Marketing means many things to many people. Some people think Marketing is selling. Others think of Marketing as advertising. And, more recently, people equate Marketing to social media. Marketing is actually all of these things…and more.
In B-sch00l, we learned about the 4 Ps of marketing–product, price, placement and promotion. Eduardo Conrado, the Sr. VP and CMO of Motorola Solutions, and the current president of BMA national, has refined marketing for today’s world: Solution, Access, Value and Education. When you think about marketing in these bigger terms, you get some pretty amazing results. Here are my top 10 reasons to think about Marketing with a big “M.”
#10. Avoid multiple implementations of “one.” When products and markets are not clearly defined, people sell anything they can. This results in a series of one-off implementations that are hard to maintain. Use Marketing to define your solution up front and simplify your product implementations.
#9. Prioritize markets. When you sell to every market, you get traction in a precious few. Marketing can help you prioritize the markets to go after now and in the future.
#8. Define revenue expectations. Defining revenue expectations is tricky business. And yet, every business expects you to do it, especially if you’re asking for an investment to launch a new solution. Confidence in your numbers takes a knowledge of the market, its willingness (and need) to buy, and the price it’s willing to pay. The best time to set revenue expectations is before you launch.
#7. Build a pricing model. Pricing models are a bit science and a bit art. Marketing can build a solid model that can be modified and adjusted.
#6. Manage the company brand. A brand is much more than a name: It’s an identity. It’s a role. It’s how you approach and work with your customers. Marketing can help you build a brand that will stand the test of time.
#5. Educate and prep the market with content. In today’s B2B market, promotion is about education. Marketing can help you become your market’s trusted advisor—and gain customers for life—when you can help them see the problem they have and the solution you offer.
#4. Create a repeatable sales process. Whether you have a sales team of one, or a large sales organization, you want a sales process that is repeatable and manageable. Use your Marketing team to collaborate with your sales organization to build a sales process, tools and incentives that deliver results.
#3. Integrate the voice of the customer. You are in business to serve your customer. Marketing knows that your starting point is a true understanding of the pain points, market drivers, buyer characteristics, politics, and more.
#2. Build repeatable messaging, positioning and value propositions. When Marketing integrates the voice of the customer, your message, position and value proposition become the words of your customers.
#1. Drive sales by meeting customer requirements. The best way to ensure a revenue stream is to build a solution that fills an empty void, test it with real customers and then make them the spokespeople for your product or service. Nothing convinces a prospect to buy a solution faster than hearing from a respected peer about their successes. Marketing can leverage the product lifecycle to drive sales.
Today is the day to think about Marketing more broadly. Your company and your customers will thank you.