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There are two major components to a  Marketing Plan:

bullethow your business will address the competitive marketplace
bullethow you will implement and support the day to day operations of your business

In today's competitive marketplace a strategy that takes a consistent approach to offering your products or services in ways that differentiate you from the competition is critical.  In concert with defining the marketing strategy you must also have well defined day to day processes in place to implement it. There is  little value in having a strategy if you lack the resources or the expertise to implement it.



The process of creating a marketing strategy includes many factors that must be considered.   Some of the more important factors are:

bulletDeciding what the overall objective of your business should be.
bulletIf the market is very attractive and your business is one of the stronger in the industry you  invest your best resources in support of your offering.
bulletIf the market is very attractive but your business is one of the weaker ones in the industry you intensify efforts on strengthening the business, using your offering as a passage toward this objective.
bulletIf the market is not attractive, but your business is one of the stronger in the industry then a well planned marketing and sales effort for your offering will generate near term profits.
bulletIf the market is not attractive and your business is one of the weaker ones in the industry you should promote this offering only if it supports a more profitable part of your business   Otherwise, you should determine the most cost effective way to divest your business of this offering.
bulletChoosing a strategy for the offering that will be most effective in the market.
bulletCost Leadership Strategy
bulletProduce and market a good quality product or service at a lower cost than your competitors. These low costs should translate to profit margins that are higher than the industry average. 
bulletDifferentiation Strategy
bulletCreating a product or service that is perceived as being unique with customers. The differentiation can be on brand image, proprietary technology or superior service,  to name a few.  This uniqueness should  translate to profit margins higher than the industry average. I
bulletFocus Strategy 
bulletFocusing on a segment of the marketplace  when it isn't feasible to attempt an "across the board" application of cost leadership or differentiation. It is based on the concept of serving a particular target in such an example nary  manner, that others in the industry cannot compete. This usually means focusing on a smaller market segment than others in the industry where there is minimal competition, creating the opportunity for very high profit margins.
bullet How you will price the offering.
bulletSkimming Strategy
bulletIf your offering has enough differentiation to justify a higher price and you wish to maximize margin contributions and have no desire to gain significant market share, then you set your prices very high.
bulletMarket Penetration Strategy
bulletIf near term income is not critical and rapid market share growth for eventual market control is desired, then you set your prices very low.
bulletComparable Pricing Strategy
bulletIf you are not the market leader in your industry then  price your offering comparably to those of your leading competitors.
bulletHow you will effectively promote and advertise your offering
bulletPush Strategy
bulletMaximizes the use of all available channels of distribution to "push" the offering into the marketplace. 
bulletPull Strategy
bulletDirect interface with the end user of the offering.  The objective is to "pull" the prospects into the various channel outlets creating a demand the channels cannot ignore.
bulletHow will you distribute your offering to get into the hands of the customer
bulletOn-premise Sales 
bulletDirect Sales 
bulletWholesale Sales 
bulletSelf-service Retail Sales 
bulletFull-service Retail Sales 

Making  decisions about your products/services, pricing, promotion and place/distribution  (the "4 P's" of marketing) is a necessary exercise when developing a marketing plan.

 

 
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Last modified: November 21, 2007