Shape Marketing works with you on your journey, long or short, addressing challenges providing tailor-made solutions to help achieve your organisation’s goals, we understand that no company is the same.
We have developed a five stage process which we use to guide you through marketing strategy development to implementation and measurement, and although each stage is not required by every organisation, it gives you a great insight into how we approach things.
Getting to know you
This is an initial meeting or conversation to discuss your challenges and goals and to see how we could help you. Most importantly, it’s to see whether we ‘click’ and if we can work well together. If we’re making strategic recommendations and rolling out marketing plans, you need to feel we can develop a good relationship.
At the end of this session, based on the information we have, we’ll go away and put together a proposal with options taking into account your budget, which we’ll present to you. If it needs working on, we’ll tweak until it’s what you need.
Understanding your business
To be truly effective, we need to fully understand your business: your goals, your customers, your processes, your market and your long-term vision. Laying this foundation ensures greater success in the long run. To get an idea of what’s involved we determine this sort of thing:
- What your current products/services are, volumes, margins
- Who your customers are: where are they, who are they, where do they buy, which are your best ones and why, what they think of you, have you segmented them
- What the external market is doing
- What competitors you have and what they are doing
- Your vision and goals and KPIs
- Your strengths and weaknesses, opportunities and threats
- Your customer experience and journey – are your processes delivering
- What capacity you have for growth
Strategic planning and goal setting
Using the insights we’ve gained in the ‘understanding’ phase we then develop business and marketing strategies that focus on your key objectives, ensuring your business goals and vision are supported. This can take the form of market, product or customer recommendations looking at segmentation, sales channels, pricing, packages, communications, competitive positioning, process improvement, customer engagement, market research and so on. We also look at the most appropriate metrics and establish a baseline measurement.
During the planning stage, the strategic recommendations we produce are completely based on the challenges facing your individual organisation and your available resources to implement it. We also work with you to help develop and sell the strategy internally. We know that if key directors and managers are not on board with a programme, it is unlikely to be successful.
The last thing we want is to produce something that just remains a dusty document on a shelf as that benefits no-one.
Monitor and review
Understanding which activities work and how to measure them is vital in order to improve your performance. Key performance indicators at a high level e.g. customer retention, customer acquisition cost, sales volume, market share etc. are often required, but it is also important to try to monitor effectiveness of individual marketing activities to ensure the marketing budget is being spent effectively. We can help you decide which are the best metrics for your organisation.
During this stage, a review process is established. Agreed strategies and tactics always need to be flexible so that they can respond to market changes or new intelligence. Ensuring monitoring is implemented allows us to learn from the market and tweak the plan to ensure effective delivery and help you achieve your goals.
Next, once the strategy is agreed, is honing the implementation plan and delivering it. This involves detailing individual activities and timings and agreeing a budget and other resources needed to deliver it. Some organisations will be able to develop their own plans – we work with you and your team to ensure that the planning is put into practice and that the strategy isn’t just a dust collector on a shelf.
However, if you don’t have the skills in-house or supporting your business externally, we can assist you with implementation to ensure your strategic plan is implemented successfully.