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Developing a Marketing Strategy

In today’s fast-paced digital landscape, a well-defined marketing strategy is the cornerstone of success for any business.

Develop a plan for reaching your target customers and raising the profile of your business. It starts with establishing a baseline of who you are as a business and understanding your customer base. From there here are some key steps to take to create a marketing strategy that will allow your business to thrive.

1. Market Segmentation

Understanding your audience is paramount to crafting a successful marketing strategy. Start by segmenting your market based on demographics, characteristics, behaviours, and needs. By dividing your audience into distinct groups, you can tailor your marketing efforts to resonate with each segment’s specific preferences and pain points.

Sticky notes stuck to a board

2. Build Customer Personas

Once you’ve segmented your market, you can create detailed customer personas for each segment. Customer personas are fictional representations of your ideal customers, defining demographics, interests, motivations, and challenges. These personas humanise your target audience, enabling you to personalise your messaging and offerings to better meet their needs.

3. Establish Your Brand

Person sticking sticky notes to a board

Your brand is more than just a logo or a tagline; it’s the essence of your business and what sets you apart from competitors. Define your brand identity, including your mission, values, voice, and visual elements such as logo and colour palette. Consistency is key across platforms, from your website and social media profiles to your product packaging and customer interactions.

Some exercises that can help might be:

  • Personality – writing down 5-10 words you would use to describe your business if you were introducing it as a friend. E.g. friendly, knowledgeable, kind.
  • Pillars of expertise – establish 3-5 core areas of expertise you want your business to be known for

These key elements of your branding will help you to tone of voice and core brand messaging.

4. Set Marketing Goals

Outline clear and measurable marketing objectives aligned with your overall business goals. Whether it’s increasing brand awareness, driving website traffic, generating leads, or boosting sales, establish goals to track your progress and evaluate the success of your efforts.

Where possible, make your goals SMART:

Person ticking off a list

  • Specific: Keep goals clear, concise, and detailed. Define exactly what you’re setting out to achieve.
  • Measurable: Set criteria for measuring your goals’ progress and success. Establish the metrics you’ll use to track and evaluate performance. Like number of site visitors, engagement rate, and conversions.
  • Actionable: Ensure clear steps can be taken and determine the workflows and investments necessary to complete your goals. Consider time, budget, and tools.
  • Relevant: Align goals with broader organizational objectives. Such as raising revenue, boosting brand awareness, and increasing customer loyalty.
  • Time-bound: Instil a sense of urgency and stay focused by establishing time frames with clear deadlines. Decide when actions must be taken. And when performance must be measured.

5. Establish Marketing Channels

People looking at a laptop

Identify the most effective marketing channels to reach your target audience based on their preferences, demographics and behaviours. This may include a mix of digital channels such as social media, email marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), content marketing, and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, as well as traditional channels like print, television, and events.

A simple bit of Google research looking at things like who is the typical user of a social media channel you are thinking of using will help you check if the profile of the channel marries up to the profile of your customer.

6. Make a Content Marketing Plan

Content is the messaging you push out through your channels that inspires your customer to take action. Develop a content marketing plan that aligns with your customer personas, brand messaging, and marketing goals. Create a diverse range of valuable and engaging content formats, including blog posts, videos, infographics, and website pages, to attract, educate, and engage your audience at different stages of their buyer’s journey.

Researching national days and weeks that connect to your area of business can be a good starting point for gathering inspiration for content development.

7. Measure the Impact of Your Marketing

Data-driven decision-making is essential for leaning into your successes and taking your marketing to the next level. Utilise analytics tools on social media, or tools like Google analytics for your website to track the performance of your campaigns, monitor key metrics, and gain valuable insights into your audience’s behaviour. Compare analytics to your offline data such as sales figures and enquiry records. Regularly analyse your data to identify trends, uncover areas for improvement, and update your marketing strategy accordingly.

Person looking at Google Analytics

Developing a comprehensive marketing strategy requires careful planning, research, and evaluation. By focusing on market segmentation, customer personas, brand, goal setting, marketing channels, content planning, and data analysis, you can create a roadmap that maximises your marketing impact.

Ready to get started?

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