, a strong sense that they're joining a team of people just as talented as they are that, really gets their juices flowing but. That means you have to back it up a players. Want, to be with other a players if you've, got a lot of B players good, but not great you, may be over promising, and if. You have any C players who you haven't cut yet these. New recruits will spot it right away that's not good. Going. Out and getting the best talent, you can afford maybe your biggest marketing challenge of all if you, do it successfully you're. On a path to, win in the marketplace. There's. A constant, tension between the, marketing, organization, and the, sales organization hey. Believe me I've seen shouting, matches in the boardroom between marketing, and sales leaders, this, tension is a challenge, and will never go away so.
It Has to be understood and managed, or the organization, will suffer hey. And it takes a lot more than just having a cup of coffee every so often with your counterpart, now. It's not hard to see why this tension, exists, the, two organizations, are vastly, different in terms of their role in the organization their, structure, and their. Ambitions they. Have different perspectives, of the market they, have different processes and, they, may have a different sense of urgency about, what's important, but. The organizations, have a tremendous. Amount of overlap and that's, where the friction can occur for. Example the, two groups can argue about things like the pricing, of your products which, products, to focus on which. Customers, to go after and what. Messages, to put in the marketplace, the, codependence, between the organization's, creates, a natural rivalry. Now. Some tension, between sales, and marketing is healthy, and productive the. Vers viewpoints, lead to creativity and better problem solving you. Need to harness those differences and turn them into a benefit, and sometimes. You, have to agree to disagree you. Can't let the relationship deteriorate. Where, things will get worse, after. All you probably disagree, because you each have different assumptions you're working with or you're, using different, criteria to, evaluate, a situation. So. Here are some ways you can keep that tension in check, first. You. Need to have role, clarity, between. The two organizations, which. Things does sales do on its own what, tasks, does marketing, do and which, tasks, are done jointly. For. Example I think, it's critical, that the two organizations. Jointly, set goals and objectives, that they, conduct, joint planning sessions, and that, they create common definitions, about what is a customer, and who, is our competition this. Creates, a good foundation. Another. Great way to keep the relationship positive, and productive is, to hold joint recognition. Events these, events, help build empathy and respect, for both sides and, finally. You, want to create frameworks, and processes, that require the, two organizations, to communicate, and collaborate. For. Example look, at your pricing processes, product. Development, and the ways you get customer, feedback put. Steps into these activities, that require input, from both organizations, this. Tension will never go away so, expected, and manage, it minimize. The downsides, and distractions. But take advantage of the positive, sides be. A strong, supportive. Leader who, creates a culture of teamwork and cooperation hey. Your customers, will appreciate it. You. Creating. A powerful brand is a great, way to build loyalty with their customers, for. Many companies brands. Are the single, most valuable, asset. But, once you've created a brand that's where the challenge is kick in and it, can be a real, headache if you don't manage brands, correctly, these. Challenges, come from both inside, your organization as well as outside, for. Example one. Of the most common, problems marketing, leaders have with brands is what, I call, brand, chaos, it happens. When new brands start popping, up almost out of nowhere and sadly. They have no consistent, look or feel to your other brands and then. One day you're flipping through your product catalog and you see a mishmash of products and brands, that have nothing to do with each other your. Brand architecture is in a state of anarchy. How. Does this happen. Well. Marketers. Love to create brands hey, it's fun and exciting and they, like creating ones that are distinctive, and unique let's. Face it they, want to put their mark on something so. They get together with their design team and branding. Agencies they throw a lot of money creating, the next big, thing, if, left, unchecked you'll. Experience brand, chaos it's, expensive, to fix and it can really confuse customers, on, what your brand's mean, another. Common brand problem, is when employees. Take one of your brand marks and create, their own adapted. Version, of it in other, words they make it look different than the official version a sales. Rep might put an altered brand mark in a presentation. For example or a marketer. Might change it slightly to fit on a package, those, sources of this problem, are many, brand, chaos can also stem from things outside, the company if your. Competitors. Start. Attacking, your brands by D, positioning. Them you, have to fight back for. Example a competitor, might begin an advertising, campaign, telling. Consumers that.
