Trying to sell a new product or service without a marketing plan is like going into battle without a plan of attack. Your soldiers and weapons (product and people) may be strong, but without a straightforward plan for how to reach your goals, your efforts will go to waste. There are many different approaches to creating a good marketing plan, but the central questions and considerations are very similar. The following text is a guide to follow as you create a rock-solid strategy to take your product to market. Answer these questions and shape your approach around them.
What is Your Product and Why Is It Needed?
This question may seem obvious, but it is the one that the rest of your strategy rests upon. A product that is redundant, flawed or simply unneeded by the people you’re trying to sell it to may not succeed, even if it’s created by very smart, well-meaning people. Make sure there is a true need for your product before trying to market it.
Who Is Your Audience?
You have to find people to buy your product. This is your audience. Do research to determine who your target audience is and be as specific as possible. Learn about age, gender, occupations, lifestyle habits and other brands that your audience likes.
What Do They Care About?
In order to appeal to your target audience, you need to understand their wants, needs, dreams and fears. What keeps them up at night? What occupies their thoughts? If your product solves a key problem for your target audience, you will have a much better chance at succeeding. Additionally, understanding how your target audience thinks and talks will help you craft marketing messages that feel authentic and speak to the target audience on a personal level.
How Will You Price Your Product?
Pricing is another key aspect of good marketing. Make sure you have someone on your staff who understands the intricacies of creating a pricing strategy that will make enough money but not be so overpriced it turns customers away.
What Specific Strategies Will You Use to Market Your Business?
In terms of marketing fundamentals, the step where you spread the news about your product and create a buzz around it is referred to as promotion. You can choose from numerous ways of promoting your products, including:
• Print, digital and social media advertising
• Search engine ads
• Radio and print ads
• Public relations
• Influencer marketing
• Giveaways and contests
Pick tactics that will reach your audience. For instance, if a very small percentage of your target customers are Twitter users, Twitter ads would not be the best choice of promotion tactic. Break your promotion plan down into daily, weekly and monthly tasks so you can be sure it gets done.
What Is Your Budget?
Before you know what tactics you can use to share news of your product, you have to be aware of how much you can spend. Set specific budgets and stick to them. Luckily, there are many low-cost digital promotion techniques that are perfect for business owners on a budget.
How Will You Communicate the Unique Value of Your Product/Service?
From your website to your marketing materials to your social media accounts, you want to make sure to have a unified brand message that clearly states why your product is worth the consideration of your audience. If you don’t understand what sets your product apart, why would you expect your customers to figure it out on their own? Make sure you understand the value of your product and what it has to offer.
Do you have a strategy that will help you achieve business success? These questions, though some of them may be tough to answer, are a good place to start to help you form a clear and actionable marketing battle plan.
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