consulting | development | marketing

Marketing plan worksheet

Define everything

The whole idea of creating a marketing plan is to avoid certain pitfalls and to foresee caveats that might prevent you from achieving your goals: The better the structure, the more defined the concept, the more detailed every single item is, the better the chances are your plan will succeed.

And never forget one of the most important factors when creating your marketing plan: Your budget. Just because it's small, doesn't mean your plan cannot succeed. Not factoring it in will most likely make it fail.

Define your vision.

Your vision is the overall purpose for your undertaking (After all, you have a reason to do all this, right?).

A Verb (a purpose/fulfillment word) + a summarizing statement
To be   the number 1 wedding cake supplier in your city.
To provide    
To enable    
To solve    
To guarantee    

Be careful to pick the right purpose or fulfillment words.
For example, to be describes the completion of the process: you have done it. Don't use to become, since it describes the process of getting there. After all, it's a vision.

Define your goals.

Don't confuse goals with objectives. Sometimes it can be hard to differentiate, but here's a reminder on how to tell them apart:
A goal is the What?, and an objective is the How?

Let's use the above example to dig a little deeper:

A Verb (an action word) + a noun + a measurable metric + a timeframe
To increase   sales of 3-tier wedding cakes   by 10%   by the end of the year
To achieve            
To build            
To acquire            
To secure            

Define objectives for every goal

What is necessary to achieve your goal? How can you succeed? What steps do you need to take?

For example, if your goal was To increase sales of 3-tier wedding cakes by 10% by the end of the year how are you going to make it happen? (Chances are it won't happen by itself.)

A Verb (an action word) + a noun + why + a timeframe
Start   an advertising campaign   to build customer awareness   by the end of next month
Hire   new customer service reps   to handle the expected sales   before the campaign is launched

Set action items for every objective

Action Items contain your strategy. Some objective will require a lot of single steps, some will not.
Your objectives might also include more sub-objectives, which again will include action items.

If your objective is to Start an advertising campaign it should be pretty obvious that it involves quite a few action items, for example:

A Verb (an action word) + a noun + why / how
Select   the right channel   for your campaign (TV, Radio, Direct Mail, Online,...)
Call/Meet with   advertising agencies   to discuss and get quotes
Create   the online ad/the flyers/the commercial   according to your specs and research
Create   the landing page(s)   to provide further information

If your objective is to Hire new customer service reps, again you already set the path for your action items, for example:

A Verb (an action word) + a noun + why / how
Create   ad for paper, internet job sites, etc   to find new employees
Schedule   interviews with candidates   to select the perfect prospects


Some of your objectives or action items may directly depend on the successful completion of another, some may not.
Pretty obviously you cannot schedule interviews before potential employees have read the ad you placed in the paper.

Just because at one point it might look easier to jump ahead and tackle a new one before another one is completed, it's not always wise to do so. You might suddenly realize that you are missing a core component because it depended on the completion of another action.

Careful planning will prevent getting caught in an endless loop: where one cannot be completed without the result of the other.

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