What Magic Happens When A Business Marketing Plan Comes Together?

For most business owners the key to success lies in a solid marketing plan with strong marketing tactics.

A marketing plan is a blueprint that outlines a company’ overall marketing efforts.

There are a ton of plan templates readily available on the internet.

Taking advantage of these plan templates and marketing calendars can help determine the success or failure of your business in 2015

Now, what happens when a marketing plan comes together?

1. You will discover who your best most important audience is and what your clients want from you

Hopefully you are creating and offering products and services with a specific target audience in mind.

However, you may find that clients, customers and patients other than your targeted audience will also been able to benefit from what you have to offer.

Understanding who your audience is a key component in marketing, sales and improving your services and/or products.

2. Increases awareness of your company

Most people won’t pay any attention to your company, unless they need you. They only care about themselves, it human nature.

A marketing plan enables you to formulate a way to help future clients see the benefits of using your product or service. When done right, this establishes your credibility in the marketplace and hopefully solidifies your business as a reliable source.

3. You will be prepared.

When you have a good marketing strategy you’ll be surprised at how fast your company will be able to respond to unexpected marketing and developments from your competition.

A well-written plan that covers all bases will include a projection on possible threats and detailed ways you can respond or capitalize off them.

4. Obtaining Finance

Companies, including small businesses often need to acquire extra financing.

A well-thought out business plan along with detailed marketing is evidence of good planning which could be extremely helpful in obtaining loans.

Without a solid business plan and marketing strategy, even the most profitable business would have a difficult time getting financing. Free sample marketing plans are readily available online, they can serve as good examples while saving you time creating your documents.

5. Save Money

One of the biggest benefits of a marketing strategy that your business is more likely to save money.

The average marketing plan includes a set budget that will be used in your marketing efforts for the year.

Yes, by outline your marketing plans, and specifying how much money is going to be used to support various marketing efforts it helps your company save a lot of money on unplanned marketing campaigns.

If you and your team hasn’t sat down to develop a marketing plan for the year, it’s time to do so now.

Start off with a marketing template to help outline your company’s marketing strategies the expand from there.

There are so many benefits from having a marketing plan that it would be insane to start 2015 without one.

Marketing Plan for Your Business Success

A quote that I use on a regular basis is “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail” by Benjamin Franklin. In business, the most important plans to have are a business plan and a marketing plan. Today we will discuss the marketing plan. The marketing plan shows the direction of all marketing and advertising efforts. Remember, marketing is the total efforts of getting together buyers and sellers, whereas advertising is the types of communication used in marketing. Advertising includes TV, radio, online, print, and other mediums. Let’s go over some important parts of the marketing plan that will help your business succeed.

Situation Analysis – This is the current state of your business. It is where the question of why you are in business is answered. What products do you offer? What problem are you trying to solve? Also, how is your business different than others? The situation analysis is a look at the inner-workings of your business to identify product and service offerings, differences, and the main reason why you exist. Business owners can build a firm foundation for their mission and vision statement with this information and are better able to communicate their value to customers.

External Environment -The next part of the marketing plan is the external environment. What is going on outside of your business? Business owners should take a look at what is going on in the external environment or industry. Are other businesses in your industry succeeding or closing shop? Is the industry in a growth or declining phase? Could there be threats that could jeopardize your business operations? Industry information can be found online at http://www.sba.gov.

Target Market – Based on research, the target market section defines the ideal customers for your business. Who and where are your ideal customers? It defines income, gender, and level of education for your target market. When defining your target market, business owners should look at census, demographics, and other secondary information. A clearly defined target market enables business owners to better use resources to obtain new customers.

Advertising Mediums – There are many options available in advertising mediums. For example, TV, print, billboards, email, flyers, social media, and radio are some common mediums. Business owners should consider different advertising mediums to reach their target market. If your target market has high usages of the Internet, then use online advertising mediums. Take into account your marketing budget as well when choosing mediums.

Marketing Budget – The marketing budget explains how business owners will pay for marketing efforts. A marketing budget should be based on a percentage of gross sales, advertising mediums utilized, and other factors. Some marketing expenses to include in the marketing budget are tradeshows, events, and sponsorships.

The marketing plan is an important part of growing a successful business. Essentially, you are planning how customers get to know your business. A marketing plan doesn’t have to be 20 pages long to help your business grow. I have found some that are one page long that are just as effective. Click the link to download one or both one page marketing plans http://smallbiztrends.com/2008/06/one-page-marketing-plan.html.

Marketing Plan Schedule Implementation – Scheduling Your Home Business Workload

Marketing plan schedules are important in any business, and a home business is no exception. In fact the way that you implement a marketing plan schedule is even more important with a home based business, either one that you run by yourself or with only your family, simply because of the limited number of people actually doing the work! So here we take a look at the best way to plan your marketing schedule for every week, and also look at the websites and services you should be using.

