Before your start to develop your marketing plan, you should ask yourself the following questions:
- Which product/service are you selling?
- Who is your target audience that will buy your product/service?
- What need does the above market have for your product or service?
- Which information on your product/service do you want to communicate to your target audience?
- What is the best way to get into contact with your target audience (for example TV, radio, newspaper, social media)? – When answering this question you should not forget about your budget?
Your marketing plan should be set up like this:
1. Executive summary
(this information you can either take from your business plan or write anew)
>> The questions who, what, when, where and how should be answered in regard to the marketing goals and strategies.
>> This part can be answered easily at the end, after the marketing analysis has been done.
- Description of the company
- Mission statement
- Financial feasibility
2. Analysis of the industry
>> Here you should go into the industry, competitors, suppliers, regulatory environment, customers, as well as the role of the company within the industry.
- SWOT-analysis: analyze the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats.
- Porter’s 5 forces analysis: Here you should analyze competitors, future competitors, potential substitutes for your product/services, suppliers on the market and customers
- Mission/vision of the product/service
- Competitive environment
- Situation analysis
- Competitor analysis
3. Products and the corresponding target audience
>> Describe each product/service
- Demographics of the target audience: income, interests,activities, way of life, other geographic descriptions, psychological mindsets, political affiliations, family situation, age, taste
- Market trends and social trends through which customers are being influenced-
- The needs and wants of your target audience and corresponding benefits received from products
4. Marketing strategy
- Overall marketing objectives
- Mission statement
- Product's positioning relative to competitors and in the eyes of target customers
- General strategies you will use to reach objectives and fulfill the mission statement
- Product's marketing mix, including specific marketing programs.
- "Four P's":
- Product (any related changes, improvements and issues)
- Pricing strategy for each product
11 different pricing strategies: http://www.websitemarketingplan.com/techniques/pricing2.htm
- Distribution channels (how the product gets to customers and consumers)
- Promotional activities: Public Relations, internet marketing and advertising, offline advertising, viral marketing and other marketing programs
>> Build success metrics into each marketing program, including intermediate measures, and how you will use them to monitor progress and adjust execution when applicable.
6. Prognosis and financial analysis
- Size of the target audience
- Size of the market shares
- (monthly) growth forecast
- Profit und loss statement (with sales units and dollar forecasts, cost of goods marketing budgets, fixed overhead and variable expense projections, other expenses, profit margins)
- Breakeven analysis (units and dollars needed to make a profit for each marketing program or new or changed product)
- "What-if" scenarios (sensitivity analyses) showing what happens if forecasts and profit margins are lower or higher than expected