Why you must have a current, flexible Marketing Plan / Strategy
Without a clearly defined marketing plan your business is essentially floundering along with no direction – short term and long term.
While today’s marketplace dictates the need for a few specific, different marketing plans, one that outlines an overall approach and structure is required for your organisation’s marketing efforts.
‘Hope is not a strategy’ – USAF Special Ops Pilot
The reasons you must have a current, specific, customised marketing plan:
1. A marketing plan ensures that your marketing objectives are in line with your overall business strategy and goals, and makes sense of your business environment;
2. A marketing plan formalises your concepts and ideas;
3. A marketing plan enables clear decision making and prevents panic decisions;
4. A marketing plan integrates long term planning and short term implementation;
5. A marketing plan keeps you and your team focused on what you need to do to achieve your goals;
6. A marketing plan establishes timelines and tasks;
7. A marketing plan enables you to measure the results of your marketing efforts.
A marketing plan will clarify the key marketing elements of your business and create directions, activities and objectives for the business as a whole, and team members individually.
Your marketing plan should initially be focused on analysis of the four P’s:
Product – Who will buy your products/services and why? How is what you are selling better than what your competitors are selling?
Price – What pricing strategy will you follow? Do you plan large scale sales at lower prices, or niche market sales at a premium price?
Promotion– How will you promote what you sell? How will your product be packaged? What is the marketplace positioning for what you are selling?
Place – How will you distribute what you are selling? Retail stores, direct marketing, an eCommerce website?
From this analysis your marketing strategy, branding, advertising and promotional tasks can be devised, a timeline formulated and marketing efforts started.
Internet advertising will make up nearly 25% of the entire ad market by 2015
While a marketing plan is typically created for a 3-5 year time frame, to determine long term goals, your plan should be devised with flexibility in mind and regularly revised. Today’s market is changing at a never before experienced pace so your marketing must be kept up-to-date.
Inbound marketing delivers 54% more leads than traditional outbound marketing
Top tips for your flexible marketing plan:
Include sub-plans for each marketing channels making changes easier to implement
Utilise measurement tools to ensure your marketing efforts are achieving the desired result
Undertake competitor analysis to determine what they are doing and how you can do it better
Keep it simple – both media and messages
Keep up-to-date with new technologies and media
Consider integration to ensure you get value for money across numerous platforms and activities
Review frequently and adapt to the fast changing information environment
37.2% of businesses increased their branding/marketing presence by using LinkedIn
Other marketing plans to consider:
Digital Marketing Plan / Strategy
Content Marketing Plan / Strategy
Social Media Marketing Plan / Strategy
Contact Liquid Creativity today, your local branding agency, to discuss creating or revising your organisation’s marketing plan / strategy. Big or small, all businesses need a marketing plan in today’s market.
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