Especially if you are just starting your business, a marketing plan is essential for success. It enables a business owner to plan how he intends to get customers, and allows him the benefit of spreading out efforts for long-term promotion - not the shotgun type of marketing where promotions lack coherence, focus and editing. Here are the main reasons why you should have a business marketing plan:
Enable you to plan for expenses. If you have a budget, then it would be wise to carefully plan out all the spending you will be doing. A marketing plan itemizes costs, which when added up, may turn out to be a huge amount. A well written plan maps out the maximum amounts to be spent on marketing per month, thus minimizing losses. You can stop certain marketing gimmicks if they turn out costly yet ineffective
You clearly target your desired market. Having a marketing plan allows an owner to see if his efforts are geared towards his desired target market. If you are selling adult diapers, must you advertise them on the music video television shows, or even on Facebook? A marketing plan must have a clear-cut menu of how to go about promotions, choosing the proper media channels to effectively reach the desired market.
You determine what form of media to use. Of course, this is in conjunction with your budget. If you have a lot of money to spare, you can target television or the print media. A marketing plan must indicate costing according to medium used. If you have a tight budget, sticking to social media might be a good idea - you spend almost nothing yet get to target your desired market.
You plan out marketing according to a schedule. A schedule is a list of marketing efforts planned out according to the need. If your client-gathering efforts are effective during the first quarter of a marketing campaign, then you can think of toning it down (or even leveling up) on the second half… and so on and so forth. You need to stick to a schedule in order to measure and quantify if your efforts are paying off. Not having a definite schedule makes it impossible to measure the growth of the company.
If you are still contemplating on writing a plan, then do it as soon as you can. The benefits far outweigh the effort needed to come up with it. Remember than success doesn't happen overnight - it must be planned.
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