The term strategic marketing, often known as a marketing strategy, has become a hot topic among businesses striving to improve their competitive edge in recent years.
However, there is still a lot of misunderstanding about the strategic marketing process and its significance in enhancing the company's reputation among its target audience.
Strategic marketing is a way a company successfully distinguishes itself from its competitors by leveraging its strengths and potentials to constantly offer greater value to its target audience than its competitors. In theory, it's that simple and easy, but it entails far more than experimenting with the strategic marketing process.
In this blog, we have aimed to explain what strategic marketing is, why the strategic marketing process is essential, how social media management and strategic marketing are related and how we can imply strategic marketing on social media.
What is Strategic Marketing?
First, let's start with marketing. Marketing is how a company promotes the purchase or sale of a product or service. So, it seeks to provide unique value to customers and prospects with the long-term objective of presenting product value, building brand loyalty, and eventually boosting sales.
Basically, marketing is a way to attract customers to your brand. So, a company needs to know how to reach out to its target audience and who its target audience is.
This is where strategic marketing comes into play. The strategic marketing process entails gathering data through research and defining aims and objectives that will optimize the efficacy and success of your entire marketing plan.
Strategic marketing is highly effective since it allows you to be more thorough in your marketing. You'll know whether you focus on the right audience, are in the right marketplaces, and employ the suitable means. Without a proper strategic marketing process, it is nearly impossible to establish a well-planned marketing campaign and reach the defined target audience.
The Strategic Marketing Process
To create an effective strategic marketing process, you also need to be strategic about it! This strategic marketing process will be the leading guide of your overall marketing plan.
As you build your marketing plan on the fundamentals of the strategic marketing process, we have prepared you a guide to creating one with defined phases.
#1 The Planning Phase
The planning phase is the initial step in the strategic marketing process. It is the most crucial phase since it is the foundation of your strategy. You'll need to determine your business's aim, needs, and intended objectives and goals since the overall strategic marketing process will assist you in achieving these.
It won't be easy to move on without this knowledge since you will not grasp the aim of your marketing initiatives, making it much more challenging to design a sound plan.
#2 The Analysis Phase
This phase of the strategic marketing process involves evaluating your company concerning its competitors and the overall market. Many companies may execute market research and competitor analysis during this phase.
At this stage, you should consider the nature of competition in your industry, as well as how political, technological, social, and economic circumstances may influence what potential buyers want and your capacity to supply it.
While doing your market and competitor research, you should also evaluate your goals and objectives with the information you gathered and make sure they are realistic.
Moreover, you may spot promising gaps in the market, which can create new opportunities for your company.
It would help if you also spent time researching your target audience and creating customer profiles during the analysis phase of the strategic marketing process. You need to have thorough insights into who your audience is, their demands, desires, and interests, as well as where you can reach them in the marketplace.
#3 The Development Phase
Now, as you have a precise understanding of your industry, other players in the market, and your target audience, it is time for you to build a marketing plan. The development phase is more directly tied to the components of marketing that you are more likely to be familiar with, such as your marketing mix.
The very core marketing mix includes 4P's; product, price, place, and promotion. But of course, marketing is not that simple. You can expand the list with people, process, physical evidence, politics, partners, planning, presentation, and so on if necessary for your business.
#4 The Implementation Phase
It is time for you to begin putting your strategy into action based on your planning and market research in the strategic marketing process. Your product will be launched employing the distribution strategy you developed based on your target audience, and sales will begin to flow in.
#5 The Monitoring Phase
The monitoring phase of the strategic marketing process is developing ways to assess the strategies you choose to market the product or service you're offering. Profits, revenue, customer happiness, the number of views your website gets, or the click-through rate of an email campaign are some examples of metrics you can consider.
If metrics reveal that a strategy you employ to advertise the product or service isn't functioning, you can make adjustments as needed. Similarly, if consumer feedback indicates that the product or service isn't meeting demand, you may need to go back to the planning stage.
Importance of Social Media Management for Strategic Marketing
So far, we have discussed that the strategic marketing process is all about data-driven insights collected through market and competitor research. When we say data collection, social media management is the first thing that comes to mind.
You can benefit from it in every phase of the strategic marketing process as social media can provide many data-driven insights and opportunities for marketing.
You can get to know your target audience with social media user analytics; use targeted ads to reach your audience directly, and benefit from monitoring tools to evaluate your performance.
How to Imply Strategic Marketing on Social Media?
Now, let's move on to step by step implementation of strategic marketing on social media.
#1 Set goals & objectives
First of all, you need to define your expectations from social media to build an effective strategic marketing process. Generally, businesses want to boost their brand awareness, increase engagement with their audience and build a loyal community around their brand.
