Let me first begin by saying that I personally own an online business and know how important having a marketing strategy is. The question you need to ask yourself is do you want your business to succeed or fail. There cannot be enough said for defining a proper marketing strategy. Taking the time to create a strategy will help you answer some important questions about your business and how to move it forward.
Some of the questions are:
What markets are you trying to target?
What are your buyers thinking?
What sets your product/service apart from the rest?
What methods of marketing are you going to use?
An advantage of having a marketing strategy is that it will help you manage your time. Running a business can be stressful needless to say and focusing your attention on specific tasks like marketing is one of the most important aspects because this is what brings customers your way, but with all the other tasks that must be done it is easy to be distracted. So if you can set aside a specific time in your day to focus on this task you will see how easy it is to accomplish. I find that when I determine a time, how and what I am going to do that even before the time arrives the creative thoughts have already begun to flow. Since I have set the time aside I am able to hit the ground running and in most cases finish within my allotted amount of time, this in turn removes stress and frees me to move onto other schedules tasks. The more I have put this into practice the easier I find it to just sit down, knock it out and move one without any distractions.
A second advantage of creating a marketing strategy is being able to learn what return you get on your investment of money and time and the methods you are using. Keeping stats on what kind of traffic your different methods get you will help you decide where you need to focus your energy. A simple way to do this is to use online classifieds and do split testing, this is done by placing two very similar ads within the same classifieds and see which one draws more attention. Reviewing these stats on a regular interval can then determine if the cost was worth it or not. Just randomly throwing ads out and not keeping track of stats could cause you to lose unnecessary dollars and waste many man hours.
And lastly, having a strategy will help you accomplish goals for you business. You must have goals for your business and one of them is marketing. Things like where, when, what and how often are all things you need to take into consideration. So if I decide I want to put out so many classifieds, articles or even videos out within a given time, I have learned to break it down to a daily, weekly or even monthly schedule thus helping me to complete my marketing goals in small manageable steps.
“Failure to Prepare is Preparing to Fail” – Benjamin Franklin