5 Components of a Powerful Marketing Plan

marketing plan, small businessEvery small business needs a current, actionable marketing plan! Here are five key components of a strong marketing plan:

A Strong Marketing Message

The first question on the mind of a potential prospect is, "Can I trust you?" A good marketing message will answer that question in a compelling way. It should say something about your reputation, your experience, your training, your systems, and your guarantee. Once you write your marketing message you can package it and communicate in many ways. One way that I use my marketing message is right on the home page of my website.

Know Your Best Marketing Channels

There are 100 or more ways to market your business. However, not all channels perform equally well. You need to experiment and find the 5 to 10 channels that work best for your business. This will be the focus of activity in your marketing plan. For my business, the channels that work the best include outside speaking, seminars, referrals, community networking, and thought leadership (through our blog, publishing, PR, and social media).

Set Your Marketing Budget

Business owners need to create and operate according to a budget. Part of that budget is an allocation for marketing expenses. By setting a budget, you are more likely to discipline yourself to spend more wisely and effectively.

Create a Marketing Calendar

Once you know your best channels/mediums and you know your budget, you should then lay out your marketing activities on a timeline or calendar. Plan what you are going to do each week and/or month. By calendaring your activity, you are more likely to generate a steady stream of new business leads.

Create and Monitor Your Marketing Dashboard

One of the biggest mistakes I see small business owners making is that they do not track and measure the performance of their marketing efforts. The way you do this is to create a "Dashboard" that identifies your activity and tracks to result of everything you do. You should begin by tracking every new lead that comes your way. Where are they coming from? Evaluate every channel every week or month. Smart entrepreneurs know where every piece of new business comes from! They then spend more time and money on the marketing activities that generate the most and best leads. For your business to be successful, you must have a powerful lead generation system. That's what a good marketing plan does for you. Plan it, track it, measure it, and refine it. Learn to leverage your marketing plan! A good business coach can be a great asset and investment to help you gain this leverage – contact us for help!

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