There are a lot of benefits to a marketing plan aside from the fact that it is extremely important to the success of a business. Ideally, a marketing plan covers the whole year ahead. It serves as a rallying point for the team to work together to achieve certain goals. It serves as a beacon for the entire team to follow and keeps them on track. It is then important that the marketing plan is something the team believes in and is excited about.
While it can appear a little problematic at first because no one, for sure, cannot predict the year ahead. However, that is the reason why the entire team should take part in planning it so that everyone can actually contribute to it. There is also a benefit to planning for the incoming year ahead because it provides a vision for the business and how far it can go.
In planning a marketing strategy, you have to know how to brainstorm great content for your marketing plan – know your business’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats – and address all of them accordingly. Another thing to focus on is the financial capacity of the company as well. Without enough money to spend on marketing campaigns, the strategy will most likely fail. The entire team, therefore, has to work within the allowable budget or find ways to raise enough money to be able to execute the campaigns.
Overall, the marketing plan has to create a big picture of how the team envisions the business to be. It has to be big enough that all things are factored in. From there, the team can set smaller goals to get to the big goal which is ultimately making the business grow and succeed. This means that a good marketing plan requires high-level of thinking from the entire team and a lot of focus. Some companies even go as far as sending them to retreats and away from the city.
Top 5 Predictions to Guide Your Marketing Plan in 2017
1. Take your business online.
In 2017, take your business online as more and more consumers prefer shopping in the comfort of their homes. You would want your customers to feel comfortable and confident when browsing through your products and services. There is no better way than selling them through a mode that they are already familiar with and that is online shopping.
There are many benefits to taking your business online. It is more affordable and takes less effort to build. While a lot of startups eventually fail, if you play your cards right and plan it smartly and carefully, you will have an opportunity to increase your sales and ultimately profit more from it.
If you are still hesitant about it, just think of the businesses that do well online such as Amazon, Instagram, eBay, and other sites. Do your research on how to start an online shop so you can come up with a marketing strategy on how you can earn through online transactions.
2. Do not ignore TV ads.
While it is true that businesses are going online, you cannot just rely solely on mobile apps and social media accounts. You have to exhaust all possible means to get your brand out there. Millennials may have a huge role in the current trends but old habits die hard and TV ads may still prove to be as relevant as they were before.
Moreover, your market should not depend solely on a certain age limit. You have to cater to other consumers as well and we know very well that the older generation has a certain connection with television. Take the baby boomers as an example. TV is something that they have been watching for a long time and is something that they trust.
Credibility is something that a brand should value and there is nothing better than a celebrity endorsing your product. After all, consumers fancy celebrity testimonials and whether we like it or not, consumers believe it. If their idols trust it, they will trust it and this is why you should spend on TV campaigns as much as you spend on other print and media ads.
TV ads can be a bit pricey but if it will be able to tap a bigger number of potential customers then that will only translate to increased sales and higher profitability. Aside from TV ads, you have to invest in personal endorsements, radio talks, and social media ads.
3. Mind your financial reports.
You cannot push through with a good marketing strategy without knowing if your business can even afford the costs. Instead of accounting at year’s end, ensure that you know your figures early on.
Most businesses especially startups are going to have a tight budget and it will not be easy for them to spare enough money to spend on marketing campaigns. Ultimately, this is where they fail. Marketing is a vital part in making your business succeed and getting your brand out there. It is an important investment that all companies should make.
Know your financial status and work within the allowable budget. Better yet, find ways to raise funds so that you can make your campaigns a reality and bank on them for profit.
4. Focus on retaining customers.
Most startups often make the common mistake of always only focusing on attracting customers that somehow they neglect other factors. You should not make this common mistake. Instead, focus on retaining current customers and establish a lifetime professional relationship with them.
This means you have to offer them a top notch customer service and constantly produce high-quality products and services. Remember that it takes less money and effort retaining customers than constantly looking for new one.
5. Profit from influencers.
When you are launching your products and services, always think about who your market is going to be. Learn about their demographics to know how you can entice them into buying your stuff. Once you learn who your potential customers are, think about the influencers and celebrities they like and employ them to endorse your products and services.
As this can be costly depending on the influencer or celebrity of your choice, you have to ensure that their ads are going to be effective. Avoid hard sales and make it appear as natural as possible. People are visual by nature so you might want to require them to post photos of them with the actual product on their social media accounts.
You can even explore other possibilities such as a Snapchat or Twitter takeover where your influencers can take your followers backstage for the latter to know more about the products and services you offer. After all, consumers trust the things they know.