Youa€™ll be joining the 130,000 Smart Insights members from 80 countries who trust our advice to Plan, Manage and Optimize their marketing. I find when speaking to clients, that goals, objectives and KPIs are used interchangeably by many. Note that this is just one way of definingA it, you may decide to just use specific SMART goals.
If your targets (goals or objectives)A arena€™t SMART, theya€™re not clear for you toA believe in and for others to follow. If you are not checking in your metrics, often, then they werena€™tA important in the first place. Tracking your KPIs is one thing, but to ensure they are being used to achieve your business goals, they need to be related to, and generate action. If you're looking for an alternative view, a good place to start is A Avinash Kaushika€™sA explanation of goals, KPIs and A metrics in the context of web analytics. It seems to me the misunderstanding between marketing strategy and tactics is far too common amongst marketers, PRs and perhaps more importantly clients who never really question it. Strategy is a strong overarching vision, intended to fulfill your predetermined goals and objectives.
Before you dive headfirst into the strategy shindig and party hard, you’ll need to have set solid objectives and goals.
In order for strategy to be effective you should already have outlined your goals (it’s surprising how many companies don’t do this), and know your intended audience.
Here’s a quick overview of what your strategy and tactics may look like for an overly simplistic goal. 2013 – AR app, mobile optimised website, foursquare deals, customer service in social media etc.
To sum up, being better thought-through and organised than your competitors will add to your bottom line – by pursuing clear and achievable objectives and implementing tactics that support your strategy you’ll be doing what most businesses don’t. Like I said even if you understand the difference between strategy and tactics, it’s not that easy to make an effective strategy supported by effective tactics. This is really well explained and done in an entertaining way, which is always a difficult balance to achieve. Connect with charliesaidthatGet in touch if you are looking for SEO or Social Media advice for your business, a speaker or a live tweeter for your event. I will talk to you about how you can measure success, and help build strategies that resonate with audiences and generate ROI. This often means using Web Analytics, SEO and Social Media to make campaigns more successful. Note that these stages represent points on a continuum from a purely domestic orientation to a truly global one; companies may fall in between these discrete stages, and different parts of the firm may have characteristics of various stagesa€”for example, the pickup truck division of an auto-manufacturer may be largely domestically focused, while the passenger car division is globally focused.
Socialist law is based on the premise that a€?the government is always righta€? and typically has not developed a sophisticated framework of contracts (you do what the governments tells you to do) or intellectual property protection (royalties are unwarranted since the government ultimately owns everything).A  Former communist countries such as those of Eastern Europe and Russia are trying to advance their legal systems to accommodate issues in a free market.
Culture is part of the external influences that impact the consumer.A That is, culture represents influences that are imposed on the consumer by other individuals. Although Hofstedea€™s original work did not address this, a fifth dimension of long term vs. Idioms involve a€?figures of speecha€? that may not be used, literally translated, in other languages.A  For example, baseball is a predominantly North and South American sport, so the notion of a€?in the ball parka€? makes sense here, but the term does not carry the same meaning in cultures where the sport is less popular.
Space is perceived differently.A  Americans will feel crowded where people from more densely populated countries will be comfortable. The international product life cycle suggests that product adoption and spread in some markets may lag significantly behind those of others.
The Japanese Keiretsu Structure.A  In Japan, many firms are part of a keiretsu, or a conglomerate that ties together businesses that can aid each other. Exporting is a relatively low risk strategy in which few investments are made in the new country. Licensing and franchising are also low exposure methods of entrya€”you allow someone else to use your trademarks and accumulated expertise. Contract manufacturing involves having someone else manufacture products while you take on some of the marketing efforts yourself. On the topic of services, cultural issues may be even more prominent than they are for tangible goods. Advertisinga€”in or on newspapers, radio, television, billboards, busses, taxis, or the Internet. Humor.A  Although humor is a relatively universal phenomenon, what is considered funny between countries differs greatly, so pre-testing is essential. Explicitness.A  Europeans tend to allow for considerably more explicit advertisements, often with sexual overtones, than Americans. Reference prices are more likely to be more precise for frequently purchased and highly visible products. Marketers often try to influence people's price perceptions through the use of external reference pricesa€”indicators given to the consumer as to how much something should cost. Transfer pricing involves what one subsidiary will charge another for products or components supplied for use in another country. Antitrust laws are relevant in pricing decisions, and anti-dumping regulations are especially noteworthy. Psychological issues: Most pricing research has been done on North Americans, and this raises serious problems of generalizability.
