When you started your business, you likely created a business plan. Did you also create a Marketing Plan? You may wonder if you really need both.

Marketing creates an awareness about your business. It is one of the key components of a successful business. The challenge is that most entrepreneurs and small business owners are not marketing nearly enough. One of my mentors taught that 60% of your time and effort should be spent on marketing. Whatever percentage you chose to spend, it should be done consistently and in line with your vision and goals.

Marketing is often confused with Sales, but they’re really two different things. For sales to be realized, effective marketing must take place first.

What is Marketing?

what is marketing

The American Marketing Association defines Marketing as:

“… the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.”

The definition by Wikipedia is a little more complex but really sums up, in a few short sentences, what you need to know about marketing your business, and how it can be done effectively to meet the needs of your target market and your business.

Marketing is the process of communicating the value of a product or service to customers, for the purpose of selling that product or service.

Marketing can be looked at as an organizational function and a set of processes for creating, delivering and communicating value to customers, and customer relationship management that also benefits the organization. Marketing is the science of choosing target markets through market analysis and market segmentation, as well as understanding consumer behavior and providing superior customer value. From a societal point of view, marketing is the link between a society’s material requirements and its economic patterns of response. Marketing satisfies these needs and wants through exchange processes and building long-term relationships.”

Why You Need Marketing Plan

Whether you’re just starting a business or have been in business for a while, it takes an investment in time, energy, and financial resources. These are basically your most important resources, and you would not want to squander them by approaching your business without a goal, a plan and strategies to achieve those goals.

Your marketing plan, not to be confused with a business plan, is a roadmap or path for one of the key components of your business – marketing. It helps you refine your strategies and maximize your efforts to get your products and services in front of the right people who will then want to buy what you have to offer.

Having a clear and thorough marketing plan is essential if you want to maximize your marketing efforts and make the most of your precious resources. When you do not have a simple, but well-outlined and structured marketing plan, you could end up wasting a lot of time, effort, and money.

Benefits of Having a Marketing Plan

marketing plan success

1.  Achieve Business Goals

A good marketing plan helps you achieve your business goals because it puts all of the parts together so that you can implement your plan more easily. It puts together and presents all of the important data you need to make decisions regarding your business’s marketing, which is the core of any business’s success.

2.  Keep Up with Changes

If you have a good marketing plan in place, it’s easy to alter your marketing strategy and tactics when required. As your market or industry changes, you may have to tweak your strategy in order to keep up with these changes. It also allows you to evaluate new opportunities so you can make smart decisions.

3.  A Hub for Your Business

Like your business plan, a marketing plan keeps everyone on the same page. New employees or team members can use the marketing plan to take in your strategy at a glance. The same goes for new business partners and investors. You can easily see where you’ve been, where you are now and where you’re going.

4.  Opportunities for Reflection

When you get the marketing ideas inside your head onto paper, you have a chance to see them with a fresh perspective. With everything clearly spelled out, you may notice gaps or weaknesses in your plan that you hadn’t noticed before.

Your marketing plan gives you a view of the big picture, therefore allowing you to exercise greater control over your marketing. It’s absolutely essential for any type of business, whether large or small.

Fifty and Wiser: 5 Reasons ‘Passion to Profit’ Businesses Fail and What To Do Instead”

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Yvonne A Jones
Yvonne A Jones

I am Yvonne A Jones, Business, and Life Coach | Relationship Marketing Strategist.

    4 replies to "Why You Need a Marketing Plan"

    • Yvonne A Jones what an awesome blog. I would really call this an awesome article because it contains research links that back up your information. Love that! The point that really made a great impression was, “For sales to be realized, effective marketing must take place first.” And I really appreciated how you explained the difference between a marketing plan and a business plan. “Your marketing plan, not to be confused with a business plan, is a roadmap or path for one of the key components of your business. Thanks for sharing your success. Sharing your article on my social media pages, especially LinkedIn, where I know it will be greatly appreciated.

      • Kathleen,

        Your comments are highly appreciated and am happy that you took note of the indepth research involved in the post. A Marketing Plan is so essential yet too many of us as entrepreneurs and small business owners never take the time to work on one so we flounder as we do not have the facts to support our business.

        Thank you for enriching the conversation.

    • Marketing is such a valuable skill. Thanks for this great article that shares why we need one and what major benefits can come from having one. I think often times people in business think only the big guys need a marketing plan but as you show it is valuable no matter what the size of your business is.

    • Great article Yvonne! I feel a little bad though because…well, let me come out and say it, “I don’t have a marketing plan in place. I started my business 3 years ago and just went for it. I studied the business model format of a few sip and paint company, looked at my strengths in being able to launch a similar venture and went for the same idea but in a smaller scale. Now, after 3 years, I find myself loving what I do. My business is sustained but I want it to grow. I am not sure how to do a marketing plan from here but I will look into it. One thing I did was place advertisement in my local cinema. It cost 99.00 a week and after 3 months I have no customers from this…ouch! Learned with that mistake. If I am going to have a marketing plan in place, I have to follow something that has proven results. I’d love to chat sometimes. Thank you for your awesome article.

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