Marketing is part of your overall businessmarketonline planning but marketing and advertising are not the same thing. Advertising consists of placing ads informing the public of your business. Traditional methods of advertising are classified ads, display ads, direct mail, bill boards, radio ads, TV ads.
Marketing consists of activity that introduces your businesses products and services to the whole world or your target market. Advertising is a piece of marketing but they are not the same. Marketing includes products like logos, brochures, business cards, brand awareness, branding of your products and services, and many other ideas.
You need to define your marketing goals: What do you want to accomplish with your business marketing? Who is your target market? Do you want immediate customer response or are you just trying to provide information on your industry? Should the Internet be part of your marketing?
Will your business operate only in your local area (within 3 miles of your location) or do you want to be city wide, state wide, regional, national or world wide? What media works best for your answer to the above question? Is there one media that works no matter what type of products and/or services you sell? If so how will you use that media to reach your intended audience? What ROI (Return on Investment) are you expecting for your marketing spend?
Will you manage your marketing internally or will you outsource your marketing? With you marketing reach, will you hire 1 company to traditional marketing and online marketing or an expert at each type of marketing? Have you developed a marketing plan for your business? Have you ever seen a simple marketing plan? You can spend thousands on getting a marketing plan created or you can control this expense by using the KISS principle of marketing? Identify what you know and stay within what you know to start out with? Grow over time and incorporate additional marketing products as your growth allows?
What should your financials look like for your marketing plan? Your choice depends on your business and your budget. Don’t let someone try and fit you into their model, the model you choose should fit your business structure and your individual business goals? You should have a business plan and marketing plan to operate your business. Even a small one or two person business should have both plans. With all of the activity you have to do every day, it is difficult to determine if every decision you make keeps you on plan or steers you outside of you business plan? You should regularly review your business and marketing plan to see where your business is heading.
Periodic reviews should be done, and it is up to you as the business owner to determine this schedule and stick to the schedule so you can steer your business toward the profitability you desire for your business? The Business plan and marketing plan are living documents. Your periodic reviews of your business should allow you to identify changes and implement those changes in time to prevent consequences or allow you to steer toward new opportunities as they present themselves. The primary advantage of small business is ability to react QUICKLY to a changing customer market place? By changing quickly to your customers demands, you become a significant value to your customers and they will continue to buy as long as your provide VALUE to your existing and potential customers.
This article is brought to you by Don Stone, owner of I-NET Inbound. We specialize in working with small businesses to develop an Online Marketing Plan that will help you use the internet to acquire new customers for your business. If your business does not have a visible presense on the Internet, you are missing out on millions of prospective new customers.
business marketing plan is a significant section in the planning stage of your business. By directing your attention to the marketing aspect of the business, you will be able to promote your business successfully.
The elements of a marketing plan affect the promotion of your business and your ability to reach your market.
In the creation a business marketing plan, you need to direct your attention to the following elements to make it effective and efficient in carrying out your marketing objectives.
1. Market Situation. When it comes to market situation, it generally gives you an overview of the market, the products and services, and the competition that you have to deal with in the business. The assessment of the market situation requires you to analyze the following:
a. Product Lines and Services. This will provide a general description of the products and services that you will offer in the market.
b. Market Size. This pertains to the market size and the segments that you will cater to. You need to make an educated guess in the number of clients that you will be able to cater to. A large market can also provide your business with competition. You can do the estimation by market research.
c. Sales and Distribution Setup. This is a documentation of how you intend to reach your target sales as well as the distribution methods that you will impose in the application of your marketing plan.
d. Geographic Area. Where do you intend to concentrate with your marketing plans in terms of location? The delimitation in terms of area needs to be specified in your marketing plans. This is where you need to determine the scope of the market that you want to reach in order to effectively market your products and services.
e. Audience. This is the description of your target market in terms of population, demographics, and income levels.
f. Competition. This will determine your competition in the market. Competition within the same industry is called direct competition. In case where products and services can be considered substitutes of each other, the competition will be indirect or substitute. Competition can help you determine how your business will place in the market.
2. Threats and Opportunities. It is also important to know how these elements can help you in the market. By knowing the threats that the industry has, you will be able to improve on the aspects that can give stability to your business. The determination of the market opportunities that you have will give ideas regarding expansions and additional product offerings.