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How to develop the Marketing Plan and Integrate it into the Business Plan

marketing plan, woman placing sticky notes on wall
This post I want to do this also as part of the business plan that you can find in the post: How to make a Business Plan for a new business or company (Start-up)

The marketing plan is one of the parts of the business plan that can bring more credibility to an investor, as it will define that you have done your homework well and that you have the market very well studied, since it doesn’t matter if you have the best product in the world

If you do not have a well-defined marketing plan with clear steps you will have a serious market problem and all the sales efforts you make will be largely a waste of time and money, there will be no results and that leads to the despair of a team and the failure of the business for not having a good marketing plan

trans How to develop the Marketing Plan and Integrate it into the Business Plan


Main parts of the Marketing Plan:

1.- Market Research

This is one of the best investments in time that you will be able to bring to your marketing plan, it is important that you do a good market research

In this research it is good to have two levels for the marketing plan, one of them with all the data related to the industry and the market that you know directly, the sources you have access to, data from contacts, the data you can access directly, etc

The second level with all the ancillary information such as industry reports and studies, market reports, even magazines, data and reviews in newspapers, appointments in your industry, etc

2.- Economic details of your market in the marketing plan

You have to look for as much market data as you can for the marketing plan

An important piece of information is to know the complete size of your industry or the sector in which you are going to operate, you can know it by global turnover, in some sectors that have an important weight in the economy you can know it because it is often indicated that they have a percentage of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the case of Spain and other similar data in other countries. Also the sectorial areas provide you with the global volume of annual sales in the sector to include it in the marketing plan

Another important data for the marketing plan and for the investor is to know what will be the percentage that your company will be able to get of that previous volume, it is an important way to assess that the project has a place in the market

The current demand of your target market, of your target audience is also relevant for the marketing plan, if your product attacks a niche market, you have to know what is the demand of that niche, the volume that is handled, etc

The trends in the demand of your target audience, consumer trends in the marketing plan, changes in habits that are occurring, etc. is also highly relevant at this point in the marketing plan as it allows you to see if your product will fit with those trends

What is and where do you see the opportunity for entry and growth for a company like yours in that niche or market segment in the marketing plan

3.- Barriers to entry in your market, the barriers in the marketing plan

What are the main barriers to entry that you think a new company may have, the typical barriers to entry that can be found in the marketing plan of many companies may be related to

The need for high capital investments, High production costs, High marketing costs, Brand recognition by the consumer, the necessary knowledge and training required, the technology is unique and has all possible patents, shipping or logistic costs, etc. are some examples of entry barriers that you can include in the marketing plan

And of course, what are the ways in which your company is going to overcome these barriers to entry and why do you think it is going to do it, this last point is vital in the marketing plan, if you don’t know how to overcome them it is a problem

4.- Product and the customer’s point of view

It is important that the marketing plan is clear what are the main benefits of your products or services that your customers perceive, but you must also include the advantages that the product or service has for customers

For each product or service define what are the advantages and benefits. It is important that you make the distinction clearly, as this will help you to clearly define the focus of your communication

For example, a luxury car may have a number of advantages such as having integrated GPS, automated parking, hands-free phone calls, etc, but that implies a number of benefits such as immediate accessibility to the people you want, peace of mind to get to a place without stress because you get lost, elimination of fears of hitting other cars when parking or getting nervous about it, etc

Another very important thing is to know what are the after-sales services, in case it is a key point of yours because the positive perception of the customer increases when he knows that you will be there if he has any problem

5.- Who buys, description of customers

It is one of the keys of the marketing plan if you have well-defined your target you have 50% of the marketing plan organized, since the good knowledge of the customer will make your contact with him always beneficial for both parties, for you and for him

On the one hand, it is good that you know what are their general characteristics of location, education, social profiles, etc., although in recent years these traditional details of the marketing plan have been changing, as the location of the customer in many cases begins to be less clear, for example, so the new approach of NeuroMarketing makes the customer knowledge is much deeper and highly effective when addressing your target, this is an important point that you should study in your marketing plan

Neuromarketing brings a new and interesting dimension to the Marketing Plan

6.- Competitors

It is important that in the marketing plan you have a list of competitors that define your market well, a comparative table with the most relevant data of each one, where they compete best, their strengths and weaknesses is a good approach, and of course your position with respect to them, that is, you have to be as a company also in that comparative table, in which also one of the important points has to be what is the relationship of that competitor with the final customer

If people are happy with that competitor or not, the happier they are with the competitor, the better the competitor will be. The marketing plan is very well-defined when you have well-located your competitors

7.- Niche

Once you have a map of everything involved in the marketing plan, it is time to define what is your key point and your situation on that map, that is, what is the only corner in the world where your company can be and get a good profit, the definition of the niche or niches in which you move is essential to succeed, since no company can start with a mega creation from the beginning, you have to start with the right niches and then expand

Well-selected niches make the marketing plan start to become a reality quite quickly

8.- Strategy

The strategy of the marketing plan must be defined in the key points that you consider to be the most appropriate, but broadly speaking, the ones that can be most useful to you are

Promotion and advertising strategy, are fundamental in the marketing plan, nowadays internet has become especially relevant in this point, but there are also other ways to reach your target audience, The good thing is that the previous definition of your target audience will allow you to reach it in the right way through the most relevant advertising or promotion that you consider, you also have to consider here the brand image that the company will have and what you want to express with it

Pricing strategy is one of the most valuable variables of the marketing plan, I include a link to a previous post in which I talked about this point

Distribution channels that you are going to use, The distribution channels in the marketing plan allow you to have greater market penetration, It is important to take them into account from the beginning

9.- Expected sales

In the area of forecasts in the marketing plan it is important that you always work with two or three options, since depending on these two or three options there will be points that will affect the financial plan. The two options you have to work with are called scenarios, and in this case you have to work with an optimistic sales scenario, a pessimistic scenario and a medium scenario. It is important that you make a series of spreadsheets in which you indicate month by month or by periods the estimated sales, from when you start selling, etc.

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