We started our 4 week help guide to outline the key areas to producing a successful marketing strategy, last week we focused on customer and prospect data. This week we are looking into analysing your market and current situation. A vital part of a marketing strategy is to identify where in the market your company is positioned compared to its competitors to determine your customers (if you don’t know this already), find appropriate pricing and discover competitor vulnerabilities. To do this carrying out a full market analysis will provide your business with the information required to move your strategy to the next stage.
Part of the market analysis has already been covered in last week’s blog, however the market analysis takes the data you’ve segmented to identify a target market. Your audience will depend on a two key factors; your overall strategic objectives and who your product or service is targeted at.
Understanding your perspective customers buying habits and interests will give you an idea if you’re product or service is going to meet their needs and expectations. Carrying out market research at this stage (if budgets allow) will also determine their reaction to the introduction of your product or service.
This is a vital area to thoroughly research and investigate into, why will depend on your marketing strategy and its objectives. For example if you are introducing a new product or service your business will need to identify if you’re competitors have a similar offering and then establish if there is enough market share for your new entry.
However, if your strategy is aimed at growing your existing business in its existing market you should already have competitor information available. If you are entering a new market completely then extensive research will be required to understand whether it is a financially viable option.
Identifying your competitors marketing strategies will also give insight into what marketing approach has been successful, or strategies which possibly haven’t been attempted or tried before.
Your own SWOT Analysis
As part of your market analysis you also need to evaluate your own strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunities. To identify the possibility of entering a new market, introducing a new product or diversifying your offering, your marketing strategy will investigate into your current situation and evaluate if there is the opportunity to progress with your strategy.
Part of your research already carried out on your customers will be used in your SWOT analysis, additional research will be required to produce an honest picture of your situation. Once this is achieved (and you might not 100% like the results) this is when you decide if any changes need to be made to your overall strategic objectives.
Now you have two key aspects of your marketing strategy complete, next week will focus on the marketing plan and implementing your strategy.
If you would like expert marketing advice please contact our sales team on 0845 345 7755.