Did you know that half of all small businesses don’t have a written marketing plan? This leads to chaos and ineffective strategies. The problem lies in the fact that too many marketers confuse marketing tactics with their marketing strategy.
Don’t worry if this is new to you too because you’re in the right place. Keep reading to learn all about the difference between your strategy and tactics and how to integrate them into your marketing plan successfully.
What Is a Marketing Strategy?
Your marketing strategy is your plan to promote your goods or services to your target audience. So whether you sell t-shirts or accounting services, you need a well-laid plan to bring your business marketing strategy awareness.
Your strategy is the action plan you’ll use to reach your target audience. For example, you can use your strategy to promote or sell your product or service to your prospective customers.
What Are Marketing Tactics?
Target marketing actions are the steps you’ll take to reach your goals through your strategic plan. When many business owners think of their marketing strategy, they immediately envision their action steps, such as posting on social media or sending weekly emails. However, these are tactics to reach your goals, not the strategy itself.
For example, let’s say your business goal is to increase annual revenue by 15% year over year. Then you might set a marketing strategy to reach 1,000 new customers this year. And your tactics will include engaging with followers on social media, continuing outreach through weekly email broadcasts, and running targeted ads to former visitors to your website.
What Comes First: Strategy or Tactic?
As mentioned, too many business owners jump straight into their tactics without first creating their strategy. This puts the cart in front of the horse and leads to wasted time, effort, and money.
There are a few key steps you must take before choosing tactics. If you don’t do these, you risk using the wrong tactics and creating ineffective marketing content. First, to effectively market your business to prospective customers, you need to determine your company goals.
Then you can create the best strategy that will lead you towards these goals. Finally, after you’re crystal clear on your goals and have your strategy outlined, then you can choose the right tactics and create content that moves the needle forward.
How Do You Create a Strategy and a Tactic?
To create your strategy, you’ll outline three key components. These include creating your buyer persona, choosing the right tools and channels to reach that target audience, and planning the campaigns to help you reach your goals.
Based on your goals, you could create several different campaigns, not all of which focus on selling your product or service. Brand awareness itself is a viable goal for your marketing plan. Many strategies focus solely on selling; however, building awareness can also positively affect your company.
To create your tactics, outline the small steps needed to reach your goals and increase revenue. Each tactic won’t necessarily bring in new revenue by itself. However, when taken in conjunction with each other in a cohesive strategy, the magic happens in your marketing plan.
The Important Role They Each Play in Your Marketing Plan
As you begin any journey, you need to follow a roadmap to ensure you are in the right place. The same is true in your marketing efforts. And your marketing plan is the overall roadmap your team will follow to reach your goals.
An effective marketing plan will start by analyzing the current market within your industry, including competitor research. It will then outline your goals and what strategies you’ll use to reach them.
Then, it will break down each strategy into the steps you’ll take, or tactics, to accomplish your plan. Finally, your project will outline the resources you have in place to carry out the tactics. Your resources include the time, budget, tools, and platforms available for your marketing team.
Keep Your Terms Straight
You don’t have to confuse marketing tactics with marketing strategy any longer. And you’re armed with a plan for success to use marketing to help you reach your business goals.
Stop throwing spaghetti at the wall and hope it sticks. Instead, start using your strategy to create tactics that will move the needle forward in your business.
If you’re ready to take your marketing plan to the next level, then reach out to us today and see how we can help you reach your goals.