Marketing is an activity that aims to make a profit by satisfying the needs of customers. This is a very general definition that shows the essence of any marketing activities – the ability to sell a product or service to the target audience.
In a broader sense, marketing is a complex discipline that includes the ability to analyze a niche and competitors, predict consumer demand, and skillfully build communications with the target audience. In short, a professional marketer must understand how to turn the needs of people (B2C) or organizations (B2B) for services and goods into consumer demand.
Thus, if to describe marketing briefly, it is an activity to satisfy the needs of customers. Actually, it is the main goal of all marketing strategies of the company.
To achieve the goal, marketers solve the following tasks facing the business:
– Analysis of customer needs in the niche where the company operates. Is the product in demand, what criteria for choosing the target audience should be taken into account before releasing products for sale?
– Studying the offers of competitors in the market, as well as pricing in a particular niche. Based on the data obtained, the pricing policy of the company is developed.
– Adjusting the range of goods and services to consumer demand. Most companies, entering the market, work with existing demand. Therefore, promoting an illiquid product is often a loss-making enterprise. On the other hand, promoting a novelty requires a large budget to create demand, but all the “cream” will go to you.
– Launching activities aimed at increasing demand, sales of products. These are online and offline advertising, viral promotion, word of mouth and other methods.
– Service, customer support. Ideal marketing is not just a single sale of goods, but a technology for turning buyers into regular customers. In this system, everything is important: product quality, service quality, responsive support.
The following principles help to effectively solve marketing problems: understanding the company’s production capabilities, the ability to plan activities for the sale of goods or services. In addition, the company must be able to respond flexibly to changing demand, update the product range in accordance with the needs of the target audience.
We examined above what marketing is and defined its goals, objectives and principles. Let’s take a look at the five key functions of marketing:
– Analytical. A set of measures to study external and internal factors that affect the company, the market and consumer demand. This includes analyzing the niche and competitors, studying the needs of the target audience and predicting consumer behavior. In addition, the internal activities of the company are also analyzed – how the corporate environment meets the needs of the time, how the company looks against the background of competitors.
– Production. These functions are responsible for introducing new technologies into the production process. The process itself can be divided into several components: the organization of procurement, the sale of goods and services, warehousing, and others. Also, production functions solve the problems of managing the quality and competitiveness of goods in the market, control the compliance of products with quality standards.
– Management and control. Responsible for planning marketing activities in the company. This also includes information support for customers and partners, risk management.
– Sales. Everything that is responsible for the formation of the pricing and product policy of the enterprise. In a broader sense, sales also include activities to expand demand for goods and services, the development of new markets.
– Innovative. Development and introduction of a new product to the market.
The functionality is supported by the following marketing methods – survey, market situation analysis, observation, consumer demand study. In terms of product promotion, online and offline advertising technologies, PR, personal sales, and consultations are used.
Marketing is the process of turning a consumer into a buyer. To accomplish this task, marketing tools are used. Conventionally, they can be divided into four groups: price, production, sales, advertising.
Let’s take a closer look:
Price – this includes the costs of production and sale of goods, the range of products, the criteria for choosing the target audience, the political and financial situation in the country. Often it is the cost of goods that determines the level of demand.
Sales – this category includes instruments that increase consumer demand. For example, bright packaging, in fact, is the seller of the goods. Discounts, promotions and other activities to stimulate the interest of buyers are also used. The participation of products at exhibitions and fairs helps to promote a new product to the market.
Advertising – online and offline channels for promoting goods and services. For the integrated development of business, it is desirable to use two directions. The first one works faster and more efficiently with consumer demand, the second one is indispensable in company branding.
Let’s take a closer look at the tools of Internet marketing:
– Contextual advertising. This is the display of text ads in the search results of Google and Yandex. The advantage is the speed of attracting high-quality traffic due to relevant texts. The disadvantage is a paid type of promotion. In competitive niches, the cost of a click can reach 1,000 rubles (real estate, cars).
– SEO. Website optimization for the requirements of search engines. According to statistics, the first page of search results for any user request generates 95% of traffic to the site. Of these, 60-70% of clicks are on sites in the TOP-5. Search promotion requires many times more time than contextual advertising, but the result is better.
– SMM. What is social media marketing? First of all, these are interesting posts, viral publications. Typically, a company opens a group or public on social networks and posts information about products, promotions and news there, and holds contests. The main principle of marketing in SMM is unobtrusiveness, nativeness.
– Targeted advertising. This tool is based on the preliminary selection of the target audience (the analytical function of marketing) and the presentation of relevant advertising to them. Marketers study the behavioral factors of the target audience, demographic characteristics, geolocation of users, collect retargeting lists (browser cookies). In terms of efficiency, targeting is not inferior to contextual advertising, and even surpasses it in terms of budget savings.
– Banner and teaser advertising. One of the most low-cost tools for promoting goods and services with pay-per-clicks on an offer. Typically, banners are placed on partner sites of Google and Yandex. The task of banners is not so much to sell, but to increase traffic to the selling page.
– Viral advertising. A kind of native promotion. A viral post on a social network or a video on the YouTube channel causes an active response from the audience – they like the publication, tell friends and acquaintances, and comment. All this naturally increases brand awareness on the web.
– Content marketing. Often this tool is called “guerilla marketing” because it suits even startups without a budget. To promote the company, products use selling texts, collect customer reviews, recommendations. In a word, they create the maximum benefit around the products so that the potential buyer can evaluate the benefits and make his choice.
– Retargeting. A tool that allows you to work with departed users. With the help of retargeting technology, users who have recently visited the resource are sent an offer relevant to their interests. Often advertising is supplied with a discount or bonus.
– Promotion in aggregators of goods and services. Marketplaces are platforms that collect many trade offers from different companies and show them to potential buyers. Such resources usually have high attendance rates, so you can find your audience.
– Push messages. A new and quite effective marketing tool. The peculiarity of push notifications is that the user “without problems” agrees to receive notifications and he does not need to fill out a questionnaire for this. Simply subscribe to notifications in the browser.
– Messengers. By analogy with social networks, instant messengers provide tons of quality traffic to the site. The main advantage is convenience. Accounts in instant messengers are easier to create than in social networks. Users are always with their gadgets, which means that it is possible to reach the target audience faster.
– E-mail marketing. Email newsletters are one of the “ancient”, but no less effective marketing tools. The main condition for the productivity of the mailing list is the availability of a customer base with email addresses.
Marketing agency – Pro Online Marketing.