It is estimated that around 627,000 businesses are created every year in the US. If we look at the entrepreneurship and innovation scene from above, we cannot help but notice that it is at an all-time high. Venture capitalists and investors are also channeling their capital to new businesses now more than ever.
This influx of businesses in the market is thanks in part, to how the use of the Internet has made it easier to run a business. Entrepreneurs can now reach a global market from the comfort of their couch due to the advancements in technology and digital marketing. Today, there’s enough data made available that equips entrepreneurs with all the knowledge they need about consumer behavior and how to meet those. That’s why the ability to attract and maintain customers is seen as a vital component to the success of any business.
Nevertheless, the line between success and failure is too fine that some startup/business owners and entrepreneurs fail to notice it. In fact, despite the many advantages that these businesses possess, 20% still fail within their first year of operation. As a result, we’ve been asking around, reading advice from entrepreneurs here and there in order to tell what sets apart a successful business idea from one that’s doomed to fail.
The answer is this: EVERY ENTREPRENEUR SHOULD ALSO BE A MARKETER.
Relationship between entrepreneurship and marketing
Apart from finances, marketing is the second biggest challenge facing businesses today. These two challenges are interrelated and if unsecured, they can put any new business idea in a vicious cycle that will eventually lead it to failure. A below average marketing strategy will only reduce sales and profits. In return, there will be a decline in the resources available to run the business causing it to fail. This is why marketing should be at the core of any business.
Any entrepreneur should be well aware of the importance of marketing for their business. As a matter of fact, entrepreneurs and marketing have a lot in common; for instance both have the consumer as their focal point. That being said, in order for any new business idea to succeed, the entrepreneur behind it needs to be well-aware of their consumer needs and be familiar with the resources needed to meet those. Even with a big team of marketers below, every entrepreneur needs to be marketing-savvy.
1. To stay ahead of the competition
In today’s market, the consumer has a wide variety of choices. On a daily basis, they are bombarded by non-stop ads encouraging them to invest their time and money in different products. Companies are using various forms of digital marketing to ensure that they stay in constant communication with their customers. If we look at Coca Cola -an already well-established business-, they continue to market their products aggressively, even though their consumers outnumber any of their competition. But still, in 2018, the company used 18.6% ($5.4 billion) of its total revenue on marketing alone. Why? To always stay ahead of the competition.
Many entrepreneurs who lack knowledge about marketing end up believing that their sales are only affected by the quality of their products, and not their marketing strategy. This is where they have it wrong. It is vital that every entrepreneur has a marketing background to make sure that their product is impeccable but also to ensure that their marketing strategy is top-notch and that it will convert and deliver them the results they want. Because even Coca Cola does it.
2. To build brand awareness the right way
We live in the age of information.
The use of the internet has revolutionized how companies are advertising their products to consumers. A study conducted in 2017 showed that 88% of consumers researched a product online before purchasing it. This means that if your potential customer looks your company up online and does not find it, they will turn to your competition to meet their needs.
Most small businesses are not fully harnessing the power of the Internet and social media as a marketing tool. A study found that less than 64% of small businesses claim to have a website. When an entrepreneur lacks knowledge about the latest digital marketing trends, their focal point again will only be on the product and not their product visibility. As a result, the power of the internet and social media channels such as Facebook will be completely overlooked. If there are 1.69 billion people using Facebook today, placing an ad on this platform can undoubtedly sell a product to a wide audience easily and build relationships.
When that is overlooked by an entrepreneur, their business automatically loses its chances of fostering a sense of loyalty and building brand awareness.
3. To truly know the market they are operating in
Identifying a niche in the market and filling it adequately is the basis of any entrepreneurial venture. To do so, a thorough knowledge of the market is required. If you can understand your consumers and their changing needs, you will easily navigate the world of business.
Targeted content is one way to effectively reach your audience, whether through your website, social media or personalized emails. This is why any entrepreneur must be marketing-savvy to understand that targeted marketing has a higher ROI than any other form of marketing and communicate this knowledge to their small team accordingly.
4. To grow their business
When an entrepreneur lacks knowledge about the impact of attracting and maintaining customers to their business when it comes to increasing profit margins, they will automatically choose to avoid large spendings on marketing.
However, if an entrepreneur is marketing-savvy, they will immediately know that digital marketing is rather an effective and a cost-friendly venture. Let’s take social media marketing for example. This is one of the cheapest forms of advertising available. One advertisement on Instagram costs about $5 for every 1000 impressions.
This reduced cost of advertising translates to more money retained that can be directed to other facets of the business. An entrepreneur skilled in marketing knows that increasing customers to their business with marketing efforts will eventually cut down on costs and save their business at the same time.
Due to misinformation or lack of adequate funding, some entrepreneurs sometimes tend to overlook the importance of marketing and concentrate solely on perfecting their product. However, due to hyper-competition, this is not enough.
Having a market-focused business model is beneficial to your success as an entrepreneur and to the success of your business. Focusing on a smart marketing strategy is paramount if you want your venture to succeed in this ever-competitive world.
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