A marketing plan is a tool to clarify your marketing goals and create clear steps towards your goal. A marketing plan is usually a list of measures to be taken within a certain time frame.
There are several ways to get your marketing plan off the ground, but here’s one way to structure it:
Elements of a marketing plan
1. Define your audience
Who are the best customers to you and why? Revenue, industry, title, age, hobbies…
2. Define the products or services you offer to target audience
What do you offer, what problems do your products / services solve, how much do they cost? What distinguishes your product and service from its competitors?
3. Define your goals
What is your long-term vision? What are the goals for this year? What role does marketing play in meeting your goals?
4. Define key people needed to execute the plan?
So who does belong to the marketing team and what are the roles of everyone? Who is responsible for what?
Where are your target group members and how do you reach them?
What is the budget for marketing? How is it allocated between different channels and actions?
7. Identify focus areas, that you will focus on to get best possible results
8. Schedule actions based on focus areas
Create clear deadlines for different actions. For example, if one of the focus areas is Search Engine Optimization, create clear steps on what’s to be done, for example:
- Website Speed Optimization
- Keyword Research
- Publish four articles per month
Assign them responsible and put on deadlines to everything.
9. Put everything together to create one presentation
Gather all your agreed-upon items in an easy-to-reach format so you can easily return to it to clarify your focus. Focus is easily forgotten in the middle of the day, but a well-done marketing plan will help you get the focus you need to create results you want.
Finished marketing plan
Now you have a ready-made marketing plan that you can use to put your marketing into practice. Remember, a marketing plan is not a guide that should be followed to the word.
The purpose of the marketing plan is to set things in the right direction and identify the most important measures. However, it also needs to be constantly updated, as you learn things along the way that affect what makes sense and what doesn’t.
So be prepared to tear up your marketing plan within three weeks of completing it if you notice that the target audience and, as a result, everything else failed.
To summarize your marketing plan
A marketing plan is a tool that facilitates effective marketing. Using a marketing plan is not an end in itself, but is useful when managing a larger entity or to get all employees on the same map.
A single-person marketing team may not even need a terribly detailed paper plan, though it can be very useful.
It is also good to remember that the results of marketing often depend on many external factors. A good marketing plan cannot guarantee that your marketing will succeed. Deeds matter.