A Marketing Program is a company’s strategy to increase sales by marketing to its consumers. A Marketing program is a well-designed set of objectives with practical action plans. The company can follow different marketing programs as per situation, goals, market size, and strengths.
The Marketing Program has a broad horizon, which caters to marketing elements, such as advertising, brand and logo design, websites, packaging, sales calls, social media awareness, and many more. The 4Ps; Product, Place, Price, and Promotion, play a pivotal role in designing marketing programs.
Understanding Marketing Plans
The terms marketing program, marketing plan, and marketing strategy are often used interchangeably. Marketing plans are designed keeping in mind the strategic framework. The marketing plan outlines monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual marketing activities, and the marketing program defines the overall value proposition.
What is Value Proposition? A value proposition is a promise to the market segment or customers to deliver a specific value if they choose to purchase the product or service by the company. It should state how the product or service benefits the customers. The value proposition should also include how their brand differs from other brands offering the same services and what makes them better?
Creating Marketing Plans
Creating a marketing plan is the most crucial part of any marketing program. It lays the foundation for sales and product engagement. Here are steps you should follow:
1. Begin with an Executive Summary
An Executive summary is the basis of any marketing plan. It should highlight the critical functionality of the business and the agenda behind the marketing program.
2. Mention Company’s Values, Vision, and Mission
This is a crucial point while defining your marketing plan, as it helps you put the information into perspective. It educates the readers or investors about your business plans and gives out why you are doing what you are doing.
3. Market and Competition Identification
Your market plan needs to be designed based on solid research and analysis. The marketing plan requires a backup of solid research on the current market situation, understanding your company’s strengths and weaknesses, and studying the competition. They also call the SWOT analysis; Strength, Weakness, Opportunities, Threats analysis. An essential part of SWOT analysis is competitor analysis, where you should research their growth and financials, bestselling products and services, and social media strategy.
4. Identify your Target Customer
Marketing strategies and programs are constructed keeping in mind the target audience or ideal customer. Every product or service has a different target customer; identifying that is extremely important. The goal is to organize and strategize information as per market and customer.
5. Define your marketing goals
It would be best to have a clear idea of your aim while creating a marketing program. Ensure using actual numbers while outlining objectives and marketing goals and not just writing vague statements. For instance, if the aim is to increase web traffic, it should be clearly stated to monitor whether or not you have achieved it. You must ensure having SMART goals for your company. SMART meaning: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-bound.
6. Present Marketing Strategy
In this step, note down one or more marketing strategies. How to implement each, what to do, and the channels to use. The activities involved can be broken down into stages. It is essential to attach a deadline to each task, to ensure proper functioning and implementation of the strategies.
7. Identify your marketing budget
This is the last step of creating marketing plans, but extremely important. While making a marketing plan, it is essential to consider a marketing budget. Marketing is a costly affair, and there are various hidden costs attached to it; hence you do not want to lose sight of the financial aspect while implementing the strategies. It also aids in hiring the right staff.
Difference between Marketing Plan and Business Plan
A business plan outlines how a business will function and operate in its lifetime. It is considered as a roadmap for the company. It covers the goals, values, missions, strategies, and financials to achieve objectives with day-to-day operations.
Marketing strategy and Marketing plans are a part of the business plan. A marketing plan focuses on creating strategies to raise public awareness about its product and services. It also defines methods to reach target sales and goals. A business plan comprises a product summary, market analysis, financial planning, marketing strategy, and operational analysis.
What Is a Top-Down Marketing Strategy?
The traditional marketing strategy is called a top-down marketing strategy. In this, a business determines who their target customer is how to explore the customer base, and the product’s selling point that encourages sale on the display of the advertisement. The Top-Down marketing strategies involve marketing products on radio and television. The executives of the firm usually decide the marketing strategies of a firm.
What Is a Bottom-Up Marketing Strategy?
A bottom-up marketing strategy focuses on building customer relatability with the brand. It creates a workable plan for the customer base and then makes impactful advertisement campaigns. In this day and age, consumers look for products they can relate to or a service that is better suited for them. A bottom-up marketing strategy focuses on the target market and creating better value for them. It is essentially done through social media.
A marketing program is the essence of any business. It initiates business promotion and creates huge sales by impacting target consumers. The marketing plan will outline the methods to captivate audiences, figure a selling point, identify the prices, and further enhance customer engagement. Constantly monitoring and adjusting a market plan is vital. It ensures you are updated with the new methods of marketing which is driving more customers. Like today, social media has a significant impact on any business. It creates brand awareness and customer engagement, as nowadays, people spend a lot of time on social media.