What is a Marketing Plan?

What is a Marketing Plan?
• A marketing plan is a road map that provides
direction for your marketing strategy – What to do
and why you are doing it
• A marketing plan is the practical application of
your marketing strategy
• A marketing plan details what you want to
accomplish and helps you meet your objectives
• A marketing plan can be part of a larger business
plan but can also be used as a stand alone piece
without a larger business plan
What is a Marketing Plan?
Tracks costs and measures value
Helps with focus
Charts marketing strategies
Serves as a handbook
Captures your thinking on paper
Reflects a the big picture
Becomes a document to build on
Do I Need a Marketing Plan?
• If you build it, they wont necessarily come
• Your opinion or the opinion of a friend or
family member is not a strong enough
basis to launch a business/project
• Would you go on a trip to a destination
without knowing how to get there?
• Marketing plans are crucial for obtaining
Where Do I Start?
• Evaluate where you are now.
– What is your product/service/project?
– How are you positioned in the market?
– How do your customers see you?
– What is you vision?
• Do you have a mission statement?
• Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities,
Threats (SWOT)
The Plan: Getting Started
• Research
Who are your customers?
Where are your markets?
Who are your competitors?
What type of marketing activities are your
competitors engaged in?
– Current trends
– How will you pay for marketing?
– Current situation – what do you do now? What
works? What does not work?
Marketing Plan Template
• There are many different ways to write a
marketing plan
• 1000’s of templates available online
• Free document templates and paid
business planning “wizard” software
• There is no right or wrong way to write a
marketing plan but there are some best
practices to keep in mind
#1 The Business
• About your business
– Who are you?
– History of your business
– Product/Services/Projects
– Brand manifesto ( a public declaration of
principles and intentions)
– Core intentions of you business
#2 Vision
• Where do you see your business in 3, 5,
10 years down the road?
• Articulate your dreams and hopes in the
• Your vision is your inspiration and
framework for your marketing plan
• Your vision does not detail how you are
going to get where you are going but it
sets the direction you are going in.
#3 Mission Statement
• Why does your business exist?
• Mission statements are as varies as the
businesses they describe
• What they all have in common, however, is a
broad description of business capabilities,
customer focus, activities and make –up
• Mission statement is your present state and a
vision statement is your future
• Every business should have a mission statement
and is a crucial component of your marketing plan
• It ensures everyone is “on the same page”
#4 Year in Review
Sales history
Marketing initiatives
Marketing conversions
Marketing conversion overview
• It is important to collect data for future
• Your marketing plan is a living and breathing
#5 SWOT Analysis
• The SWOT is a powerful tool used to understand you
marketing strengths and weaknesses
• It also assists in identifying opportunities and threats
that you may face
• Uncover opportunities that you are well placed to take
advantage of
• Understanding weaknesses helps manage and
eliminate threats that would otherwise catch you off
• Apply the SWOT to you and your competitors
• Facilitates a marketing strategy that will distinguish
you from your competitors
• Help identify promising new customers
A) Strengths - internal
• What advantages to you have?
• What do you offer better than others?
• What unique or low cost resources do you
have access to?
• What do customers and competitors
perceive as your strengths?
B) Weaknesses - internal
• What can you improve?
• What marketing and business practices
should you avoid?
• What do customers and competitors
perceive as your weaknesses?
C) Opportunities - external
• What positive opportunities are you facing
• What are the interesting trends that you
can take advantage of?
D) Threats - external
• What obstacles do you face?
• What is your competition doing?
• Are the specifications to your sector in
regard to how you market your product
and services changing?
• Can you weaknesses seriously threaten
your business?
#6 SWOT Analysis Overview
• Recap and examination of the internal
strengths and weaknesses and external
opportunities and threats determine the
appropriate course of action
• Action may include:
– Communications standards policy
– Product diversification
– Marketing strategy that captures a particular
target market
#7 Measurable Objectives
Increase sales over year prior
Expansion of target market
Pricing incentives (discounts, bundles)
Introduce new product offering
Create new collateral
Concentration on existing customers
#8 Market and Brand Position
• Transform your passion into a position
• Be a big fish in a small pond
• Perceptual location of where your
product/service/project fits in the marketplace
• Identify your greatest strength and use it to
position and define your product/service/project
• Effective positioning puts you front of mind to
potential customers
• Key elements to positioning: price, value, quality,
service, distribution, packaging
#9 Market Share
• What is the size is the market for you
product/service/project offering?
• Identify your current market share over a
specified time period
• Define the potential market share your plan
aspires to over a specified time period
• To calculate your market share: your sales
divided by total sales of your industry over a
specified time period
• This metric is an indication of your relative
#10 Target Market
• Group of customers you are directing your
marketing efforts toward
• A well defined target market is critical in your
marketing strategy
• Key segmentation of target markets
Psychographic (lifestyles)
Behavioural (occasions, loyalty)
• Primary and secondary target markets
#11 Marketing Objectives and
Creating experiential events and brand leveraging programs
Great special events and activities engage the consumer creating an emotional connection with a
brand. Oceanview Garden Centre and Landscaping will produce special events that are integrated
into the marketing plan which will create long lasting memories with the target market.
Oceanview Garden Centre and Landscaping will engage the consumer by placing gardening
lifestyle experiences face-to-face with the target market in a manner which reinforces the
Oceanview brand experience.
Connect art and culture to the Oceanview brand – Artists by Nature
Show local art in retail areas
Live acoustic performances by local singer/song writers
On-site treasure hunts for children
Painting contests inspired by nature
Educational field trips for schools
Moonlight garden parties
Saturday BBQ’s
Halloween pumpkin carving
#12 The Marketing Mix
• The 4 P’s of Marketing
• Product – detailed description of your
• Promotion – tactics of your marketing plan.
Getting your product/service/project
known. The nuts and bolts of the
marketing plan
• Price – How much does it cost?
• Placement – distribution and location
#13 Critical Path/Project
• Schedule and manage your marketing
• Identify key tasks and when they must be
• Identify interdependencies
• Many tools available to employ tasks and
schedule activities
• Outlook, Excel spread sheets, word docs,
Marcato, Base Camp
#14 Budget
• All marketing plans will be subject to your
marketing budget
• Although this will be the last page of your
plan it is the first thing you should consider
• SWOT analysis should serve as a useful
tool in determining what you can afford
and what low cost opportunities are
available to you