Marketing in Business

Marketing refers to activities a company undertakes to promote the buying or selling of a product or service. Marketing includes advertising, selling, and delivering products to consumers or other businesses. Though traditional marketing is still prevalent, digital marketing now allows companies to engage in newsletter, social media, affiliate, and content marketing strategies. Marketing makes use of the “marketing mix,” also known as the four Ps—product, price, place, and promotion.
Marketing as a discipline involves all the actions a company undertakes to draw in customers and maintain relationships with them. Networking with potential or past clients is part of the work too and may include writing thank you emails, playing golf with prospective clients, returning calls and emails quickly, and meeting with clients for coffee or a meal.
At its most basic level, marketing seeks to match a company’s products and services to customers who want access to those products. Matching products to customers ultimately ensures profitability.
Marketing Strategies
Marketing is comprised of an incredibly broad and diverse set of strategies. The industry continues to evolve, and the strategies below may be better suited for some companies over others.
Traditional Marketing Strategies
Before technology and the internet, traditional marketing was the primary way companies would market their goods to customers. The main types of traditional marketing strategies includes:
• Outdoor Marketing: This entails public displays of advertising external to a consumer’s house. This includes billboards, printed advertisements on benches, sticker wraps on vehicles, or advertisements on public transit.
• Print Marketing: This entails small, easily printed content that is easy to replicate. Traditionally, companies often mass produced printed materials, as the printed content was the same for all customers. Today, more flexibility in printing processes means that materials can be differentiated.
• Direct Marketing: This entails specific content delivered to potential customers. Some print marketing content could be mailed. Otherwise, direct marketing mediums could include coupons, vouchers for free goods, or pamphlets.
• Electronic Marketing: This entails use of TV and radio for advertising. Though short bursts of digital content, a company can convey information to a customer through visual or auditory media that may grab a viewer’s attention better than a printed form above.
• Event Marketing: This entails attempting to gather potential customers at a specific location for the opportunity to speak with them about products or demonstrate products. This includes conferences, trade shows, seminars, roadshows, or private events.
Digital Marketing
The marketing industry has been forever changed with the introduction of digital marketing. From the early days of pop-up ads to targeted placements based on viewing history, there are now innovating ways companies can reach customers through digital marketing.
• Search Engine Marketing: This entails companies attempting to increase search traffic through two ways. First, companies can pay search engines for placement on result pages. Second, companies can emphasize search engine optimization (SEO) techniques to organically place highly on search results.
• E-mail Marketing: This entails companies obtaining customer or potential customer e-mail addresses and distributing messages or newsletters. These messages can include coupons, discount opportunities, or advance notice of upcoming sales.
• Social Media Marketing: This entails building an online presence on specific social media platforms. Like search engine marketing, companies can place paid advertisements to bypass algorithms and obtain a higher chance of being seen by viewers. Otherwise, a company can attempt to organically grow by posting content, interacting with followers, or uploading media like photos and videos.
• Affiliate Marketing: This entails using third-party advertising to drive customer interest. Often, an affiliate that will get a commission from a sale will do affiliate marketing as the third-party is incentivized to drive a sale for a good that is not their own original product.
• Content Marketing: This entails creating content, whether eBooks, infographics, video seminars, or other downloadable content. The goal is to create a product (often free) to share information about a product, obtain customer information, and encourage customers to continue with the company beyond the content.

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