Tom Mitchell

Tom is a 30-year marketing veteran and currently serves as a marketing consultant to healthcare organizations seeking to realign their strategy, reinvent themselves or enter new markets. He has led...

Don’t Let Your Marketing Pillars Crumble

Whether you are a startup, a well-established company, in the B2B space or trying to accelerate ecommerce in a B2C environment, there are some basic marketing fundamentals you can’t ignore. These are the three main marketing pillars that drive marketing strategy: Awareness, Preference and Demand. They are as foundational to any marketing initiative as knowing your targets.

Awareness is just that – creating awareness of your organization and its products or services. This may come from media relations, your Website, advertising, social media, branding or any number of tactics that raise the level of your company’s presence in your given market segment. When crafting an Awareness strategy, focus and messaging appropriately to the target audience are vital. Remember, content is king. Create relevant, impactful content to drive your Awareness strategy.

Preference is focused on voice of customer, voice of market and highlighting your own expertise. This may be accomplished through case studies, thought leadership, reviews on your Website or social media properties and having other industry leading endorsements. Preference is about positioning your organization in the market through one of two ways: 1) finding those willing to share your story and 2) showing your value in your given market segment through your expertise and uniqueness. A Preference strategy should consist of a long-term program with both internal and external resources that will validate your claims and position of relevancy and value.

Demand is about creating a need so strong for your solution that someone is willing to take action -- commit to receiving more information, scheduling a meeting or making an outright purchase. In other words, it’s about running integrated campaigns to drive conversions of pipeline opportunities or pure sales, such as through a B2C enterprise. One caveat about this category is that you can’t run a Demand strategy without Awareness and Preference.

To have a truly successful marketing program build it around your three marketing pillars – Awareness, Preference and Demand. However, each one can't independently support your overall marketing strategy. An integrated marketing program rests on all three pillars.

Keep these pillars strong. Continually maintain them by reinforcing them with fresh content regularly, creating outstanding campaigns aimed at driving conversions and continually demonstrating your expertise with documented validation by third parties and through your own distinct identity.

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