How To Create a Marketing Plan

Create a marketing plan and you will have a map to success! You may even need to do several marketing plans, one for your company, and others for each product line if you are selling products or services.  The company marketing plan comes first, and is the most important.  The marketing plan is the framework within which you will be working to get noticed.  This applies to products and services also.

There are several essentials to put into your marketing plan.  Start with a field of ideas, and narrow that field down until you have a concrete plan on paper.  There will be several categories to look at, including objective, personnel, budget, and goals.  The objective and goals are closely linked.  Personnel and budget categories relate to how you will get something done.  Other areas to include are events, promotions, and accessories needed to add spice to those areas, such as promotional products.

The marketing plan is part of your company's overall business plan.  It can be divided into segments, such as one-year, five-year, and long term.  There can be several marketing plans within the overall company marketing plan.  Each product line or service may need to its own individual marketing plan.

The objective, or mission, as stated in your marketing plan puts forth the goals the plan hopes to achieve over time.  This should be as detailed as possible, and should include methods for measuring success.  A subsection here should include competitive studies and projections for future results.  Next, define the target audience for the marketing efforts, and how this audience can be best reached.

Before starting a strategy determination, it is essential to know the budget allotment for marketing. Plans need to fit within the designated budget, and alternatives should be considered for best use of the available budget.  Include any costs, and sales and distribution information. At this point, you should be able to plan a year's marketing efforts out on paper. Include events, customer meetings, and any seasonal campaigns that will be used. Break down the budget to cover all events.

Once the yearly plan has been segmented and the budget has been allocated, you can begin to look at what promotional advertising can be used.  Include media, promotional products, and event requirements such as booths, entry fees, and other costs related to events.  Other great marketing ideas are explored in online marketing classes, so you may want to enroll in a few just to keep those creative juices flowing. In any case, once you have these figures, you can plot out any media and accessories you need to order.  A final component needed when you create a marketing plan is the method for monitoring and measuring success of the plan.  Follow these methods rigorously so you can use this data when reviewing your plan (which should be done at least annually).


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