Marketing is much more than just advertising—it's all of the actions you take to promote and sell your products or services. Marketing books often talk about the 4 p's of the marketing mix: price, promotion, place, and product. This includes areas like branding, social media advertising, and cold call selling. As part of deciding promotional strategies, consider your goals and determine what benchmarks will let you know it's a success. While social media can be a free way to advertise, paying for a direct mailing coupon campaign might bring actual customers in your neighborhood to your store.
Figuring out what appeals to your customers involves doing both primary and secondary market research. Primary research is going out and surveying your potential customers on their needs and wants, what would motivate them to use your product, and what product features are most attractive. Secondary research is using already collected research, such as information from census data, market databases, and published survey results.
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