5 Elements of A Marketing Plan Template That Guarantees Your Business Success
Major Points of the Article
It is important to plan your marketing otherwise it can lead to overspending
Communicating the goals of your business can help motivate your employees
Understanding your customers on a very deep level and matching it to your offering can maximise your business potential
What is a Marketing Plan Template?
In any business, there are common structural areas such as staff, finances, operations, sales, marketing and more. This would be the same in your business and usually, the most important areas are sales and marketing.
Because... without sales and marketing, your business wouldn't be able to attract clients/customers and make money.
If you have your sales processes worked out and are continuously improving them, excellent. If not have a read of the action learning cycle later. As for marketing, read on...
Using a marketing plan template is essential as you will be able to outline how to attract your customers, find potential ways to save money, and potentially increase your efficiency and return on investment. Below are 5 crucial elements you should include when developing your marketing plan.
1. Create Smart Goals
If you are not already familiar with them then a SMART goal is Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-bound. When structuring your goals in a SMART way, you are more likely to succeed in business.
You can even increase the effectiveness by communicating them to your employees, as it has a profound effect on their motivation, providing direction for your business.
A typical smart goal might look like this, "wanting to increase your sales by 10% by the end of the next quarter". This is a perfect example of a SMART goal, however, the next part is you will need to establish "how".
2. What Are Your Customer Personas?
Do you know what kind of customer buys your product or service? Where do they hang out? What is important to them? How does your product or service help them?
Establishing your customer personas is a great way to flesh out all of these questions, as you will be able to know all about who, what, where, and when of your customers. Getting to know your customers on a very deep level can reduce marketing costs and increase your efficiencies.
Good customer personas should consist of things such as gender, occupation, age and location. These are known as demographics then, cross-reference them with psychographics; their values, desires, goals, interests, and lifestyles to really hone in on your customer.
Once you have established your customer personas you can determine ways to reach them, encourage them to buy, and build customer loyalty.
3. Is There A Product Market Fit?
Product market fit is a term used to describe how well a product can satisfy and solve the issue that your target market is facing.
For example, you wouldn’t want to sell summer clothes in a country where it is currently winter or cat toys at a dog show. The product (service), simply does not fit the need of the potential customer.
So in this next step, consider the customer personas you have created and how well they fit the needs of your product or service. Perhaps it doesn't, perhaps it is only for a certain time of year, or perhaps it is in the wrong country? How well does your product/service fit the market?
4. Your Competitors
Who and what are your competitors offering? Is it better or worse than your offering? If it is worse how can you make your offering better than theirs?
Essentially, when creating your marketing plan you need to evaluate your competitors and how to beat them at attracting customers. An offering that just looks like everyone else's will not be as attractive as a unique offering that hits your customer on a deeper level.
Additionally, you should consider if there is any new innovation that connects better with your customer, as bringing in this could sky-rocket your sales.
5. What is Your Marketing Budget?
$50k, $100k, $1m? How much can you spend? How much do you need to spend?
These are very important questions as various forms of promotional marketing have minimum costs to be effective and in using those platforms there can be an expected return on investment.
You obviously wouldn’t want to spend more than what was necessary.
By putting in a budget, you will not overspend and you will be able to establish what forms of promotional marketing you can do to achieve the sales you want.
A Marketing Planner
Once you have established your marketing plan, you need to keep track of it and also when and how certain actions need to take place. This can be achieved with a marketing planner that can provide structure in what you do and how you achieve it. With time you can continuously improve it to increase efficiency and reduce costs.
In fact, a marketing planner should also be adaptive and include how to conduct experiments to determine if a new campaign or form of marketing was effective before you scale up the budget.
In summary, you need to use a marketing plan template and marketing planner to establish the how, what, where and when, track the efficiencies, and record your operational steps. Only by doing this, you can improve your promotional efforts, reduce your marketing costs, and increase your sales.
In fact, if you are low on time and resources, why not get an expert to do it for you? A great place to start is with the professional team from Paradelta Strategy. We are a business strategy and brand equity building company that specialises in this area to review and improve your business. Over the years, we have helped businesses across Australia to grow and expand, nationally and internationally. To get assistance with your business, simply email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or schedule a no-obligation discovery call here.