The Benefits, of your brand just aren't that important, this. Type of deep positioning, strategy, can lower your brand equity. Another. Common, problem is when some company copies, your bread and creates, counterfeit. Products, and services. Hey consumers, don't know the difference, so, you leave as a sale each time they buy a fake product with your brand on it, so. How do you deal with these challenges well. First you, need to create a brand, book, just. As the name implies the. Brand book is the, complete, story of the brand and all, the elements that go into it it, establishes, strict, guidelines, on every, aspect of how a company's, brand will be managed, this. Affects everything from how the logo can be used the. Look of a website how. Social, media is used, advertising. Product. Design and so on second. You, need to appoint a strong, brand, champion, someone, who is senior, enough in your organization, to regulate, and monitor brand. Compliance, and stop, anyone, who violates standards. In the brand book and. Finally. You need a strong legal team either internal. Or external that. Will go after counterfeiters. Or anyone. That hijacks. Your brand's for their own use, great. Branding, is about making, and keeping promises in a consistent, way that's, why great marketers, do whatever they can to prevent, brand, chaos. You. Marketing, operates, in a world of change and ambiguity, so, you have, to constantly monitor trends, to, spot opportunities and, avoid problems, now. Depending, on your market this could be one of your biggest challenges you. Don't want to be guilty of missing, a key trend that, puts your company, out of business, trends. And your business happen in many areas for. Example consumer. Tastes can change, Campbell's. Soup for example is looking, at ways to change its legendary. Long-standing. Chicken, soup recipe, because, of perceived changes, in consumer taste, trends. And technology, are another big source of risk and reward, you. Can also be affected, by trends in economic. Conditions. Politics. Regulatory. And legislative policies. As well, as trends, in foreign, countries, there's. A lot going on out there when. I analyze, trends I like, to sort them out this way first. I decide whether, the trend will have a big impact or a small impact on my company, then. I assess, whether the trend is fast, moving or slow. Moving when. I say fast moving I mean it happens, quickly over. A matter of days or months whereas. Slow moving trends, might last 20 years or more now, I wouldn't say that you should completely ignore low impact trends, but clearly, you want to focus on the big ones those. Are the ones that will get you in trouble if you ignore them trends. That have a big impact and are fast-moving need. Immediate. Attention, so. Assign, someone from your team to study it and make, recommendations. Try. To avoid, a quick knee-jerk. Reaction, you. Might make matters worse get. Alignment from your peers and your boss before, taking action you, don't want to be guilty of what, we call in marketing, / driving your headlights, now.
For My experience, the, ones that give me the most concern are the big, impact, slow, moving trends I call, these the silent, killers, they're. Slow moving so, there's no sense of urgency until. BAM. One, day you're staring at something that you've known about for a long time but, you're way behind you're competitors in dealing with it not. Good, so. How do you keep up with trends you. Need to set up a way to monitor, what's, going on out there or what, I call listening-posts. For. Example, you. Might want to hire a marketing research firm to, watch trends, in taste and attitudes. Also. Monitor, social media channels, to hear, the conversations. That consumers. Are having about, you and your competitors, one. Of my favorite techniques for dealing with trends, is to form an advisory, panel of experts both from inside and outside, the company their. Advice can guide you when you need it most how. Do you deal with trends, once you spot them well. You have to ask yourself, a critical, question well. I let this trend change what we're doing or well. I go, out and change what this trend is doing in other, words you, have to decide if you're a market. Taker or a. Market, shaper in reality. You'll have to be a little both you, can change some but, not all trends of course, you need the resources, and skills to do that you. Need to decide where, to focus to get the most with the resources, you have and avoid. Trying, to change things you can't for. Those you'll, just need to adapt, and survive. Great. Marketing, leaders thrive, in a world of ambiguity, and change trend-spotting. Is what helps them stay on top. You. A lot, of my senior, marketing, colleagues would come to me and complain, about some, of their new staff members they. Were frustrated, because these new marketers, just couldn't, seem to get the right perspective of, the market and translate. That back to, their day to day actions it's. A very common problem especially for, less experienced, marketers, but, it can affect just about anyone, like. Everything, else we've discussed in this course it's, a big challenge, because, you'll miss critical, insights if you don't have this skill, I've. Put a name to this skill I call, it zooming out and zooming. In zooming out. Is when you change your perspective to see the big picture the, whole market from a very wide angle zooming. In is just the opposite you zoom, in to a new perspective right. On the ground so to speak very, close to the customer, and the buying journey. Think. Of it like the lens on a camera, the, photographer. Sees, a completely different, view of the subject when the lens is changed, by zooming closer, in or by, zooming far away, changing. The view triggers, new insights, on how best to take that shot you.
