Meet Your Customers Where They Are With a Cohesive Marketing Ecosystem
Understanding your marketing ecosystem and the various components needed to run a truly cohesive environment is not always easy. These days, a marketing ecosystem should see both sales and marketing seamlessly working together. Anything less, and you are working in silos—which may not provide the best experience for your customer.
Consistent branding, messaging and communication through a single cohesive ecosystem is critical to building brand awareness, attracting the right personas, converting quality leads, and creating highly engaged fans of your products or services.
Does any of the following sound familiar: You’re a busy entrepreneur with a thriving new business and a vision, but you don’t know exactly how to articulate or execute your objectives. Or, you may be a bit more seasoned, and while you’ve had your marketing on an even keel for a while, things have slowed down and you didn’t know why.
If either of these ring a bell, it’s a good sign you need a more secure marketing foundation —and, really, if we’re being honest, a marketing ecosystem should be built on a solid marketing foundation. But how do you achieve that?
Defining a Cohesive Marketing Ecosystem
Think of a marketing ecosystem as a web that contains all of your marketing efforts, for everyone in the organization, to see and use. But, if there’s no communication between groups, your staff may unknowingly work against each other.
For example, your marketing team may be handing over leads that aren’t “sales ready,” or the sales team may be going out to find its own leads with no input. Whatever the case, that can leave a big chunk of customers with no idea what the next step might be. We live in a fickle world with a lot of competition, and if customers sense confusion or disorganization, you can bet they’ll go to a competitor who can better meet their needs.
A cohesive marketing ecosystem will leverage multiple channels. As an entrepreneur, you can create an effective marketing ecosystem that brings marketing, sales and other areas of your business into alignment. Better yet, you’ll be meeting your customers wherever they are.
Why Build a Business Marketing Foundation?
As a small- or medium-size business owner, you know marketing is important. Often it’s just one more thing on your to-do list. But, creating a solid marketing foundation is one of the most important things you can do as a business owner. Designing and building a stable foundation for your sales and marketing ecosystem will provide the base you need to tell the world who you are and why they need your products or services. In short, it’s the key to your long-term success.
If you want to know more about the theory behind a solid marketing foundation, check out this blog about evaluating the strength of your marketing foundation.
Building a Foundation on Four Strong Pillars
If you are building a house, you need four solid pillars to create your foundation. Otherwise, you’ll likely end up with a pretty flimsy abode. When it comes to crafting a sturdy marketing foundation, it’s not all that different. You need four pillars to support your marketing efforts, which include:
Brand identity. Your brand identity is who your customers think you are. It’s the story about how and why your business exists. It’s how customers recognize you. Make no mistake…a strong brand identity may be the most valuable asset your company owns.
CRM. If maintaining customers is the lifeline of your business, a CRM (Customer Relationship Management System) is at the heart of it. This tool is where all channels of your marketing and sales can be connected and reviewed to make sure your marketing ecosystem is efficient.
Online presence. Your website is the hub of all your marketing activity. It’s often the first (and possibly only) contact your customers will have with you before purchasing a product or service. Therefore, your online presence needs to have a strong strategy and execution.
Outbound (email). If you want to keep your current customers engaged with your business, using email to do that makes a lot of sense. After all, they asked to hear from you! Make sure you use this channel to stay in touch and find out what your customers are reading.
So, Where are Your Business’s Strengths and Weaknesses?
It’s not always easy to know if your four pillars of your marketing foundation are working together…or if you even have all of them in your marketing strategy. We’ve put together this worksheet for you to get an idea of how your marketing foundation might be graded. Once you’ve done that, take our free, 10-question quiz and get your own personal marketing foundation score!
Once you know where you are, you will be able to make a plan and make sure your own marketing ecosystem uses the key pillars to create a strong marketing foundation.
Tomato Fish Marketing Is An Indianapolis Marketing Company Focused On Helping Small And Midsize Businesses Make Good Strategic Planning Decisions.