What is a Marketing Plan and Why You Need It for Your Business

*from entrepreneurshipinabox.com

Do you want more customers, more income, and more profitability? Then, you probably need an excellent marketing strategy. But, strategy without a plan doesn’t bring you the success that you want. So, you will need an excellent marketing plan.

The marketing function is one of the most important functions of your company and a vital part of your success. Without marketing, your business may have a very low number of customers. Without customers, you can’t sell enough of your products and services. Without enough sales, you don’t have enough revenue. Without enough revenue, you can’t make a profit.

Marketing presents a continuous process that every business must perform from the beginning. If the marketing is a process then a marketing plan is the tool for implementation of that process.

Writing such a plan is not the simple task. But, if you have one, it will help you to know what action steps you need to take in order to attract enough and the right type of customers for your business.

Marketing Plan: What Is It?

In the simplest way,  a marketing plan is a blueprint for the activities related to communication of the messages about your products or services, or your business in general to your customers or potential customers.

In other words, it is a detailed roadmap that outlines all your marketing strategies, tactics, activities, costs and projected results over a period of time. It is the detailed written document setting the necessary marketing actions that your business needs to take to achieve one or more marketing objectives. This plan contains various strategies formulated to achieve the business growth and profit objectives.

A marketing plan outlines the specific actions you want to take in order to build an interest to potential customers and clients about your products and/or services. Then to persuade them to buy the product and/or services that you are offering.

The Purpose of Your Marketing Plan

The purpose of a marketing plan is to:

  • coordinate your business goals,
  • define the market and create proper market segmentation,
  • define marketing mix and
  • systematize activities about chosen marketing strategies.

Continuity of the Marketing Plan

While a marketing plan will give you an important part of activities for your business, every entrepreneur should update it regularly. This plan, once it is written, needs to be updated on a regular basis. You must remember that marketing and its activity planning is not something to be carried out only once.

For example, you can choose 5 different marketing weapons for the next six months. If you measure the effects of implementation of those marketing weapons, you can easily see that some of them will work well, and some of them will not give you desired, or targeted results. You must change something in those marketing weapons that did not give you desired results.

You must remember that a good marketing plan is something that never ends, and maintaining a marketing plan is an ongoing process.

Marketing Plan: Why It Is Needed?

With a good marketing plan you may:

  • Follow up on marketing activities and analyze what is good and what is not.
  • Analyze your market and gain solid knowledge about your target customers, market segments, your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.
  • Timely change your marketing strategies and tactics.
  • Know how you spend your marketing money.
  • Know real ROI from your marketing money.

Implementation

Your marketing plan is effective only if you have the capacity to implement it.

You must implement every step covered in your plan if you want your marketing activities to be effective. If you implement every activity obtained in one marketing plan you will know what to exclude next year, or what to add to new activities.

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