A Marketing Plan is a very important part of a business being successful, whether they work online or offline, it does not matter. A business has to have direction as far as the selling of their products is concerned. Without direction a business will just bounce from one opportunity to another or from one disaster to another, depending on what is happening at the time.
Having a marketing plan keeps the business owner focused and also any staff that they may have. It highlights deadlines and promotional times. Having these times and dates written for all to see helps keep the business on track and operating to its full potential. but before you can do all that you need certain information so let’s look at what you need to find out before writing your marketing plan.
Steps to Take Before Writing a Marketing Plan
Many of the answers to the following questions should be in your business plan but if not find out the answers first before making your plan.
- Firstly you need to decide what you are going to promote at which times of year.
- What allocation of funds have you got for marketing? If the business is one where there are certain months of the year that produce a major part of the income then funds need to be available before that time for the promotion of the products or service. If there is not any particular busy time of the year, then funds can be allocated evenly through out the year, either monthly or quarterly.
- You need to have ascertained who your target market is and where they hang out
- How are you going to reach them
- What is your competition doing to get your customers to buy from them
- What type of marketing can you do with the funds available
- Are you skilled enough to do your own marketing or do you need a professional
Once you have the answers to the above questions you then need to work out exactly what you are going to sell at certain times throughout the year. It could be that your business does not have much diversification and therefore your marketing plan can be very simple, but if it does have several or a lot of services or products then the marketing plan needs to be much more in depth.
Creating a business plan for your business will mean that you are not wasting your hard earned money as you will know exactly where to spend your money. Better still you will recognize some of the free or budget areas which will also bring in good traffic.
Creating a Marketing Plan will help you answer many questions about your business and market….some of which you may not have even thought about!
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