2016 presents all-new challenges for marketers as the world of digital marketing continues to evolve. The previous year’s success is not an excuse to stick with old plans and ignore new and more effective strategies. In fact, it should motivate you to preserve your momentum throughout the year. To help kick start your goals, let’s review some of the most important marketing guidelines for 2016, as well as the most useful strategies for your brands and businesses.
The digital marketing landscape changes constantly. Banner ads and pop-ups gave way their crown to new strategies and more innovative techniques, such as digital PR and social media marketing. Despite the passage of time, traditional practices have not lost their value and they can be integrated with current trends to come up with effective marketing plans.
The 8Ps of Marketing
In 1964, the article “The Concept of the Marketing Mix” published by Neil Borden popularized the 4 P’s of marketing, which has become a fundamental concept used to develop and execute a successful marketing plan.
Over the years, the Ps have evolved in response to the needs of the time. When the idea initially appeared, it was limited to marketing involving physical products but it had to be replaced when the services boom began to emerge.
As numerous academics and marketing practitioners pointed out, services differ greatly from products, although they can overlap in certain cases, such as a product bundled with an aftermarket service like a car with a limited warranty. To differentiate, when clients want you to make something for them, they are asking for a product. On the other hand, when they want you to do something for them, it’s a service. The difference between the two required a more extensive framework, which led to the 8 Ps.
The first of the 8 Ps refers to the product that the business is selling, as well as its competition and substitutes. Product must be able to satisfy consumer demand. When marketing services, all forms of benefits must be determined along with their related products and services.
Price refers to the actual cost that end users are expected to shoulder. The amount that consumers pay affects demand, sales, volume, and profit margins. It is a crucial factor that sets industry-standards for a service being offered, and can also affect marketing decisions.
Promotion is how a company markets its services. It varies depending on the industry because of the difference in their target audiences.Promotion heavily involves brand development, which include the creation of slogans and logos to help convey a desired message that increase market awareness.
Place involves the various methods of delivering the product to the customer. It includes distribution channels, coverage, logistics, locations, transportation, assortments, and inventory. It also plays an important role in product promotion and pricing.
User experience is affected by the people who deliver the services. This element involves professionalism, courtesy, and other positive attributes including tact and discretion. These personal qualities work as dependable elements that can help a business succeed and claim a reputation in the industry.
Process is the standard operating procedure in the delivery of services and may depend upon the situation and the location. Due to the proliferation of services, these practices have been adapted to include quality in the delivery of services.
Positioning is determined by the company’s preferred marketing path in the industry, as well as the business strategy employed to conquer a particular niche.
Also referred to as productivity, performance assesses the capability of services to compete in the marketplace. It determines the quality offered to your customers and the consistency in the delivery of services. Performance should always go hand in hand with quality to convert the two into benefits. It is a crucial in measuring the goals of the company and knowing if they are being achieved.
Knowledge of the 8 Ps can be leveraged to create a strategic marketing plan that suit your product or service.
Step 1: Brand Storytelling
The most influential technique in building a relationship is storytelling. It leads people together and keeps them engaged with your brand. Being relatable builds affinity with your target audience.
Step 2: Branding
Branding helps raise awareness for your brand. It helps consumers to remember and distinguish your product. Different aspects of your business like your company logo, color, merchandising design, or tagline are subject to the demands of branding. Through its proper application, your business can stand out from your competitor.
Step 3: Identifying your Target Audience
Your target audiences are the consumers that your products or services are geared for. Defining them is crucial in creating a strategic marketing plan. To do this, build comprehensive buyer personas that will represent your audience. If you have multiple targets, this practice will help you develop appropriate campaigns per demographic.
Step 4: Business Review
An in-depth business review serves as the foundation of your marketing strategy. It is also a critical evaluation of your current corporate condition, assessing the internal and external factors affecting your business or brand. Lastly, it considers what’s happening in the world around your company including trends, current issues, competitors and the marketing environment.
Step 5: Marketing Objectives
Marketing objectives are the goals established by a business that must be accomplished within a particular time frame.
In establishing effective marketing objectives, the SMART approach is often recommended.
Used in digital marketing, the strategy ensures that the stated goals of your business will be achieved through a set of marketing activities that are driven towards the completion of goals.
S - Specific
In a specific approach, objectives are stated in a precise way to give a clear overview of the specific goals.
M - Measurable
A measurable approach provides a quantified value of the goal. It provides a basis to determine the level of success to by objectively measuring how far the target has been achieved. In digital marketing, measurable results are easy to gather. The number of people visiting your website and their respective location can appear instantly with the aid of Google Analytics. Analysis of the numbers whether from social media or websites can help determine the next direction of your campaign. For example, it can provide clues to opportune places where digital marketing can be supplemented by on-ground efforts by identifying the locations of your frequent readers.
