These marketing terms will make your strategy emerge from the fog

Marketing terms aren’t just something to be highlighted in a textbook and then stored in a box in the basement. Like the defogger on your windshield, marketing terms and concepts enable you to see marketing clearly. Understanding marketing terms can mean the difference between throwing marketing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks or spooning a well-planned message directly into customers’ hungry mouths. We help our clients use sound marketing concepts to focus their messages. Consider these three terms and the implications of not knowing them:

1. Brand. A brand is the definition consumers hold in their minds of a company and its products. A brand is formed in two ways: by what consumers experience and by what they are told. Now that you know the definition, listen to how people use the word “brand”. You’re going to find some people simply use the term “brand” as a synonym for the word “product”. I guess they think it makes them sound smart. If you happen to be one of these people, remember this: Just because people aren’t telling you your shirt is on inside out doesn’t mean they aren’t thinking it.

Branding is all about shaping people’s thoughts in way that causes them to desire your product more than their money. That’s no easy task. It’s going to work out better if the agency you hire to build your brand actually knows what a brand is.

2. Positioning. Positioning is how your product is positioned in the mind of the consumer as compared to the competition. As prospective customers go through the Consumer Buying Process (another marketing term) they reach a stage where they compare your product to their other choices. If you don’t know what Positioning is, how can you know that you need to define your competitors before your competitors define you?

3. Product Lifecycle. A Product Lifecycle is the period of time a product, service or offering exists in the marketplace from its introduction to its discontinuation. Products should be marketed differently depending on their stage in the Product Lifecycle. In the Introductory stage you should use Promotional Mix Channels that allow time to reach and teach people about your product. When your product is in the Maturity and Declining stages, there’s no need to teach anymore. You need to reach and remind consumers to buy the product they already know about. How can you do that if you aren’t familiar with the concept of a Product Lifecycle?

Whether you know marketing terms inside and out or don’t know them at all, you can count on us to know them. Once we’ve helped our clients define their strategy, they often feel as though a jumble of competing ideas has been organized into a clear plan. This clarity can bring our clients both peace of mind and increased sales.

The three marketing terms discussed in this blog aren’t new and flashy like “ZMOT” and “long-tail”. They’re more like the classic blue jeans that stay popular long after zebra-print pants and gigantic bellbottoms have been donated to Goodwill or used as Halloween costumes.

Don’t get me wrong. We take advantage of the newest marketing trends, as well. We’re a full-service hybrid agency that can create and execute every element of a fully integrated promotional campaign. We embrace the new, but time-tested strategies are the foundation that makes our clients’ messages powerful and consistent.

Call us at 952-697-5269 or complete our contact form. Let us show you how academic marketing principles clarify your marketing strategy. There are other marketing terms you need to know, too. If you would like, we can sign you up for daily e-mails that teach you a new marketing term every day of the month. You’ll feel so much better when you can define your strategy more clearly.

Written by Lonny Kocina

Lonny is a visionary who is passionate about marketing. He believes that to be a truly great agency, our professional advice and deliverables must be based on a solid marketing foundation. He has made it his mission to ensure that everyone on our team knows and understands the basic marketing concepts and the SAM 6 process. Lonny pioneered the concept of our nationally trademarked Pay Per Interview Publicity® business model which enables clients to purchase publicity by the story. “It’s a familiar concept. If you pay for a pizza, you get a pizza; if pay for a car, you get a car; and with us, if you pay for media coverage, you get media coverage,” he explains. “Clients come to us because they are tired of paying hourly retainers and getting little tangible return.” When the Internet was in its infancy, Lonny also had the business foresight to quickly reserve portal web addresses such as publicity, media relations and checkerboard, and advised clients to do the same. Nearly 30 years since launching this agency, Lonny’s still finds great joy thinking about, talking about and writing about product promotion. He thrives on expanding our ability to help clients tell their stories to the masses.

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