Cornerstone Alliance


How to create a marketing strategy that works

Have you ever had a moment thinking that you made the best marketing strategy in the world and yet, no one comes to buy your product? What happened? What went wrong? What is your strategy? It all comes down to whether you have done enough research on your product, market, and competitors and how you use that knowledge in your strategy to stay relevant within the fast-paced and changing world. To make sure that your strategy is effective, there are eight components of the marketing strategy that you can follow.

The infographic below shows an outline of the process of developing a marketing strategy.

Understanding the Marketing Mix for your strategy

To help you in your marketing strategy, we will use the marketing mix to identify how we can best market your organisation. The marketing mix considers the 4 P’s: Product, Place, Promotion, and Price. While there are many variations of this model like the 4 Cs and 7 P’s, for simplicity’s sake, the 4 P’s are adequate. Here are some questions you might consider.

Product /Service

  • What features does your product have?
  • What packaging do you use?
  • Are there variations of this product?
  • If it is a service, what is the journey customers go through?


  • Where do you distribute your product?
  • Online or in a retail store?
  • Is it available 24/7?


  • How will you communicate your product?
  • What messages and associations do you promote?
  • What media and where do you promote your messages?
  • How much will it cost?


  • Do you follow the market price or cost-based?
  • What fixed and variable costs do you consider?
  • Do you follow price tiers?
  • Do you supply discounts?

Set your Strategy Goals & Objectives

Setting a goal will give a clear direction on which area your marketing department needs to focus on and decide your team’s key activities. These goals should also align with the organisation’s higher-level goals.

Consider these questions:

  • What are your organisation’s vision, mission, and overall goals?
  • At what stage of growth is your organisation?
  • How do you operate your organisation?
  • What are some challenges that your organisation is currently facing?
  • What are your organisational values? Do you look to gain profits, help people, or earn rewards?

Once you see the bigger picture, you will have a better understanding of the direction that you must head towards and know what marketing goals to set. Here are some examples:

  • Raising awareness
  • Increasing engagement
  • Maintaining market share
  • Introducing a new product

Your goals and objectives will change over time according to your business needs. So, you will need to do your research and know what you want to achieve within the business period. Consider also using the SMART goals model, to assist you in writing and setting achievable and realistic goals too.

Know your Strengths & Weaknesses

What resources and capabilities do your organisation currently have? Taking a resource-based view of your organisation will help identify the competitive advantages, strengths and weaknesses that you currently have over your competitors. You can also consider which area of the marketing mix you excel in, and which areas do you not do well in. Consider asking yourself:

  • Do you have the necessary branding assets to make consumers remember you? (Logos, packaging, promotions)
  • What talent and skills does your organisation currently hire?
  • Do you have marketing relationships, suppliers and networks that are exclusive from others?
  • What qualities and traits do consumers think of when they see your brand or products?
  • What retail stores or distribution channels do you currently have?

Once you know your organisational strengths and weaknesses, you will have an idea of what your organisation is good at doing and what you are lacking to compete in the market.

Research Your Market

We now looking outside your organisation and scanning the environment. By understanding the market in a global, regional, and local environment, you will find opportunities that you can take advantage of and see threats that might affect your organisation. Take the time in knowing who your customer is. Look for demographic, geographic, psychographic, and behavioural information. Search news articles, infographics, and reports. You will want to know everything about what your customer is doing and the social trends that are happening in the world. You will need to know these things to get the right product promoted with the right message at the right time. In this way, you can stay relevant and know how to effectively reach your market in the best way that you can. You can collate your information as a buyer persona if you wish to do so to remind you as well!

Consider asking yourself:

  • What are the demographics of my market? (Population, age, income etc)
  • What are my customer’s needs and challenges?
  • Where can I find my customers?
  • How do my customers consume my product?
  • What are my customers interested in or values?
  • What social trends are my customers interested in?

Watch Your Competitors

You are not the only one who is keeping an eye on the market. Your competitors have their competitive advantages and their ways to reach the same market. You will need to make a list of key competitors within the industry that is like you and understand how they sell and advertise their products. Look through annual and financial reports or take note of their marketing mix: their prices, products, channels, and promotions. When you see what your competitors are doing, you will be able to see what marketing activities are working and what are not. You might be able to improve on what they are doing, giving you a better advantage in reaching your market.

Adjust Your Marketing Mix Strategies

So far, you know the marketing goals to achieve, the strengths and weaknesses that make your organisation more competitive, you have a better understanding of your customer, and you have seen what your competitors have done to market to their customers. Now we can put all these things together to develop an effective strategy. Sometimes it’s easy to organise your findings with a SWOT table. From there you can see how you can use your strengths to use opportunities and mitigate threats. Or you can use opportunities and threats to further strengthen your weaknesses.

Consider these questions when adjusting your marketing mix:

  • What products and their features are you best performing or lacking in the market compared to your competitors? Should you introduce new products or remove products?
  • What distribution channels are working? Are they efficient and available compared to competitors? Do you need more or fewer channels?
  • What promotions are working? Are you sending the right messages? Do you need to spend more on advertising or less? Are you reaching the right audience?
  • Do you need to lower or increase your prices? Do you need to offer discounts at a certain time of the year?
  • Are there marketing opportunities you can use to improve your marketing mix? (e.g., a new partner to expand product distribution.

When you ask these questions to adjust the marketing mix, list them down and consider activities that you will need to do. Remember, you should also have the goal set in mind as well. For example, if you need to raise brand awareness, you will want to focus on questions related to adjusting promotions in the marketing mix.

Plan your Activities, Timelines & Budget

Once you have a list of activities, it is time to schedule your activities and figure out the cost of each activity. When will you run discounts? When will you set up a new channel? How often will you advertise? How many resources will you need for each activity and how much will it cost? Answering these questions will give you a clear idea of your budget.

Measure Your Marketing Performance

This is the crucial step that you must consider when developing any strategy. Without measuring Key Performance Indicators, how will you understand whether your strategy is working or not? Choosing the right metrics is also important as you might find that some metrics are unnecessary or unimportant, depending on the goals that you have set for this marketing strategy. These are a few metrics that you might want to consider tracking:

  • Reach or Impressions
  • Engagement
  • Marketing Conversion Rates
  • Website Visitors
  • Clicks
  • Sales
  • Number of Distribution Channels
  • Advertising Costs
  • Return on Investment

You can learn more about these metrics on our website very soon!

Execute your strategy!

Now that you have a well-developed strategy, you are prepared to launch high-performing marketing campaigns that will accelerate your business growth! All you need to do now is for someone to produce your messages, create promotions, publish highly engaging communications, and report your performance. But what if you do not have the time or the right creative skills to make all this happen? At Cornerstone Alliance, we have a small but highly professional and creative team who can partner with your organisation to implement and manage your marketing activities, especially for multicultural marketing campaigns. So we will support you from the start until the end and reveal key insights that will make your campaign perform even better. Now get out there and make a successful brand!