Marketing is a funny old thing, as well as taking into account the industry insights and behaviour of consumers, you have to incorporate both emerging and steadfast tactics to develop something successful. There are countless opportunities up for grabs with an effective marketing strategy in tow, and as the saying goes “planning makes perfect” but it doesn’t make the planning phase any easier.
There are so many factors that will influence your marketing direction as a company and ensuring that you incorporate them all and continuously analyse and update them as times change, your market evolves and consumer habits alter is vital. Read on to discover how you can prep a marketing plan like a pro and build a strong strategy that will stand the test of time and grow as your business does.
It’s all in the pre-planning
Planning your plan is not the beginning of your marketing journey, pre-planning is where it’s at. By nailing down the objectives of your marketing plan you can truly plan to perfection, whether it’s brand recognition that you’re looking to achieve, the successful promotion of a product, service or complete range, or you wish to infiltrate an entirely new market.
Get your head around the numbers
An important aspect of marketing plan logistics is those numbers. Both budgets and timescales must be considered during the early days of marketing planning, after all it’s unlikely that you have a never-ending money pit or unlimited time to dedicate to marketing.
Placing your budget in the right areas of your strategy is a particularly difficult one. Whilst many think that the majority, if not all, of the marketing budget should be devoted to the acquisition of new customers, recent statistics tell a different story. The most successful brands commit just one third of their marketing budget to reaching new customers, leaving the remainder to communicate with customers who they have already done business with. The key to any profitable company is repeat business, and it’s actually cheaper and more profitable to get past customers purchasing with you again than it is to bring in new business.
Consider the one pager
For those new to marketing planning, keeping it simple and completing a one-page plan may be the way forward. One page plans provide a succinct view of the project and an easy way to map deadlines and track progress, particularly if you are managing the campaign in-house.
Define your target audience to a tee
Understanding who it is you are targeting with your marketing plan is worth putting lots of time and effort into. By knowing your target audience, you can not only craft the right words to communicate with potential and existing customers but identify the marketing channels that will be the most successful. The creation of buyer personas is an excellent way to map the wants and needs of your audience precisely, giving you the information you require to personalise campaigns for maximum impact.
Just do it, then review it
After all that planning, the next step forward is implementation. Many choose to complete a split test before a full campaign launch, this allows you to trial aspects of your campaign with separate target audiences, and evaluate what’s successful and what’s not. Whether you are starting with a split test or not, regular campaign analysis is a must, especially in fast-paced marketplaces that are continuously changing.
Don’t take on marketing your company alone, let us help with planning, execution and campaign review. We’re pretty good at it, even if we do say so ourselves!
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