by Tony Vidler
There are 10 big steps to developing an effective marketing plan. “Effective” in this context means a marketing plan which will get you enough of the right sort of customers for the resources you have available. Getting results with the limited time and money you have in other words.
The 10 steps to creating ongoing marketing success are:
1. Know who you are targeting with your efforts. Who is the ideal client, and where do you find them?
2. What is your pricing strategy? How will you charge profitably, fairly, and sustainably?
3. What is your unique position? How and where you are different to your competitors?
4. What is your value proposition? Why should your ideal customers choose you? What is the valuable outcome, or benefit, they will receive or experience from working with you?
5. What are your objectives from marketing? Do you know the specific results you want, or need, to achieve? And in what timeframe?
6. What is the budget? How much are you able to, or are willing to, spend on marketing in the next financial period?
7. What is your promotion strategy? How are you going to generate awareness, and then interest? How will you engage with, and then convert those interested prospects into being actual clients?
8. What are the action steps? How do you intend to convert the “strategy” into actionable tactics – what are the action points? When will they happen by? Who is driving them?
9. How are you measuring results? Is it customer numbers, gross revenue, new prospects engaged…..whatever the metrics are, make sure you are clear about how you will measure results.
10. What is your review timetable? When do you pause, take a breath and see whether or not the plan is delivering? When do you make adjustments if necessary? When do you review the whole thing?
There it is…the outline of an effective marketing plan.
It doesn’t have to be a 30 page pie-chart-laden printed report. It can be covered in just 2 or 3 pages at most. Even then, the 2 or 3 pages don’t matter all that much. What matters the most is that you have gone through the thinking and refinement of the core components, and have then put in place the right action plans and review timetable. It is the “thinking it through” which actually matters.
It is the clarification of thought followed by the deliberate allocation of resources to the most probable activities and targets that will generate consistent results. The clarification of thought is created by asking the right questions in the right sequence.