8 Things the Best Marketing Strategies Have in Common (And How to Create Your Own)

Lauren Owens - September 23, 2014

In a few months, everyone will be talking about the best marketing campaigns of the year. Tech bloggers will embed funny Vines and videos and talk about why the Doritos “Goat 4 Sale” commercial went viral. This will leave many marketers feeling left out, or even perplexed. Humorous goat videos don’t, after all, help sell most products or services.

The good news is you don’t have to be funny or go “viral” to have a successful marketing campaign.  All you have to do is find, connect with, and provide value for your core audience.

In this post, we’ll look at eight things that successful marketing campaigns have in common, and provide real-world advice for launching your own.

1. Successful marketing campaigns focus on a specific audience, and communicate effectively to that audience.

Whether you’re selling Doritos or doorknobs, the questions are the same – who is your audience? What do they need or want? For example, if you’re selling doorknobs, your audience could be DIYers, contractors or decorators.

DIY: Who is your audience? What do they want?

2. They dovetail with specific customer needs or concerns.

Often, marketers are more concerned with selling products than they are with solving problems. This is a bit backward, and can backfire, causing customers to equate your products and services with your competitor’s. Instead of thinking about the end-result (selling product) think about the problem that the product solves and sell the solution.

If you’re selling doorknobs, for example, the solution could be security, aesthetics or value for the money.

DIY: How can your product / campaign address specific customer needs?

3. They provide value to the end-user.

If you take a single lesson away from this blog post, make it this one: Your content – whether it’s an advertisement, landing page, blog post or video – should provide some form of value to your user. (See No. 2, above.)

DIY: How can you create marketing content that provides value to your core audience?

4. They are data-driven.

In the age of micro-targeting and web analytics, we are awash in ways to collect and use data. Make the most of it by determining where your audience is, what they want, and how they’re coming to you.

DIY: Perform keyword research, and dig into your web analytics and social media analytics data in order to understand what your core audience is searching for and responding to.

5. They are built around a specific purpose or goal.

Whether you’re trying to gain more followers, build your email list, or sell more product, if you don’t have a specific goal in mind, you’ll never be able to determine ROI.

DIY: What is the purpose of your campaign? What does success look like? (Be specific!)

6. They deliver ROI.

There’s a reason Doritos makes goat videos and it’s not because they want to distract you at work. All successful marketing campaigns will deliver a return on investment. (What’s the value of having users watch your doorknob installation video if they, or at least a portion of them, don’t buy your doorknobs?)

DIY: Determine the value of every conversion, and track those conversions using goal tracking in Google Analytics.

7. They are comprehensive.

Most successful marketing campaigns work because they don’t rely on a single mode or medium for success. Yours shouldn’t either. Instead of creating a single doorknob installation video, for example, create a video, an infographic and a blog post.

DIY: What forms should your campaign take? Which would be most effective for finding, and communicating with, your audience?

8. They make contact.

You can create the greatest doorknob installation video on the planet, but if it’s buried on a page that’s not optimized to be found, if it’s not published on a popular video streaming site, and if it’s not promoted on social media, it’s not likely to get found by very many people.

DIY: Close the loop. How will your content find your users? Is it worth reserving some budget for paid distribution?

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