There are numerous reasons why every company should plan their marketing endeavours well in advance. From effective allocation of resources and budgeting to measuring ROI, a marketing plan can take the guess work out of how to promote your company for the coming year. However, creating your own marketing plan can be a daunting task for even the most seasoned entrepreneur. The following are five steps to create a simple and concise plan to get the most out of your marketing efforts:
Situational Analysis — An important first step is to create an overview of your current situation. Describe your product or service offering, list the marketing advantages and challenges you face and describe the threats posed by your competition. Include any external factors that may affect your business in the coming year.
Target Audience Analysis — Describe the intended audience for your product or service. Include in the profile things like demographics (age, gender, lifestyles etc.), psychographics (attitudes, tastes, views etc.) and for B2B marketers, a breakdown of potential clients based on industry or organization.
Goal Analysis — List your company’s marketing goals and objectives for the coming year. Make sure your goals are realistic and attainable, but most importantly are measurable. This will allow you to monitor the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. A goal to “grow the business” should be a quantifiable goal — “grow the business by 15%.”
Strategic Analysis — Create an overview of the various marketing strategies to be employed along with the corresponding execution tactic. A calendar template is a valuable tool here to map out the various initiatives throughout the year. This section of your plan should be highly detailed will clear actionable steps for each tactic. The most important thing is to routinely review your plan and stick to your schedule and timelines.
Budget Analysis — The final step involves the cost analysis to implement each element of your marketing plan. It is easy to have grandiose ideas to market your company, but having the financial resources to carry them out may be the challenge. Once you list all the costs involved with each initiative, you may have to revise your plan. The beauty of a marketing plan lies in its fluid, living and breathing nature with built in flexibility that allows for appropriate changes throughout the year. Changes to the plan may be required due to opportunity or happenstance, the important thing is to stay involved and committed for the long haul. Your efforts are sure to be rewarded.
Still have your doubts about tackling your own marketing plan? The team at ZOO Media Group includes a talented group of marketers who can create and implement dynamic marketing plans that bring results. Contact us today to find out what the ZOO can do for you!