For me, the key A when setting KPIs for marketing and digital marketing is to start with theA business goals. It's understandable, but can lead to confusion within a businesses and when talking to providers. What's important is settingA specific targets (goals or objectives)A that you can evaluate performance against! For example if you set a business objective to the leading voice in the local fish & chip market, and a goal to have your shop be mentioned in over 50% of all online fish and chip conversations in your local area by December 2015, then a simple a€?mentionsa€™ metric pulled from a listening tool isna€™tA going to good enough to know if you are yet in the lions share of conversations. I think this is perhaps because strategy is a sexy buzzword used by management consultants and the self-proclaimed ninjas, gurus and The Apprentices of the world to infer some secretive superior knowledge.
As we’ll find all strategy and no tactics is simply not enough to gain traction in the noisy overcrowded marketplace. Strategy is the plan that ensures all your day to day activities (tactics) contribute to your monthly, quarterly and annual business goals. I know it might sound cheesy, but it’s true – and one of the things I see overlooked most commonly.
Of course you will usually have several goals running at the same time and you actually should structure your strategies to differentiate your business.
We often struggle to get clients to understand how Strategy and Tactics differ but this does it well.
Although a global focus is generally appropriate for most large firms, note that it may not be ideal for all companies to pursue the global stage. Firms often have to make a tradeoff between adapting their products to the unique demands of a country market or gaining benefits of standardization such as cost savings and the maintenance of a consistent global brand image. With rare exceptions, products just dona€™t emerge in foreign markets overnighta€”a firm has to build up a market over time.
A drawback is that, because the firm makes few if any marketing investments in the new country, market share may be below potential. The firm gains more knowledge about the local market and maintains greater control, but now has a huge investment.
Another way candy manufacturers have effectively increased prices is through a reduction in quality. In the old days, most software manufacturers provided free support for their programsa€”it used to be possible to call the WordPerfect Corporation on an 800 number to get free help. Consumers often develop internal reference prices, or expectations about what something should cost, based mostly on their experience. Therefore, retailers very often promote soft drinks, since consumers tend to have a good idea of prices and these products are quite visible.
While marketers may choose to introduce a product at a low price in order to induce trial, which is useful in a new market where the penetration of a product is low, this may have serious repercussions as consumers may develop a low reference price and may thus resist paying higher prices in the future.

In some cultures, particularly where retail stores are smaller and the buyer has the opportunity to interact with the owner, bargaining may be more common, and it may thus be more difficult for the manufacturer to influence retail level pricing.
When a product is exported, price escalation, whereby the product dramatically increases in price in the export market, is likely to take place.
Firms will often try to charge high prices to subsidiaries in countries with high taxes so that the income earned there will be minimized.
In general, it is illegal to sell a product below your cost of production, which may make a penetration pricing entry strategy infeasible. Buyers in some countries do not have ready access to convertible currency, and governments will often try limit firmsa€™ ability to spend money abroad.
Americans are used to sales, for example, while consumers in countries where goods are more scarce may attribute a sale to low quality rather than a desire to gain market share. While there isn't a 'right or wrong' way to define these, it is definitely a good idea to have clarity on this. This is key for all striving to achieve the goals, how will they know when theya€™ve smashed them. What if we talked about new likes on Facebook asA a€?audience waiting to be inspireda€™ or cart dropouts asA a€?potential customers we faileda€™.
If you own a card shop, and your focus is on driving customer to your store from the high street around the corner, then footfall is a key indicator of success.
