Friday, October 15, 2010 @ 10:57 PM

Write a marketing plan #5

Your marketing plan is your marketing strategy in action

Your marketing plan is how you put your marketing strategy into practice. It should therefore be a practical reflection of your strategy.

If you understand the market well, you can probably break it down into different segments - groups of similar customers. For example, you can break the business market down into businesses operating in the same sector and/or of a similar size.

For each segment, you need to look at what customers want, what you can offer and what the competition is like. You want to identify segments where you have a competitive advantage. At the same time, you should assess whether you can expect high enough returns to make the segment worthwhile.

Often, the most promising segments are those where you have existing customers. See what you can do to expand sales to these customers. If you are targeting new customers, you need to be sure that you have the resources to reach them effectively.

Once you have decided what your target market is, you also need to decide how you will position yourself in it. For example, you might offer a high quality product at a premium price or a flexible local service. Some businesses try to build a strong brand and image to help them stand out. Whatever your strategy, you need to differentiate yourself from the competition to encourage customers to choose your business first.

See how to create your marketing strategy.

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