What Is The First Step in Effective Marketing?

So you have decided to start marketing your business…now what? There are so many options where do you start? Althought the tendency is to to start developing websites, designing brochures and seting up advertising campaigns, I suggest that first you build the foundation so that you can make these other tactics more successful.  You really need to clearly define what your business does and how it is different from your competitors.

Step one, is to take a hard look at your business. What are your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats?  Everyone on your management team should be involved with this process so that you have input from various people. This can be a bit of a painful process but it can garner tremendous information for your company. Ask the group what your company does well, what don’t you do well. Who are your competitors? What do they do well? What do they do poorly? Do your competitors provide you with any opportunities or threats?  How does the current economy affect your business?  There are lots of questions that you can build into this examination. Ask as many as you can.

Once you get through this exercise you should see some themes begin to arise. Where are your opportunities and what do you do better than your competitors? You should use this information to develop your “unique selling proposition.”  So what is that?  Your “USP” is your promise to your customers. It is the reason why people should buy from you. Then you can begin to use your “USP” as the foundation for developing your marketing campaigns.


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