Developing Your Marketing Plan

Marketing Strategy

Last time, we mentioned the Marketing Plan as part of our 9 Easy Steps in Creating Your Business Plan.  Below is a brief overview of what a Marketing Plan is, why it is a quintessential part of a Business Plan, and the four most important points to keep in mind as you develop your own Marketing Plan.

 

What is A Marketing Plan?

A Marketing Plan is merely a part of an overall business plan and usually takes up six pages for a small business.  It describes the current market position of a business and the marketing strategy for the period covered, which is usually one year.  A good Marketing Plan should clearly show the steps that will be undertaken to achieve the marketing objective.

A typical Marketing Plan might include a description of the service/product being offered, any special features, the marketing budget, the business location, pricing strategy, the demand for the service/product, the advantages and disadvantages for marketing, the description of the competing businesses, and the strengths and weaknesses from a market standpoint of both the business itself and its competitors.

 

Steps to Follow in Creating Your Marketing Plan

1.  Prepare your Marketing Plan within at least two months.
2.  Put your Marketing Plan in a three-ring binder and refer to it once every month.  Put in your monthly sales reports to allow you to track your company’s performance as you follow the (one year) plan.
3.  Let all the key players in your company thoroughly read it, and get a feedback from each one of them.  They can provide realistic input on which goals are achievable and how they can be achieved, as well as potentials and opportunities for the business.
4.  If you’re a one-person management operation, then it won’t hurt to consult with other marketing experts to review your Marketing Plan.

*Remember, a Marketing Plan must be updated every year to address changes in costs, market conditions and demand, etc.

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