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Planning your marketing

architect36832024.jpgMarketing plans can come in many forms and sizes and each company and each objective will need to be approached differently.Planning a marketing program can be very complicated if you have not done your research and are unsure of what to do.The basic steps to planning your marketing begin with learning about your market and understand what your skills, strengths, and weaknesses are in that market.Then you should set goals based on these qualities.Your goals should also be geared towards what you ultimately want to accomplish as a business owner.Then you need to make your plan of attack and work on the plan until you achieve what you want.

As you plan your approach and strategies for marketing, keep in mind that the scale of your business is not as important as the scale of your goals for your company.No matter what the size of your business is, your marketing plan should be accessible, preferable in printed format, like in a binder, and should be read regularly (at least every quarter) to help you refresh your mind.You should also have space for adding addenda and other modifications to the plan and reports on progress as well.Keeping organized is a very important part of running any business and is important when implementing a marketing plan.The marketing plan should generally cover one year, although some people have longer-term projections as well.It should also be adaptable and flexible to change as the business grows or the market in which it is operating changes.

There are those who are unsure as to how to write a marketing plan.Where do you start?A good place to start is to create a mission statement.As you continue moving forward with your marketing plans you will need to look back on your original mission statement to ensure that your marketing actions remain aligned with the ultimate goals of your business. As you plan your marketing, you will also need to be able to describe and have a plan for attracting potential customers of the target or niche markets that will be pursued by the company.You need to know who your target market is so that you can get the greatest benefit of marketing by directing your efforts towards those from whom you will be most likely to generate a sale.If your target market includes a large portion of the population, you could include in your marketing plan a description of different market segments that identify specific sub-groups within your target market for which a slightly different marketing plan can be applied.

Your marketing plan should also describe you services and products you offer.In order to effectively market any product, you should have it clearly defined so that you can articulate the same information in any marketing materials that will be used in your marketing plan.It is wise to do some research before hand to find out what your target market thinks about your product before you start marketing on a wide scale.You may need to revise your approach or add other products or services to meet the needs of your customers.Planning your marketing ultimately includes getting to the details of your plan.You need to spell out your marketing and promotional strategies.Do not make the mistake that many small business owners make when they choose to avoid doing this because you are not sure what will really work.Write something down with the knowledge that it can be changed if needed.Planning your marketing is an ongoing process that is rarely perfected but can be continually refined.

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