There is more than one way to do something, and the same can be said for creating a marketing plan for entrepreneurs. What’s important is understanding the foundational marketing concepts in order to create a successful sales and marketing plan.
The key theme of this Stanford University video is that, “the companies that last, the companies that are enduring, do more than just satisfy the customer. They must constantly amaze them.” And doing so requires creating a plan for marketing your product, producing the product and selling the product.
The first step is opportunity recognition, where you identify a market need, examine the competition and determine the size and growth of the potential market. Identifying your actual and potential buyers of the product allows your establish if a need or want is in demand.
In order to determine your target market, start by looking at the total available market, which means 100% possible sales in the whole market. From there you look at the served available market, which is how many customers can I reach through my sales channel. Finally, you want to find your target market, which are the customer who are likely to buy your product, from your served market.
Once you have establish a market, then you can move on to step two, using marketing as a strategy to create demand. That requires developing both a unique positioning and marketing objectives.
It’s important to segment your markets. In the video, segments are broken down into business-to-business and business-to-consumers. For example, in the consumer market, you would segment customers based on age, gender or income brackets.
Once you have done extensive research on your specific segments, you will understand your customer better and can then create a positioning statement. Positioning “has to happen before demand creation, otherwise you don’t know through what…channels to direct your advertising and marketing.”
As a result, positioning is going to drive the strategies behind your marketing plan, affecting your promotion, communication, pricing, sales and distribution.
The route to which you achieve success may be abnormal, but designing a winning marketing strategy requires sticking to the key marketing concepts; it’s all about the value you create.
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