Wednesday, February 27, 2013

How To Write A Marketing Plan


Marketing is a key part of any businesses success; it is essential you speak to your customers and get your brand out there. You will need to decide what customers to target and then work out how you can reach and win these new potential customers. It is important that you review your marketing plan on a regular basis to ensure that you are improving and staying ahead of any competition.

To ensure all employees understand who you are marketing and how, you should create a marketing plan document. You should use this document as a reference to execute your marketing strategy, it should set out clear objectives and how you are going to achieve them.

Marketing Plan Summary

You should start your plan with a summary of the main points of the plan, this will guide you on what you want to achieve and how you are going to do it. You should write the summary at the end of your plan, this way you can make sure all the essential information is included. You should also include:
  • What your business is
  • Your business mission
  • Key objectives
  • How you are going to reach these objectives.

External and Internal Analysis

You will need to complete an external analysis when creating your marketing plan, this will recognise any threats and opportunities you may have when it comes to creating your plan. A good way to create an external analysis is by using a ‘STEEPLE’ guideline.
  • Social factors (changing attitudes and lifestyle)
  • Technological factors (new materials, use of technology, use of internet)
  • Economic factors (interest rates and exchange rates)
  • Environmental factors (changing expectations of customers, regulators, sustainable development)
  • Political factors (changes to taxes, trading relationships, grant support)
  • Legal factor (employment law, regulations)
  • Ethical factors (ethical standards, moral standards, governing policies)
You will also need to complete an internal analysis; you should use a ‘SWOT’ analysis to complete this. Get employees views on the internal strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Objectives

You should base your objectives on your strengths, weaknesses and the environment you are located in. All your objectives should be ‘SMART’.
  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Achievable
  • Realistic
  • Time-bound
You will then need to come up with a strategy to meet these objectives.

Marketing Tactics

Once you know what your marketing objectives and strategies are, you will then have to plan how to meet these goals. Most businesses will use the ‘FOUR Ps’ as a technique to follow.
  • Product (Is your product suitable to meet your customer’s needs?)
  • Pricing (Is your pricing suitable to meet your businesses and customers needs?)
  • Place (Are you selling your products in an appropriate place?)
  • Promotion (How are you going to reach your customers?)
Writing out a marketing plan is the perfect way to come up with the perfect marketing strategy.

Rachael owns her own business specialising in exhibition freight, she knows how important it is to market her business. Rachael and her team at http://www.24-7exhibitions.com/ work together when coming up with marketing objectives.

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