ICS Magazine

Your 9-Step Marketing Plan - Step 9

June 11, 2009

At last! Over the past 8 months I have painstakingly outlined a step-by-step marketing plan for you. Finally, we are at the last installment.

Here’s what we have covered so far (to see the steps in their entirety, go to www.icsmag.com and search “Howard Partridge”).
  • Step 1: Set Your Sales Goals. Break it down to the day.
  • Step 2: Outline a Description of Your Service. What is the Unique Experience that you want to offer?
  • Step 3: Position Yourself. What “position” will you take up in the marketplace?
  • Step 4: Identifying Your Target Market. High-end? Value? Low-end? Commercial? Restoration?
  • Step 5: Competition Assessment. What do others do that you don’t? What do they not do that you can capitalize on?
  • Step 6: Pricing Strategies. Not just “how much” but how you charge. Square foot? By the room? By the hour? Packages?
  • Step 7: Packaging and Fulfillment. What will the actual step-by-step system be to fulfill your service promise?
  • Step 8: Sales and Marketing Vehicles. What strategies will you use? What methods of marketing and/or advertising will you utilize?
Step 9: Your Marketing Schedule
Your final step is to schedule your marketing activities. These activities would include, but not be limited to:
  • Advertising schedule
  • Referral marketing route schedule
  • Client mailers (such as newsletters, send out cards, reminder cards, etc.)
  • Testing campaigns
This step doesn’t have to be complicated. Simply take a moment to outline each month over the next 12 months.

Go ahead and list the things you normally do each and every month, such as your ‘Thank You’ cards, newsletters, etc. List these for each month and put down what date they are due. Take it a step further and list the timeline leading up to the due date. For example, if you do a monthly mailer to your clients (you should), start with the date you want the piece to arrive, and then put down the actual mail date. From there you need to factor how long it normally takes to get the piece ready for mailing. Next, estimate the time it will take to get it written and printed. Now you have a beginning date of that project that will give you a better chance of getting it out on time.

Creating a written schedule and timeline helps you remember important campaigns and strategies that you may have overlooked in previous steps, plus it helps you to implement. Without a schedule to go by, it’s easy to forget.

Finally, remember the Japanese proverb that says, “Vision without action is just a daydream.” This marketing plan will do you no good without taking action. The biggest reason that small-business owners don’t grow is not because they don’t know what to do, it’s because of F.T.I. (Failure To Implement). So take this plan, put it into action and watch your business grow.

Next month, I will have a brand new subject for you. Until then, my passion is your phenomenal success!