Business marketing is constantly evolving, especially amid the digital age. While there is a myriad of common marketing tactics that modern businesses utilize across industries, understanding the intricacies and effectiveness of each can be a challenge.
From retail e-commerce strategies to lead generation tactics, the information is out there — it’s a matter of if you know how to execute them.
Whether your business goal is to increase sales, become more sustainable, or boost brand awareness, the right marketing strategy will help you stay on course to reach and exceed your targets. But how do you go about creating a smart strategy with purposeful marketing tactics?
Read on to discover all you need to know about the difference between marketing strategies vs tactics and the best methods to use to take your business to the next level.
What’s the Difference Between Marketing Strategy vs Tactics?
A marketing strategy is a long-term plan that has an overarching goal in mind. A marketing tactic is a mere piece of the puzzle in the larger strategy. In other terms, marketing tactics are the steps taken to achieve the goals of a marketing strategy.
As Sun-Tsu states in his book, Art of War, “Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy are the noise before defeat.” Although these terms refer to warfare, the same philosophy can be applied to marketing.
If a business hashes out the details of a marketing strategy without calculated tactics, they are more likely to face a longer, more directionless route toward achieving their marketing objectives. A marketing strategy will help determine which tactics will propel efforts forward and which might delay or obstruct desired results.
Why Does Knowing the Difference Matter?
Understanding the difference between marketing strategy and tactics is essential because executives need to know where a marketing challenge is coming from and how to overcome it.
When implementing a new marketing strategy, it’s not uncommon for set objectives to fall by the wayside. In fact, a 2016 study found that 67 percent of strategies fail after implementation. In order to prepare for the inevitable hurdles and roadblocks, executives need to be able to distinguish whether the overarching challenge lies within the marketing tactic or the whole strategy.
What are Marketing Tactics and Strategies?
Whether you’re a seasoned marketing expert or a novice, the following common marketing tactics and strategies are tried and true methods of putting your business on the map.
The following are just some of the most common marketing tactics that marketers implement within their global strategy to boost their abilities to reach their goals.
1. Email Marketing
Email marketing campaigns are characterized by sending branded messages to consumer email inboxes. It’s a powerful channel that marketers use to bring in new business.
In fact, according to a study conducted by the Content Marketing Institute, 87 percent of Business-to-Business (B2B) marketers stated they use email campaigns as a primary distribution channel for their content strategy.
In 2019, a study conducted by Litmus reported that for every dollar spent in email marketing, brands receive on average 42 dollars in return. This indicates that email marketing provides one of the greatest returns on investment. Therefore, it is a proven tactic for organizations to utilize in their strategies.
2. Video Marketing
Video marketing is designed to increase audience engagement through social media platforms. Effective video marketing offers a higher probability of viewers converting into leads.
In the Wyzowl annual video marketing report, 84 percent of video marketers found video marketing to be effective in generating leads, and 80 percent reported that video presents a positive influence on sales.
3. Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing is defined by a brand collaborating with an online influencer to create more brand awareness and increase direct sales.
A survey pioneered by Influencer Marketing Hub found the return on investment (ROI) for influencer marketing measures five-to-one — meaning every dollar spent returns five dollars in revenue. It’s estimated that influencer marketing is expected to be worth $13.8 billion in 2021.
Marketing tactics are critical to boosting marketing campaigns. Yet, they all have one thing in common: they are pieces of the puzzle of the overarching marketing strategy.
1. Content Marketing Strategy
A content marketing strategy includes publishing educational and entertaining content throughout various channels designed to inspire consumers to take action.
An effective content marketing strategy moves individuals closer to the buying stage in the customer journey. The ultimate objective for a content marketing strategy is to generate revenue through the frequent and consistent distribution of an organization’s content.
Marketing content comes in written, downloadable, and visual formats. Recent studies have found that 54 percent of consumers prefer video content to written copy. This trend allows businesses to flex some creative muscle that sets them apart from the competition and improve their brand awareness and revenue.
2. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Operating a website comes with multiple moving parts for it to be a profitable digital asset for an organization. One of the moving parts includes having and sustaining an SEO strategy.
The objective of SEO is to increase the number of website visitors and the quality through organic search engine results. SEO leverages the keywords, alongside other ranking factors, to organically appear at the top of search results.
A recent study found that the first five organic search results account for 67 percent of all clicks. With the right SEO strategy, a website can rank at the top of its target search terms.
Community building is a form of relationship marketing. The purpose is to build an authoritative brand and increase long-term engagement. This is accomplished by building relationships with prospects, customers, and other individuals in the industry.
A community-building strategy can include simple tactics such as cultivating a hashtag on Twitter, or complex tactics that include creating a comprehensive support network of all your customers. The concept of community can expand beyond a brand and be a viable resource within itself.
Take Women in Tech SEO as an example. This niche community focuses on accelerating women’s careers in the SEO industry. Not only does it help the people involved in the community, but it also shows how much an organization cares about its community. It increases the reputation of the organization, which attracts more customers.
Common marketing tactics and strategies are constantly evolving, and those who wish to stay at the cutting edge of their industries must stay up-to-date on the latest trends.
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