What a surprise, recently I just realized there are many colleagues of mine still do not understand what exactly strategy is, whether it’s PR strategy nor marketing strategy. The fact is, they hold management level position, but when they’re told to make their marketing strategy , well from my side, it’s not fully describe the strategy but only regarding to activities that they make in one year. So what is wrong with that?
Okay, we start from the definition of strategy. What is the strategy? Or I better reverse my question, with no strategy what could be happen? If we run marketing activities without a defined strategy for example, I’m pretty sure that all marketing activities will be filled with what we want impromptu that time, or who our boss want impromptu this time, or in short, frequently happen impromptu reactive which influence to every marketing activity. So everything seems instant, not deep in thought and consideration, wasting, and not integrated with one another. Ever feel that way? If so, then you’re just like my colleagues thou. 🙂
The strategy is a conscious plan that has clear and purposively goals. Usually for short term, it’s made for one year. By strategy, we have a TEMPLATE for a detailed road or a way to have clear objectives that agreed by every involved parties. By strategy, we can know what PATTERNS we use to achieve that goal. With a strategy, our perspective to view all impacts that caused by our strategy will be built and formed well. So it has been imagined in advance, if my strategy will be this way, I will got my advantages, disadvantages how, and what kind of reaction will happen next.
In setting the strategy, we need to analyze situation first or often called Situation ANALYSIS. Hence, the manager will do cross check the information about the product or brand or company, such as how many percent growth last year, what infrastructures does company have, how its competitors, how is the market, is there any innovations they got , what about government regulations, etc. It’s recommended to use SWOT ANALYSIS for summarizing the situation analysis.
After the analysis, then we determine what the objectivity. What is objectivity? Objectivity is a clear goal and when do we want to achieve. For example; reach a significant growth of 30% until the end of 2011. Or another example; strengthens the existence of post-sales service with 100 service outlets in Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya and Bandung, as of the end of the year.
Well how do I get there? It’s called strategy. For example, the strategies for first objectivity are; selling upscale products, open new distribution network, making promotion tool key messages, images and designs are persuasive, and add a sales team that dares to be fast, responsive and smart. As for the objectivity of the second, the strategies are to determine the appropriate market areas, human resource development and infrastructure and ensure all promotion tool looks clear and fit with company brand.
Now we’ve got strategies. The next question is how to work it out. That’s called tactics. Tactics are the techniques to apply the strategy into reality. Okay, the strategy focuses on upscale product will bear the following best tactics: I will do more detailed product range and separate those who fall into the category of hi class product, I will also make the hi class product knowledge is more comprehensive than others, for example, his booklet is thicker, more exclusive and etc, I will make outstanding POP, display systems more exposed and etc; I will also use the clearance sale program at the end of the year, as well as compliment getting 12 months edition free magazines from my brand partner only for my buyers.
Objectivity done, strategies done, tactics done. Next is the budget. Well no need to mention, this stage is the most complexions of other previous stage. But actually it still can be done easily, by crossing check last year budget than we can add some percentage of inflation for this year. Or if the program are quite brand new, we can cross check to the purchasing division, or external agencies that hold the same program. All can be done anyway, if there is a will. Now time to set schedule. Setting the schedule is important because it will help us to make the strategies easily realized.
Well, in short, strategies should be SMART (Specific Measurable Attainable Realistic timely). Strategy helps the managers stay on the right path to run activities for a certain period. The strategy also could be a powerful tool for those who suddenly appeared with impromptu programs that are frequently not relevant to the existing applied strategy.
So, get set for your strategy now! 🙂
Posted by Afril Wibisono