In this article, we will define a marketing plan and provide a brief guide on how to write one. This may be beneficial to business people and even students.
What is a marketing plan? A marketing plan, also known as a business plan, is the initial process conducted that illustrates the purpose of a business. The marketing plan is a highly-thought out and researched evaluation of the type of business you wish and hope to establish. It is needed as part of the yearly planning process within the marketing functional area, for a specialised strategy as to introduce something new, such as new product planning, entering and winning new markets, or trying a new strategy to fix an existing problem. Additionally, the marketing plan is a component within an overall business plan, such as a new business proposal to the financial community. A marketing plan includes: - Purpose and mission - Situational analysis - Marketing strategy and objectives - Tactical programs - Budgets, performance analysis and implementation - Additional consideration Therefore, if you are considering of writing one, you would need to consider the above headings. There are many templates available online to assist you when designing your marketing plan.
Pros and cons
- A marketing plan illustrates your sales strategy and your planning strategy. It lays out everything in one report, so business members can refer to and compare progress and achievements.
- It is method of effective marketing as it shows control and thought out business and marketing procedures.
- It helps to identify the needs and wants of the consumer base.
- It helps determine demand and supply for the product.
- It helps to identify competitors and what is needed for USP (Unique selling point) to gain that competitive edge.
- It helps to identify new products and new markets.
- It allows to control, if strategies are giving the desired results.
- Helps to identify weaknesses in your business skills.
- Leads to faulty marketing decisions based on improperly analysed data.
- Creates unrealistic financial projections if information is interpreted incorrectly and prepared incorrectly.
- Identifies weaknesses in your overall business plan and structure.
Conclusion Marketing plans are good and beneficial marketing strategies as you can benchmark your businesses performance against the projections that you make in your marketing report. This can be a cost-saving strategy which is always important when setting up business especially for profit.