The role of Strategic Marketing in an organisation
Over the past few years, strategic marketing has becoming increasingly popular within organisations. Yet, as some confusion still exists with regards to what exactly strategic marketing is and the role it plays in organisations, this blog will explain all you need to know.
What is strategic marketing?
Strategic marketing is a method through which an organisation differentiates itself from its competition by focusing on its strengths to provide better service and value to its customers. In a nutshell, the goal of strategic marketing is to make the most of an organisation’s positive differentiation over its competition through the consumers’ perspective.
The implementation of strategic marketing involves three questions, which include:
- Where to compete;
- How to compete;
- When to compete.
Once these questions have been answered, then the strategic marketing planning phase can begin.
Phases involved in the strategic marketing planning process:
- Planning phase: In this phase, the various aspects of an organisation, such as its strenghts, weaknesses and technology are assessed. The overall state of the organisation is also presented to the management. This phase comprises of four components, which include:
- SWOT analysis: This method analyses the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats related to the organisation. The results of this analysis help in developing a strategic marketing proposal for the organisation.
- Marketing mix strategy: Once the SWOT analysis has been conducted, a proper marketing mix strategy is then prepared. Marketing mix strategy consists of combining and analysing a variety of components that help in strengthening a company’s brand and in selling its products or services. Take a look at a sample marketing mix strategy table:
- After sales services
- Price level
- Price terms
- Perceived value
- Set product and marketing goals: Setting product goals is one of the best methods for obtaining success with new products. The product should be marketed in such a way that it becomes indispensable for the consumers.
- Four P’s of marketing: Once the product goals are set, the four P’s of marketing; price, place, product and promotion strategy, come into the picture.
- Implementation phase: The strategic marketing plan is implemented in this phase, and it consists of four components;
- Collecting resources: raising the capital required to develop and promote new products;
- Marketing hierarchy: A marketing hierarchy should be put in place to ensure the proper implementation of plans;
- Formulating schedules: Preparing schedules in which specific time periods are allocated to tasks;
- Executing the plan: this needs to be in an extremely efficient manner;
- Evaluation phase: In this phase, the plan is crosschecked with the product goals to determine if they are aligned. If that is not the case, the marketing team will have to edit and improve the plan until there are no deviations between the plan and the goals.
Some of the guidelines that will help in ensuring your strategic marketing planning process is a success include:
- Set goals that are achievable and can be measured;
- Prepare the plan after conducting a thorough market and competitor analysis;
- The prepared plans must be concise and easy to understand;
- Ensure that the plan and set goals are in sync with the requirements of the consumers.
While preparing a strategic marketing plan, it is important to be aware of some of the issues that may arise. These include:
- Lack of skilled workforce;
- Assuming the requirements of the consumers without conducting a thorough research;
- Changing demographic of the consumers;
- Management issues;
- Coordination problems;
- Incorrect SWOT analysis;
- Issues in conducting marketing research;
- Confusing marketing feedback obtained;
- Budgeting issues.
The importance of strategic marketing in an organisation:
- Helps in evaluating the current environment: Strategic marketing helps in assessing the positioning and performance of an organisation. It is important to know what resources are at the disposal of an organisation at any given time. The data that is collected helps in understanding how well an organisation is performing within the overall competitive environment. This will also help the organisation in planning for future strategic marketing activities or plans.
- Helps in establishing clear marketing objectives: Having a strategic marketing plan in place helps in establishing achievable marketing objectives. The objectives should have a specific time-frame and should be measurable.
- Streamlines product development: Strategic marketing helps in creating products and services that provide the organisation with high profits. This is because strategic marketing starts off by conducting a SWOT analysis of the organisation, a market analysis of the consumers and the existing trends in the market. This information is then used to create the optimal products and services for the consumers.
Difference between strategic marketing and a marketing strategy
Although people sometimes use these two terms interchangeably, they are in fact very different and mean different things. To understand this better, here are some of the differences between strategic marketing and a marketing strategy:
- Strategic marketing
- Strategic marketing is a method through which an organisation differentiates itself from its competition by focusing on its strengths to provide better service and value to its customers
- This is a planning process and it involves three phases
- This is related to the management level as it involves determining budgets, allocation of resources and improving product quality.
- This covers the marketing goals of the organisation as a whole and includes all products.
- This a process that is put in place to achieve organisational goals.
- Strategic marketing analyses various factors such as organisation performance, competition environment, competitors and demographic behaviour of customers in order to achieve organisational goals.
- Marketing strategy
- This is an organisation’s plan to target people and convert them into consumers of the organisation’s products and services.
- This plan is an implementation of a predefined strategy
- This strategy does not involve the higher management, as it only includes creating marketing strategies for a particular product or service. The strategies could consist of a promotional plan, distribution and price of the product.
- This is restricted to the marketing goals and strategy of a single product or service.
- This is a part of one of the functional strategies that help in achieving organisational goals.
- A marketing strategy focuses on the products and services of an organisation and their positioning in relation to attracting customers.
If you want to learn more about strategic marketing, Berlin School of Business and Innovation (BSBI) offers a MSc in Digital Marketing. To find out more about this course, click here.
This text was written by Varun Mehta and edited by Amelia Hayward-Cole.
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