Today, businesses have greater access to markets, thanks to modern transport infrastructure and digitization. However, along with the increased access and competition, there is also a greater need for organizations to scale marketing efforts. This is creating the room to create growth in your company. This requires planning, the right systems and the right people. Otherwise, you can develop excellent products but fail to generate any sales.
At the heart of your marketing efforts should be a marketing plan. What to include in a marketing plan and how it relates to your business is critical to your future success. As 2021 approaches, you should have your marketing plan ready to ensure you achieve your sales targets.
Read on to learn the crucial elements of a marketing plan.
1. Business Summary
Marketing plans are unique to each business. Therefore, the first step in developing one is outlining your company details in the business summary section. Some of the details to include are:
- Name of the company
- Mission statement, this defines the company’s business, its objectives and the process it takes to reach them
- Vision statement, this defines where the company desires to be in the future
Another critical element that should be included in this section is the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT) analysis.
2. Business Initiatives
The next part of a successful marketing plan is the business initiatives section. At this juncture, you want to outline your company goals. Outline and describe all of the projects you have planned and determine appropriate methods to measure results. If you aren’t sure which goals to set, give your best estimate to begin and measure and tweak as the year progresses.
3. Target Market For Your Marketing Plan
The secret to getting results from your marketing efforts is knowing where to direct your efforts and to whom. Conduct market research to determine your ideal customer base. Are they male or female, young or old, or high-income earners or not? Know as much as you can about them to know your ideal target market.
4. Marketing Strategy
The marketing strategy is arguably the most essential part of your marketing plan. Even with the best services/products and knowledge of who your ideal clients are, your efforts will not bear any fruit if you do not know how to reach them. In essence, it entails how you plan to reach your customers and to distinguish your brand from competitors.
Your marketing strategy should be guided by the “seven Ps of marketing”. These are product, price, place, promotion, people, process, and physical evidence.
5. Budget For Your Marketing Plan
Along with product development, marketing is a crucial investment for a company. Therefore, as you prepare your marketing plan, include a section for the budget. It should outline the amount of money the organization has dedicated to achieving its marketing objectives.
For accuracy and accountability purposes, each marketing project should have broken down into the various expenses. Doing so will also ensure that the marketing budget is sufficient to cater to all the goals. Some of the items included in this section are events, advertisements, marketing agency costs, etc.
6. Marketing Channels
There are many ways to reach customers today. Depending on factors such as your budget and target market, determine the most appropriate channels to reach your consumers. Align each channel and strategy with the marketing objective.
For instance, if you want to build brand engagement, a social media post strategy is an effective long-term approach. However, if you want to generate sales, paid advertisements on Google and social media will be more effective.
Effective Marketing Is All About Understanding Your Audience
Due to the high level of competition, markets today are consumer-driven. This means that your customers have plenty of options to choose from and influence how the sector shapes up. To thrive, you must first understand and anticipate their needs and ensure your marketing reflects that.
Andy Bush is President of Bush Marketing. Contact him today at 416-214-4298 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a discussion about how Bush Marketing can help your website do more for your business.