No business can succeed without good marketing. This is especially true in the internet era, where brands seem to be constantly fighting to be the most noticed online. Sadly, there’s no secret weapon that brands can use to be the most recognized in a crowded marketing landscape. All of us want to come up with that magic viral post that catapults us to the next level, but it’s typically not as simple as that.

While there might not be a magic bullet, there are definitely techniques that brands can be used to raise their visibility. If you want to take your brand to the next level, then you need to put some real effort into your marketing strategy, both online and off.

Here are some tips on how you can improve your brand’s image through superior marketing, thereby increasing visibility and sales.

Put Some Thought Into Your Image

Too often, entrepreneurs make the same mistake when it comes to promoting their business online. Instead of sitting down and reflecting on what sort of brand image they want to portray, they study the principles of marketing as if they were steadfast laws and follow them blindly.

How often have you visited a website that seems to follow the exact same formula? They have a blog that’s stuffed full of obvious keywords, a mailing list sign-up page and a free PDF report that presents no real substantive information.

These websites might be following the rules, but they’re not doing anything to entice their customers. This is why superior marketers look outside of the regular rule book.

Sure, they acknowledge that there are some steps that brands must follow in order to successfully build their brand online. However, they look for unique ways to appeal to their customers and reach new audiences. They try the techniques that haven’t been tried before. This is what separates ordinary marketers from innovators.

Be Customer Oriented Above All Else

When it comes to social media marketing in particular, there seems to be an epidemic of brands talking at their customers instead of with them. If you’re using social media to bombard your audience with advertisements but never communicate with them, then you’re wasting your brand’s social media platform’s potential.

People in general like to feel like they’re being heard. It’s why YouTube videos and news articles are full of pages and pages of comments. When an idea is expressed, people naturally want to respond and join in on the conversation.

You should be using your brand’s social media pages as a method of talking to your customers. If they have a complaint, address it. If they have a question, answer it. This might be a time-consuming endeavor, but it’s simply one of the best methods of establishing brand loyalty and making your customers feel appreciated.

Know When Something Isn’t Working

When a company sits down to devise a marketing strategy, there’s often a lot of time, energy and passion put into the new endeavor. For this reason, many brands are reluctant to admit when a new marketing campaign simply isn’t working. However, it’s essential that companies can acknowledge when a strategy simply isn’t creating the type of impact that they wanted it to have on their customers.

Typically after three or four months, it becomes apparent if a marketing strategy isn’t landing. When this happens, it’s essential that your team can come together and create a plan to scrap it and come up with something new.

Customers dislike having the same strategy shoved at them when they didn’t respond well to it the first time. If you can acknowledge when something isn’t working and move on to something new, you’ll be a cut above the rest.

Always Look For Inspiration

There’s inspiration everywhere, from you customers’ feedback to your competitors’ strategies. While you should never outright copy another brand’s strategy, it can be a good way to gauge what works and what does not work with your target demographic. A good marketer never puts out a campaign and then calls it quits. Instead, they continue to analyze and look for new and innovative ways to promote their brand.

Superior marketing isn’t a black and white endeavor. Rather, it’s nuanced and complex. However, if you put thought into your marketing strategy, you can eventually see some real rewards for your efforts.

About the Author: Philip Piletic’s primary focus is a fusion of technology, small business and marketing. He’s a freelancer, a writer and a traveler who loves to share his experience with others by contributing to online communities and helping others achieve success. He would like to thank LockedOn for their help with this article.