Business Marketing Plans
Small business marketing
plans are important to pursue a streamlined strategy for marketing that will
improve sales and enhance profitability.
A marketing plan is a written document that reflects the vision of
the entrepreneur and clearly states the steps planned for promoting sales
through advertising and other marketing tools in the forthcoming year. It
clearly delineates the marketing strategy being adopted and small businesses
also need to have clear cut marketing objectives for both the short term and
long term, listed in their concise plan.
A marketing plan needs to be written after proper research and
collection of information from every section of the business. It takes time to
prepare, and will prove to be successful only if it has the requisite inputs to
give direction to the employees.
Key Elements in a Successful
Small Business Marketing Plan
- A brief overview of the business- The
business plan must first list what the company produces and sells and provide
details about past achievements.
- The marketing environment- This
is supposed to explain the environment in which the small business operates. It
should include the market it caters to, its target customers, demography,
geography, competitors, disposable incomes per household, the overall economic
scenario and other political or social factors which may impede the business.
- The marketing activity taking place- Every
marketing plan should have the 7 P’s of product, price, place, promotion,
physical environment, people and process. These help in finalizing the action
plan for the small business.
- The marketing objectives- Though largely based
on the financial aim of the company, these explain the larger picture about
where the company is headed. The objectives must include a quantitative
description of what it seeks to accomplish. Objectives include both the short
term, which is the coming year, and long term. Thus, plans of diversification,
new launches, entering new markets or global expansion plans can all be
explained after appropriate research. Many marketing plans have a five-year
plan as well.
- Impediments - The marketing
team that is out collecting information has a very clear idea about what
impediments their business is likely to face and ways to remove the obstacles
can be listed in the plan.
- Opportunities and expansion possibilities-
Analysis of the business environment will reveal several avenues waiting to be
explored. These need a thorough feasibility study and then included in the
- Marketing Goals- these define the goals and
targets expected to be achieved in the coming year, which then set the production
targets. Price levels, distribution channels, advertising and sales promotion
all need to be included. These have to be based on past performance and
expected customer behavior and realistic targets, quantitatively listed, are
Successful small business marketing plans are those that are more
realistic and prepared after a thorough research and analysis. Their
effectiveness can be tested only over a period of time after their
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