It is safe to say that just about every business uses some sort of marketing strategy – whether it’s a restaurant, clothing store, or generally any company that is selling a service or product. Studies show that every person on average is exposed to over 4,000 advertisements a day, which is directly related with marketing. So why is marketing important exactly? Before we answer that question, let’s discuss what marketing is and its purpose for a business.
What, Exactly, Is Marketing?
When you walk into a supermarket, there are isles of food and they are all usually grouped by the food type. But did you know that they are all strategically placed in areas where you more inclined to buy them? There is a reason the candy bars and gum are next to the checkout stand and the more expensive cereals are at eye-level with shoppers, while the cheaper ones are on the bottom.
Marketing is simply something you do to place your product or services into the hands of customers. The term marketing actually encompasses quite a few things. Advertising, promotions, product placement, and public relations are some types of broad marketing techniques used to attract consumers. If you would like to learn more about market strategies, take a look at this course as it explains in better details about market planning, strategies and more.
When people buy a product, they are buying more than just the product itself. They are buying the concept of what it will do for them. For example, if someone signs up for a gym membership, they are not just paying to use the gym and exercise. That person is buying the membership expecting to lose weight and look good. And the goal of marketing in this case is to sell that image and perception to the consumers.
Designing the product is also an important part in marketing. If a car company makes a sports vehicle that is bulky or does not look slick, it will be hard to sell no matter how well you advertise and promote it. Having knowledge in what consumers want in a sports vehicle will affect the way a car company decides to design a new product.
The price of a product is determined by marketing because that has a big influence on whether the consumer wants to buy it or not. A lot of fast-food companies such as McDonalds and Jack-In-The-Box offer their “Value Menu”, which contains certain food for a low price. If they were to sell some of those same products for a higher price, it could greatly reduce the amount they sell, which in turn would hurt their sales. Most of the prices we see are set at that price for a reason and not just because it feels right.
Importance of Marketing
Now that we have gone over a few examples of how marketing is used, here are some reasons why it is important in businesses.
Sales – Monitoring and understanding your fluctuations in sales can give you a better idea of what is working and what isn’t when it comes to your marketing strategies. Some companies release a product and set the selling price too high, causing people to stay away if they feel it is not worth it. Sometimes setting the price too low can backfire because it can make it seem like your product is cheap or built with low quality. Comparing your competitors sales can give you a better idea on how to sell your product as well. If you are marketing yourself well, it should translate into increased sales and customer traffic.
Brand loyalty – When customers become more familiar with your products and brand, you can slowly build a brand loyalty base, which will give you an advantage over your competitors. This can allow you to raise prices since you are aware that certain customers are willing to pay a little more because they like and trust your brand name. Not only does this increase your sales right now, but people in the future will be buying your products.
Word of mouth – Building brand loyalty means that people appreciate your product. When people are happy with a product, they are likely to promote it to their family and friends. A lot of consumers are skeptical of advertisements they see promoting a product, but when they hear positive reviews from people they trust, they are more inclined to believe. And from a business standpoint, the best advertisements are the ones that they don’t have to pay for.
Social media – The way companies market themselves has changed drastically in the last 20 years. Newspapers and magazines were considered the best ways to reach the public to advertise a product. Nowadays, social media and online advertising play a much bigger role and for good reason. With a click of a few buttons, a company can send a mass email out to millions of consumers with a simple ad attached. Almost every webpage on the internet has an ad attached to it. More and more companies are creating Facebook pages to market themselves in social media. Thanks to the internet, breaking into social media marketing is quickly becoming the best way to advertise.
Understanding your industry – Using marketing can give you a better understanding of the current industry you are in and your competitors. Every company needs to use trial-and-error to see what is working and what isn’t. Some industries such as fashion change frequently, as trends come and go on a regular basis. It’s important to be on top of the current fashion trend or you can easily fall quickly behind. And when you know your industry well, you can learn more about your competitors and their strategies.
If you are interested in learning more about marketing, check out the online courses we are currently offering. Whether you want to learn how to market on Youtube, see what mobile marketing is about, or understand more about small business internet marketing, take that next step towards one of the most important aspects in business and you’ll see the true significance of marketing.