17 Marketing Strategies to Boost Your Business


Nike ran one of the most successful marketing campaigns. It's almost impossible to imagine that Nike only catered to the needs of marathon runners at one point. Due to their stellar campaign, they dominated the athletic apparel industry in a brief time by the banner of 'Just Do It.' To put things into perspective, Nike's revenue increased from 800 million in 1988 to 9.2 billion in 1998 due to its excellent marketing strategy.
Volkswagen ran one of the most successful print advertisements of all time. Their campaign not only helped them sell their cars but they changed the perception of the Americans altogether. Before Volkswagen entered the market, buying big and powerful vehicles used to be the status symbol during that time. Also, the Americans were highly skeptical about German cars. The "Think Small" campaign changed the game forever. The minimalist design of the advertisement appealed to the taste of the public as formulated by the strategists.
Inclusion of a celebrity or having a big budget for a marketing campaign might not ensure success which is justified by the controversial Pepsi ad in 2018 that featured Kendall Jenner. Rather than helping Pepsi grow sales, the ad backfired with protests on social media calling for strict action against the ad.
A good marketing strategy begins with a survey of the target audience and understanding what appeals to them. The same approach might not be practical for all viewers. Therefore, a good agreement has to be developed between the seller and the buyer. Let's look at some top the marketing strategies that have been used over the years.

1. Above the line marketing
Above the line marketing strategy uses mass media as its platform to target wider audiences. For instance, at an IPL game, the digital boards near the boundary show different ads. The ad will not only be seen by the thousands of people in the stands but also by the millions of people viewing the match on TV. The potential reach of the ad defines the primary aim of this strategy. The cost of such advertisements is massive due to the platforms used. A 30-second ad might cost as much as a ten lakhs. And that is why such a strategy is typically adopted by huge corporate houses that possess the capacity to bear such enormous costs.

2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is the kind of marketing adopted to increase the reach of someone else's product, service, or website in exchange for a fee. The more active the affiliate marketing, the more the affiliate can earn. Some of the most successful affiliate programs run in India are by Flipkart(Flipkart Affiliate Programs) and Amazon(Amazon Affiliate Programs), the big e-commerce giants.

3. Affinity Marketing
Affinity marketing is all about making a mutually beneficial relationship between the seller and another organization based on mutual interests. The seller and the collaborating organization come together to bring in a broader audience that benefits both of them. A great example of this strategy can be seen on any e-commerce platform. Let's take the case of Amazon, the last time you bought a product, and you got a fantastic discount when you paid for it with your credit card. The truth behind the concept is that the credit card company and Amazon have collaborated since their consumers share similar interests and it helped them to widen their consumer bases.

4. Augmented Marketing
The word ‘augmented' means "having been made greater in size or value." A great example of this type of marketing would be the 1 + 1 offer on pizzas, buy one get one offer on e-commerce sites, etc. These types of offers always catch the attention of the audience very quickly and are a very effective strategy of marketing. The downside of this type of marketing is that it cannot be used with costly products else you will end up bearing significant losses.

5. Behavioural Marketing
Behavioral marketing is the most current approach to marketing. You might have noticed that while you browse on the web a lot of pop-up ads are tailor-made for you. You have been searching for the cheapest tickets, and the sidebar on your browser shows you the latest deals on tickets without deliberately searching for them. These tactics have been employed by almost all e-commerce platforms to market their products. It is an automated process wherein your online activities are studied and then ads are custom made to suit your best interests. This is primarily an online marketing strategy.

6. Below the line Marketing
Below the line marketing is the exact opposite of above the line marketing. While above the line marketing targets mass audiences, below the line marketing targets smaller and focused viewers. While mediums such as TV's, Radio are used for ATL marketing, direct email marketing, and search engine marketing are used for BTL marketing. One of the significant advantages of this type of marketing is the cost since a smaller and focused audience is targeted; therefore, the prices are comparatively lesser. This strategy is most successful when the product or the service caters to the needs of a niche segment.
7. Brand Marketing
Brand marketing reaches far beyond the realms of marketing a product or service only. A company's brand is its market identity. Therefore, it's vital to achieve status with is synonymous with trustworthy, top of the line quality and other such attributes. The USP of any brand is not its product but the problem it solves through its product or service, the morals it upholds, the precedent it sets for other firms. Let's understand through an example of how a trustworthy brand is helpful in the long-run. If Apple and Huawei launch their flagship laptop and both the laptops have the same specifications and visual design. Which laptop is bound to sell more? It's safe to presume that the Apple laptop will sell better because of the reputation that Apple enjoys amongst the consumer. And this is how having the right brand name gives a firm the upper hand amongst its rival firms.

