Posted: Tue 9th Feb 2021
As a start-up, small business or entrepreneur, no one knows the value of using your resources more effectively than you.
Funds are limited for most start-ups and every founder has to make tough decisions on what they have to pay for and what they can do themselves.
While hardly any start-up would consider delivering their products themselves, many are still tempted to do their own marketing. This is strange because developing the right marketing strategy is far more complex and important than simply delivering a product.
Marketing is one of those key elements that must be done right, and a marketing consultant is an expert at doing this for you. You may be able to have a go at doing the marketing yourself, but if you want your brand to grow and develop, it's best to leave it to a professional.
Here are just some of the reasons why every business (including yours) needs a marketing consultant:
1. Marketing consultants know how to use marketing to further your business goals
Too many businesses launch themselves in the market without having a clear understanding of how their short and long-term business goals are linked to their marketing efforts.
Your business goals are where you want to be; your marketing strategy is a way to get there. Developing a solid marketing strategy requires a good understanding of the current market as well as your business's situation within it.
A clear marketing strategy helps determine what you must do with your marketing efforts to further your business goals. Marketing consultants are experts at developing a marketing strategy.
2. Marketing consultants are skilled at developing your unique selling proposition
As a business founder, you spend your day and night dealing with the details of your product. While this is great for developing the product, it's not so great for developing your unique selling proposition. Most business owners and founders are too close to their business to be able to step back and take an objective look at it.
Marketing consultants are experts at identifying and developing a distinctive niche for your product and presenting it in a way that appeals to your target customers.
They can also help identify who you target customer is. Despite what you think, it's not everyone - and it doesn't need to be! Marketing consultants are experts at identifying opportunities and market segments that may easily be missed by you.
Remember, you may have the best product or service, but if it's not marketed to the right target customers, in the right way, it's never going to be as successful as it could be.
3. Promotional planning
No one wants to waste money on pointless promotions. A marketing consultant can help avoid costly mistakes by ensuring your promotional efforts are aimed specifically at your target customers.
Marketing consultants are experts at identifying promotional tactics that suit your budget, your product and which will be targeted at your specific customer.
4. Packaging analysis
Your packaging is the first tactile engagement customers have with your product, so it's critical to get this just right. A marketing consultant will be able to guide you on what needs to be on the front of your packaging to make it stand out - in store and online.
Remember, everything from the use of colours, words, text and visuals has an impact on the way your product is perceived by customers, in just one glance - whether it comes across as premium or affordable, as natural or artificial, as vegetable or meat based. It's important to get this right to even be considered by your customer, and a marketing consultant can help with this.
5. Content development
Whether it's your website, social media channels, your blog or any other form of content, a marketing consultant can help build your external marketing message so that it's in sync with the personality of your brand. They can even do sample blogs or social media development packs to get you started and keep you going long into the future.
There is a lot a marketing consultant can do for your business. Before you spend money on Facebook ads, SEO or even a fancy website, make sure you take advice from a marketing consultant. Remember, until you're absolutely clear on your marketing strategy, target market and unique selling proposition, there is no point spending money on any of the rest.
Shalini - who's been featured on BBC Breakfast, ITV and Le Monde - is a trusted Enterprise Nation adviser with more than 15 years' experience in marketing. Book a free discovery call to discover how she can help you reach more customers, generate more sales and build your brand.