Marketing strategies can be quite confusing. Which one is the best? Here are the top marketing strategies for Business to Customer sales, and what they mean.
Social Networks and Viral Marketing
Social media marketing focuses on providing users with content they find valuable and want to share across their social networks, resulting in increased visibility and traffic. Social media shares of content, videos, and images also influence Search Engine Optimization (SEO) efforts in that they often increase relevancy in search results within social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram and search engines like Google and Yahoo.
Paid Media Advertising
Paid media is a tool that companies use to grow their website traffic through paid advertising. One of the most popular methods is pay-per-click (PPC) links. Essentially, a company buys or “sponsors” a link that appears as an ad in search engine results when keywords related to their product or service are searched (this process is commonly known as search engine marketing, or SEM). Every time the ad is clicked, the company pays the search engine (or other third party host site) a small fee for the visitor — a literal “pay per click.”
Internet marketing, or online marketing, combines web and email to advertise and drive e-commerce sales. Social media platforms may also be included to leverage brand presence and promote products and services. In total, these efforts are typically used in conjunction with traditional advertising formats like radio, television, and print.
Email marketing is a highly effective way to nurture and convert leads. However, it’s not a game of chance, as to whether your message winds up in spam filters. Instead, email marketing is an automated process that targets specific prospects and customers with the goal of influencing their purchasing decisions. Email marketing success is measured by open rates and click-through rates, so strategy comes into play, particularly when it’s used as a component of a larger internet marketing initiative.
Direct selling accomplishes exactly what the name suggests — marketing and selling products directly to consumers. In this model, sales agents build face-to-face relationships with individuals by demonstrating and selling products away from retail settings, usually in an individual’s home.
Point-of-Purchase Marketing (POP)
Point-of-Purchase marketing (or POP marketing) sells to a captive audience — those shoppers already in-store and ready to purchase. Product displays, on-package coupons, shelf talkers that tout product benefits, and other attention-getting “sizzle” often sway buying decisions at the shelf by making an offer simply too good — and too visible — to pass up.
Cobranding, Affinity, and Cause Marketing
Co-branding is a marketing methodology in which at least two brands join together to promote and sell a single product or service. The brands lend their collective credibility to increase the perception of the product or service’s value, so consumers are willing to pay more at retail. Secondarily, co-branding may dissuade private label manufacturers from copying the product or service. Similarly, affinity marketing is a partnership between a company (supplier) and an organization that gathers persons sharing the same interests — for instance a coffee shop that sells goods from a local bakery.
Conversational marketing is just that — a conversation. Real-time interaction via a chatbot or live chat gets the right information in front of prospects and customers at the right time, allows them to self-service, and get questions answered immediately. Personalized, relevant engagement vastly improves the user experience. For B2C businesses, conversational marketing is especially effective because it and scales your customer service typically cuts the time buyers stay in the sales funnel. Conversions happen quicker because relationships are established quicker.
Earned media (or “free media”) is publicity that is created through efforts other than paid advertising. It can take a variety of forms — a social media testimonial, word-of-mouth, a television or radio mention, a newspaper article or editorial — but one thing is constant: earned media is unsolicited and can only be gained organically. It cannot be bought or owned like traditional advertising.
Brand storytelling uses a familiar communication format to engage consumers at an emotional level. Rather than just spew facts and figures, storytelling allows you to weave a memorable tale of who your company is, what you do, how you solve problems, want you value, and how you engage and contribute to your community and the public in general.
Now that you have a better understanding of the types of marketing strategies, you can find the best one to suit your needs as a business.