Posted: 19th March 2017
No matter what is going on in the business world, what political changes are happening, the state of the economic climate or local challenges that arise, business need to plan to be successful… otherwise, what’s the point?!
What’s your business plan? What’s your marketing plan? What strategies have you got planned to achieve your business and marketing plans?
All businesses need customers. All businesses need to attract new customers. So you need to put a plan in place to do that. Your business plan lays out the goals you want to achieve and how you plan to achieve those goals. Your marketing plan outlines the promotional activities to put in place to achieve your business goals.
Your marketing plan will enable you to understand exactly who your target customers are, which in turn will enable you to send out the right messages and define the right marketing activities to attract those customers. This will become your marketing strategy.
A Marketing Plan for Small, Local Businesses
Most small, local businesses have one goal in common… get new customers (which means growing the business and generating more money). So let’s plan for that.
Who is the right (ideal) customer for your business ?
Identifying your target customer is key to growing sales. You can then focus your marketing to promote your business directly to those people. Find out more about how to identify your target market >
Why should those customers buy from you and not your competitors?
You need to differentiate yourself from similar businesses, in order to stand out from the competition and attract your target customers. Find out more about unique selling points >
How do you target your target customers?
Once you know who you are trying to attract and what your unique selling points are (what makes you different/special), then you will be able to create the right marketing messages and define the best marketing activities…
What to say
Are your customers led by price? Are they affluent? Are they conservative in their approach to buying or are they quick decision makers? Do they go out or do sports or watch all the soaps?
Talk their language.
Where to market
What local papers/magazines do they read? What social media do they use? What activities do they do? Where do they live?
Promote to their lifestyle.
How to market
Advertise – do they read local papers? Leaflets – can you distribute to where they live? Sponsorship – do they support a local team? Tweet – can you get them to follow you on Twitter?
Talk directly to them.
So what have you got planned?