8. Viral/ Buzz/Guerilla Marketing
Viral or buzz marketing are based on the same notion. The only noticeable difference between viral and buzz marketing is in terms of the medium used for marketing, and buzz marketing might be done through TV ads while social media helps in strategizing viral marketing. This strategy seeks to approach the emotions of consumers. Making the announcement dramatic, exciting, and entertaining is at the heart of this strategy. This type of marketing is the make it or break it type. If something goes wrong, then the whole plan falls apart. Extensive planning is required while making an ad to minimize the chances of failure. Every time you hear the word Hotel, the word Trivago might pop up instantly. The ad featured a very average looking man in peculiar clothes talking about Hotels. The announcement was unconventionally in a number of ways corroborating the fact that they chose an average looking man over a model or a celebrity as other ads do. The audience instantly started looking for the man in the ad all over the internet and ever since Trivago is synonymous with Hotels.

9. Cause Marketing
An ad campaign that has a two-fold objective, firstly to increase the profitability of the firm and secondly, to showcase the corporate social responsibility of the company. Everybody loves a firm that not only maximizes its profit but also maximizes welfare. This is either achieved by collaborating with a non-profit or by highlighting a moral issue through a simple ad. Rebook had teamed up with Avon 39 to raise awareness about Breast Cancer through a marathon. Other examples are Nike which featured Arab women athletes in their ‘Find Your Greatness' campaign. Apple proudly boasts about the use of recycled aluminum use in the manufacture of Mac laptops.

10. Celebrity Marketing
Everybody is familiar with this marketing strategy wherein a celebrity endorses a product in a TV commercial. It is one of the most common types of strategies adopted by a company to spread its reach.

11. Communal Marketing
Communal marketing seeks to connect with the consumer by inviting them for their active feedback and incorporating their stories in their ad campaigns. The logic behind this strategy is that the average consumer will relate and identify themselves more with the experiences of somebody like them. Therefore, incorporating "consumer-generated data" in the form of feedbacks and stories showcasing their skills is better understood by the consumer watching the ad. For instance, in the advertisement for Colgate an average consumer is seen sharing his/her experience with how using Colgate has helped them overcome sensitivity and now they can eat ice-cream carefree. A consumer watching the ad who face such an issue will be tempted to give it a try, and that's precisely what is expected of the ad to achieve.

12. Digital Marketing
The marketing of service and products using digital technologies on the internet is termed as digital marketing. It is one of the most popular techniques of marketing. It enables you to market your business to not only potential local but also national as well as global customers.
Since the world has become a global village, it won't ever be enough to stress the point that digital marketing is crucial to every business which endeavors to address the target customers on a large scale especially the youth.

13. Email Marketing
Business firms usually employ this type of marketing. Companies tend to have a record of the potential clients, and they establish and maintain a relationship with them through emails.

14. Pay-per-click Marketing
Remember clicking on an ad on Facebook and been directed to a different page? That's what pay per click marketing is, and Facebook dominates the marketplace for the platforms used for this sort of strategy. The company will only pay when someone spends on the link. It is a useful metric as it gives the company a good idea of the reach of the ad.

15. PR Marketing
PR marketing is about working with the media houses to increase the awareness of the product. It's been the go-to strategy for Apple. Every time before the keynote presentation, there is a considerable hype created by the media that everybody is looking forward to the product launch irrespective of the fact whether the consumer is an Apple user or not.
16. Referral Marketing
This is one of the oldest techniques in the books. Referral marketing is when a friend of yours refers to you to join a particular service. The incentive for every referral is monetary. For instance, Paytm gives out 100 rupees each time a person enters the service using your referral code.

17. Word-of-mouth Marketing
This strategy has been in use since time immemorial. A company cannot employ this strategy per-se. A firm with a quality product and excellent customer service not only makes the life of the consumer easier but also enables a long-lasting productive relationship with the customer such that the consumer passes on a good recommendation about the firm to his/her friends. If you look out for your loyal customers and treat them appropriately, they'll be sure to praise you amongst their peers. Your customers are selling to potential customers without the company paying them for it. In a sense, it costs the company zero bucks to market themselves, as the firm can achieve it by building a strong bond with its consumers. Word-Of-Mouth technique is one of the most effective and frugal strategies out there in the field of marketing.

Written By- Prateek Mittal
Edited by- Sonali Singh

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