Internet Marketing Talk : What is a Marketing Mix

Internet Marketing Talk: What is a Marketing Mix?

While Purple Tie Guys are mostly disciplined in the form of internet marketing, we do acknowledge that there is an appropriate time and place for traditional marketing formats. But why? Shouldn’t we, as a digital company, discourage or at least underplay the use of traditional media marketing. Honestly, to dismiss a traditional avenue of marketing promotion entirely would be shortsighted. That is because any marketer worth their paycheck knows to keep their options open when coming up with a compatible marketing mix. What is a marketing mix, and when does a traditional marketing format come into play over the internet marketing version?

marketing mix, internet marketingThe Basics of a Marketing Mix

A marketing mix is a combination of 4 “P’s”.  They are product, price, place, and promotion. While there are oftentimes debate over just how many p’s to add in the term, the average consensus is just the 4.  In a perfect world, a marketer will have control over all four of the “p'”s. But, oftentimes, the job of the marketer is limited to the demands and resources that the client has available to them.

Aside: In my experience, marketers have little control over the actual product or the price because that is oftentimes already determined by the client. Unless you are in charge of creating your own products or are working with a company from concept to execution, marketers might not even have any control over 2 of the 4 P’s in place. However, I will still include product and price, because they are still viable strategies when it comes to adjustment in the marketing mix.

 

Product

This part of the marketing mix can range from a tangible good to an intangible service. It is the feature that is going to be promoted. And if you have any hope of promoting it to the right people for the right purpose, you need to understand it inside and out. That means a thorough examination of the product or service itself. Usually, it is best to apply a Socratic line of questioning to at least get a grasp of what it is and who it is meant for.

A few of these questions include:

  • What can a customer expect to get from this product/ service?
  • What features does it have to meet customer needs?
    • Are there any features you’ve missed out?
    • Is there a reason why that feature is missing in the first place?
    • Are you including features that the customer won’t actually use?
    • Is it breaking the bank for both the customer and the manufacturer?
    • Did the development of the product or service go through the proper legal channels and regulations?
  • How and where will the customer use it?
  • What does it look like? How will customers experience it?
  • What size(s), color(s), and so on, should it be?
  • How is it going branded?
  • How can you differentiate it from the competition?

 

Price

This part of the marketing mix can be determined even less by an internet marketing company or a traditional one. This is simply due to the fact that value is determined by the consensus of the market place and the inclusion of tax fees from the local and federal government. However, the adjustments can be made to affect the clientele’s perception of pricing appropriateness.

For example, you might want to charge a little lower if the target demographic you are aiming for is a bargain bin hunter. Or, you might charge more, just to increase the perception of importance/ necessity to a potential client. What’s more, some people are more willing to buy an item that visually appears cheaper.  In spite of the fact, it is objectively the same price across the board. $12.99 just looks better to some people than $13.00.

Also, if you are just dying to move product because there is damage to the packaging, then you can clearance it out, and still have a shot of moving a product that you previously had little chance of moving before.

This is because price sensitivity changes from client to client because their mindsets vary according to the situation. Just be observant and figure out the behavior of your buyers for a more effective sales tactic.

 

Promotion

This one is the one that most people come to marketers for in general. Promotion is about: What the message is, the way it is given to an audience, and the likelihood it is to entice a person.

Most marketers utilize something like demography to figure out what medium their target audience is most likely using. There is also the matter of timing, which is the right point the message should be heard, and how often that target audience should hear it.  After all, people get annoyed FAST when they start seeing Christmas promotions around August on their television screens. It is a delicate balance of finding where your target market is, analyzing their habits, and relaying the message in the correct way to garner a positive result.

Aside: If your client is unwilling to budge on timing, avenue, or even the message, especially if you have shown them your research, then there is really no point in working for them. There is at least a fiscal argument to Price. The argument for Product comes from the fact that it’s already mostly developed to the point of inflexibility. However, if the rigidity extends to the point where they are insistent that they know what they are doing, there is no point in leading that horse to water anymore.

 

Place

This one is about product distribution more than anything else. After all, you don’t want people just to see the advertising. You also want to make sure the product is just as easily distributed.  Even if the product is abstract, like a web service, if you are unable to provide what you claim to have or keep channels of communication open about its development, you are going to look like a con artist.

So, take the time to figure out where your target market is getting the stuff from. How easy can you distribute the product to other people? What is a cost-effective way to distribute your product?  Should it appear easily available to a large public, or should it appear specialized and scarce? This is the part where the magic happens. If you can’t give your customers a good impression of your product or service, you are not going to be able to keep their money for long.

 

Conclusion

Whether you are an internet marketing company or a traditional entity, the best you can do is to look at the situation from all angles.  The 4 P’s are certainly a good start. However, you need to go above and beyond if you want serious results. That usually involves putting yourself in the shoes of your client. Or humbling yourself to ask questions and get insight from others.

www.purpletieguys.com

By |2019-03-22T17:39:16-05:00March 22nd, 2019|Post|Comments Off on Internet Marketing Talk : What is a Marketing Mix

Digital Marketing -What Are You Really Selling?