With these goals in action, all the businesses ultimately want to increase their sales. But your priorities may differ for different companies. For example, if you are about to enter the market, you may first build your brand awareness. Or, if you already have good brand awareness, you may want to enlarge your community by reaching out to new target audiences.
For example, Hello BC delivered a social responsibility message during the lockdown period across all media networks, advising everybody to stay home and #ExploreBCLater. The ad was a spin-off of their branded hashtag, #ExploreBC, leveraging the brand's existing awareness.
It was a tough time for the tourism industry. But even though Hello BC was actually encouraging people not to travel, they smartly set a goal to increase their brand awareness by emphasizing health over their monetary interest.
#2 Get to know your audience
If you build your strategic marketing process on assumptions, you take many risks. If your assumptions are not the reality, all your efforts will be in vain. Besides wasting your efforts, there is a possibility that you may damage your brand.
To build an effective strategic marketing process, you can get to know your audience using social media management tools. For example, with Circleboom Twitter, the ultimate Twitter management tool, you can get insights about your audience's gender, active hours on social media, language stats, and interest areas.
This strategic marketing method can help you boost your business in two ways. First of all, you can show your audience how you value their ideas by including them in your strategic marketing process. On the other hand, you can also get insights about your customers by directly contacting them.
For example, LEGO created LEGO Ideas in 2004 and invited its fans to generate ideas about new product development.
Since then, over 1 million individuals have submitted ideas to the crowdsourcing platform, and fans voted on the most popular ones.
The inventors of the selected ideas gave the final authorization for the ultimate product. They were also acknowledged on all packaging and marketing and potentially earned a share of product sales in exchange for delivering a great idea.
Of course, you don't have to play that much big in your strategic marketing efforts if you don't have the means. It can also be a simple co-creation campaign, such as inviting your audience to suggest a product name for an upcoming launch.
Secondly, this strategic marketing method can help you get insights into your customers. You can learn what they expect from a company like you and their preferences. After all, asking is the most direct method to learn more about your audience, right?
#3 Determine your KPIs and metrics
Your strategic marketing process for social media should be data-driven, regardless of your goals or market.
That involves concentrating on the most critical social media indicators. Rather than focusing on vain metrics, you should look for data directly related to your objectives.
Is it reach or clicks you are looking for, or is engagement the key for your campaign? Or, maybe you want to focus on sentiment so that you need to concentrate on how your target audience reacts to your campaign.
Twitter Interest Targeting is of great use to anyone attempting to determine their consumer-based investments.
With Circleboom's Twitter User Analytics graphs, you can learn about your followers and tweets and take correct measures to boom your impressions and engagements.
#4 Develop exciting and engaging content
There are no surprises here. Your content is the foundation of your strategic marketing process for social media.
Based on your objectives, audience, and brand image, you should have an obvious sense of what to post at this stage. You presumably have a good idea of which social media platforms to include as well.
One of the most comprehensive social media management tools, Circleboom Publish, offers its users a built-in version of the ultimate design tool Canva. With Canva, you can enhance your content with its limitless graphic features. You don't need to be a professional graphic designer to create and curate engaging content, thanks to Circleboom Publish.
You can also include user-generated content in your strategic marketing plan as it is a great way to increase engagement. For instance, Coors Light has recently run a genius UGC campaign on Twitter; they asked their audience to record a 30-second video loop of themselves seeming engaged during video calls so that they may sneak out and get a beer.
They promoted their UGC campaign with a giveaway, and they distributed 500,000 six-pack beers to their customers who posted their video with #CouldUseABeer hashtag.
#5 Know the best times to be present on social media platforms
Social media is a platform to engage with your audience. So, you need to be aware when your audience is online and active on social media platforms.
It is highly likely that your brand is present on different social media platforms. And, it can be hard to manage multiple accounts with different best times to post suggestions.
With Circleboom Publish, you can manage your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google My Business, and Pinterest accounts through a single dashboard. You can schedule your content for these platforms separately or all together.
#6 Monitor your performance
There's no doubt that much of strategic marketing for social media includes trial and error. Monitoring the stats behind your processes helps you make modest adjustments to your social media marketing approach instead of making large, time-consuming modifications.
With data-driven facts, you may determine whether your KPIs genuinely align with your overall business objectives or whether they should be modified.
The strategic marketing process involves acquiring data through research and establishing goals and objectives that will maximize the effectiveness and success of your complete marketing campaign.
This strategy helps you to get the maximum results by using optimal resources. You can better define where you need to be present, how to build your brand identity, and when to get in touch with your audience.
If you don't want your time and efforts to go in vain, it would be better to implement a strategic marketing process for any of your marketing activities.