A marketing plan gives your company a flying start and works cost-saving. This plan fulfills the set objectives in the business plan. You can use an external agency for this purpose, but by writing the marketing plan yourself you will also gain more insight into your company. In any case, you must include the following items: the 5 basic ingredients of the marketing plan.
- Internal and external analysis
You must be aware of matters that play in your field and environment. With an external analysis you identify the market, customers and your competition. What are your strengths and weaknesses? You can do this, for example, by applying the SWOT system: SWOT stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. Or, in plain Dutch: strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. An internal analysis describes the state of affairs in your company and mirrors them to the competition.
With a marketing strategy you determine the goals you want to achieve with your company in the long term. By setting provisional (and measurable) targets you can quickly make smaller jumps and the general long-term goal will be more manageable. Find a good balance between ambition and false modesty: with too easily achievable targets you will not gain much in comparison with the competition, but thinking too big can have disastrous consequences. The marketing mix is a useful tool for determining your marketing strategy.
- Target group
For whom are you going to work and how do you intend to market your product? Under marketing target groups you set out which market parties, ie your potential customers, apply to your organization. This can vary greatly per company and sector. In this way, consumers can be your main target group, but you can also focus primarily on the intermediate or retail trade. Do not forget to describe your ideal customer or client in detail, also known as gauge. This makes it easier to make a realistic estimate of the size of your target group.
Your budget must also be determined in the marketing plan. Whether you have more than sufficient starting capital or not, you will have to specify how much money you can make available for the various market segments (product development, price discounts, etc.). Calculate per product how much money you are expected to spend.
Have you completed your marketing plan? Then you are not there yet, because a company is always on the move.
Due to circumstances your company can grow faster or much slower.
In short: what applies to your company at the beginning of the year can have changed completely six months later.
Make sure that you regularly evaluate your marketing plan.
This allows you to quickly adjust when objectives or targets are not being met and you will not be surprised at the end of the year.