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This should help you answer questions like: If you did any research when you developed your business plan, you may already have this information.
The marketing plan is a powerful tool that belongs in your small business arsenal.
If you've been making do without a plan so far, or using a "play it by ear" approach, you're missing out on boosted revenue. A plan focuses your best efforts on activities that move your business forward.
Once you've gathered market research, it's time to prepare your Market Overview section. What strategies are they using and how are they positioning themselves in the market? What kind of an impact do they have on your business? Now that you've described your current market situation and analyzed how various aspects of it affect your business, it's time to set your marketing objectives. Think of your marketing objectives as answering the crucial questions: What is my plan going to accomplish? Some examples of common marketing objectives include: It's a good idea to make each objective conform to the SMART goal criteria.
Begin this section with a description of your market as it currently stands. Include details about sales, prices and gross margins. SMART = Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely. To align both you need clear, measurable objectives.
Marketing is about creating a conversation with people and measuring that conversation to see how well it's working. How does that conversation change tone, or meaning, as the marketplace changes?
As you start executing your strategies keep that top of mind. This is the section where you get down to the practical nuts and bolts of your marketing plan.In marketing parlance, marketing strategies fall within what's known as the four Ps: product, price, place (distribution) and promotion.For a typical small business, promotion will form the bulk of your strategy.You want to address how you'll implement your strategies and achieve your objectives by breaking things down into action steps or smaller goals.You already did a bit of this when you considered the implementation methods you would use for each marketing strategy.There are a lot of strategies out there (far more than can be covered here).No matter which approach you take, it must push your objectives forward and – ultimately – drive revenue.It will help you understand yourself and your customers.Writing it down forces you to think through tough problems, come up with repeatable solutions and positions you for success.This is the first thing someone sees when they read your marketing plan but it is the last thing you write. Once you have a basic overview of your current market situation, it's time to take a closer look at your market environment. First, identify those trends that might present you with challenges. There will also likely be market trends that provide you with opportunities or benefit you in some other way.The Executive Summary outlines all the major points of the plan itself, so anyone in management can pick up the plan and get an idea about your vision. Identify these trends and describe the positive impact they could have on your business and how you can take advantage of them.