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What is marketing?

And why do you need it?

marketing agency, what is marketing, digital marketing, offline marketing

In day-to-day business life, we use a lot of words and terms as second nature, but we don’t always know their true meaning. “Marketing” is one of those words that gets used all the time but can also be treated in the wrong way, or can be completely misunderstood (hello, multilevel marketing).

As a marketing professional, and agency owner, I believe helping people understand the basics of marketing and how to implement strategic marketing can help them implement these strategies on their own and also avoid marketing agency trauma.


Marketing in the simplest terms is any activity that generates interest in your product or service.

Marketing can be as simple as word of mouth and as complicated as search engine optimization (SEO).

The key to marketing is defining what marketing tactics you need to focus on and how you will implement them - which is where strategic marketing comes in.


Strategic Marketing is a marketing game plan and schedule based on a business's target audience, mission statement, value proposition, budget, and goals.

Having a strategic marketing plan is critical to the lifeline of your business. Not only does a strategic marketing plan help you find success with your current resources (time, budget, and people), but it helps you and your employees stay aligned on your goals.


Every business needs marketing whether they think they do or not. Even if you don’t have a budget, plan, or resources, you can still find success through marketing. Without marketing, no one is going to know about your product or service.

Something as simple as a writeup in a local newspaper, word of mouth, social media posting, and/or having reviews on your Google Business Listing are all different types of marketing.

Marketing creates demands, keeps you in competition with your competitors, and positions you as a relevant business.


There are two different types of marketing. Digital marketing and offline marketing.


Digital marketing is all the marketing tactics that you basically do on your computer using the internet. Types of digital marketing include:

  • SEO

  • Social media marketing

  • Email marketing

  • Copywriting

  • PPC and display ads

  • Lead magnets

  • Digital reviews

  • Content marketing


Offline marketing can be thought of as traditional marketing. Whereas a lot of the above marketing tactics need the internet, offline marketing does not. Offline marketing can include tactics such as:

  • PR

  • Television

  • Billboards

  • Radio

  • Networking

  • Physical mailers

  • Speaking engagements

  • Magazine advertisements


A strong marketing strategy usually takes a professional approach which is why hiring an in-house marketing person or hiring an agency (hint: STAK Marketing) is so important.

If you’re coming up with your own marketing strategy my first piece of advice is to figure out who your target audience is. Who are those people? What do those people like? Where do those people go for information? By figuring out those details you can figure out where to market and how to message them.

After you figured out where you are spending your marketing resources, you need to figure out your resources and then stay consistent within those resources. For example, are you only able to post to Instagram twice a week? That’s ok! The key to is post twice a week for a long period of time to gain consistent followers.

Just remember, no one marketing tactic is going to make or break your business. Successful marketing is a STAK of marketing tactics that are done correctly and consistently over a long period of time. Successful marketing takes time, expertise, money, and patience.

Keep STAKing,

Michelle Johnson

Owner/Founder STAK Marketing

Michelle Johnson is the owner, founder, and Chief Marketing Guru at STAK Marketing. Our passion at STAK Marketing is to create beautiful STAKs of marketing strategies that help small businesses grow and reach their goals. STAK Marketing's expertise ranges from SEO to branding, e-mail marketing to website design, PR to advertising, and much more - making STAK Marketing a one-stop-shop for all your small business marketing needs.

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