Can Do the exact, same thing when, trying to understand, a market. Here's. An example, imagine. You work for a pharmaceutical company and you, want to introduce a drug, that treats diabetes. Into, the Chinese market now. China is a very big country with around, 1.4. Billion people, that's almost 20% of the world's population, should. Be a great market right so. Where do you start how. Do you get your drug from, the plant in the US to, the people with diabetes in, China from. This perspective it seems, overwhelming. So. Let's change our perspective and, see, if it helps let's. Zoom, down to let's, say one city in China like, Shanghai, now. It's a big modern city with about 14, million people but. For me that's still too big let's. Hoon down again to a very, small town in the middle of China with, no more than say 50,000. People in fact. Let's zoom into just one neighborhood in that. Neighborhood. Let's find one home with, one, person with diabetes let's. Say a man in his 50s got. It. Now. Let's ask ourselves the, same question how. Do we get one dose of our diabetes, drug from the plan in the u.s. into. This man's body now. Here's why this helps, if you. Can't figure out all the things that have to happen to get the product to just this one customer it's. Hopeless. To consider how, you would do it for all of China but. If you do figure it out you created, a model that can be scaled up to other customers, with. This in mind we're, going to zoom out and imagine, other homes in this neighborhood then. Zoom out to other neighborhoods, then. To other towns around the region and so, on before. Long you're, back at the level of the entire country. To see the big picture with. Each change, in perspective I get, the insights, I need to create a successful marketing. Campaign. So. Look at your markets and train, your eye to see new perspectives zoom. In and zoom out. To, find new ways to grow. You. A company. That retains, a high, percentage, of its customers, must, be doing a lot of things right, that's, why retention, rate is the best indicator, of a, company's long term viability. But. Keeping, customers, can be very, challenging to succeed. You, need to understand how and why your customers buy your products in marketing. We do that by defining four, types of purchasing. Styles, the. First one is what we call brand, laziness. That's, when customers. Want to exert the minimal, buying effort, they, don't want to be bogged down with a lot of information, they just want, to buy something now. Consumers, use this style with old familiar, products, and services that have worked well in the past so, they buy them out of habit without even thinking about it they, have no commitment, to the brand think, about for example how you buy flour, this. Approach is highly efficient, for low-risk, simple, products because, it saves time, and effort now. The key here is, to be careful, not, to disrupt, anything. About, your customers purchase flow if, you change the Shelf location, the packaging, or anything, that makes them have to think about too much about the purchase you may lose them to another brand.
Next. Is brand, loyalty, truly. Brand, loyal customers, are highly, involved with the bread they've, had a good experience with, it and they know a lot about it instead. Of buying it out of habit they, buy it because they're, emotionally. Attached, to it the. Key here is to continue, to deliver high levels of quality and service. Consistency. Is the name of the game if. You let them down they. Start drifting away. Next. Are the variety. Seekers, people. Who shop for new alternatives. Over more familiar, ones, varieties. Seeking is the opposite, of brand loyalty. Consumers. Use this style because, they have yet to fall in love with a particular brand. Try. To get your customers out of the style as quickly as possible, otherwise. They'll, keep switching back and forth between you, and the competing brands try. To lock them in with free. Trials, follow-up. Service. Or discounts, or perhaps a loyalty, program and, finally. Our the problem, solvers as the, name implies, consumers. Use this style when, dealing with complex, products, involving. A lot of risk and uncertainty. They. Need to be highly. Involved and they need to gather a lot of information especially. If, the product or service is expensive, or purchased. And frequently think. About buying a car for example or shopping, for a plastic, surgeon it takes, time and information. To make a good decision, now. As a marketer, you have to help customers when, they're using this style first. Provide, as much information about, the product as you can make. Sure it's where people can find it in. Your stores or online, or perhaps with their salespeople and. Show comparisons. Between your product, and the, competition. Loyalty. Drives high retention rates the, best marketers, are those that understand. Each type of loyalty so, they can continue to give their customers, exactly. What they want. You.