Marketing Plan or Muddling Through?
In honour of St. Bernadine of Siena, patron saint of advertising, who is specially remembered today (20th May), let’s have a look at marketing plans, which may well include advertising. Why not?
First, we hear you asking, “Why was St. Bernadine, 15th century Franciscan priest, the patron saint of advertising?” – yes, that’s a whole four centuries before the very first Coca Cola ad, which appeared in 1886. The simple answer is, because he was renowned for his passionate and persuasive speeches. Before his death in 1444, he preached for 50 days in a row. We would not necessarily recommend this as part of your marketing plan, both for your sake and your clients’ – but, passionate and persuasive words would definitely be a good idea to incorporate into any marketing material…
Why is a marketing plan important?
We’ve all done it, haven’t we? Been so busy with the day-to-day running of our business that we don’t feel we can spare the time for marketing. It seems counterintuitive to take time away from client-facing activities or fine-tuning production.
Instead, we may use a scattergun approach, reacting to external situations when they occur rather than being proactive and creating opportunities that will help our business to grow. A scattergun fires lots of pellets and the hope is that some may reach the target. Many of the pellets go wide and many fall to the ground. What a waste of effort and resources!
Planning our marketing makes absolute sense – it’s as simple as that.
Writing a marketing plan
If you do it well it will take time. Implementing a plan has plenty of challenges, but more challenging still is deciding what to do, how to do it and when. It needs contribution from every department even if that department is one person, and even if one person wears a number of hats within the company. Finance, manufacturing, personnel, supply – all these elements must be considered in order to be realistic about what’s achievable and where the focus is needed.
What does a marketing plan achieve?
(Aside from the obvious like identifying your target market and setting up focused campaigns – like the Direct Mailing that we specialise in at Mailing Expert).
- A chance to reflect on the big picture for your company
- Your game plan written out in black and white – so anyone can refer to it
- A mega to-do list assigning specific tasks
- A rallying point which will encourage commitment from your team
- Provision of specific measurable results
So – take time to write a marketing plan and make St. Bernadine proud!