A - Achievable
Before objectives are set, factors affecting the completion of goals must be assessed for their reasonableness and achievabilitye. It’s crucial for managing expectations and determininge if the goals are set too high. Both social media and Google provide benchmark data for objectives, such as traffic, likes, and engagement.
R - Realistic
A review of resources and capabilities are necessary when setting objectives to ensure that realistic goals will be set, and minimizes, if not eliminate, the chance of failure. Always check the current budget and its allocation to target activities. Fortunately, digital marketing can reach a lot of people simultaneously without having to spend too much.
T - Time Specific
Goals must be time-bound. A time plan must be established to target the completion of each objective within a specified period. A Google AdWords campaign can be set to activate in specific months while Facebook ads can be released during specific dates, such as holidays. Chinese New Year ad can run the whole week during the start of the lunar year.
Step 6: Marketing Strategy
Developing a marketing strategy is fundamental for any business. Establish a long-term strategy to ensure that your brand or services meet your customer needs while being beneficial to your future prospects. A perfect strategy should consider target audience, desired positioning, allocation of resources, and marketing mix.
Step 7: Tactics/Implementation
Implementation needs a wide perspective, including collateral, digital marketing, social media, websites, public relations, conferences, email marketing, word of mouth, direct sales, trade shows, lead generation, and all the things needed to achieve your marketing objectives. It is also the process of completing the marketing strategy by building specific actions that will guarantee the accomplishment of your objectives.
Marketing today requires a multi-channel approach, one of the most important of which is digital marketing because it benefits all industry and business types. 2016 is projected to intensify the evolution and diversification of the Philippines online landscape as new ASEAN and global partnerships develop after APEC. It is therefore necessary – more than ever before – to be equipped with the right tools to.
Below are tried and proven strategies used by many a successful digital marketing agency that can help your business achieve its goals for the coming year.
#1. Search Engine Optimization
Even though this practice has been recommended for many years, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) has not lost its luster. It is still a proven tactic for online businesses. Over 86% of consumers use search engines to find a local business, which makes it very important for businesses to develop and establish their website presence on the first page of search engine results. SEO covers a range of strategies including improvement of website appearance, creation of internal links, and the development of better website architecture.
Blog content can be informational, fun, and entertaining. It is an efficient marketing tool that helps drive traffic to your website and create connections with your target audience by offering them valuable content. Creating a blog for your business is a simple strategy used by digital marketing agencies to bring websites on top of the search engine rankings and drive organic traffic.
#3. Video Marketing
Video marketing is predicted to have a huge impact on businesses for the year 2016. Video is one of the most engaging and popular forms of content. It is the ideal format to quickly grab the attention of even the busiest audiences. Videos must be able to tell a story in a short clip but should have an extraordinary format that viewers can enjoy.
#4. Social Media Networks
48 million Filipinos are active on their social media accounts, which make building a strong social presence critical. Social media marketing consists of many marketing techniques that help develop your marketing value and achieve higher visibility, popularity, and traffic.
#5. Email Marketing
E-mail is another influential marketing strategy to explore in 2016, if you haven’t already. The conversations change into a more personal setting – the inbox. It also provides a direct line of communication to promote your brand or service. Over 65% of promotional emails sent to targeted audiences and consumers become successful while returning more business leads to the company.
#6. SMS Marketing
Text messages are short, quick, and very personal. It is one of the best ways to communicate directly with your customers.
#7. Mobile Marketing
You can’t leave your home without your smart phone. In 2015, 36 million users in the Philippines accessed the internet from their mobile device. It is expected to grow to 61.2 in 2018. Mobile marketing includes personalized messages to the customers that advertise your product or services.
#8. Graphics & Infograhics
One of the most effective marketing strategies for 2016 is the use of graphics. The “power of visuals” can make your content more effective in reaching out to your target audiences. In 2015, over 95% of marketers say that graphics are more effective than plain text. Visual content also gives and retains more information to the customer.
The importance of online marketing has forced Filipino businesses to adapt to an increasingly connected market. Digital advertising in the Philippines has brought incredible opportunities to local businesses and current trends offer even more promising opportunities, especially with the right strategies in place.
2016 could be a big year for your business and there are several options to make your marketing plan work. The question is, are you prepared for the challenges ahead?
We’d love to know your thoughts on digital marketing in the Philippines. Need tips on how your digital marketing strategy can be put in place? Got some information to share? Leave your comments below!