Marketing Your Business
IMAGE: Marketing Your BusinessA marketing plan may be the single most important determinant of business success. Identifying prospects and figuring out how to turn them into customers is the essences of the business experience. Marketing may be the single most difficult aspects of business management. It also becomes more difficult due to the the ever-changing market. A written plan will help everyone in marketing, and in the company in general, understand and work toward common goals. In this section of the website we will discuss the critical components of a marketing plan:

Identify Your Target Market - knowing your target market- who you are selling to is critical for positioning your company and product in the market place

Profile Your Customers - creating a customer profile can save your company a lot of time and money. Knowing your customer will shape the kinds of market schemes you want to undertake.

Know Your Competitors - always know what your competitors are up to. The more you know the better.

Understand Your Product - in order to position your product on the market; you must understand it as an outsider would. Knowing your product will help you portray it honestly and positively.

Analyze Your Risk - thoroughly analyzing the risk of your business will help you plan for and avoid problems. The purpose is to have a fuller picture of what you are undertaking.

Target Market

Industry Analysis - begins with collecting information about the size, growth, and structure of your industry.

Market Segment - define the segment of the market you want to sell to

Market Niche - define your niche by aiming at customers what do they really want.

S.W.O.T. Analysis - a broad based S.W.O.T. involves looking at your company’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats. Analysis can be a quick and easy way to examine your company.

Your Customer

Demographics - Who’s out there that will use your product or service?

Geographic Influences - relates to where your target market is located. The larger your market, the more flexible you will have to be in your marketing efforts.

Economic Factors - knowing your target consumers’ economic circumstances can help you decide how much money to spend.

Other Influencers

Biographic - describes how your customer purchase products

Psychographics - this information helps you to determine or at least make an intelligent guess about the factors that motivate your potential customers to buy.

Consumer Adopters - this is based on the notion that different people will accept and use your product at different stages.

Your Competitors

Pricing - a key aspect of competition, if the competitor changes to a lower price than you, justify that higher price to the customer.

Packaging - consider packing as a portrait that says a thousand words about both you and your competitors.

Locations - where are your competitors located? Does their location have any impact on how they provide their product?

Marketing Communications

Sales Promotion - supplements advertising, public relations and personal selling. The objective of your promotion should be to activate new prospects and bring about sales.

Sales Literaure - the written material that accompanies represents or explains your product to potential customers.

Advertising - the most powerful tool available in the marketing mix. One ad can reach a millions of people.

Public Relations - also called PR or publicity is information about your company, your product, your project, or your event that is not a direct message from you to the potential customer.

Trade Shows - offer many advantages if you plan ahead and know what purpose you want to achieve by attending.

Customer Service - can be the key component to attracting and retaining customers. Customer service is the one way to retain customers

Sales Plan - is part of your marking plan that deals most directly with generating revenues for your company. Your sales plan will ensure your company’s success by addressing goals.

(This information can be found in the Small Business Resource Center Marketing section of the library).