The first step to creating a marketing plan for your new company is to create a marketing program that works. It doesn’t need to be complicated to make it work.
You have started a company. Now you want to develop a marketing program. Marketing has been my profession for over a decade. I’ve seen a lot of marketing plans. Some are concise and straightforward, while others are thick and hundreds of pages long and can cost thousands to produce.
Ironically, many expensive marketing plans are left on the shelf and never get implemented. Simple plans can have the most significant impact if implemented well and researched.
What makes a good marketing plan?
Execution is the most essential part of any marketing plan. The execution of a marketing plan is what determines its value. This includes the decisions made, the amount of business generated and how well it was implemented. Great marketing plan is worth less than one that is poorly executed.
In practical terms, this means that a marketing plan must have a well-crafted marketing strategy. It should include a marketing mix, budgets and schedules. The plan must be reviewed regularly by those responsible for executing it, so they can make changes as necessary and keep it current.
What are the components of a marketing strategy?
A thorough marketing plan is essential to market your products and services. It allows you to assess your products’ potential market and develop strategies to achieve that potential. A complete, written marketing plan contains seven main components:
1. Market research, analysis and identification: This first part of a marketing strategy allows you to identify potential markets for your product or service, evaluate strengths and weaknesses and determine a target audience.
2. Financial goals and objectives and marketing goals: This part of a marketing strategy defines your financial and marketing goals. These goals and objectives will help to focus your marketing efforts and allow you to evaluate them.
3. Marketing mix This section of a marketing strategy describes how you intend to reach your target audience and entice them to spend money. It also encourages them to return to your business. These strategies cover the four P’s of marketing: price, promotion, product, and place.
4. Marketing budget This part of a marketing strategy consists of creating a budget that will help you plan for marketing expenses.
5. Monitoring the market and evaluating the response: This marketing strategy section describes the strategies you will use to evaluate and monitor the market reaction to your marketing strategies. You can make adjustments to your marketing plan by evaluating its effectiveness.
6. Contingency Plan: This plan describes the possible adjustments you can make to your marketing strategies if your tactics prove to be less or more effective than expected.
7. A marketing checklist: This is the final part of your marketing strategy. Checklists will allow you to list all the tasks required to make your plan a reality.