Back to Basics – The Five Steps of Marketing

By Small Business AllBusiness.com

Marketing theory is not as complicated as it seems. Often business owners who are looking to expand their brand through marketing get lost in the jargon and technical terms, finding themselves at a loss for how to market their companies without hiring a professional.

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However, when it comes to reaching the consumer through marketing, simplicity is key. Despite the confusing marketing rhetoric offered in textbooks, marketing is actually very simple. The marketing process is made up of five broad strokes that can easily be customized to fit the needs of your business.

Here are the five steps:

1. Listen

Successful marketing campaigns begin with listening. What problems, confusion, or compliments have heard about your company and business? Or, what problems have you heard in general that your business can solve? Depending upon your business, your marketing niche might be wide or narrow. For example, a business credit loan officer has a broad scope to work with in terms of marketing since most people have financial needs, while a music store has a much smaller audience. Once you determine something to solve or exploit, you now have an opportunity to reach the masses with your marketing.

2. Marketing

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Once you have your marketing idea, the next step is putting a marketing plan into place. Different businesses will succeed with different marketing. The different types of marketing range from email, to pamphlets, to billboards, to word-of-mouth, to coupons, to online social media, to TV or radio advertisements.

While well-known businesses have the means to reach out via expensive options like television, billboards, and radio, it does not necessarily mean that they have more opportunity to reach customers than you. Successful marketing truly comes down to a catchy phrase or a relatable situation. Twitter has just as much reach as does a TV commercial so put your best foot forward with any marketing strategy you use.

3. Funding

Setting aside profits for marketing is a wise idea. While most social media marketing is free, there are times when paying Instagram or Facebook to post an ad involving your company is worth the price. Marketing is vital to your company’s success, thus don’t skimp on it. As your business grows, grow your marketing fund. No matter how successful your business is, you must continue marketing. No business is untouchable.

4. Service

Delivery service can make or break your company. While it might seem small in the scheme of things, poor delivery service can easily leave customers with a negative impression of your business. If there is another business that offers the same product as yours but has better service, most people will be quick to make the switch, even if it’s more expensive than your business.

5. Profits

The final step of marketing is all about the profits—what’s left over after you’ve deducted the cost of everything else in your business. Everything you have put into your business—all the time, effort, and marketing—is for the purpose of growing your yearly profits so that your business can provide its service for many years to come.

Getting back to basics is a good thing to do every once in a while. These five steps are something that one learns in college but can easily forget in the real world. Keep these steps in mind for all marketing efforts and you’ll be on the right track!

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Miguel Salcido is a veteran search marketing executive with a focus on SEO and link building. He has provided SEO consulting to enterprise brands such as McDonald's, State Farm, Chicago Title, Expedia, Qualcomm and others. In his 11+ years in the industry Miguel has built and led large search agencies, holding executive and VP level positions. He is currently providing SEO consulting services to select clients via his boutique SEO agency, Organic Media Group, and also blogging at professionalseoconsultant.com.

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