The Complete Guide to a Perfect Marketing Plan
A well-defined and feasible marketing plan makes meeting customer needs a likely and attainable goal. And while most companies do great marketing, only a few have created brand attachment and customer loyalty through their marketing practices and tactics. It takes strategy.
What is a marketing strategy?
Marketing strategy is a section of your business plan that outlines your overall game plan for how you’ll find and attract clients or customers to your business. Your strategy will depend on where you want your business to go – it forms part of your overall business aims. Examples include:
- Increase sales
- Bring in new customers
- Get existing customers to buy more
- Introduce a new product or service
- Increase market share
- Better establish your brand
- Improve customer loyalty
- Launch an advertising campaign
- Increase market share
- Retain existing profitable customers
- Make customers feel more valued
- Offer existing customers exclusive offers
- Ensure business stays fresh and new
In terms of putting a marketing plan into place, here are our suggestions of crucial components that keep your sales bench stacked:
Research is the backbone of the marketing plan. The world wide web or even your library are good places to turn to. Some library cards even allow access to online services from home. Identify consumer buying habits in the industry, market size, market growth or decline, and any current trends.
A well-designed target market description identifies your most likely buyers. In addition, you should discuss at least two or three levels of segmentation. A language tutoring business might target both students and foreign-born employees who want to improve their English.
What is the perception of your brand in the marketplace? For example, if your restaurant sells burgers, do customers see you as the place to go for gluten-free or healthy options or the place to go if you’ve got an appetite for a double cheeseburger? The difference in how the target market sees you is your positioning. Develop compelling branding and marketing messages that clearly communicate how you want to be perceived.
You need to know who your competitors are and how your products and services are different. What is the price point at which your competitors are selling, and what segment of the market are they aiming to reach? Knowing the ins and outs of your competitors will help you better position your business and stand out from the competition.
Your marketing strategy is your path to sales goals. Ask yourself, “How will I find and attract my most likely buyers?” This is the core of what the strategy should explain. It should look at the entire marketplace and then break down specific tactics including such as events, direct mail, email, social media, content strategy, street teams, couponing, webinars, seminars, partnerships, and other activities that will help you gain access to customers.
Develop a month-by-month schedule of what you plan to spend on marketing. Also include a “red light” decision point. For each activity, establish a metric that tells you to stop if it’s not generating sufficient return on investment (ROI).
Track your marketing success with Google Analytics for website conversions and a simple Excel sheet to compare your budget against the actual ROI. Test programs over the course of a 30- to 60-day period, and evaluate the results. Repeat any programs that are delivering sales or sign-ups to your email list, and get rid of anything that’s not.
Ready to bring in more leads?
When you start out in business, two things are scarce: time and resources. To create an effective new business strategy and ensure you’re not wasting time or money, you need a marketing plan, and Charley Grey is here to help. We offer branding packages, full website design, development and management, SEO to increase your presence on Google, and several other marketing services to make sure your business stands apart.
Call us for a free evaluation so we can see how we can help your business in the best way:(317) 991-1982.