Digital Marketing -What Are You Really Selling?

As someone who has immersed themselves in a world of traditional and digital marketing, I have certainly picked up a few surprising things. I have learned to glean over data, look for retention, find what works and what doesn’t, and look into the latest in how technology is playing a role in things like implicit and explicit advertising.

But what intrigues me is the core of it all. What are marketers, digital or not, really selling? A lot of people assume that marketing and sales involve just getting the product to the consumer. From point a to point b. But if it was that easy, we wouldn’t have an entire study industry devoted to the concept. So, what is digital marketing? What makes it part of our culture on the Web?

 

Digital Marketing is Accessibility

digital marketingI might be showing my age a little bit, but I remember a time before the Internet got big. My only access to the world before then was through documentaries on television and books, usually encyclopedias. Those pictures of faraway places like China, Argentina, and Kenya were more or less limited to my imagination.

But when the internet was becoming more mainstream, I was giddy, if not outright enthusiastic, because I was able to talk to people from so far away. I made friends, got into arguments, and offered support to people that were literally on the opposite ends of the country. I even talked to people from other parts of the world that I always wanted to go to. It was risky, very risky. But it still opened a whole new world of possibilities.

And I will be forever grateful for it.

Now, if some random person can gain access to people, places, and ideas that they have never heard of, what do you think the possibilities could be for an advertising group? If a digital marketing company makes it big, chances are, they not only had financial backing but also the flexibility of time, location, and new ideas on their side.

However, involvement is no guarantee of success either. After all, the internet is a ridiculously critical place, because EVERYONE has access. Meaning…

 

Digital Marketing Demands Creativity and Willingness to Keep Pace

One of the most frustrating thing that seems to butt heads with traditional marketing groups that have long been established, is that they can’t rely on the same tactics and messaging over and over again and expect different results.

While people are for the most part, habitual in their day to day activities, that does not mean that they don’t get sick and tired of being told to buy the exact same thing, at the exact same place, in the exact same way over and over again. Even though people in groups may be easily lead, individuals are getting smarter. They work harder to pick up on when someone is selling to them, and what is actually in it for them.  What’s more, software, hardware, and algorithms are constantly changing in the world of technology. If you cannot catch up to any of it, you will be left behind.

Successful digital marketing cannot rely on laziness or complacency. The only thing that a company or a marketing group can do to shake things up is to at least alter the message, the format, or the product.

If you can do all that and keep up with the changes in technology, you will no doubt be ahead of the pack.

But how does a digital marketing company, miss the mark completely? What if they are missing the mark in communicating with the primary users of the latest technology, the youth? How do you even communicate with those Millenials and Aught’s anyway?

 

Digital Marketing Demands Sincerity in Message and Practice

The values of these two market demographics are vastly different if not outright incompatible with the messaging tactics of yesterday. For starters, these two generations are demanding something gen z, digital marketingthat exists way outside of the realm of traditional advertising sensibilities, authenticity. In the latest complaints about Instagram ads from its primary users, (ages 25-34), the biggest included:

  •  62% of those displeased with adverting in survey stating that, influencer content ‘takes advantage of impressionable audiences’.
  • 55% stated that aspirational posts were ‘too materialistic’.
  • 54% of that group said influencers ‘misrepresented real life’.

This is a far cry from the assertion from older generations that claim that the latest generation is more narcissistic than ever. If anything, they are the exact opposite. And they put their money where their mouth is.  According to Mckinsey.com, this implies three things that are up and coming for the digital marketing world with Gen Z as their target audience, “Companies should be attuned to three implications for this generation: consumption as access rather than possession, consumption as an expression of individual identity, and consumption as a matter of ethical concern.” This means that brands should expect to share a level of authenticity and demonstrate a level of ethics that is far past the comfort zone of previous generations.

 

Digital Marketing Belongs to the Young

So just tying a brand to an event or paying lip service will not cut it anymore. Especially not to the first generation that grew up as “digital natives”. This probably outright terrifies brands and marketers who are very much used to navigating a traditional landscape in Gen X territory. Because it is vastly opposite to Gen X-er values.

It means doing an exact 180 degree turn around in digital marketing strategies and even branding. And not all companies are going to be willing to adapt. That is probably why there is so much negative pushback between established forms of marketing and media vs newer formats today. They both embrace the opposite values. Because the old values of status, materialism, and competition are slowly dying out in favor of uniqueness, authenticity, and cooperation, they know that their days are numbered.

 

Conclusion

And it is certainly interesting to watch as the field of digital marketing keeps growing.  We have seen so many changes in the past two decades alone in both the technological and marketing landscapes.  Either way, Digital marketing has become a lot of things to a lot of people. It is accessibility. It is creativity and the spirit of change. Most importantly, it is diversity and sincerity.

