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Strategic Marketing Guidance in Essex -Frequently Asked Marketing Questions
Welcome to Our Frequently Asked Questions, FAQs
Navigating the complex world of marketing can often bring up more questions than answers. That’s why we’ve created a comprehensive FAQs section to help demystify the key concepts, strategies, and practices in marketing. Whether you’re just starting out or looking to refine your existing marketing approach, our FAQs are designed to provide you with clear, actionable insights.
In this section, you’ll find answers to some of the most common and critical questions in marketing. From the basics of what marketing really is, to the nuances of modern strategies like SEO and AI in marketing, we cover a broad spectrum of topics. We also delve into practical queries about starting a brand, selecting marketing channels, and understanding intricate concepts like sales funnels and PPC.
Our aim is to not just answer your questions, but to empower you with knowledge to make informed decisions in your marketing journey. For more detailed explorations on each topic, we’ve included helpful external links. These resources will guide you to a deeper understanding and provide additional perspectives from leading experts in the field.
Your success in marketing is our goal, and we hope these FAQs will be a valuable tool in your journey towards achieving it.
What is marketing?
Marketing is your business. Yes, it’s a flyer or poster or TV advert promoting your company, but it’s everything you do – from your letterhead to your WhatsApp profile photo. It’s your website, your logo, your staff uniforms, your tweets. It’s the essence of every action and activity you accomplish as a business.
What is Bite-Size Marketing?
Bite-size marketing is a marketing strategy that involves breaking down information into small, easily digestible pieces. The goal is to convey messages in a clear and concise manner that can be quickly understood and absorbed by the audience. This is often done in the form of short videos, infographics, mini blog posts, tweets, or other succinct content forms.
In today’s fast-paced digital world, where consumers are often overwhelmed with information, bite-size marketing has become a popular approach. It caters to decreasing attention spans and the increased consumption of content on mobile devices, where brevity and immediacy are key.
These are some of the most popular Bite-Size products on offer at Miles Marketing:-
Bite-size marketing is not just about making content shorter, but also about making it more engaging, impactful, and memorable. When done effectively, it can lead to higher engagement rates, improved message retention, and more shares on social media, thus increasing brand awareness and influence.
Where do I start with marketing?
The best place to start is always with your target market. Who is currently buying your products or services? Who else do you want to sell to? You can have more than one ideal customer profile. Just make sure you drill down into what there habits are, where they consume media and spend their time.
What are marketing channels?
They are all the different opportunities for customers to come into contact with your brand. The main ones are the following :
– Social media:
Organic social media (you publishing targeted content on social media platforms and your customers find you without you having to pay for ads)
Influencer marketing (you pay or give way some product to a 3rd party to promote your company online)
Think of this as your window to the world.
Get your Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) right.
Either face-to-face or online, networking or word-of-mouth referrals are by far the main source of most business leads.
– Direct Mail:
Use your email database to communicate regularly.
– Your own stationery:
Look at what you send out – your email signature, your letterhead, business cards etc.
– Point Of Sale:
This is traditionally material at the point of sale to attract attention to your product.
– Promotional items:
This is a cost-effective way of leaving your brand with your customers in the form of a branded pen, t-shirt or mug.
– Webinars and podcasts:
Live or recorded events are a good way to engage your audience and interact with them.
– Video Marketing:
A picture says a thousand words, so a video must say millions.
How do I start a small brand?
First, you need to do the boring stuff first. That is the planning. Do things in this order below and you will get it right the first time.
1. Define your WHY?
2. Write down your Brand Values.
3. Think about your Tone of Voice
4. Figure out your Unique Selling Point (USP).
5. Define a detailed description of your target market.
6. Give the details of points 1 to 5 to a creative agency or graphic designer to create your logo and brands visual identity.
7. Write a brief for your website using points 1 to 5.
8. Decide on which social channels you will use to market your business based on where your target consumers are.
9. Join a networking group. Word–of–mouth is key!
10. Keep your messages on target.
The KEY is consistency. Keep focused on your messages and keep your values at the heart of all communications.
What is SEO?
SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is a digital marketing strategy focused on improving a website’s visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs). The primary goal of SEO is to attract more organic (non-paid) traffic to a website by ranking high on search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo for specific keywords or phrases.
SEO involves a variety of techniques and best practices, and it’s often broken down into three main categories:
- On-Page SEO: This includes optimizing the content and HTML source code of individual web pages. Techniques include using relevant keywords in your content, optimizing meta tags, ensuring your website is mobile-friendly, and more.
- Off-Page SEO: This involves activities that drive traffic and authority to your site from other online sources. Common practices include link-building, social media marketing, and influencer marketing.
- Technical SEO: This focuses on improving the backend structure and foundation of your website. It includes website speed optimization, XML sitemap optimization, structured data for rich snippets, and ensuring your website is secure and easy for search engines to crawl and index.
Effective SEO takes time and requires ongoing effort, as search engine algorithms constantly change. However, when done right, it can significantly increase a website’s visibility, attract high-quality traffic, and improve user experience, thereby leading to higher conversion rates.
What is AI?
A: AI, or Artificial Intelligence, refers to the simulation of human intelligence in machines. It is a branch of computer science that strives to create systems capable of performing tasks that usually require human cognition. These tasks include problem-solving, pattern recognition, understanding language, and decision-making.
AI systems are typically categorized into two main types:
- Narrow AI: Also known as “Weak AI”, this type of artificial intelligence operates under a specific pre-defined set or context. It’s designed and trained for a particular task. Examples include voice assistants, image recognition systems, and chatbots.
