How to Build a Comprehensive Marketing & Promotional Plan
Marketing plans allow businesses to build brand awareness and a customer base. All well-known businesses have employed marketing strategies to increase the company’s popularity with customers. A comprehensive marketing plan involves several different marketing strategies and requires you to devise a strategy ahead of time and plan for the expenses of your campaign. From determining your average customer to using technology to your advantage, you must use several tools to build a successful comprehensive marketing plan.
Calculate your budget. Overzealous marketing plans can ruin company budgets if you do not budget for advertising expenses. Comprehensive marketing plans span numerous avenues of advertising, which will run you more than a basic marketing plan that only reaches a few people. Hilary Johnson of Inc.com explains that spending between 1 and 10 percent of your revenue on marketing is normal, although it’s acceptable to spend slightly more, especially if you’re creating a comprehensive plan. Your budget should never put you at a loss.
Before launching your marketing campaign, you must know what it is you want to market. Ask yourself if you want to market your business as a whole, a specific product or service, or numerous products and services.
Determine your target audience. Determine who buys your product or service, as in customer demographics, such as customer age, gender and educational status. Determining your target audience enables you to market to people who have an interest in your product or service. Use surveys, membership data and common sense to determine your target audience.
Write down your strengths in comparison to your competitors and explain what you do better than your competitors. A comprehensive marketing campaign consists of two goals: to build brand awareness and increase sales. If you don’t differentiate yourself from your competitors, you’re accomplishing neither goal.
Market your product through multiple sources of advertising. Choose sources that allow you to reach your target customer. The most effective way to make an impact in marketing is by employing a strategy that reaches as many potential customers as possible. For example, suppose you’re selling a smart phone application. Online advertising, video game marketing and advertising within smart phone applications each serve as ways to effectively reach your target customers. Radio and magazine advertising would likely be ineffective, because it’s reaching an entirely different group of people.
Take your efforts online and take part in social networking. Social network sites give you the opportunity to connect with millions of people at one time. Between creating advertisements on these sites and talking with fans and customers of your business, you strengthen the efforts of your marketing campaign. For example, suppose you create an ad for television. To help that ad reach even more viewers, upload it to a video sharing site and then post the link to the video on a social networking site.
Keep your reputation in mind. When launching a marketing campaign, everything you do says something about your business, for good or for bad. Always think about what effects your actions will have on your company’s reputation. For example, suppose you sell educational products. Advertising those products with a risqué ad in an attempt to hook a customer will likely backfire.