Marketing is one of those activities that’s easy to dive right into, especially when you have lots of great ideas on hand, not to mention some ambitious goals set for the year or the quarter.
With that in mind, it’s understandable that so many new clients want to skip over the most important step in the marketing process: strategic planning.
Most of these business owners and managers don’t actually skip over the planning stage, of course, but they don’t really give it the time and attention they should. That can be a big mistake, however, because everything that comes later – including all the increased sales and revenue – is predicated on that initial planning stage.
Your marketing plan shouldn’t just be a list of activities to try, or even a schedule combined with a budget. Instead, it should be a document that outlines your competitive strengths, gives some consideration to who your best customers are, and gives a detailed timeline and activity profile that shows exactly how you’re going to reach them. On top of that, it should have some measurable targets and follow-up activities, so that you’re never confused about whether your marketing plan is on track, or what the next steps are.
Put all of these elements in place, and you have a road map to take your business to profitability. Have you been following a marketing plan with that kind of detail in the past?