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How to Write a Marketing Plan for a Business

Business plan

Most successful businesses start with a business plan. In fact, it’s a requirement if you are applying for financing to get the business off the ground. Much of a business plan deals strictly with finances. What are the anticipated expenses for labor, equipment, and rent, compared to the expected income from goods and services? A key part of any business plan is a marketing plan, and that’s where Duffy Marketing can help your business thrive.

What is a marketing plan?

The short answer is that it lays out a strategy to get customers to buy your products or services. At a minimum, it typically includes these sections:

  • Products and services
    • This where you focus on what you are offering/selling and how they are unique from what competitors are offering. The key aspect is determining how the customer will benefit from what you’re offering. Price and quality are two of the obvious ones, but remember benefits can be intangible as well as tangible. A new HVAC system can not only make your home more comfortable, but it can also make it healthier and add to the value of the home.
  • Pricing strategy
    • This involves determining how you will price your product or service. First and foremost, the price has to be competitive OR you must show extra benefits to justify higher rates for the customer. Pricing must also include a reasonable profit. When setting rates make sure to include all costs, not just the obvious ones like labor and materials. There are overhead costs for office space and vehicles, money spent on promotion and advertising, and the cost of staff training, just to name a few.
  • Sales and distribution plan
    • This determines how your product or service is going to get to the customer. Is product distribution going to be through a website, through the mail, through sales representatives, home delivery, or through retail? This also includes who will handle the sales process, what level of inventory will be kept on hand, and how the products and services will be paid for (credit cards, in-house financing, etc.). You also need to lay out a plan for what happens after the sale concerning return policy, warranties, and customer support.
  • Advertising & promotion
    • The top priority is deciding what marketing message you want the target audience to hear. Working with Duffy Marketing is a great way to examine all the promotional possibilities and decide where to allocate your marketing dollars for the best return on investment. Here are some common categories:
      • Media including publications, radio, TV, internet, billboards
      • Sales promotions like free or discounted services and coupons
      • Marketing materials starting with business cards but also including direct mail, brochures & pamphlets
      • Publicity generated through social media, website, blogs, and community events
      • Grass roots tactics including the Duffy Marketing exclusive “Nesting” program. 

Setting your company apart

At its root this is what the marketing services provided by Duffy Marketing can do. The goal is to highlight what makes your company different and how that benefits the customer. Call today to learn more about designing a unique marketing plan for your business.