Creating an actionable marketing plan is a task every small business must perform.
However, writing a marketing plan can be overwhelming.
While there is software that assists with creating this plan, many businesses still find the process a little overwhelming.
Moreover, most business owners frown at the idea of using software to generate a business marketing plan.
While the benefits of marketing plan software cannot be disputed, I’m going to give you a simple, yet effective way to create a quality marketing plan that can deliver your desired result.
It Begins with Mindset
It starts with mindset. Every business owner should realize from the onset that marketing determines the core value of their business.
Whether your business is in the retail industry, construction industry, or food production industry, the fact is, we’re all in the marketing business.
Unfortunately, only a few business owners started their businesses with this mindset.
Small business owners should understand that becoming an expert in their industry is as important as becoming a marketing expert.
By keeping in mind that you’re in the marketing business, you’re already a step ahead of the competition.
Creating Your Marketing Plan
Now that you’ve developed the right mindset, it’s time to create an actionable marketing plan.
I’ll discuss 5 critical components of a marketing plan. These components will assist you with creating a marketing plan that you can use effectively.
1. Marketing Message
The first question here is, “who’s my potential, most profitable customer.”
Identify who your ideal customers are and stretch your marketing muscle to them.
Keeping your ideal, profitable customers in mind, the next question is “what would they want to hear? What words do they gravitate towards?”
Ideally, the first question in every prospect’s mind is “why should I trust you”
This is what your marketing message must answer.
In my years of experience as a business mentor, I’ve realized that an excellent marketing message must feature these 5 pointers:
Write a few sentences describing your reputation.
You can identify this by what your happy customers say about your business. What are their comments on testimonials?
Next, write a brief sentence describing your experience. For how many years have you been around?
What spectacular project have you successfully completed in your industry?
Then, write a short sentence describing your education, training, and professional life.
Describe your systems – how your service is offered or how your product is delivered.
Finally, write about your guarantee. It could be a statement that gives your prospect the peace of mind that doing business with you is safe.
In the end, you’ll have 5 paragraphs of solid marketing message that can be used on your website, brochure, or even for oral presentation.
2. Marketing Medium
Keeping your ideal customers in mind, think of the best platform to communicate with them. Hundreds of active channels are available to market your business. But, not all of them can work for your business.
Traditional marketing like print ads, radio, direct mail, and more are great sources.
Digital marketing strategies like press releases, social media marketing, and relationship marketing, are also a few tactics you can implement.
These categories have different channels where you can reach out to your target audience.
Choose between 5-10 mediums that could potentially work for your business. So your focus and planning will revolve around these mediums.
3. Marketing budget
While considering different marketing medium options, you also want to sort out your budget. The truth is, your budget won’t fit into all mediums.
You don’t have to spend a large chunk of your business budget on marketing, but you’re going to spend some.
You can create a yearly or quarterly budget and stick to it. Setting a budget allows you to judiciously manage your business finance.
4. Marketing Calendar
Once you’ve sorted out your business budget and communication medium, then you can set out your marketing calendar. Create an activity plan for the week or month.
Most businesses run on a “famine/feast” cycle. When they get busy with customers, the owner stops marketing, and eventually, sales slow down.
Set up a calendar that clearly separates work time from marketing time.
5. Marketing Dashboard
Create a marketing dashboard that tracks your activities and results.
First, track the source of your new customers. Monitor the quality of each lead and the number of sales from each medium to tally them every month.
You can create something as simple as a spreadsheet for your dashboard or use a template from an online tool like Airtable.
The more detailed the more clarity and confidence you will have with all your marketing and pricing decisions.
Overall, make sure you keep track of everything in regard to sales and marketing including advertising campaigns and the income generated from them and ROI.
6. Monitor Your Business – Scale Your Results.
Lastly, monitor your plan, manage the process, and measure your result. Follow these quick steps to make it happen:
•Start using your plan today, not the next day.
•Hire an external or appoint a team member to monitor the process and give relevant feedback.
•Schedule regular meetings to analyse the entire process. A quick 20-minute Monday meeting should make an impact.
•Do it now, your competitor might start in the next minute.
•If the plan proves difficult, try the next
A marketing plan is a professional, documented way of organizing the behind the scene activities of a company.
Unfortunately, many businesses do not take this effective marketing strategy to heart.
Lots of research backed up the claim that businesses that put efforts into creating a professional marketing plan easily outshine their competitors.
Most times, the right research can achieve success or better yet talk to an expert on business growth planning.
About the Author
Tim Stokes is a veteran of business and an Australian business mentor. He assists businesses of all kinds to overcome growth limitations and to give business owners back their life and freedom. He has extensive knowledge in marketing, recruitment, team building, systems, and setting businesses up with a great team to have the business growing on autopilot. Contact Tim through his company website:https://www.profittrans4mations.com.au/
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