In running a business, marketing plays a very important role. The business owner must be knowledgeable with the business’ customers, with their competitors, their strengths and weaknesses. These elements along with others should be well-defined in order to develop a well-written marketing plan and should be carried out though effective marketing strategies.
Marketing Plan and its Overall Purpose
An excellent marketing plan will draw how the business can catch the attention and retain their customers, how it will content with identified competitors and the needed fund to achieve desirable results. The marketing plan should incorporate a thorough market research, location of the business, the targeted group of customers, competition, product or service to put in the market for sale and effective strategies for promotions and advertisements. A marketing plan assists the business to incorporate its total marketing effort. It makes sure of a logical and organized approach to products and services development in order to meet and satisfy the needs of the customers. (Paul, 2007)
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Conducting a market research is needed to start an effective marketing plan. Through market research, relevant data will be gathered in order to help the business to solve possible problems in marketing. Frequently, the most common way of conducting market research is though survey via direct mail, telephone survey or facilitating a focus group session.
Derivative or secondary data is also important to a successful market plan. Studies and reports done by different sectors of the society, like the government, associations and other businesses within the industry can provide very significant data and statistics on the research area. Consumer behavior research as the scientific study of the processes consumers use to select, secure, use, and dispose of products and services that satisfy their needs is very important in market research. Consumer behavior unswervingly affects marketing strategy. This is because of the concept of marketing, the idea that firms are present to satisfy customer needs (Winer, 2000).
In writing the marketing plan the business needs to be clear on its objectives and how they will achieve them. A good marketing plan makes realistic, measurable and very clear objectives, which includes deadlines, provides a budget and designates responsibilities. A marketing plan is comprised of an analysis of the current market of the business, the business’ objectives, the business’ key strategies, the business’ actions to attaining their objectives, their allocated budget and the effective timing of entering and positioning in the market
Regardless of what type of market research a business will do, the focus should be on gathering sufficient information to find out who the potential customers are, if there is product or service demand for the business, if there are competitors in the scope of the business and how can the business be successful in the marketplace that they belong to. A comprehensive and a well-written marketing plan is very vital to all business undertakings because it illustrates how the business plan to attract and retain customers, how they will compete with their competitors, and what resources will they have available to attain the identified goals of the business. (Paul, 1997)
Marketing Strategy and its Various Components
In the present intense competition in the marketplace, a strategy that guarantees a coherent approach providing the business’ product or service in a way that it will outperform its competitors is very crucial. On the other hand, by defining the marketing strategy of the business, it is a must to have a well-written methodology for the everyday process of implementing it. There is little value to strategy when the business lacks the resources or the know-how in its implementation.
The process of developing a marketing strategy involves the consideration of many factors. Out of those factors some are more important compared with the others. For the reason that each strategy must prioritize some distinct considerations, it is not rational to determine each important factor at a generic level. (Porter, 1998)
In developing a marketing strategy, there are two major components, which are:
How will the business address the competition in the market
How will the business carry out and support their daily operations
After selecting the direction which is the most ideal for the overall objectives of the business, the next step is to consider the following factors in order to select a strategy for the offering that will outsell in the market: (Porter, 1998)
After determining the overall objective of the offering and selecting a generic strategy, the business should then decide on the range of closely associated operational strategies. One of these is how will the business price the offering. The pricing strategy is mostly influenced by the business’ necessity for net income and the objectives for stable market control.
In order to sell an offering, the business should effectively promote and advertise it.
Place of Distribution
The business must choose the distribution channel and the method that will be utilized to get the offering into the close to the customer.
The business should be scrupulously familiar with the factors that launch products/services as strong contenders in the marketplace.
Once the strategy is defined the must use the gathered information to determine whether this strategy will attain the objective of making the business competitive in the marketplace.
Marketing Plan and a Marketing Strategy Fitting Together
The marketing plan is how the business puts marketing strategy into practice. It is worth emphasizing the main points of the business’ strategy in the plan. The marketing plan functions as a detailed road map for the planning and supervision of all marketing undertakings for a given period. An effective marketing plan must be customized, and it may be essential to change a range of sections to meet the changing needs of the business to which it applies.
Effective marketing plans start by studying what is presently happening and what has happened in the past. It is unworkable to build up solid plans for the future if the present situation is misunderstood. The marketing plan can then be considered as the practical application of their marketing strategy. In effect, the business will not have a marketing plan without a marketing strategy.
Then marketing strategies sets in by being delivered by the business’ detailed marketing plan.
Operating successful business is not an easy task; it involves a great deal of business knowledge. Marketing is simply all about letting people know about the product or service that a certain business offers, and influencing potential customers to buy or use it. And for effective marketing the business have to let people know about their product or service constantly and to do this, the business will to have to come up with both an appropriate and effective marketing strategy and a marketing plan.
- Paul, S. (2007). Why Need a Marketing Plan?, Legal Zoom Article Center.
- Porter, M. (1998). Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance, Free Press.
- Winer, R.S. (2007). Marketing Management, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.
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