Bring KPIs to life with regular reviews and actions will demonstrating your team are firmly aligned to the goals of the businessa€¦ and not just see as reporting for digital marketing self-indulgence. Used well they help keep the agenda clear and simple, driving teams to focus and allowing celebration of success.
1900, 1980, 2013) your strategy would remain the same, whilst the tactics will more than likely change.
One significant reason is technologicala€”because of improved transportation and communication opportunities today, trade is now more practical. For example, manufacturers of ice cubes may do well as domestic, or even locally centered, firms.
Department of Commerce and available through the Gelman Library (you can access it through the a€?Linksa€? section of my web-site), contains a great deal of statistical information online.A  Excellent full text searchable indices to periodicals include Lexis-Nexis and RDS Business and Industry, also available through Gelman.
That is, members should respond in similar ways to various treatments (such as discounts or high service) so that common campaigns can be aimed at segment members, but in order to justify a different treatment of other segments, their members should have their own unique response behavior. At the macro level, countries are seen as segments, given that country aggregate characteristics and statistics tend to differ significantly. Further, the firm, by not operating in the country, learns less about the market (What do consumers really want? Problems here involve the fact that you are training a potential competitor and that you have little control over how the business is operated. In some countries, the government may expropriate assets without compensation, so direct investment entails an additional risk. Nowadays, you either have to call a 900 number or have a credit card handy to get help from many software makers. Most drivers with long commutes develop a good feeling of what gasoline should cost, and can tell a bargain or a ripoff. The trick, then, is to be more expensive on products where price expectations are muddier.
This usually occurs because a longer distribution chain is necessary and because smaller quantities sold through this route will usually not allow for economies of scale. Japan has actively lobbied the World Trade Organization (WTO) to relax its regulations, which generally require firms to price no lower than their average fully absorbed cost (which incorporates both variable and fixed costs). There is some evidence that perceived price quality relationships are quite high in Britain and Japan (thus, discount stores have had difficulty there), while in developing countries, there is less trust in the market. This normally only occurs under near-perfect market conditions, where products are almost identical. This may seem a little over the top compared to the safeA a€?click-through-ratea€™ orA a€?reacha€™ numbers, but maybe its worth asking the question: Would more listen up and pay attention if the KPI actually described what was happening to the business? So youA monitor it, and think about it every day making small changes to what you write on your chalk board each week to see what works in driving more people into your store. All too often people seem to confuse Objectives with Strategy as being the same which they are not. Thus, consumers and businesses now have access to the very best products from many different countries. For example, there will only be a large market for expensive pharmaceuticals in countries with certain income levels, and entry opportunities into infant clothing will be significantly greater in countries with large and growing birthrates (in countries with smaller birthrates or stable to declining birthrates, entrenched competitors will fight hard to keep the market share). Two approaches exist, and their use often parallels the firma€™s stage of international involvement.
For example, American fast food restaurants have found that foreign franchisers often fail to maintain American standards of cleanliness. A variation involves a joint venture, where a local firm puts up some of the money and knowledge about the local market. It is frequently tempting for foreign licensees of a major brand name to use inferior ingredients.
Cultural differences may influence the extent of effort put into evaluating deals (potentially impacting the effectiveness of odd-even pricing and promotion signaling). The approach he recommends is to have a clear top-down approach so goals support vision and more specific objectives add detail to goals.
If you ran a card shop on the high street and you had 50% of customers walking out on youA because paying was just too painful, would you talk to your staff about theA a€?basket abandon ratea€™ that day, or talk to them about the 'customers we pissed offa€™. We work with clients to devise KPIs that are actionable and as part of that we need them to delineate between Strategy and Tactics and so this is really useful. Increasingly rapid technology lifecycles also increases the competition among countries as to who can produce the newest in technology. Similarly, a foreign manufacturer may use lower quality ingredients in manufacturing a brand based on premium contents in the home country.