- General AI: Often referred to as “Strong AI”, this form of AI would have all the cognitive abilities of a human being. It means that the machine can perform any intellectual task that a human can do. Currently, this type of AI remains theoretical and hasn’t been achieved.
The development of AI involves various techniques from different domains, including machine learning (where computers are trained to learn from input data), deep learning (a subset of machine learning inspired by the structure of the human brain), neural networks, robotics, and natural language processing, among others.
It’s important to note that AI, in its current state, complements human abilities and augments our capabilities. While it can perform certain tasks more efficiently than humans, it doesn’t possess emotions, consciousness, or genuine human creativity.
What is Outsourced Marketing?
Outsourced marketing refers to the practice of a company delegating its marketing functions and activities to an external agency or independent consultants. This could include a wide range of services such as market research, digital marketing, content creation, SEO, social media management, advertising, public relations, and other marketing-related tasks.
Companies may choose to outsource their marketing for a variety of reasons. For some, it allows them to access specialised skills and expertise they don’t possess in-house, or to save on the cost of hiring and training full-time employees for marketing roles. For others, it can be a way to handle overflow work during busy periods, or to gain fresh perspectives and innovative ideas.
The extent of outsourced marketing can vary depending on the company’s needs. Some businesses may outsource their entire marketing department, while others may only outsource specific functions or projects. In all cases, the goal of outsourced marketing is to help the company achieve its business objectives more effectively and efficiently.
What are the 4 pillars of marketing?
Product, Price, Place and Promotion are the 4 pillars of marketing but also People, which is too often forgotten about. I believe it is the most important pillar of any company.
I have a limited budget, how should I spend it?
Spending a small amount of money on one activity very rarely gets any results as customers need to interact or see a brand or product up to 8 times before they engage. So the best use of a small budget is to either keep it in the bank, spend it on talking to current customers or lapsed clients. If I had to pick one, it would be making sure your staff understand your products and services. Word-of-mouth is by far the most effective form of marketing.
What is a sales funnel?
A sales funnel, also known as a revenue or conversion funnel, is a model that illustrates the theoretical customer journey towards the purchase of a product or service. The funnel metaphor is used because, like a physical funnel, the number of potential customers typically decreases as they move closer to making a purchase.
The sales funnel typically consists of several stages:
- Awareness: This is the top of the funnel, where potential customers first become aware of a business, product, or service. This might occur through advertising, social media, word-of-mouth, or search engine results.
- Interest: In this stage, consumers start to express interest in a company or its offerings and begin to research more about them.
- Consideration: Here, potential customers are considering whether to make a purchase. They might compare different options, read reviews, or engage with sales teams to learn more.
- Decision: At this stage, the customer has decided what to purchase and from whom. They might be negotiating the deal or finalising the terms.
- Action: This is the final stage of the funnel where the purchase happens. But even after this, a company will want to maintain a relationship with the customer to encourage repeat business and referrals.
A key role of marketing and sales is to guide potential customers through these stages effectively, turning as many as possible into actual buyers. Each stage requires a different strategy, as the needs, motivations, and behaviours of the customer can differ greatly from one stage to the next. Understanding the sales funnel can therefore help businesses better target their efforts and resources.
What is the number one way of getting my name out there?
It’s networking. Why? Because people buy from people and the most effective way of people and companies knowing about your products or services is if you talk to them. There are loads of organised networking events in your local area, some of the big names are BNI, British Chambers of commerce and the Federation of Small Businesses. Some groups meet online, others offline.
My advice is try searching some groups local to you and see which ones suit you. Networking groups are only as good as the people in them, so take your time and visit a lot of them. However, please don’t think that flitting from one to another will be effective. You need to build relationships.
To start with, I suggest picking one group. This will allow you to home your networking skills and patter. Your fellow networking members need to know, like and trust you in order from them to recommend your services. I would advocate a ‘you scratch my back and I will scratch your’s’ approach. Try giving business opportunities to people and see if you receive some in return.
What’s the best digital channel for generating quality leads?
It’s where your target market consumers are, in short. I give you an example. Take Jack. He is a kids rugby coach and operates in Cardiff where he runs coaching camps. Schools and clubs would be a good place to start networking with. However, if he wanted to be found, he might use Google and do two things. He could Pay Per Click (PPC) and appear in the ads at the top of a search for “kids rugby camps” or other related search terms. Jack could also make sure his Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is on point, so that his website appears on page one of a Google search for his services.
What is PPC?
PPC, or Pay-Per-Click, is a model of digital advertising where advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked by a user. Essentially, it’s a way of buying visits to your site, rather than attempting to earn those visits organically through SEO.
The most common type of PPC is search engine advertising. Advertisers can bid for ad placement in a search engine’s sponsored links when someone searches for a keyword that is related to their business offering. For example, if you bid on the keyword “running shoes,” your ad might show up at the top of the Google search results page when someone searches for that term.
Every time a user clicks on one of the sponsored listings, the advertiser pays a small fee to the search engine. This fee can be worth it if the click results in a conversion, such as a sale or a lead, as the profit from the transaction can significantly outweigh the cost of the click.
In addition to search engines, businesses can also run PPC campaigns on platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, where they pay for every click their ad receives.
A successful PPC campaign requires careful keyword research, strategic bidding, compelling ad copy, and a well-designed landing page that is optimized for conversion. The ultimate goal of PPC is to attract high-quality traffic that will lead to conversions, providing a return on the advertising investment.