Marketing Strategy for Home Business Success

What it is and how do you develop one in your home business?

Strategy
Research and plan your marketing strategy. Credit: andresr | Getty Images

Updated March 2016 Leslie Truex

Definition of Marketing Strategy: 

Marketing strategy incorporates what you know about how your business fits into the market and the 5 Ps of marketing,  to develop your techniques and tactics that will achieve your marketing objectives. The marketing strategy is most often a section of your business plan.

 

Sometimes marketing strategy is confused with a marketing plan, but they are different.

Your marketing strategy focuses on what you want to achieve for your business and marketing efforts. A marketing plan details how you'll achieve those goals. 

When is a Marketing Strategy Developed?

The marketing strategy is created before you even start a business. Before you can market, you need to understand how your business fits into the marketplace, your competition, how you'll compete, and what you need to achieve (i.e. sales numbers) to reach your financial goals. Then, you use what you've learned to create your marketing plan, and start your business.

Like a business plan, marketing strategies are static. Once your business is operational, you'll no doubt need to adjust your marketing strategy from time to time to account for market conditions, shifts in demand and other factors you identify as a result of your market research activities and resulting from the performance of your business.

 

How to Create a Marketing Strategy

Before writing your marketing strategy, you need to know how your product or service benefits others and how it's unique (unique selling proposition) to others in the marketplace. Further you need to do market research to understand your competition, your target market, and other factors that will impact your ability to reach and entice people to your business.

Once you have your research, you can write your marketing strategy, incorporating the 5 Ps of your marketing mix:

Product: What you selling? What are the physical attributes of your product or uniqueness of your service? How is what you offer different from your competitors and what benefits does it provide your customer?

Price: What will it cost to get your product or service? How does it compare to your competition? What will your profit margin be by selling at that price?

Place: Where will your products and services be available for purchase? This is beyond having a home office, and instead should be where consumers are able buy. If you're in multiple places, you should work to calculate the percentage of sales from each place. For example, what will your Internet marketing strategy be?  What is your sales strategy? How will the transaction take place, what is the cost of getting the product or service to the consumer/client, and what will be your refund/return policy?

Promotion: How are you going to the market know about your product or services? How will you let them know about the features and benefits you provide to entice them to check out what you offer? What tactics will you use and what do you anticipate will be the results of each method?

Include information about any incentives or coupons you'll use to attract business.

People: This in a newly added "P" to the marketing mix, and is important if other people are involved in helping you create or deliver your product or service. Who are these people (i.e. sales people, virtual assistants) and what do they do (i.e. sales calls, customer service)? What is there level of training and/or experience in providing help to your business?

When writing your plan, be specific, using detailed steps, visuals, and budget projections.