Marketing Planning… Do You Really Need It? This will help you decide!
Methods of Marketing Planning Domination
As a business owner or a marketer, your first concern is whether your marketing budget is being spent in the most productive ways or not? If you think that you are marketing is not attracting enough customers, it may be because of your marketing planning. Marketing Planning is, basically, a process that helps to organize and define the marketing goals of your company and gather strategies and tactics to achieve them. Marketing planning can be done through many concepts, and it goes through a lot of stages. In this article, we will discuss the importance of marketing planning and how can market research be beneficial for your business and how to make successful marketing planning that will eventually help you, your business and your brand to reach their goals.
What is Marketing Planning?
Market planning is a process done by the company to define and organize its aims and goals through gathering tactics to achieve them. What defines solid marketing planning is that it should consist of the company’s value proposition, buyer persona, and information about the targeted market, budget, distribution channels, and all the marketing information. Marketing planning can only be done successfully through what is called “Market Research”. Market research is a process to determine the variability of a new service or product, through conducting directly with a potential customer. It can be done through feedback, surveys, or asking the customers face to face.
Is Marketing Planning Important for Small Businesses?
In the past few decades, many small businesses and startups have started their journeys, but unfortunately, many fail to reflect on their marketing strategy and plan. Marketing management is an essential part to start with a plan, you have to have a unique, yet, consistent promotion strategy in order to get noticed in the market, that is why marketing planning is very important for small business and startups to leave their mark in the market and to catch their customers’ eyes.
Market Planning Stages
Marketing planning consists of 2 main stages, and they are:
The first stage of marketing planning is evaluating the past promotional activities and measure their effectiveness. The evaluation process includes analyzing which part of the past marketing strategy should have more focus and which part would be adjusted. The analysis process doesn’t only mean evading the company’s / brand position in the market at the moment, but it also includes implanting new stages to reach the business goals.
The second stage of marketing planning is organizing. It is important to organize marketing objective and strategies so that your marketing planning carries on effectively.
Market Planning Concepts
There is an enormous number of marketing planning concepts, but below a few of the most important concepts that you should pay attention to, and these concepts are:
1- Market Segmentation/ Market Targeting
Even though Market segmentation or Market Targeting plays a crucial role, that part of marketing planning and marketing management is often overlooked. Marketing segmentation involves dividing your potential customer into varying criteria based on their behaviour, age, average income, demographics. After that, you should choose the best category that you think that your next product or service will benefit from and worth your marketing. The main reason why market segmentation and targeting is important is that a company should always be focusing its resources on the most profitable category of customers, so knowing which group that is, is a precondition.
Budget is one of the most important terms in marketing planning when it comes to execution. In order to secure your funds, you need proof of your marketing plan success, that requires accurate forecasting of returns. Make sure that the returns are not overestimated to avoid over budgeting.
3- Marketing Mix
The term “marketing mix” means a combination of elements that influences the potential/current customers to purchase your product. These combinations of elements include price, product, promotion and place. Price simply refers to the price of the product or the service that you offer your customers, other than the actual price of the product of the service you should put into consideration the shipping costs and any additional costs to your product /service. Place refers to where the customers can contact and purchase the products. Promotion refers to the shape and the image of the product.
4- Customer Relationship Management CRM
Customer relationship management is the main key that you should maintain to keep your current customers loyal and to attract more potential customers. There are enormous numbers of software that will help you to handle CRM ( Customer relationship management). It is recommended for small businesses to keep such activities in-house to keep the company lean.
Do You Really Need It?
A marketing plan considers the value proposition of the business, the values proposition is the overall value that is delivered to the customer including the company website or any branding material. The value proposition of your business that state how your product or service solves the customers’ problem, and how it be beneficial for them and how to convince them to buy that product/ service from you and not any other company or brand.
Creating a market plan will help you to reach your targeted audience and customer easily, through market research. Your marketing plan should be flexible and can be adjusted at any point to fit your goals if you found out that digital ads are more beneficial for you than excerpted, you should adjust both your market plan and budget to pursue that goal. Marketing planning is a very constructive process that facilities the consideration of your company’s market objectives and products. While some features may be unique for each business, key concepts of marketing planning such as marketing segmentation and marketing target are all applicable no matter what your business is.
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