We’ve covered some key marketing concepts that you can use to develop a marketing plan. So it’s now time to look at actually writing the plan. All aspects of writing a marketing plan are covered in this lesson including:
- Developing objectives
- Developing the marketing strategy
- Budget and timelines
- Developing the action plan – marketing tactics
- Developing a marketing performance review strategy i.e. metrics.
Marketing objectives are the defined goals for marketing and are a very important part of a marketing plan. Objectives should be in the SMART format, which is the acronym for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely. For example, an effective goal could be to increase sales of a product by 6 percent in the next 4 months. Having measurable goals will be necessary when you implement the plan, as these will be used to monitor its effectiveness.
Writing your marketing strategy. All the elements of the marketing mix influence each other. It is important that marketers review the strategic objectives of the organisation so that marketing strategies, approaches and the marketing mix can be determined to support these goals.
Marketing strategies also need to align with the organisation’s strengths and opportunities as explored earlier in the SWOT analysis, as well as be within the organisation’s capabilities and resource limits.
For example, an organisation’s strategic objective could be to increase sales or to increase brand awareness by specific amounts. Understandably, these would need to be measured with access to data within the business.
Once strategic objectives are identified, marketing strategies and the marketing mix can be developed to align with these. Additionally, tasks such as product testing and customer research can be implemented to support the overall strategic goals. For example, if an objective was to improve brand awareness, then customer research like surveys or focus groups would need to be organised and conducted to establish a baseline for measuring any improvement.
Any identified marketing approaches will need to be justified to senior management. All marketing strategies should be developed to maximise success for the enterprise.
For example, where an organisation has the overall objective of increasing sales, the organisation could adopt an undifferentiated marketing strategy that focuses on developing an offer that meets the common needs and wants of the most consumers. The company therefore provides products or services that appeal to the largest number of buyers.
Marketing mix features are likely to be product or service features that appeal to the mass market, low price and easily available, as well as being marketed and distributed through low cost options.
Take a moment to Review the presentation-based activity in your student guide and speak to your online coach about ways in which you could present your appraisal of a marketing strategy.