How to Determine Marketing Needs

Marketing is the way that a business attracts, keeps and sells to customers. In order for marketing to be effective, it must be targeted toward the business, its demographic customer base, its competitors and market innovations. The best way to determine a business' marketing needs is to go through a checklist of the most common ways to market to consumers, and then check them off according to what is missing in the current marketing plan. It is important to note that there is no universal marketing plan; each business will have a different strategy to advertise to their customers. This article will tell you how to determine marketing needs. :)


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    Take stock of the current marketing department, materials and strategies. You must become familiar with what has already been tried, so that you can decide what is missing. For new businesses, this may be as simple as business cards or a business plan.
    • A new business should complete all or most of a business plan before trying to chart their marketing needs. The managers and marketers should have intimate familiarity with the market before trying to define a marketing plan. You should have an established marketing budget, if possible.
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    Research how your competitors market. Pay special attention to the most successful companies in your business. You can identify key competitors by searching online and completing a sales process, surfing their sites, walking into physical business offices themselves, or by reading reviews online.
    • Establish your competitive advantage against your competitors. Everything you do in your marketing plan needs to emphasize this advantage.
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    Do market research. Survey your current customers to see what age, gender, ethnicity and other demographic groups they fit into. Also, ask them what is missing in their experience, so that you can improve their experience and attract repeat customers.
    • You can also evaluate new industry standards and innovations. Develop a detailed report that everyone involved in marketing would read.
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    Identify your target customer base. The majority of the money you spend on marketing should be spent on communicating and attracting similar customers. Occasionally you may want to try to tempt a new demographic to your business.
    • Remember that each demographic responds to marketing in a different way. One of your main needs may be to establish different campaigns for different kinds of customers. A 20 year old person would be better served by an email, but an 80 year old might require a piece of mail to alert them about a sale.
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    Evaluate your name, logo and motto. All 3 of these things should communicate what is unique about your business within its market. This is called "branding," and you should hire marketing professionals to create an attractive brand, if you do not have the skills to do it yourself.
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    Evaluate your printed materials. Everything from business cards to letterhead to invoices and more should project your brand. Media kits, catalogs, brochures and direct mail campaigns should be in the hands of people who can effectively design your graphics.
    • If you find your printed materials are not up to standard, you can choose to hire a graphic designer full time, hire 1 for a contract, or contract with a marketing firm. A good relationship with a graphic designer will help you to execute printed marketing campaigns in the future.
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    Evaluate your electronic image. Online marketing is growing to be 1 of the best ways to find new business. To this end, you should have a user-friendly website, email correspondence, and possibly social media accounts that announce your business and specials.
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    Find out if you have a marketing calendar. If not, this is 1 of your primary needs. You need to be able to track and implement marketing campaigns on a regular basis to create new business.
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    Research your past marketing campaigns. Find the most effective methods and start advertising campaigns based on those methods. Develop a more efficient way to track the Return on Investment (ROI) on marketing campaigns, such as Google Analytics.
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    Begin adding new marketing strategies according to your needs. If you find that many of these marketing pieces are missing in your marketing plan, you may want to consult a marketing firm, so that you can meet the needs in a timely manner.
    • Instead of hiring a marketing company, you can choose to hire or appoint someone to a dedicated marketing position.


  • Make sure to register any names and logos with your Department of State. All unique branding should be registered under a trademark in your state or country.

Things You'll Need

  • Customer research
  • Branding
  • Graphic designer
  • Google Analytics
  • Competitor research
  • Trademark

Article Info

Categories: Marketing