Marketing strategy and tactics are words often used interchangeably. While they may seem the same, they are distinct from one another, though they work to support each other.
So, if you’re thinking of writing a foolproof business plan, it will help to know the difference between marketing strategies vs. tactics.
To learn more about their differences and how they support one another, we should define each term first.
Strategic marketing serves as the backbone of all your efforts. Simply put, it answers the question ‘why.’ That’s because it aligns with your objectives while helping you define your marketing approach.
It is geared towards the long term, meaning it aims to address what your people are trying to do and why they’re doing it.
A good strategy should include the following features:
Here are some examples of the questions your marketing strategy should be able to answer:
On the other hand, marketing tactics are methods that can help you achieve the objectives in your marketing plan.
The difference between strategy and tactics is that the latter is focused on a single, present goal. In other words, tactics are what you use to answer the question ‘what.’
Though different, tactics without strategy are essentially useless. As tactics and strategies help inform you of the accomplishments, risks, and possible failures, they work together to improve product sales.
Looking for specific examples of action-focused tactics? Here are some:
If you still can’t differentiate a strategy from a tactic, here are some excellent examples to follow:
Goal: Rebrand the company to appeal to a younger base.
Goal: Increase revenue and grow your business.
Goal: Launch a new product or service
The Role of the Marketing Plan
As mentioned, strategic marketing is all about the ‘why’ while tactical marketing answers the ‘what.’ Tying these two together is the marketing plan, which answers the question ‘how.’
As the intermediary between your strategy and tactic, a marketing plan helps you determine the best way to meet your goals.
At the same time, a plan can help you determine your key performance indicators or KPIs. These can come in handy for monitoring the success of your strategies.
A strategy serves as your game plan. It can help you reach your audience while persuading them to engage with your business. Tactics, on the other hand, are methods that help you execute your goals.
Although they are different, it is important to ensure that these two factors are aligned. Without tactics, strategies are useless and vice versa.
You also need to make sure that your tactics are faring well by continually monitoring them. For example, if you wish to undergo a website redesign, you need to measure its effectiveness by checking the bounce rate, page views, and other metrics.
If you can’t seem to meet the metrics, it will help to take a good, hard look at your strategies and redefine them as needed.
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