For most businesses, marketing is the second biggest expense after payroll. As a business owner, you want to ensure your marketing budget is being spent productively and efficiently.
The best way to achieve your marketing objectives is to have a marketing plan. Without a solid marketing plan, businesses risk trying out different marketing tactics, hoping to maximise results, and ending up with little success.
What is a marketing plan?
A marketing plan is a blueprint outlining how businesses set their marketing goals, plan and execute, and track the marketing strategy results. The plan could span over a month, quarter, or year. The ultimate aim of a marketing plan is to provide a clear overview of all the marketing activities.
A marketing plan should include:
- Your marketing and advertising goals
- Whom you want to target. i.e., your target audience and customers
- The marketing strategy you are adopting and how (tactics)
- The allocated marketing budget
- The KPIs you will be using to measure results
Different types of Marketing plans
There are different types of marketing plans that one can create. It’s always depending on how detailed you want it to be. You can create a year’s strategy or make specific marketing plans for every channel you aim to target.
Here are some examples of specific marketing plans:
- General Marketing Plan – gives you an overview of your plan and tactics at a glance.
- Social Media Marketing Plan – contains the specific tactics for each social media channel you own. It should also include the planned campaigns.
- Content Marketing Plan – features the editorial calendar with all the content elements you intend to use in your campaign.
- Paid Marketing Plan – has to include all paid elements in your marketing strategies, such as paid social media ads, email marketing, and search ads.
Can I do without?
Operating without a marketing plan will result in a reduced return on investment. Businesses running without a marketing plan will waste marketing budget and resources. A solid marketing plan will enable you to align your objectives with the overarching business goals.