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Why do you need a marketing plan?

I was talking with a client today and there was an underlying idea that a marketing plan may be a waste of time. Why did their organisation need one? I think the real issue was that this client didn’t see the value in a marketing plan because she didn’t understand it’s purpose.

1. Marketing plan has to have an objective – what is the aim of the business and make it measurable, over the next 12 months. Is it to grow the database, increase the sales coming from existing customers, build awareness, launch a new product, relaunch a brand, etc, etc

2. You need to do your research. The whole point of a marketing plan is to understand your market/s and then plan out your activities. Makes sense, doesn’t it!

3. You need to understand your competition so you can position yourself against their offering/s. Show your points of difference, making it easy for the customer to decide the options.

4. You need to profile your markets so you understand their needs. Once you have done this you should be able to identify your ideal customer and with this information comes great power. This understanding allows you to tailor your offerings and ensure that you are able to focus your energy in the right areas.

5. Brand promise is the key to any good plan. What is your point of difference or value proposition?

6. Tactics for the marketing plan, the action plan.

7. Track to see progress and refine.

8. Communication plan to target markets.

9. Work your plan, it is an evolving ever changing, active document.

10 Congratulate yourself on being organised and have a long lunch!!

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