Developing a marketing strategy can feel a little like watching the clouds go by – stare too hard or for too long and the view changes. To streamline the process, marketing pros have a little trick to streamline their efforts: they use a model. There are many different ways of thinking about marketing, but one, in particular, stands out in this modern age of online marketing. It is called STP Marketing.
What is STP Marketing?
STP marketing is a model that leverages Segmentation, Targeting, and Positioning to craft targeted marketing messages and a tailored customer experience. It is most commonly used in digital strategy. Marketers use this information to define demographics, develop the right marketing mix, and create buyer personas to guide their marketing efforts.
Understanding the STP Model
Successful marketing centers around your value proposition, be it for your company, brand identity, or your products and services themselves. The problem is that different people value things in different ways.
Take a low-price department store like Walmart for example. Some people shop there because of price while others visit those big box stores for convenience. If you were in charge of marketing for Walmart, your marketing would reflect those two messages – low prices and one-stop shopping – to appeal to each type of shopper.
This is (very simple) example is effectively STP marketing in practice. Why should the marketing for your company be any different? Let’s go over each component of STP marketing so that you can understand how to use this model to take your marketing to the next level.
The first step to applying STP marketing is segmentation. This is the practice of dividing your customers based on certain identifying characteristics. It allows you to deliver tailored marketing messages that specifically appeal to these groups – an approach that tends to be more effective than a one-size-fits-all strategy.
While there are many ways to segment your market, here are some of the most common.
- Age/Gender: Age and gender are very personal attributes, but they are also very defining. The needs of a 20-year-old woman are inherently different than that of a 60-year-old man, regardless of any other characteristic.
- Income: STP marketing professionals may also look at income level because the more money people make, the more they tend to spend. They also have different values. Many companies find that their customers fall within a certain income bracket.
- Lifestyle: You may also want to segment your customers by lifestyle. For instance, the needs of a customer with kids is often very different from those who do not.
- Location: Look at your customers by location as well. Understanding where your customers come from will help you target your ads and place them more effectively.
Once you have divided your customers into different groups, it is time to look at how those segments contribute to your revenues and success so that you can determine which group to target. Here are three ways refine targeting.
- Economic Potential: Depending on your business, you might find that one segment is responsible for more sales than others and you can use that information to target those individuals. While this should not be your single determinate for which segment you target, it should factor into your decision.
- Size: Next, look at the size of the segment. If one group contributes twice as much as another, that doesn’t mean that it is absolutely the best segment to target. You have to dig deeper. Look at the size of each segment and its potential for growth.
- Distinction: Finally, consider what makes a segment distinctive. You might see that you have a segment with good economic potential and possibilities for growth but if going after that demographic kills business as you know it, give it some thought before you pursue that group. For instance, if you own a store and you find that teenagers love the simple canvas shoes you carry, you might be tempted to expand your offering, carrying more colors and styles or offering other products to draw teens in, like popular candy. However, if you do that, you could alienate your other customers.
The last step in STP marketing is positioning. This involves creating a marketing mix to reach your targeted segment and identifying the best way to reach your customers. While there are many ways to do this, positioning strategies fall into three basic categories.
- Function: Functional positioning is centered on how your product or service meets the specific needs of your target demographic. This strategy relies on the value you can provide your customer and the pain points you can resolve.
- Symbolism: You can also take a symbolism approach to positioning. Think about what it is about your products or services that could bolster your customers’ self-esteem and emphasize those features. Prestige brands often use this strategy, playing up their logos, the exclusivity of their offerings, or a certain lifestyle.
- Experience: Positioning can be based on the experience as well. This strategy is designed to create an emotional connection with your target segment by focusing on how it feels to use y our products or services. Marketing messages like “Relax,” “Let us take care of everything,” and “experience the difference” are examples of this approach.
Using the STP Model
The STP marketing model forms the basis of a tailored marketing strategy and can serve as a framework to help you transform the way you reach your customers. The STP model ultimately help you identify the best way to connect with your target audience. Many companies also find that STP marketing builds brand loyalty by refining and defining your company’s identity.
The four P’s of marketing – Place, Price, Product, and Promotion – can be a useful tool to get you started in implementing the STP model. Think about where you can reach your target customers, the price point that they are willing to pay for your unique product or service, and the types of promotion they like best.
STP marketing is a three-step strategy to transforming your marketing from a one-size-fits-all approach to a more tailored and targeted effort. By defining your customers by their segmentation and evaluating the economic potential of those groups, you can identify which segments to target and position your brand to reach that segment.
All you need is accurate customer data to get started, and ironFocus can help. We offer tools that can help you identify the opportunities in your sales funnel. From identifying the segments with the most potential to helping you figure out the best positioning to reach that group. We can help you use STP marketing in your business so contact us to discuss your particular needs.