A strategic marketing plan is necessary for the health of your business. It helps you find the right marketing strategies in an efficient way so that you don’t get hung up by any bumps along the road.
Read on to learn how the right marketing plan can lead you to the right marketing strategies and effectively grow your business!
1. Strategic Marketing Plan: Business Goals
In order to get started, you need a clear vision of what you want to accomplish. Based on your specific goals, the details of your marketing plan can drastically change.
First, create specific short and long term business goals and attach those goals to a timeline. Attaching your goals to a timeline will aid you in creating a more targeted and realistic plan!
2. Mission Statement
Your mission statement is similar to your business goals, as it states what you’re trying to accomplish. However, it goes one step forward and asks why you’re trying to accomplish those goals.
This is absolutely necessary because it serves as the foundation of your marketing plan. It helps keep you on track when you’re unsure of whether your decisions support your business’s objectives.
3. Target Market
Your target market is the specific audience you want to reach for the products or services you’re trying to sell. You want your target market to be as specific as possible so that you know exactly who you’re selling to. This is of utmost importance even if you are planning for a side hustle. This will help you get started with your venture.
Here are some questions you can think about that can help you form a specific target market and ideal customer:
- Where can you find them?
- What are there values?
- What are they worried about right now?
- How old are they?
- What do they need right now?
- What are their hobbies?
4. Competitive Analysis
Studying your competition is one of the best ways to research your target market, and to prepare your marketing activities. Take note of what your competitors are doing right and wrong.
Ask yourself what differentiates yourself from your competitors and how you can further differentiate your business.
5. Unique Selling Proposition
Differentiating yourself from competitors is important because customers will have an easier time deciding whether your business is right for them. This is also called a unique selling proposition (USP).
6. Pricing Strategy
One of the main ways to differentiate yourself from the competition is your pricing strategy. What are you pricing your products and services, and why?
Support your price points by making it known to customers the value and benefits they’re receiving through your products or services. A high-value proposition often leads to a sale.
7. Promotional Plan
Your promotional plan constitutes all of the communication between your business and the consumer. This is a combination of marketing activities that could include:
- Public relations
- Direct sales
- Internet marketing
- Sales promotions
- Marketing materials
- Customer service
However, you don’t want to start with too many variations in your marketing plan, as this could weaken your message overall by trying to focus on too many variations at once. It’s recommended to select three to five specific marketing activities to specialize in instead.
8. Marketing Budget
It’s important you have a marketing budget in place so you know which marketing activities you can focus on, for how long, or how many. When you’re just starting out your marketing budget can be small, so finding activities that fit within your budget is important.
If you have an annual marketing budget, be sure you break it down monthly so that you’re able to accurately track results. That way, you can focus on the activities that give you the highest ROI (return on investment).
9. Action List
Now that you have most of the details of the marketing strategy defined, it’s important that you create an action list so you know exactly what you need to do, and when.
This helps you stay on track so you know exactly what steps you need to take next in order to make consistent, measurable progress.
If you’ve ever created a to-do list for your daily tasks, this is similar. Break down your tasks into manageable bites that lead you to desired results.
For example, if one of the activities in your promotional plan is creating an advertisement on social media, your action steps could look similar to this:
- Determine your budget for your campaign.
- Clarify your objectives for your campaign: Brand awareness? More website visitors? More post engagement? Building your email list?
- Determine the type of advertisement you’ll use.
- Hire a designer or marketing agency to create your advertisement.
- Create a compelling call to action.
- Publish your campaign, or create two different designs and launch an A/B campaign to discover which one works better.
10. Measuring Your Results
The work you’ve put into creating a strategic marketing plan would be almost useless if you didn’t track and measure your results. This way, your marketing plan can continue to grow and evolve just as your business does and can continue to be relevant.
By keeping track of the numbers behind your marketing, you’ll become better at creating more and more effective marketing activities.
A Successful Business Requires Planning
Hopefully, by now you’ve realized just how helpful a strategic marketing plan can be for the growth of your business. While it takes time in the beginning, it will save you even more time and anguish in the long run.
Want more helpful tips and strategies on how to grow your business effectively? Browse the rest of our site today for more relevant, informative articles!