Advertising strategy sounds complicated and a bit scary. But really it’s just a plan that lays out how you’re going to use advertising and marketing to help achieve your business targets (which at S3, we call your big bites).
Of course, not all business targets can be addressed by marketing. For example, a campaign cannot help lower your production cost per unit. However, it can do lots of other important things, like drive demand for your product and persuade people to pay a premium for it.
Advertising and marketing strategy is important because it provides a clear plan for your marketing department (and business), with rationale, targets and ways of monitoring your success. Without this plan, you may find that you end up lurching from month to month and target to target, jumping around from one idea to the next and frantically trying to make sense everything you’re doing. And if this is how you feel, imagine how confused your target audience will be. If they don’t have a clear idea of your brand and what your offer is, then they’re highly unlikely to choose to buy from you over your competition.
Strategic planning for advertising and marketing is good practise whenever you’re in charge of a marketing department or budget, but it can be crucial when you get handed a new and ambitious target for sales growth by your boss or business owner.
It’s likely that to achieve those challenging targets, you’re going to need to take a new and different approach. One that maximises every penny of budget you have and that therefore incorporates different and innovative marketing activities. Going through the process of strategic planning to get to an advertising strategy will encourage you to explore lots of options and really think about how everything will work together and how you are going to deliver what you’ve been asked.
Developing an advertising and marketing strategy can also be useful whenever you start to feel you have too many different marketing activities on the go and perhaps suspect that they’re not all really adding up to the same goal. A strategy here can help you simplify down what you’re doing and get clear on how everything ladders up to deliver the results you need.
It can be best to hire an agency to do your advertising and marketing strategy, as an agency will usually have a wealth of experience and expertise in crafting strategic plans for lots of clients and in lots of categories. They’ll be able to bring examples of best practice and tangible ways to structure your thinking and activity, they can provide a highly valuable external perspective and they can also offer you the strategic resource you need, if your own marketing department doesn’t have capacity.
A good agency will always work hand-in-glove with a business and its marketing department as it develops an advertising and marketing strategy. There’s no use an agency going away and working in isolation only to come back with a plan you’ll find totally unhelpful or irrelevant.
A good advertising and marketing strategy will always start with the objectives of the business and will then use these to define exactly where advertising and marketing can help, listing the key tasks for marketing, the recommended approach to achieve them and then usually a laydown of how this approach will be delivered over time.
Other things that an agency will do and create are:
At S3 we work best in partnership with our clients, so devising an advertising strategy together is our preferred way of working. We use a number of different tools and techniques to draw out what the business really needs to achieve with its marketing and help define and agree this, so that everyone is aligned from the very beginning.
We have specialists in advertising, marketing and campaign strategy; our team have experience delivering strategic planning for national supermarket chains, big automotive brands, leading fintech companies, local charities, regional tourist boards, universities and pretty much everything in between.
We use our S3 Play to your Strengths methodology to make sure that as we devise your advertising strategy, we put your business’s Natural Strength at its very core – that way we will always build your marketing and campaigns on a rock-solid foundation that has genuine integrity. There’s nothing worse that marketing activity that seems totally detached from your actual business. Consumers will sniff out a naff proposition a mile away.
As a full-service agency we also benefit from having a team of other specialists we can draw on as needed; people who know everything there is to know about digital PPC strategies, PR plans, roadside OOH tactics and agile video production for example.
If you’re thinking about advertising strategy, it sounds like you’re gearing up to embark on some advertising and marketing campaigns. Unless your business has a full creative and production department in-house, then you might also want to think about using an agency to develop your creative, design the necessary artworked files, write, film and edit the required TV or video, write and issue press releases and book your media.
How do I find out more?
Get in touch with the team at S3 and we’ll happily talk you through our strategy process. Hit the button below to get started.