Develop a marketing strategy and marketing plan that sells

When creating a new successful marketing plan you should go through 5 steps including the areas of:

  • Market Segmentation
  • Market Targeting
  • Market Positioning

Market segmentation

1. Develop customer profiles

The first thing you need to do, is to define who your potential customers are. What problem do you solve for that customer profile? This should be the main focus in your marketing plan when you: segment, target and positioning your products in relation to competitors.

2. Identify bases for segmenting the market per profile

Create virtual profile-picture of your customer profiles. Describe the variables defining the segment. Depending on it is B2C or B2B market different segmentation variables can be used such as demographical information or industry, company size buying process etc. can help define which of the potential customer you will focus on.

Market Targeting

3. Link products and customer profiles to identify target segments.

Your products should be linked to the identified customer profiles – so you have a clear idea of which products should be marketed to which customer groups.

Market Positioning

4. Develop positioning strategy for each target segment

For each of the target profile customers and related products you should choose a clear strategy how to differentiate yourself compared to competitors. Map all competitors and your major sales drivers to identify where you are different. If you over perform in areas customers do not value reduce and use resources on drivers which can improve your differentiation factors where you are different than competitors.  

5. Develop marketing mix for each target segment

You marketing mix, which is actually your marketing plan, should include decisions about:  Product, Price, Place (distribution) and Promotion.

Product

Anything you do should be with relation to your product and product strategy to differentiate from the competitors. For each product you should identify the Features, advantages, benefits and evaluate if you have competitive advantages compared to your competitors:

Features: Facts about the product. What is it? What can it do?

Advantages: What advantages does the product have? Why should this particular product be chosen over its competitors?

Benefits: What will the customer win using the product? What "problems" does your product solves for the customer? What needs does it cover? (Saving time, money etc.)

Competitive advantage: Is it something that is standard also for the competitors' product, or is this unique on the market?

You should for each product evaluate how you will set the price: By objectives, By demand/supply curve, by costs or by comparing with competitors. Additional to choose your distribution strategy the promotion strategy should be defined focusing on the Benefits identified for each product. The promotion actions should give a clear action plan for areas as: Advertising, Sales promotion, PR, Personal selling and Online Marketing. All which will be described later in this blog.

Which promotion area would you like to know more about at first?

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