On my most recent trip to IKEA, I was struck by the brilliance of their in-store marketing.
It's not subtle at all, really, it's almost in your face. It also works like a charm. All you have to do is look at the overflowing shopping carts of the fellow shoppers around you to know that it works.
Why is IKEA's marketing so good? Because they put the right things in front of the customer at exactly the right time. Sometimes it's things you are thinking about and sometimes perhaps not. But the right thing ALWAYS shows up in the right place.
Looking at light fixtures? Here's the right bulb for you! Checking out the fabric? Lo and behold, it's a sewing machine! Like those nifty magazine racks? Here's an electric screwdriver to install them with! Want to know why you just spent $100 more than you intended to? Look no further than the accessories you didn't know you needed that you loaded into the ubiquitous blue bag -- which you also bought on the way out the door.
Granted, IKEA isn't the only company in the world that does this, but I think they do it more masterfully than anyone else I can think of. Walking through the IKEA maze presents an entire field of landmines that can be deadly to your bank account. This field, however, has been set up so that you happily step on all the mines along the way. They even get your last dollar for a cinnamon bun on the way out the door.
Your company's marketing strategy should be like IKEA's. You need to utilize all the tools at your disposal to put the right product in front of the right customer at the exact time he or she is ready to buy. Social media and good research can help you do exactly that.