Developing a Really Successful Marketing Plan

If you are a business owner or company manager, you know how important a marketing plan is to the short- and long-term prosperity of your enterprise. Following are six time-tested steps toward developing a really successful marketing plan:

Step 1) Describe your products and/or services in easy-to-understand terms. Include what sets you apart from your main competitors and the benefits/value your customers will receive.

Step 2) Carefully identify your target audience. Be specific with respect to the demographics and product/service preferences of your ideal buyers. Focus your company’s resources and marketing tactics on these groups.

Step 3) Establish both short- and long-term objectives for your business. Make your goals meaningful, specific and measurable. Pursuing concrete goals such as revenue earned and new customers acquired will help keep your marketing efforts fruitful and focused.

Step 4) Laser-focus on your prime competitors. Are they small local businesses or larger regional or national companies? Understanding the competitive landscape will enable you to sharpen your target marketing and maximize the impact of each dollar spent.

Step 5) Formulate a detailed marketing budget. Dedicate a specific monthly or quarterly amount. Compare expenditures to results and adjust accordingly.

Step 6) Execute! The best marketing plans often fall victim to lackluster follow-through.

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