Tactical Marketing vs. Strategic Marketing
In simple terms, a strategy is a plan for reaching a specific goal, while a tactic is the means you use to reach the goal. In business, a strategy is a broad goal, such as increasing sales or market share or creating an particular image for your business. Tactics for creating an image or brand might include using price to establish you as affordable or high-end. When creating marketing plans, start with broad strategies and support them with specific tactics.
Strategic marketing consists of selling your product in such a way that you achieve a goal. Goals can include increasing sales, revenues, market share, segmenting the market or creating a new brand or position in the marketplace. An example of a marketing strategy would be to maintain your existing revenues with less advertising or using fewer locations. Even though strategic marketing goals might be conceptual, try to make them as specific as possible. For example, instead of setting a goal of increasing sales, set a goal of increasing sales by a certain percentage or among a specific market segment, such as women, seniors or parents. Part of strategic marketing includes adjusting your price, position and actual product or service to help you achieve your goals.
Once you have goals, including specific strategies for achieving your goals, determine how you will implement your strategies. If you want to increase your revenues, one tactic might be to raise your prices in conjunction with rebranding a product or service as upscale. If you want to increase market share among health-conscious consumers, you might start sponsoring sporting events or advertising in health and fitness magazines.
Know Your Customers
To create tactics to support your marketing strategies, create detailed profiles of your customers. Learn the age, gender, marital status, geographic location, educational level, parental status and other information about your current customers, as well as customers you want to attract. Without this information, it will be difficult to create strategies and even more difficult to tactically implement them. Knowing your customer demographics will help you choose the right marketing channels, such as advertising media, to reach your customers.
Use a variety of marketing channels to implement tactics. Selecting the right advertising media, public relations, cause marketing, sports marketing, public relations and distribution channels are critical to creating effective tactics. For example, if your strategy to increase revenue is to position and price your shoes as upscale, but you sell the shoes in discount stores, your tactic will not effectively support your strategy. If one of your strategies is to increase sales among single women, sponsoring women s 5K runs and tennis leagues might be an effective tactic.
About the Author
Sam Ashe-Edmunds has been writing and lecturing for decades. He has worked in the corporate and nonprofit arenas as a C-Suite executive, serving on several nonprofit boards. He is an internationally traveled sport science writer and lecturer. He has been published in print publications such as Entrepreneur, Tennis, SI for Kids, Chicago Tribune, Sacramento Bee, and on websites such Smart-Healthy-Living.net, SmartyCents and Youthletic. Edmunds has a bachelor s degree in journalism.