5 Steps to Create a Strong Marketing Plan

What Is A Marketing Plan Infographic

Every business needs a marketing plan to have a clear direction for building revenue streams. A marketing plan is basically a plan that lays out your advertising and marketing initiatives for the year. It describes the target market, advertising/marketing channels, strategy and budget in place to meet marketing goals. Without a marketing plan, your marketing strategies will be unorganized and disjointed, you’ll have issues managing the budget, and it’ll be hard to track and reach your goals. So how do you build a marketing plan?

Step 1: Start from Where You Are

Where is your business or organization at right now? Do you have a revenue stream already in place? Have you just started a marketing campaign? It’s important to assess what situation you are so that you can get an idea of your options. This assessment will allow you to capitalize and grow what’s already working while expanding with your businesses’ characteristics in mind.

For example, you should look at how successful you were in reaching your target audience so far. You should understand what kind of budget you have to work with. You should understand the strengths and weaknesses of your business, brand, products and services. Having this deep understanding will help you establish your goals and start brainstorming the means to reach them.

Step 2: Establish Clear Goals

Once you have a clear assessment of your business or organization, you’ll gain the confidence to establish your marketing goals. When you establish your marketing goals, it’s important that you be very specific about them. For example, a goal that states you want to build a stable and profitable revenue stream is not enough. You want to expand on that and state that you want to build a stable and profitable revenue stream using a digital advertising channel like Facebook ads.

It may also help to establish one or more major goals that complement your primary goal. For instance, if you do intend on establishing a revenue stream by building a campaign with Facebook ads, it may make sense to try to create a goal for maximizing your customer lifetime value through email, and social media follow-ups. You can then come up with a general idea of how you can meet both of these major goals when you start building your strategy.

Step 3: Research Your Market and Channel

Once you have a clear assessment of your business or organization, you’ll gain the confidence to establish your marketing goals. When you establish your marketing goals, it’s important that you be very specific about them. For example, a goal that states you want to build a stable and profitable revenue stream is not enough. You want to expand on that and state that you want to build a stable and profitable revenue stream using a digital advertising channel like Facebook ads.

It may also help to establish one or more major goals that complement your primary goal. For instance, if you do intend on establishing a revenue stream by building a campaign with Facebook ads, it may make sense to try to create a goal for maximizing your customer lifetime value through email, and social media follow-ups. You can then come up with a general idea of how you can meet both of these major goals when you start building your strategy.

Step 4: Collect/Brainstorm Ideas and Build a Strategy

While it may make sense to start building a strategy to get your marketing plan in motion, it’s often better to take a step back to develop some ideas. You can start by brainstorming some ideas with your team on how to make the marketing/advertising channel work for you. It helps to seek advice from other marketers in a community forum or from a marketing consultant that specializes in that channel. You can also collect ideas by looking for channel-specific case studies that are similar to your business model. There are many marketing publications that post case studies on a regular basis.

Once you have a few strong ideas, it’s time to compare them and pick the strongest one. You can then create a strategy that is in line with the idea and break down all the small steps to make it work. This includes everything from the copy, lead nurturing, follow-ups, upsells, etc. It’s also very important that you set specific metrics to help you assess what aspects of your strategy is working and what aspects aren’t working. That’s the only way you’ll be able to correctly adjust and improve based on the initial results of your strategy.

Step 5: Working Out and Managing Your Budget

The final step in creating your marketing plan is to work out your budget. Start with the budget you have available and then break down how it will be used in your marketing strategy. If you are using multiple channels or mediums, you’ll probably have to figure out how to split your budget in a way that maximizes the effectiveness of your marketing strategy. You’ll probably come up with a general idea of how to distribute the budget in the beginning, but it’ll make sense to adjust the budget according to the results you’re getting.

Another big thing that business owners often neglect is their cash flow. It’s important that you bring cash back into your marketing budget so that you are ready to invest your gross earnings into the next advertising/marketing cycle. This can be especially important if you’re advertising on channels that have deadlines for submitting your ad like newspapers or radio spots. Managing your cash flow and budget is vital for establishing a revenue stream and scaling your marketing campaign.

In conclusion, you need a clear marketing plan if you want to establish and meet your business goals. Start by assessing your business situation and establish your goals. From there, research your market and advertising channels so that you can build a solid strategy. Your budget will round out your marketing plan and give you the confidence to implement your plan.

Image sources: 1, 2

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This