Three Questions to Get Strategic Clarity

Written by Praneetha Aniruth on . Posted in Strategy

What are the goals for the business?

Goals such as becoming the biggest camera distributor or the most trusted financial planner are visionary statements. They are grand goals. They serve well as the guiding principle for the company but lacks substance in terms of specific outcomes. You need to describe the goal using results language. This leads to the second question.

Can you describe the specific outcomes?

Without clearly articulating the specific outcomes, you run the risk of initiating incongruent actions to reach a vaguely defined goal. the approach and the associated costs vary significantly. You need to define the outcomes for your strategy in concrete definitive terms that would guide you create a realistic roadmap. Otherwise, there are so many ways to grow.

How do you know when you reach these outcomes?

It is frustrating when you spend the effort in pursuing an outcome and produce no result. There needs to be some indicators that you can monitor to validate that you are doing the right work. What are these indicators? For example, revenue growth and market share for the camera distributor would be good indicators. Without any measurement, you won’t know if you are moving closer to your goal.

These three questions facilitate a thought process to crystallize the strategy for your business. They set the stage for identifying initiatives that you would undertake to realize the specified outcomes.

Evaluate Your Company’s Digital Marketing Strategy

Written by Praneetha Aniruth on . Posted in Strategy

Step 1: Evaluate your digital marketing goals.
The first step in any good digital marketing strategy evaluation is a thorough examination of the specific goals you’ve set for yourself in the past.

Step 2: Reexamine your target customer profiles.
It’s important to remember that any good digital marketing plan is founded on a series of well-constructed customer profiles that outline the specific types of people you’d like to reach through your campaigns.

Step 3: Take a look at your digital presence.
As you reexamine the types of customers you target, you’ll also want to periodically assess whether or not you’re actively participating on the right digital properties.

Step 4: Evaluate your messaging strategies.
If your digital marketing message is in line with your customer’s expectations, you’ll see high levels of engagement with your branded materials, as well as a high number of social shares as people pass your content on to others.

Step 5: Check your digital marketing ROI.
The last thing you’ll want to evaluate when it comes to assessing your digital marketing performance is your overall ROI. Now, calculating your exact returns can be difficult, but you’ll ultimately find that the data you’re able to produce are well worth your efforts.

What is Strategy?

Written by Praneetha Aniruth on . Posted in Strategy

Strategy is the direction and scope of an organisation over the long-term: which achieves advantage for the organisation through its configuration of resources within a challenging environment, to meet the needs of markets and to fulfil stakeholder expectations

Strategy at Different Levels of a Business:
Strategies exist at several levels in any organisation – ranging from the overall business (or group of businesses) through to individuals working in it.

Corporate Strategy – is concerned with the overall purpose and scope of the business to meet stakeholder expectations. This is a crucial level since it is heavily influenced by investors in the business and acts to guide strategic decision-making throughout the business. Corporate strategy is often stated explicitly in a “mission statement”.

Business Unit Strategy – is concerned more with how a business competes successfully in a particular market.It concerns strategic decisions about choice of products, meeting needs of customers, gaining advantage over competitors, exploiting or creating new opportunities etc.

Operational Strategy – is concerned with how each part of the business is organised to deliver the corporate and business-unit level strategic direction. Operational strategy therefore focuses on issues of resources, processes, people etc.

How Strategy is Managed – Strategic Management:
In its broadest sense, strategic management is about taking “strategic decisions” – decisions that answer the questions above.In practice, a thorough strategic management process has three main components

Strategic Analysis:
This is all about the analysing the strength of businesses’ position and understanding the important external factors that may influence that position. The process of Strategic Analysis can be assisted by a number of tools

Strategic Choice:
This process involves understanding the nature of stakeholder expectations (the “ground rules”), identifying strategic options, and then evaluating and selecting strategic options.

Strategy Implementation:
Often the hardest part. When a strategy has been analysed and selected, the task is then to translate it into organisational action.

The 11 Principles of Brand Strategy

Written by Praneetha Aniruth on . Posted in Strategy

1. Define your brand
It starts with your authenticity, the core purpose, vision, mission, position, values and character.  Focus on what you do best and then communicated your inimitable strengths through consistency.

2.  Your brand is your business model
Supports and challenge your business model to maximize the potential within your brand. Think of personal brands like Oprah, Donald Trump, Martha Stewart and Richard Branson.

These individuals practically built their business right on top of their personal brand; everything they offer is an extension of their brand promise.

3. Consistency, consistency, consistency
Consistency in your message is the key to differentiate.Own your position on every reference point for everything that you do.

4. Start from the Inside out
Everyone in your company can tell you what they see, think and feel about your brand.  That’s the story you should bring to the customers as well, drive impact beyond just the walls of marketing.

5. Connect on the emotional level.
A brand is not a name, logo, website, ad campaigns or PR; those are only the tools not the brand.  A brand is a desirable idea manifested in products, services, people, places and experiences.Sell people something that satisfies not only their physical needs but their emotional needs and their need to identify themselves to your brand.

6. Empower brand champions
Award those that love your brand to help drive the message, facility activities so they can be part of the process.

7. Stay relevant and flexible
A well managed brand is always making adjustments.  Branding is a process, not a race, not an event so expect to constantly tweak your message and refresh your image.

8. Align tactics with strategy
Convey the brand message on the most appropriate media platform with specific campaign objectives.

Because consumers are bombarded by commercial messages everyday, they’re also actively blocking out the great majority of them.

9. Measure the effectiveness
Focus on the ROI (return on investment) is the key to measure the effectiveness of your strategies.Ultimately it should resonate with sales and that means profitability.  But don’t just focus increasing sales when you could be getting a profit boost by reducing overheads and expenses as well.

10. Cultivate your community
Community is a powerful and effective platform on which to engage customers and create loyalty towards the brand.

11.  Practice brand strategy thinking
Essentially it means to not just settle for the choices currently available but to think outside the box without being limited.It’s always easier to execute tactics than coming up with a strategy because it implies the possibility of failure.

How To Develop a Marketing Strategy in 5 Easy Steps

Written by Praneetha Aniruth on . Posted in Strategy

A marketing strategy will help you in defining business goals and develop activities to achieve them. The benefits of a planned marketing strategy are numerous.

Here are 5 easy steps on how to do so:

1. Describe your company’s unique selling proposition

2. Define your target market.

3. Write down the benefits of your products or services.

4. Describe how you will position your products or services.

5. Define your marketing methods. Will you advertise, use Internet marketing, direct marketing, or public relations?

Tips

  1. Your Unique Selling Proposition sets you out from the rest, don’t try to develop a marketing plan without one.
  2. It’s important that you have a budget developed for your marketing plan. Marketing is an investment.
  3. Revisit your marketing plan at least once every quarter. Are you on target? Do you need to revise it?