Six Steps to Creating an Effective Marketing Message Strategy
An effective marketing message strategy is essential for sustainable success and business growth in the complex world of modern business. No matter how amazing your product or service is, you won’t be able to stand out in a crowded marketplace or make a sale if you don’t have strategic messaging. In fact, according to the Product Marketing Alliance, a 20% improvement in your marketing messaging strategy has a more profound impact on ROI than a 20% improvement in your product. (1)
Creating an effective messaging strategy is like putting a puzzle together: each piece contributes to a bigger, more cohesive picture. While there is no one-size-fits-all recipe, there are a series of six critical steps that must be followed for your messaging to be impactful:
1) Know your audience. In today’s dynamic digital era, the buyer’s journey is more convoluted and nuanced than ever. To effectively reach your audience, you first must understand who they are at an intrinsic level, focusing on details like lifestyle, social class, habits, behaviors, and interests. Only when you take the time to understand your audience, both on the surface and at a psychographic level, can you get a complete picture of what their needs are, inspiring content that taps into your audience’s emotional buying motivators. When you create your marketing message strategy, remember that prospects’ needs and wants change along their buying journey, and you must understand and emotionally connect with them at each of these phases.
2) Keep an eye on your competitors. To create strategic brand messaging that sets your brand apart in a crowded marketplace, it is critical to know what your competitors are offering and how they are positioning themselves to customers. Before you can convince customers to choose you over them, you must first understand what they are doing to effectively differentiate yourself.
3) Learn from your customers. Ultimately, the sale is going to the company that best understands their customer and has a marketing message strategy that resonates at an emotional level. You may think you know what your customers want, need, and feel, but the reality may be different. Many organizations have turned to customer interviews as an effective way for marketers to learn what truly resonates.
4) Build an audience matrix. The demographic and psychographic information you gather is only as useful as your ability to organize and apply it in your marketing message strategy. One powerful tool to help you drill down is an audience matrix. An audience matrix helps you cross identify who your audiences are for your products and services at each stage of the buying process. This information empowers you to transform data into actionable insights that inform your messaging strategy. Different audience segments will respond to different types of messaging and content, and understanding these nuances is key to messaging success.
5) Synthesize and organize the information. Summarize all the information you gathered to create overarching points for your message strategy that resonate with the audience. Don’t worry about wordsmithing quite yet. This stage is not about crafting perfectly formed prose; it’s about defining the core ideas that will eventually be fleshed out into comprehensive, compelling narratives that differentiate your brand and communicate its unique value to the market. Make sure you include both your offense and defense – your defense is anchored in your value propositions, what your customers stand to gain by choosing your product or services. Your offense is your differentiators – what you have that your competitors don’t – providing compelling reasons for consumers to purchase from your business over others in your industry. While they might be similar to what your competitors offer, failing to emphasize (or defend) these points can lead to missed opportunities and potential disconnect with your target audience.
6) Develop your marketing message strategy. Once you have completed the foundational work of the preceding steps, it is time to develop the messaging itself. Serving as a strategically crafted narrative that aligns with your target audience, your marketing message strategy should educate, inspire, and captivate readers to reinforce who you are, the value you bring, and what makes you better.
A marketing message strategy goes beyond words on paper; a message strategy in marketing communications involves a meticulous process of crafting compelling narratives that resonate with your target audience. A brand messaging strategy creates a unique voice that not only communicates your value but also forges authentic connections with customers, setting your business apart in a crowded marketplace.
Your marketing message strategy is fundamental in establishing a clear and impactful marketing approach, driving sustainable success, and fueling business growth. Many businesses struggle with their messaging, which can lead to attracting the wrong audience, resulting in poor leads for your sales team and wasted marketing dollars. At Paradigm, we help businesses every day determine the best marketing message strategy for their brand. Download our on-demand webinar, ‘Six Steps to Develop a Compelling Brand Message’ to learn more about crafting effective marketing messaging strategy.