When being assigned with marketing plan writing students often think that they can come up with a viable strategy over a night or two. Unfortunately, it is hardly possible if you want to receive a good grade. However, following the given expert tips you can deal with marketing plan writing rather fast and very efficiently.
How to write an impeccable marketing plan
To simplify marketing planning, use the following steps to develop a marketing plan:
1) Conduct an internal marketing audit (also referred to as a marketing audit or situational analysis) by interviewing key employees of the company and collecting internal information.
The purpose of the audit is to compile a list of gaps, trouble moments in the work of the organization, for such business processes as: work with clients from attraction to maintenance, work of sales managers, production, product line, pricing, all channels of promotion (advertising, PR, internet, shares, etc.), budgeting, packaging, corporate style, personnel, automation of key processes in the company, etc.
When you do this, the output will get a great job – a draft for drawing up a marketing plan that will need to “increase” your activities to address the problem points.
2) Spend at least a minimum desk analysis of the market.
Here you collect information about your clients (target audience), their advantages, “pain points,” problems, competitors, their prices, declared preferences, marketing activities, work with clients, market trends.
At this stage, it’s also worth playing a “secret buyer” and calling or visiting several competing organizations to evaluate their service and the situation “in the fields.”
Without research data, there is the risk of putting a marketing plan at best – “in the box.”
3) Once your marketing audit and desk research results are at your fingertips, SWOT analysis, which is nothing more than a visual representation in a convenient tabular form of the strengths and weaknesses of your organization and capabilities and threats, will be very easy for you. You have all the source information for this.
You also consider the strengths and weaknesses of the SWOT analysis in the marketing plan of the company: strong – for promotion, weak – for elimination. And the opportunities and threats of the market lay in the form of individual measures regarding marketing: the first – you can use to strengthen their competitive positions, the second – to anticipate actions for their leveling in case of possible occurrence.
Strategy and marketing plan
As a rule, an annual marketing plan is tied to the fiscal year, during which it may undergo some adjustments. Typically, the development of a marketing plan includes a short-term (1-1.5 years) or medium-term (3-5 years) perspective.
In the second case, we have a strategic marketing plan that is not so commonly used by small and medium-sized businesses as an annual one. During this period, it should contain key decisions that determine the company’s future share:
- extension/product line shortening
- recruitment/dismissal of staff
- an attraction of clients and partners,
- conducting advertising campaigns
- development of production and technical base,
- strengthening of corporate culture,
- opening new offices/stores
- access to new regions/market segments, etc.
The ultimate goal of marketing a plan is always to increase the profitability of the enterprise. But many business people, unfortunately, forget that the employees of the marketing department themselves are not the front office of the company. That is, they do not work directly with clients, do not produce goods on their own, do not personally sell after-sales service, and so on.
Therefore, your marketing strategy must necessarily include strengthening business processes within the company with all the units that affect the formation of profits. If other employees of the company are not involved in the implementation of the marketing plan, then any plan will remain only letters on paper and wasted time and effort.
Do not forget that the goals of the company’s marketing plan must be fixed in time and space. For example, you can mark goals like:
- expanding the client base by (date) by (%);
- increase in sales before (date) in (times);
- Increase the popularity of the trademark among target segments by (date) by (%);
- expansion of affiliate/dealer network by (date) by (number).
That is, the goals directly affect the education of the financial result (revenue, profit). All other goals will be auxiliary to achieve these core.
If you are not sure that you can deal with all these points on your own, it is time to find a reliable writing company with affordable prices to deal with this assignment for you. Feel free to get cheap marketing plan writing help if you have no experience in drafting such documents. An expert-written marketing plan can come in handy not only in the university but also later, when you come up with a start-up idea and need to pitch it to a potential investor.