A strategy is a guiding light, it describes the destination, how you are going to get there and what tactics will be used to accomplish your marketing objectives. Here at TACK10, we have developed a proven 5 pillar methodology that we use throughout the client process, with ‘Strategize’ being the third pillar.

In this week’s #TuesdayTop Series we are looking at the Top 3 Things to Consider When Developing a Strategic Plan!

It is important differentiate that tactics are the actions one uses to deliver on a given strategy. Tactics are your short-term actions and strategy is your long-term path towards a desired outcome. Much like investing, strategy is something you need to commit to and see through. Tactics are the actionable elements that should be constantly tweaked, tested and refined. Quite often when things do not go as well as planned, strategy gets blamed and it is said that the strategy was wrong. In these cases, organizations will be quick to alter the strategy when the root cause of the performance deficit comes down to the wrong tactic or a poorly executed tactic. Described by James Chalmers, our Group President & CEO, “Strategy is like me saying I want to go to Montreal. There are many ways that I can get there. I can drive, I can take a train or I can fly. All will get me to my destination but which one is best depends on circumstances. These travel options are my tactics for how to get to Montreal.”

Evaluate and Define
Our Director of Brand Strategy, Andre Proulx says that the most critical thing he considers when putting together strategy is evaluation and definition of exactly who or what the target audience is. Having the audience extremely well-defined, allows organizations to tailor their messaging to what matters most for that targeted audience. Are you delivering a message or starting a conversation with the audience through the channels they prefer, using the tactics that will best connect and at the right time? It always has to start with creating value for your audience and the only way to do that is to evaluate and define exactly who the audience is and what the audience values.

Keep it Simple
Ockham’s Razor states that all things being equal, the simplest and most direct solution with the fewest number of steps is usually the correct answer to any problem. The concept was popularized centuries ago, but despite being an age-old principle it still rings true to this day. The same goes for developing a marketing strategy. Limiting the number of objectives simplifies the focus, leading to a clearer defined set of tactics. Change is a constant – not to mention inevitable, which means with a simple strategy you are able to efficiently pivot tactics when needed. It allows you to expect the unexpected.

Final Bell
Strategy is about a long-term destination and tactics are the short-term actionable items used to get there. Strategy can absolutely be wrong, but so often it is actually the tactics that need attention when under-performance occurs.