The Unified Theory of Marketing
This article outlines a typical marketing strategy, identifying its pain points for users and marketing teams alike. After looking at the marketing strategy, the secret will be revealed! You may be surprised at what the secret is, because it isn’t hidden at all. In fact, it’s right in front of you. Once you know what the secret is, you will see how your marketing strategy falls short, and you will know what to do about it.
There are a lot of marketing strategies that include a montage of channels and approaches that are more or less wired together. Each channel does its own thing without really considering the other channels. The result: a marketing strategy that lacks coherence and, by extension, its ability to meet marketing goals. Companies that have figured out the secret have seen substantial improvement in their marketing efforts in every channel.
What’s most intriguing about this secret is that it’s so obvious, once you see it.
The secret? The most effective marketing strategies share one thing in common: a deeply shared vision of the brand. You may think your marketing team already has a shared vision of the brand, but do they really?
What does a deeply shared vision of a brand look like?
When a brand’s vision is shared, its core message shines through in every marketing channel. This isn’t always the case in practice. Each marketing channel tends to focus on its own specific goals without giving much thought to the strategy as a whole. The best way to see this in action is to approach it from the user’s perspective. Engage each channel as a user and potential customer and see what your brand’s marketing strategy looks like from the other side. Is there a consistent look and feel? Is the user experience consistent throughout all channels? Does the brand’s core message shine through every channel? A lack of consistency in marketing channels translates to confusion and frustration in the user. This leads to dissatisfied customers who turn to another brand.
A high level of consistency and coherence across marketing channels may appear to be severely limiting, but that’s actually not the case. Setting such constraints forces your marketing team to be creative in developing channels that collectively present a clear, coherent image of the brand for the world to see. The result: major gains in new customers, substantially improved customer retention, CRM, and increased lifetime value of the customer.
If your marketing strategy is a mashup, it’s time to transform it into a refined portrait of your brand.
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