Are you a brand without a plan?
For an entrepreneur, creating a marketing plan might seem like a daunting task.
In large organizations, marketing managers spend months working with their team to create next year’s marketing plan, before getting it approved by the corporate level. But if you are a small business, no one is reporting back to you. You are the marketing manager, the team and the corporate office, all in one.
For this reason, marketing plans are often created on the fly in smaller organizations, if at all. Sometimes marketing is poorly understood and done haphazardly with fingers crossed, hoping that somehow all that money invested will pay off. As goals are never clearly set, marketing success can not be measured. There’s no map to follow so you never know if you’re going in the right direction! It’s understandable that many small business owners find marketing stressful and confusing, knowing they need to be more organized and strategic in their marketing efforts, but not knowing how. Not knowing is a very uncomfortable and insecure place. But done right, a marketing plan will help you make decisions from a place of knowing: knowing who you serve, how you serve them and how to bring the two together.
So what is a marketing plan, and what does it do?
A marketing plan is a well researched, well planned document that acts as a road map for all your marketing activities. It starts with an analysis of your business and your customers, and ends with a detailed plan that can be implemented confidently by your organization. At the basic level, a marketing plan:
- Helps you get clarity on what, why and how you offer value
- Helps you assess your current situation, your industry, your competition and your business itself
- Helps you match your business offering to the right consumers (your target market)
- Helps you understand the needs of your target market, and tailor your offering to provide superior and unique value to them
- Helps you set specific goals, so you can measure success
- Helps you market strategically with a consumer and brand focus
- Helps you map out your product, price and place and promotion strategies to work together cohesively
- Helps you position and differentiate your brand
- Helps you design your marketing communications to reach potential customers effectively and meaningfully
- Helps you set out well timed, well budgeted action plans
- Boosts your overall chance of success!
Do these seem like things your business should do? Perhaps its time to consider creating a marketing plan. I’d love to guide you through the process to get your brand on the right path. Contact me here or drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coming soon- why you should choose a brand-focused marketing plan.~ Erica