An offset contract is somewhat more flexible in that the buyer can get paid but instead has to buy, or cause others to buy, products for a certain value within a specified period of time.
In considering these decisions it is important to distinguish between pricing strategy and tactics.
Yeah thata€™s right, the one that actually says whata€™s happening, evokes more urgency and action, and thatA actually helps frame ideas for solutions.
In part to accommodate these realities, countries in the last several decades have taken increasing steps to promote global trade through agreements such as the General Treaty on Trade and Tariffs, and trade organizations such as the World Trade Organization (WTO), North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the European Union (EU). In the international stage, as certain country markets begin to appear especially attractive with more foreign orders originating there, the firm may go into countries on an ad hoc basisa€”that is, each country may be entered sequentially, but with relatively little learning and marketing efforts being shared across countries.
Strategy is concerned with setting prices for the first time, either for a new product or for an existing product in a new market; tactics are about changing prices.
In contrast, intermarket segmentation involves the detection of segments that exist across borders. Changes can be either self-initiated (to improve profitability or as a means of promotion) or in response to outside change (i.e. Finally, in the global stage, the focus centers on the entire World market, with decisions made optimize the producta€™s position across marketsa€”the home country is no longer the center of the product.
Note that not all segments that exist in one country will exist in another and that the sizes of the segments may differ significantly. For example, there is a huge small car segment in Europe, while it is considerably smaller in the U.S.
Barter)Geographical pricing involves the company in deciding how to price its products to different. For example, should the company charge higher prices to distant customers to cover the higher shipping costs or a lower price to win additional business? Marketing intelligence provides your company with information on the external market environment, including market size, competitive activity, trends in product or service sales, and market growth.
Effective marketing intelligence can increase sales opportunities and minimize the risk of failure by helping you tailor products to meet customers’ needs.
This issue is critical when buyers lack sufficient hard currency to pay for their purchases.

Marketing intelligence should be a continuous activity that enables you to track changes in the market and adapt your marketing to the new environment. For example, if you find that online sales in your product category are exceeding sales from retail outlets, you may decide to invest in e-commerce rather than retail support. For example, PepsiCo sells its cola syrup to Russia for rubles and agrees to buy Russian vodka at a certain rate for sale in the United States.Price discounts and allowancesThe role of discount Offering discounts can be a useful tactic in response to aggressive competition by a competitor. It enables you to assess the level of competitive threat to your business and provides an early warning of changes in the competitive environment that could impact your business. However, discounting can be dangerous unless carefully controlled and conceived as part of your overall marketing strategy. Competitive intelligence helps you to make better decisions about changes to products, marketing strategies and promotional activities so that you can deal effectively with competitive threats. Discounting is common in many industries – in some it is so endemic as to render normal price lists practically meaningless.
This is not to say that there is anything particularly wrong with price discounting provided that you are getting something specific that you want in return. The trouble is that, all too often, companies get themselves embroiled in a complex structure of cash, quantity and other discounts, whilst getting absolutely nothing in return except a lower profit margin. Let us look briefly at the main types of discounts common todayCash and settlement discounts – These are intended to bring payments in faster.
However, competitive intelligence is the most difficult type of information to acquire, according to B2B International. However, since such discounts need to be at least 2,5% per month to have any real effect, this means paying your customer an annual rate of interest of 30% just to get in money which is due to you anyway. You can obtain a limited amount of published information on competitors’ new product plans, customers and strategies from company websites or analysts’ reports. What is more, customers frequently take all the discounts on offer and still do not pay promptly, so that you lose both ways. Your customers may also be willing to share information on competitors with your sales team. Much better, we believe, is either to eliminate these discounts altogether and introduce an efficient credit control system, or change your terms of business so that you can impose a surcharge on overdue accounts instead.
To obtain more detailed information, you can hire the services of a competitive intelligence specialist certified by an organization such as the Strategic and Competitive Intelligence Professionals Society. Whilst you may lose some business by doing this, these will probably be the worst payers anyway.
