Welcome Back! Thank you for returning to #PlansForSuccess, a blog designed to help you plan to succeed, tee hee…I know, that is sooo cliché:) Anywhoo, did you pull out your business plan? How about your marketing plan? Were they dusty, lol? What did you find? Believe it or not, many entrepreneurs and small business owners omit marketing planning and a solid marketing plan from being a part of early business strategy and strategic planning. This week I will discuss the purpose of marketing planning and a marketing plan with the intent on helping you understand why it is a process that should be included in the early stages of business development.
Going back to last week’s post, remember that a marketing plan is a detailed document that summarizes the information found during the marketing planning process AND outlines the proposed strategies, timelines, and assignments for the planned activities, that will be executed to achieve the business’s goals and objectives. Whereas, marketing planning is the real process of researching and analyzing the market and its current condition to understand the best approach. Successful marketing planning finds a way to provide value to key stakeholders and customers, and clarity to the business goals and objectives. Ultimately, the overall purpose of marketing planning is to produce a strategic marketing plan that provides value, builds relationships and make a difference.
There are six processes to marketing planning and following each of the process thoroughly will result in developing a solid strategic marketing plan. As we move forward with future posts, we will discuss each process and its sub-processes in detail; so in this post, I am simply going to list an outline of the processes that will eventually translate into you finding valuable information for your marketing plan.
- Researching and Analyzing the Current Situation by looking at the current Internal and External business trends.
- Understanding the Industry based on its NAICS code, the Market, and your Customer Behavior.
- Planning, Segmenting, Targeting and Positioning.
- Planning Direction, Goals and Objectives, and Marketing Support.
- Developing Marketing Strategies and Programs.
- Metrics, Implementation and Control.
Now that we understand the purpose and processes of marketing planning and its connection to the overall strategic plan and business strategy, next week we will move forward with discussing the contents of a marketing plan. As you will see, eventually the contents of the marketing plan will be provided directly from the information obtained during the six outlined processes above. Again, my goal is to give you a step by step way of retrieving information that you can apply to your current marketing plan and contribute to your business’s growth and success. I hope you found this post helpful, please share with a friend, or comment for feedback and suggestions.