Your marketing plan schedule should ideally fit in around your work and family commitments, yet still leave plenty of time to adequately complete all of the tasks you need to each day, week in week out. Of course in the real world that is easier said than done, and it sounds great when you read it in an article, but how do you actually implement such a schedule?

Firstly you need to start by taking a moment to analyze your day to see when you have quiet periods of time that you can actually get some work done without being interrupted. It’s no good starting a complicated task if you are not going to have the free time to finish it without being called upon to do something else.

You actually need to do this for every day of your week, so that you can see what free time you have available, as it is likely some days will be busier than others. If you are still working whilst running your own home business, then your days off will contain the most free time available to you and the days you have in work will contain the least, obviously.

A smart marketing plan schedule will allow you to do most of your work on your days off, and some of your promotional work should be setup to automatically complete whilst you are in work. This will give a more consistent feel to your promotional efforts, and will help to avoid the feeling that you absolutely must get something done even after a hard days work, because you will already have done it in advance when you had the chance!

To better visualize your marketing plan schedule we will take my own personal schedule as an example. This schedule was originally based upon my 4 days on 4 days off shift pattern in work, giving an interesting 8 day week plan (8 day weeks previously only existing in Beatles songs) which had the added benefit of my work never appearing in the same place on the same day each week. This meant people could not simply visit once per week for content, they would have to visit more often than that to find my updates.

I would do most of my promotional work (things such as writing blog posts, articles, press releases, classified ads etc.) on my 4 days off, and schedule as much of it as possible to be posted during my 4 days on. This would have the appearance of me working away and being consistent despite the twelve hour shifts, and look to all as though there was a constant stream of content coming from my website.

My marketing plan schedule worked quite well for me, at least as long as I stuck to it, which was until circumstances changed beyond my control, and yours will work well for you provided you implement a schedule you can actually stick to, hence the earlier reason for analyzing quiet periods in each day of the week. So do this now before reading any further!

In this section of the article we will look at the websites and services you should be using. Which service you use, and even the particular day that you use them is entirely up to you. No doubt there is extensive research on the particular day of the week to complete certain tasks, but that is beyond the scope of this article. You can always adapt your schedule later if you experience better results on different days for the individual tasks in hand.

Adapting my marketing plan schedule to your own.

(Please note the difference between the major tasks and the minor tasks as we go through my schedule below. A major task, for me at least, was one that required more time and research to complete, the minor task version was one that could be done without any research at all and on only a moments notice)

FIRST DAY ON

On my first day on I would look into posting a Yahoo answer (a minor task). For those that don’t know Yahoo answers are a wonderful place to post questions others can answer usually in minutes. The fact that they can answer them in minutes is excellent, because this means that Yahoo answers gets indexed by the search engines very quickly indeed. You can get links back to your own website once you get enough points built up by answering questions. You can also get quite a lot of traffic this way, provided your answers are good enough.

The truly great thing about Yahoo answers is the fact that it is usually placed very highly in the search engine positions if individual keywords matched. So if you work it well enough, you can get your answers to be displayed at the top of Google for a search, and get most of the people that find your answer over to your website! Yahoo answers should be part of any successful marketing plan schedule implementation strategy.

In addition to Yahoo answers I would also send out an email through AWeber (another minor task) to my email subscribers. The AWeber email archive page is indexed by the search engines, is a good source of traffic in itself and also helps to improve the positions of pages linked to it from there. The email could be about anything I was planning to do with my website or other announcements. Sending out a simple email and answering one question doesn’t take up much time, and so that’s the reason for including it on a busy work day.

SECOND DAY ON

On my second day I would upload a video to YouTube (another minor task). Usually the video was largely completed on one of my days off and simply needed some tweaking before uploading. YouTube is an excellent source of traffic and the videos are again indexed extremely quickly. Commenting on videos was another quick and easy way of getting traffic over from popular videos.

Additionally I would also make a small post on the Yearn2earncash.com blog (another minor task). This would be nothing special, often only something as simple as stating the fact I had uploaded a new video to YouTube, and rewriting the description of the actual video slightly. The reason for making small posts is to keep the search engines robots coming back to the blog as often as possible. (By the way, always use free services to “Ping” your blog, unless your blog already automatically uses ping services like WordPress.org self hosted blogs do)

Again both the uploading of YouTube videos and posting of small blog posts are something that could be done even after a busy day in work.

THIRD DAY ON

On my third day on I would create a classified ad (another minor task), usually through Craigslist and also a website called USFreeads. The search engines really like classified ads and they index them very quickly. They can be a very good source of traffic; they get placed quite highly in the search engines results, and are really quite easy to write. Choose good keywords as your ad title.

