What if you go to the supermarket without a frame? Most of the time, you buy a lot of things you don’t really need, spend more money than planned, and go home and find that you’ve forgotten a lot of things. Then you have to go back again to make everything correct. You will face the same situation if you don’t sit down and write a marketing plan. If you just want to jump in and get started it seems like a waste of time, but in the long run, sitting down and writing a marketing plan can save you time, money and frustration. These are the things a marketing plan can do for your business:
Helps you focus on your target market
Without a marketing plan, it is easy to fall into marketing for everyone rather than a specific target audience. When you sit down and create a marketing plan, you will consider who is in demand for your product or service. You see demographic information such as age, gender, location and education level. When you narrow the scope of your target market, you can focus all of your marketing spend on audiences that really need your products or services, instead of wasting money on marketing to uninterested audiences.
Helps you spend money more effectively
How do you know how much money you are spending on marketing or whether you are overspending? In general, about 10% of sales should be used for marketing. Once you determine this number and actually include it in your plan, you can easily understand your ability to spend on any marketing strategy and avoid excessive budgeting.
Helps you focus on specific goals
Do you want to sell more? Any more clues? increase brand popularity? Without a marketing plan, you don’t have specific goals to achieve. All of your marketing efforts will help you work towards your goals, but if you don’t write down specific goals in advance, your marketing efforts may not be on track.
Help you keep up with the competition
You know your business will compete, but do you know how to compare with them? With a marketing plan, you can spend time figuring out exactly how you compare to competitors in terms of prices, products on offer, marketing strategies, etc. Being able to see a side-by-side comparison will help you understand what to do to gain a competitive advantage.
Focus on your marketing strategy
Do you want to run ads in the newspaper, send marketing emails or follow social media? There are many choices in marketing strategy, and you cannot do it blindly. Taking the time to define your goals and target audience in your marketing plan can help you decide which strategy will most effectively achieve those goals.
Creating a marketing plan requires some effort from you. You need to do a lot of research and planning in advance, this is an ongoing process that changes as your business develops. But a well-written marketing plan is like a map that can show you the direction to follow and keep you from getting lost along the way. Take the time now to write a detailed marketing plan and it will certainly benefit your business.