Any business, big or small, needs marketing. It is marketing that helps you get your business out there, so that you can entice customers in, make sales, and survive as a business. However, even the most successful of businesses has goals to improve. Whether you want to make more sales, expand your team, increase your product range, or more, there is always work to be done! But how do you get there? That’s where the idea of a marketing gap comes in. But what is it? Why do you need to understand yours? And what do you need to do once you’re equipped with this knowledge? We’ll cover all of this and more in this article!

What is it?

This term is easily confused with ‘market gap‘, but it is important to be aware that they are not the same thing! The former is a gap in the market that a business can exploit with a solution to a problem or want in order to make money and be successful. On the other hand, when it comes to marketing, the term gap means something very different. Here, this gap is the difference between where you are currently with business and your goals, and where you want to go. The gap in between these two stages of businesses is what your marketing activity needs to fill. So, what can you do in the way of marketing to grow your business and meet your goals. Once you have figured this out, you know what your gap is, and what you need to do in order to fill it. The gap can be between where you are now and either short or long term goals. In fact, many businesses may have more than one gap that needs to be filled by their marketing, so it does end up being a long-term strategy.

Why do you need to understand your specific marketing gap?

Firstly, let’s take a look at the reasons why a gap like this occurs. There is a gap in most businesses, and it is not a sign of your business gone wrong. After all, every business has a goal that they want to work towards. If this is the case, they will have a gap that needs filling by marketing activity in order to get there. So, it is usually the case that the gap occurs as a natural by-product of wanting to grow and expand. However, some gaps are bigger than they need to be, and this is where things can go wrong slightly. If you don’t have a solid marketing strategy, you may feel as though you are spending time and money on marketing activities that simply aren’t working for you. They are not helping you to reach your goals, grow your business, and fill your marketing gap. If this sounds like you, then you probably need to get a better understanding of what your gap is, and what you can do to help fill it.

While it sounds simple, figuring out your businesses’ specific gap and how to fill it isn’t quite as straightforward as it may seem! In order to fully understand your gap and what it means for your business, you need to know the specific figures surrounding your business, and where you would like them to go. The figures you should know include:

  • the average value of your transactions
  • the average value of a customer per year
  • your customer churn or retention rate
  • your conversion rate
  • the average length of your relationships with each customer
  • your average profit margin per transaction

Once you know these figures, and know where you would like them to be, you will be able to calculate your marketing gap in terms of a concrete number. How many sales do you need to make to reach those goals? How many new customers do you need to attract? And so on. Having a good understanding of the facts and figures that come with running your business is key to successfully working on your gap. This is because you won’t be working towards an arbitrary figure. Instead, you will know exactly what you need to do. But where does marketing itself come into this? Let’s take a look…

Market gap

What now?

So, once you know what your marketing gap is in terms of numbers, what should you do now? Well, in order to reach your target, you will inevitably need to make more sales and get more customers. Marketing is the main way in which you can do this. Having said that, there are some things that you can do to help narrow the gap without having to get more customers on board. For example, if your average customer retention rate is low, what can you do to help encourage more customers to stay loyal to your business?

Marketing Strategy

However, for any company to grow significantly, marketing is key to bridging the gap and ensuring that more customers are finding out about you and choosing to make a purchase with you. If you want to close your marketing gap and reach your goals, you need to take a hard look at your marketing strategy. If you don’t have a concrete marketing strategy yet, then you definitely need to make this a priority! Having a solid marketing strategy is key to all marketing activity. It tells you what you need to do and when in order to grow your business. So, if you are just now identifying your gap, tweaking your strategy to suit these new aims and objectives is definitely important. You can find out more about strategic marketing and why you need a marketing strategy in this blog post.

Marketing based on facts and stats

Once you have a solid idea of what your marketing gap is, you can base all of your future marketing activity on this. You can feel confident when making decisions. This is because you know your decisions are based on facts and figures, and are not based on poorly-researched ideas or just a stab into the dark. The consequence of this should be that you are wasting less money on marketing activities that do not offer a good return on investment. Having a solid plan will give you the security of knowledge that you are making good choices for the benefit of your business, that are based on meeting a pre-defined and clearly set out end goal.

Review and learn

Once you understand your marketing gap and what to fo next, it’s not just something that you can simply forget about! In fact, you should be constantly reviewing your gap. What’s changed? Are changes on the horizon? Are there new marketing methods that you are aware about that you should be adding into your strategy? It’s important to keep reviewing your end goal to ensure that it is still in line with your business as a whole. After all, things can change drastically in a short amount of time, and where you thought you wanted to go isn’t actually the best path for you. Don’t be afraid to change your plans if needed. Let your knowledge of your business, how it works, and the hard facts and finances back you up in your decisions, and adjust your strategies accordingly.

Be realistic

Having big goals and ambitions for your business is definitely not a bad thing! However, when it comes to identifying your marketing gap and actually working on the activities that help you reach those goals, it is vital to be realistic. How much time and budget do you actually have to dedicate to this? Are your time frames accurate and achievable? It may be helpful to split your bigger goal into smaller goals, each with a gap to fill with marketing activity, in order to make this a more manageable task. After all, if your tasks are genuinely achievable, you are far more likely to reach your goals. This is highly motivating and should spur you on to achieve even bigger and better things in the future!

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

Reach out for support

Marketing can be a tricky challenge. There is plenty to learn and do. Once you have a plan in place to bridge your marketing gap, there’s all the work that needs to be done to actually get there! So, especially if you are a small business with no in-house marketing team, it’s vital to reach out for help if you need it. Taking on the services of an outside marketing professional can help you get the job done in a far more efficient manner, leaving you to focus on what you do best, which probably isn’t marketing unless you are from that background!

Here at Delivered Social, we are passionate about helping businesses from all sorts of sectors make digital marketing work for them. If you’ve identified your marketing gap, but need support to help reach those goals, then why not get in touch today? We’d love to learn more about your business and how we can help you thrive and grow!