Very Official Definition:
Strategic Marketing Planning is a complex process of identifying target markets and ways to reach them to increase revenue. It is built around the company’s brand proposition, vision and mission. It takes in consideration both the long-term and short-term view of the market.
It is an on-going process of building strategic marketing initiatives and deciding which marketing tactics based on current market conditions. It also helps in launching new products and services for current and potential customers.
Strategic Marketing Planning is becoming aware of all the possibilities for business growth. It is about getting into the minds of your customer, walking in their shoes, understanding what specific problems you can solve and then finding every possible way to reach them and communicate how you can add value to their life. Revenue generation will happen as a by-product. There, I said it.
A good marketing strategy is similar to an umbrella.
Business goals= canopy
Shafts= various components of strategic marketing plan, all of them coming together to reach the business goals
Handle= you, team and resources spreading out to support the shafts.
If one shafts breaks, umbrella will still work. 2 breaks, it will still hold up. 3 still hanging in there.
A cheap umbrella will leave you stranded in a storm, a good quality umbrella will last a life time.
For Small business owners and entrepreneurs, the main components of strategic marketing planning include:
• You vision of life
• Your why
KNOW YOUR BRAND
• Your business vision
• Business vision and mission statements
• Core values
• Who you are
• What you do
• How do you do it
• Your ideal customer
• Why do you do it
KNOW YOUR BUSINESS
• Your ultimate business objectives and goals
• Determine where you are right now
• decide where you want to be in the next 5 years
• What needs to happen in the next one year
Unique Selling Proposition:
• What values your service/product offers to your client?
• What problem does your product/service solve?
• What makes you stand out from your competitor?
KNOW YOUR COMPETITION
• Research your top 3 competitors
• Analyze your product/services against them
• Determine the areas of opportunities
KNOW YOUR OFFERS
• List out your offers (products/services)
• Write down pricing of your products/services
• How do they compare to your competitors?
• Determine the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to measure success
KNOW YOUR CUSTOMERS
Target market profile
• Demographic and psychographic profile
• Customer’s key desires and problems
• Customer’s buying journey
• Create the customer personas
• Where do you find your customers?
• How do you communicate with your customers?
KNOW YOUR OPTIONS
• Distribution Plan (direct and indirect)
• What Marketing Materials are needed?
• Promotion Strategy
• Online Marketing Strategy (social media content strategy, email marketing, paid ads etc.)
• Lead Generation and Conversion Strategy
• Retention Strategy
• Referral Strategy
• Joint Ventures and Partnership
• Community Outreach
• Public Relations Strategy
• Customer Testimonials
KNOW YOUR PLAN AND EXECUTION
• Build a scalable phased tactical marketing plan with timeline
• Line up the resources for efficient and effective execution
• Create operational efficiency by identifying the resources and processes to automate
To bring it together: Doing this work upfront will help you explore all your options and help you determine, prioritize and align the tactical marketing initiatives with goals . It will help you measure the ROI (return on investment), stay proactive rather than reactive and scale your business with ease.
Prati Kaufman is a leading global Marketing Energy Coach based out of West Hartford, CT, USA. She partners with entrepreneurs to scale their business with laser-focused, integrated marketing. She has a best-in-class digital marketing agency to provide small business owners and entrepreneurs with the right digital marketing tools, resources and initiatives to build their brand, reach more customers and meet the business goals.
She is also a certified Master Practitioner of Energy Leadership Index (ELI) assessment. One-of-a-kind assessment which breaks down the basic elements of human beliefs, values and action into seven core levels of energy.
Follow her on Instagram for simple, practical and easy-to-implement marketing hacks.