If you are not very careful, although they may have helped you win the business to start with, in the long run the only effect they have is to spoil your profit margin. As a general rule, only publish the very minimum of quantity discounts – your very largest customers will probably try to negotiate something extra anyway.
There may be times when you want to give an extra boost to sales – to shift an old product before launching an updated one for example. They also make sure that the end user gets at least some of the benefit, which doesn’t always happen with other types of discounts. Two other points to remember areMake sure you retain control over your special promotions, with a specific objective, a beginning and an end point.
Be sure to terminate them once they have outlived their usefulness.Ensure that your offers are linked to sales and not simply to orders.
Otherwise you may find that orders to you are up for a while, only to be followed by a barren period whilst your customer supplies the end user from his accumulated stocks.Clearly the role of discounts will vary from one type of business to another and not all of the comments above will apply to you.
In part your ability to minimize discounts, or eliminate them altogether, will depend on the non-price benefits of your product. But, whatever business you are in, you should always ask yourself what your discounts are supposed to achieve, whether they are effective, and how long they are expected to last. This pays if the revenue on the addi-tional sales compensates for the lower margins on the) boss-leader items.
Manufacturers of loss-leader brands typically object because this practice can dilute the brand image and bring complaints from retailers who charge the list price. Longer payment terms – Sellers, especially mortgage banks and auto companies, stretch loans over longer periods and thus lower the monthly payments. If they do not work, they waste money that could have been put into other marketing tools, such as building up product quality and service or strengthening product image through advertising.Discriminatory pricing strategiesCompanies often adjust their basic price to accommodate differences in customers, products, locations, and so on. Price discrimination occurs when a company sells a product or service at two or more prices that do not reflect a proportional difference in costs. In first-degree price discrimination, the seller charges a separate price to each customer depending on the intensity of his or her demand. In second-degree price discrim-ination, the seller charges less to buyers who buy a larger volume.
A perfume manufacturer can put the perfume in one bottle, give it a name and image, and price it at Rest.
Public utilities vary energy rates to commercial users by time of day and weekend versus weekday. Hotels and airlines use yield pricing, by which they offer lower rates on unsold inventory just before it expires.
Coca-Cola considered raising its vending machine soda prices on hot days using wireless technology, and lowering the price on cold days. However, customers so dis-liked the idea that Coke abandoned it.For price discrimination to work, certain conditions must exist. First, the market must be segment able and the segments must show different intensities of demand. Fourth, the cost of segmenting and policing the market must not exceed the extra revenue derived from price discrimination.
Sixth, the particular form of price discrimination must not be illegal.As a result of deregulation in several industries, competitors have increased their use of discriminatory pricing. For instance, they can use software that monitors customers’ movements over the Web and allows them to customize offers and prices.
New software applications, how-ever, are also allowing buyers to discrimi-nate between sellers by comparing prices instantaneously.Product-mix pricingPrice-setting logic must be modified when, the product is part of a product mix. In this case, the firm searches for a set of prices that maximizes profits on the total mix. Pricing is difficult because the various products have demand and cost interrelationships and are subject to different degrees of competition. In many lines of trade, sellers use well-established price points for the products in their line. Customers will associate low-, average-, and high-quality suits with the three price points. The automobile buyer can order electric window controls, defoggers, light dimmers, and an extended warranty. Pricing is a sticky problem; automobiles companies must decide which items to include in the price and which to offer as options.
Manufacturers of razors and cameras often price them low and set high markups on razor blades and film, respectively. Telephone users pay a minimum monthly fee plus charges for calls beyond the minimum number. The service firm faces a problem sin1ilar to captive -product pricing-namely, how much to charge for the basic service and how much for the variable usage. When offering a mixed bundle, the seller normally charges less for the bundle than if the items were purchased separately. An auto manufacturer might offer an option package at less than the cost of buying all the options separately. A theater company will price a season subscription at less than the cost of buying all the performances sepa-rately. Because customers may not have planned to buy all the components, the savings on the price bundle must be substantial enough to induce them to buy the bundle.

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