Starting a business, one is likely betting their all on it and couldn’t afford to waste their time and money. But having an effective marketing plan could only do your business good.
It will help you make smart and strategic decisions for your business to retain customers, generate referrals, and create the necessary buzz. With such a plan, you’ll know who exactly your target clients are, why they’d want to buy from you, and how you’ll get them to purchase products or services again.
But is such a plan complicated as it is beneficial? As with anything, the deed is only intimidating if you haven’t been adequately shown the ropes.
It’s as easy as pie as long as you know the foundations of it. The following are the components of a effective marketing plan that you shouldn’t miss:
- Executive Summary
The executive summary gives your stakeholders a glimpse of what your business is all about once they review your marketing plan. Typically, this is one of the first parts one will see off of the plan. Although this only serves as the birds-eye view of what’s in store. Hence, writing this part is most practical after the rest of the document.
This part of the plan will serve as an elevator pitch that hopes to rake interest and curiosity from potential stakeholders. It is easy to digest and curiosity the triggering factor into making the business shine and rake in support.
- Mission Statement
Every successful business, or any business aiming to be, needs to have a mission statement that clarifies why it exists and what makes it stand out.
Outdoor equipment mogul Patagonia summarizes its goal with a powerful mission statement:
“Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.”
Right off the bat, the customer knows that Patagonia produces quality outdoor equipment while being conscious of their operation’s environmental impact.
Now we can imagine a wedding videography business saying, “We make you ‘I do’ shine and last forever, without punching a hole in your pocket.”
In that statement, people will have come to know the following:
- The target demographic
- What you do
- Service is affordable.
- Target Customer
To reach your ideal customers, you have to have a clear picture of who they are and where to find them.
You have to know a customer’s demographic. This includes their age, gender, marital status, and income. As an aspiring online English teacher or tutor, one has to consider their target students’ age. Students who would want to learn English could come from different age brackets. As an aspiring online tutor, you should choose which age bracket best suits your teaching style.
It’s also essential to know the customer’s psychographic profile, which pertains to the emotional reasons they would be looking into purchasing your products or hiring your services. Besides, depending on age for your teaching style, you should consider why they’re looking into learning the language. Some do it to learn it while some try to learn it for more formal purposes like studying abroad or even using it for business.
You can learn about your target demographic by communicating with your current and former customers and digging into your website analytics and social media following.
- Products and Services
List out the products or services you offer and layout their price points. By doing this exercise, you’ll come to realize the flexibility of your product or service.
Take, for example, writing. While the skill in itself might seem cut and dry, you can expand the list of services you can offer. Namely, writing articles, copywriting, proofreading, and editing, among others.
- Plan for Distribution
After figuring out what to sell and who to sell to, now you’ll task yourself with figuring out how to sell it., Also, your distribution plan will specify how your customers are going to acquire what you offer.
If you’re selling a physical product, you can sell on your e-commerce website, both online and in-store with mass retailers, at small boutiques, at your brick-and-mortar stores, or a combination. If you’re offering a service or a digital product, consider where people would be able to purchase them, such as your website, on a freelancing platform like 24Task, or through banner ads.
- Marketing and Promotion
Spread awareness of your business on every online channel. You have to plan how you’ll generate buzz for the biz. Some of the common methods of promotion include:
- Social Media Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Influencer Marketing
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
- Selling or giving away merchandise (bags, t-shirts, mugs)
Do not forget that marketing strategy should entail measurable goals and objectives. You should see tangible results like generating traffic that increases sales by 20%, obtaining a certain number of new clients or customers per month, or building brand awareness by getting featured in a specific number of articles.
To sum up pointers, an effective marketing plan is essential for starting a business. It includes knowing what products or services you’ll offer, knowing the target customers, composing a catchy but informative mission statement, determining how you’ll sell the products and services, and figuring out how you’ll spread the word to gain attention towards your business. Being guided by these elements ensures that every step you take towards putting up your business will bear fruit, and the time and effort you’ll invest will ultimately be profitable.
With these, expect to bring in leads. But if it doesn’t, it’s no reason to fret. The plan not raking in leads is never failing because this time, with a plan, it is easier to track where you’ve failed, where you succeeded, and how you’ll move forward. It’s always a win when there’s a plan. Coming off of a less than stellar marketing plan, you’ll know how to proceed more cautiously but still as efficient and aggressive as ever. It’s best to roll with the punches when you do it with a strategy, or you can simply hire freelance marketers to boost your sales!
Kunal Vaghasiya is the writing adviser for International students that seek rapid paper assistance. Kunal shares helpful suggestions on writing, productivity, study, references. Occasionally Kunal goes off-topic by discussing his personal experience peppered with playful humor.