FOURTH DAY ON

On my fourth day (the last of my 4 on, 4 off work schedule) I would simply find some do follow blogs to comment on (another minor task, with the right software). For those that don’t know do follow blogs give you SEO benefit, and so they are they best blogs to comment on. If you comment on blogs then make sure that you don’t spam them, simple leave normal helpful comments on subjects you are interested in. In addition to getting SEO credit from do follow blog comments you can also get some traffic if your comment is good enough and helpful enough.

Additionally on my fourth day I would create another short blog post, usually just about how good one of the other do follow blogs was, or something I had just discovered on one of them. Again, just something quick and easy would do to get the search engine robots back to the blog.

So now we are halfway through my own personal marketing plan schedule, and hopefully you are now well on your way to implementing your own schedule. This is where the work really starts though; because once I was on my 4 days off I had to really start creating the work in order to have some that could be scheduled to post even on the next set of work days!

FIRST DAY OFF

On my first day off I would write an article (a major task), usually to be posted on EzineArticles although occasionally posted on Isnare for massive article distribution. Although articles have become slightly less important in the search engines eyes of late, they should still form a major part of any successful marketing plan schedule implementation strategy. They still draw a lot of traffic over to the websites linked to from them.

Not being the best writer in the world I would find writing the article to be somewhat time consuming, due to the amount of research often required, and it was for the best that I did this on a day off.

SECOND DAY OFF

On my second day off I would research and create my main weekly YouTube video (a major task – lesser ones can be created and uploaded anytime, but I always like one important one each week) plus make a forum post (another major task, requiring some research on the subject matter). The forum used was often warrior forum, although any popular one will do.

The warrior forum is perhaps the most important forum for internet marketers and can be an excellent source of traffic. I have also noticed some good SEO benefit from having links coming from forum posts and signature links, and so ideally you should use more than one forum. Google really approves of forums, and the posts get placed quite highly in the search engines results. So always make time for forum posts in your marketing plan schedule.

Additionally I would make another small blog post, this time a rewrite of my forum post answer so that I could effectively use the same content twice, but hopefully get even more traffic by implementing different keywords.

THIRD DAY OFF

On my third day off I would write a press release (a major task, not so much because it required any research as such, but mostly because it really requires writing in the “third person” – which was a skill I never really got the hang of). I have only ever used PRlog for my press releases because I have been amazed by the speed with which traffic was generated by them. I had hundreds of views very quickly (within minutes for my best efforts!) and could get indexed by the search engines quickly too.

Given that press releases can now contain images and also videos they should be the most important factor in the implementation of your marketing plan schedule. If you are prepared to pay for it, you can even have the extra feature of keyword anchor text in the links back to your website – One of the most vital link types you can get.

Again writing press releases for me was time consuming, and so best left to one of my days off.

FOURTH DAY OFF

On my fourth day off (my last day off work, sadly) I would create my major blog post. This would be the most important blog post of the week, and would contain the sum of my discoveries and experiences online during the week. It would also contain any announcements I wanted to make to my visitors. As Google loves blogs you absolutes must have one and post to it regularly, regardless of the home business you have or the type of content you plan on posting.

Thus completes my marketing plan schedule. It is important to note that although some tasks were only mentioned once per week, they were actually repeated more often than that. For example, my yahoo answers postings were sometimes made more often than once per week. The schedule above was only the minimum number of times I would do it per week. Often I would try to post on yahoo answers more often than that, but never less.

Additionally as partly mentioned earlier in the article you should note the minor tasks. For example I would create small blog posts as often as I liked, even every day if I felt like it, provided I had made one at least every other day that was fine. I also made smaller YouTube videos that required no research and simply contained my reactions to something that had happened that day. Provided I made at least one major YouTube video in the week, again that was just fine.

In the implementation of your marketing plan schedule you must attempt to reach a happy balance between not getting enough done, and having so much on your schedule for the day that you feel overwhelmed and decide not to do anything! Try simply to create a minimum schedule of work that contains all of the tasks you want done each day/each week, and then do more if time allows.

One good option would be to print out copies of your marketing plan schedule so that you can tick off completed tasks each day, then after the week is complete start again on another copy. Better still, have a whiteboard so that you can write on it and wipe it off after the week is complete.

The final area to be covered is the sharing of your own content through social media. I would share through Facebook and twitter all of my posted content from the week before. I would also click on the Facebook like button, and any other sharing buttons available in order to get more of my marketing content out there. You should be sure to share your own content through as many networks as possible, usually a week later in order to give it time to be scheduled, indexed and seen by a few people. Plus that avoids the issue of having all of the same subject matter appearing in your status updates in the same few days.

Now its time for you to implement your own marketing schedule. Whatever work schedule you have simply adapt my plan schedule above to suit and use all of the mentioned websites and services, plus as many more as you have time for. Get going!