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How small businesses can be Effective with their Marketing

Posted on 05/05/2016, 09:18

Most companies waste most of their marketing spend by not focusing on their customers sufficiently – who they are, what their business needs are, how they buy and what media they use.

There is a better way, it just needs a detailed assessment of the business and its customers (current and future) and a clear plan to achieve the business’s objectives. Strategy, for short.

So, what is Marketing all about?

Marketing is a means to an organisation achieving its business objectives, no more and no less. To the surprise of some people, it not an end in itself. Having a brilliant website or brochure is fine, but if it isn’t helping the business to succeed, it is not really achieving anything.

It does not need to cost the earth – much more important is to act smart and focus on the most appropriate Strategy and Tactics to meet the business’s objectives.

While the essential ingredients will be a broadly similar pick-list for most businesses, the precise combination can vary considerably according to the needs of the business. Examples are on-line commerce to a wide audience and bespoke upmarket products.

Marketing Strategy vs. Marketing Tactics

The following diagram – courtesy of – illustrates the very important difference between Strategy and Tactics.

Many organisations focus on the Tactics without really developing a clearly thought-out Strategy.

As a result, significant expenditure can be made in such areas as exhibitions, brochures and adverts without being clear about whether they are appropriate or not. Measuring their effectiveness becomes almost impossible as a result.


By having a clear Marketing Strategy, the Tactics (which is where the actions are taken and therefore the expenditure is made) are the right ones for the business.

Questions you need to ask include:

  • How many clients do I need?
  • Can I identify them?
  • Do I know what social media they use and which exhibitions they attend?

Making Marketing Effective

Once you have a clear Strategy and appropriate Tactics, each activity needs to have KPIs related to it so that they can be measured and appropriate action taken.

Examples are number of visitors to an exhibition, orders taken, visitors to certain pages on website, response to pay per click and number of column inches.

Effective Marketing? Easy!

By having a clear direction for the business and developing a Marketing Strategy, small businesses can ensure that they are making the right decisions (and the best investment) to be successful.

For more information on making the link, please contact us today!

Want to talk further with your business coach?


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