Marketing Plan

marketing planning processThe marketing plan is a highly detailed, heavily researched, and well written report that many inside and possibly outside your organization will evaluate. In many respects, the marketing plan is the most important document produced by marketers as it not only helps to justify what has occurred in the past, but is critical for explaining where a company intends to go in the future.

The marketing plan is widely used by both large corporate marketing departments and also by small start-up companies. It is particularly important for marketers who seek funding for new projects or expanding existing product lines or services.

To write a business plan is similar to writing a marketing plan in that they both organize thoughts and ideas to help company owners and managers plan business strategies. The exact nature of your plan and your marketing situation dictates its contents. You may include or remove details to suit your needs. However, there are some key standard components that your plan ought to include. A marketing plan should always have a market analysis, strategic marketing plan or strategy, sales forecast, and expense budget. There are other components of a marketing plan that should also be included.

  • Purpose and Mission
  • Situational Analysis
  • Marketing strategies and objectives
  • Tactical Programs
  • Budget, performances analysis and implementation
  • Additional consideration

In most cases, you’ll start a marketing plan with an executive summary, and you’ll also follow those essentials just described with a review or organizational impact, risks and contingencies, and pending issues. The plan will serve as a road map for the phased growth of your company. Although each company will have a similar format with their plan, your plan will be entirely customized by you.

A plan will not happen by itself. You need to make someone responsible for monitoring progress and chasing up overdue activities. Reviewing progress will also help learn from your mistakes so that you can improve your plans for the future.