 

If you want more advice or are looking for a Digital Marketer in the Decatur, Alabama area, give us a call!

www.purpletieguys.com

By |2019-03-17T12:49:55-05:00March 17th, 2019|Post|Comments Off on Digital Marketing -What Are You Really Selling?

Local SEO and Service Based Companies without Physical Locations

Local SEO and Service Based Companies

Marketers, search engine wizards, and techies alike understand the concept of search engine optimization or SEO. As a practice, SEO is an organic, long-term set of consistent actions that increases web visibility for specific sites. However, when it comes to local search engine results or local SEO, it can get a little hairy. It comes with the key word of that phrase, “local”. Small service-based companies, especially ones that don’t have a ‘brick and mortar’ base of operations, or have multiple locations, often find themselves frustrated with lack of acknowledgment as a legitimate business by everyone. If you aren’t in a business bureau listing or if you don’t have the brand recognition of a franchisee, it is all too easy for a small service-based business to look illegitimate. Especially to someone like their customer base.

That is why so many small service-based businesses, rely on the internet for connections, advertising, and revenue.  However, because there are so many people who are relying on the internet as they are starting out, it is far too easy for broken promises, lousy service, and outright scammy behavior.

So, what can a legitimate service-based business do to gain awareness from their potential clientele locally? And, what is the right/ wrong way to go about it? Here are a few things to keep in mind.

local seo

Be Mindful of Presentation

First impressions are everything, whether we like it or not. You cannot claim to know or have something without some sort of evidence to back it up. So, if you want to make sure your clients, and Google are less likely to turn you away, you need to put the extra effort in the visual aesthetic of your promotional materials. Whether it is a website or a printed out sign, you want to give a unified and comprehensive message about what service you offer.

So, don’t be sloppy when you are trying to advertise your local service based business on and offline. Ask a professional, or someone who is good at spotting details to make sure the message you want to send is the right one.

In terms of Local SEO, make sure that your information is relevant to what you offer in the immediate area. Talk about what your business entails and show visible examples of your training. This will increase the likelihood of a client picking up your company for a job.  Also, check to make your your website and social media is updated, and easy for others to navigate.  Google give you a small boost in both local and non-local search rankings if your site is easy for people to both navigate and understand.

 

Aside:

It is absolutely important that you want to put your best foot forward. But you also don’t want give off the impression of inauthenticity. If you are trying to promise something that you can’t deliver, or if you are trying to “cheat” the system both on and offline, you will pay in the long term. That can look like a Google penalty online, or a lawsuit/ out of business sign offline.

 

Keep a Constant Online and Offline Presence in the Local Sphere

The advantage of not having a physical location, is that you can go anywhere. You can make appointments at any place, with any person, at any time. The world is your oyster. However, the minute you stop meeting with people, networking, and making yourself visible, you are much more likely going to be completely and utterly forgotten.  The same principle works online as well as offline.  If you keep your website updated, reach others through social media, and keep your information updated, you will receive a higher priority for Local SEO rankings. However, if you leave it sitting on its own and do nothing to draw attention to your business site, and avoid listing your location to match for relevant searches, you are going to be much less likely to get a positive rating or attention from google algorithms.

 

Pay Attention to Accuracy in Local Listings

local seoIf you are working from home with a P.O Box, or if you have multiple locations and only one building, do not attempt to add a listing for a location that isn’t there.  Google Maps is first and foremost about the accurate indexing of physical locations. If Maps sends direction to a location that is not there, it looks bad for them. Especially, to anyone who is relying on Maps for credible information. Because Google wants people using it to trust them for information, it cannot afford to send out bad information in the name of advertising.  So if you go out of your way to falsify a location listing you will not only be penalized but will also lose out on the time and money that you spent trying to get it on there in the first place.

Some of the things that you can do instead, according to Miriam Ellis at MOZ is :

 1) Go after organic rankings for that city via the authority you build surrounding website content+links for that city.

2) Pay for visibility with locally-targeted PPC.

3) Use social media to try to build brand awareness for your work in that city.

4) Do everything you can to encourage word-of-mouth among existing customers. Customers in your location have friends and family elsewhere. Make a superior effort to offer the type of superior service that would cause the your customers to recommend your services to others. Consider how loyalty programs might assist with this. Perhaps every customer who brings you a new customer gets a voucher for a free dinner, free massage, etc.

5) Explore building relationships with related businesses in a nearby local location you are trying to break into. Perhaps your company does everything but bake the cake for weddings. Find the best bakers in City B and see how you can help one another in terms of lead generation.

 

Conclusion

If you are accurate with the information you have, are mindful of your presentation, and are actively communicating with your clientele, then you will no doubt see your service based business and your Local SEO search results grow. Just put yourself out there and make a conscious effort. If you don’t know about something like Local SEO, you can always ask us at www.purpletieguys.com.

By |2019-03-11T17:01:57-05:00March 11th, 2019|Post|Comments Off on Local SEO and Service Based Companies without Physical Locations