There are four essential elements of marketing. These are: Specialization, Differentiation, Segmentation and Concentration. You must implement and execute effectively in all four areas to survive and thrive in your business. A lack or weakness in any one area can lead to underachievement and even the failure of the enterprise.
Decide Who You Are and What You Do
Specialization requires that you focus on specific products or services, specific markets or specific customer needs. You must fight the temptation to try to offer too many products and services to too many customers in too many areas. You must specialize, both in your own mind, and in the mind of your customer.
What is it exactly that your product or service is designed to achieve, avoid or preserve for your customer? What are the core competencies or proprietary methods or technologies that enable you to specialize in this area? What specific problem or need can you solve or satisfy for your customer? And of all the different results you can get with your business, where do you, should you, could you specialize?
All Marketing Involves Differentiating
You differentiate your product or service by determining and deciding exactly in what way, and how, you are going to be superior to your competitors. I’ll explain this process in detail in a later chapter. It is the key to business success and high profitability.
Choose Your Best Market Segment
The process of segmentation requires that you clearly define the exact customers who can most benefit from what it is that you do better than anyone else. This requires rigorous customer analysis to determine who your best potential customers are today, and who they can be tomorrow.
High Probability Customers
Concentration requires that you focus your vital resources of time, talent and money on marketing and selling more and more to your very best potential customers. Sales efforts directed to your highest probability prospects yield the highest possible return on your activities. Based on your decisions on specialization, differentiation and segmentation, where should you concentrate your marketing and selling efforts?
All marketing strategies eventually become obsolete and stop working. If your sales are down for any reason, it may be time for you to revisit your answers in one or more of these four areas. This can lead to your developing a more effective marketing and selling strategy, one that works in today’s market.
Remember, today the answers have changed with regard to your market. Changes in customer demand, competition or other market forces may require that you change your area of specialization, your area of differentiation, your ideal customer segments and your areas of focus and concentration. You may have to change more than one of these at the same time.