The Marketing Plan

What it is and how to do it.

What is it?
A marketing plan is a business document written for the purpose of describing the current market position of a business and its marketing strategy for the period covered by the marketing plan. Marketing plans usually have a life of from one to five years.

What is the purpose?
The purpose of creating a marketing plan is to clearly show what steps will be undertaken to achieve the business’ marketing objectives.

What is in a Marketing Plan?
A typical small business marketing plan might include a description of its competitors, the demand for the product or service, and the strengths and weaknesses from a market standpoint of both the business and its competitors.
● Description of the product or service, including special features.
● Marketing budget, including the advertising and promotional plan
● Pricing strategy
● Market segmentation

HOW TO DO IT?

Section 1
The Executive Summary
Complete your Executive Summary last, and, as the name implies, this section merely summarizes each of the other sections of your marketing plan. Here you will summarize all your Marketing Plan, you must be able to explain it well like an elevator pitch*. Must be precise and concise in order to everyone understands.

Section 2
Target Customers
This section describes the customers you are targeting. It defines their demographic profile (e.g., age, gender), psychographic profile (e.g., their interests) and their precise wants and needs as they relate to the products and/or services you offer. *market segmentation*

Section 3
Unique Selling Proposition
Having a strong unique selling proposition is of critical importance as it distinguishes your company from competitors.

Section 4
Pricing & Positioning Strategy
Your pricing and positioning strategy must be aligned. For example, if you want your company to be known as the premier brand in your industry, having too low a price might dissuade customers from purchasing.
In this section of your marketing plan, detail the positioning you desire and how your pricing will support it.

Section 5
Distribution Plan
Your distribution plan details how customers will buy from you. For example, will customers purchase directly from you on your website? Will they buy from distributors or other retailers? And so on.
Think through different ways in which you might be able to reach customers and document them in this section of your marketing plan.

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