To be successful in business, one has to have a marketing strategy. Marketing helps a business to know clearly, which products and services it should offer, how it will promote them and what price it should charge for these goods and services. A marketing plan is a blueprint of marketing activity that a company follows to pursue its marketing objectives. It is a systematic approach to selling goods and services. A marketing plan involves setting marketing objectives, specifying target markets and establishing methods for reaching these markets. In this paper the importance of marketing plans in any organisation is highlighted.
Marketing plan is an important part of an organisation to know about its products and services. By knowing its product and services, it helps the organisations to satisfy the customer’s needs.
Importance of Marketing Planning:
Marketing planning is a systematic and disciplined exercise to formulate marketing strategies. Marketing planning can be related to the organisation as a whole or to strategic business units (SBU). Marketing planning is a forward looking exercise, which determines the future strategies of an organisation with special reference to its product development, market development, channel design, sales promotion and profitability.
1. It helps in avoiding future uncertainties.
2. It helps in management by objectives.
3. It helps in achieving objectives.
4. It helps in coordination and communication among the departments.
5. It helps in control.
6. It helps the customers in getting full satisfaction.
Minimize future uncertainties
To minimize the future uncertainties, an expert marketing manager makes future marketing strategies and programs on the basis of present trends and conditions of the firm. By effective market planning and future forecasting, he not only minimizes the future uncertainty but also successfully fulfill the objectives of the firm.
Clarification of Objectives
The clear-cut objective of the organization helps in keeping the efforts of the management in proper lines. These are very useful in formulating the managerial functions like organizing, directing and controlling. The proper marketing planning and decision-making helps in determining the objectives of the organization.
The marketing planning helps in co-ordinating all the managerial activities of the firm. It not only helps in co-ordinating the work of its own department but also helps in co-ordinating the managerial activities of all the other departments to achieve the overall objectives and goals of the firm.
Helpful in Controlling Function
The marketing planning sets the performance standards and these are compared with the actual performance of various departments. If these variances are favorable, efforts are made to maintain them and if these variances are unfavorable, efforts are made to remove them.
The marketing planning helps in increasing the managerial efficiency of the firm. It is meant to ensure efficient allocation & utilization of resources. It also compares the results with the set standards to ensure efficiency of the organization. It directs all the managerial activities of the firm and controls these activities. It develops the feeling of sincerity and sense of responsibility among the managerial executives by defining the duties, rights and liabilities of all employees of the firm, which in turn increases the efficiency of the firm.
Under marketing planning, the needs and wants of the customer (or consumer) are studied properly and marketing activities are channelized to provide better customer-satisfaction, which in turn maximizes the profit of the firm. Therefore, by concentrating on customer satisfaction, marketing management increases market share and revenue of the business enterprise.
Economy in the operation of firm
Marketing planning helps in achieving the objectives of the firm economically. It checks and controls all unnecessary expenses of the firm.
Higher performance standards
The marketing planning helps in evolving higher performance standards. It facilitates easier and quicker decision-making, which helps in solving many problems quickly.
Reasons Your Marketing Plan is More Important Than the History of Your Business
It helps you strategize
Marketing plans, by their very nature, are strategic. They force the author to think ahead and consider the effects of promotional activity on both sales and the public image of the company. Big ideas fail without a plan, and your marketing plan is the one thing that will drive innovation and help you meet sales targets.
It helps you formalise ideas
If you’re embarking on a new era for the business – perhaps replacing an old product with something fresher – the process of writing a marketing plan will help you formalise the idea behind the new development. You’ll spot areas you’ve not considered that relate to how it will be perceived which will in turn help you build the perfect ‘new thing’ for your business.
It gets you used to working to timescales
Businesses that have been around for some time often fall into the trap of becoming too cozy. Existing customers continue to pay bills and there always seems to be a surplus in the bank account. That can lead to timescales for new developments and initiatives slipping and, before you know it, the entire organisation grinding to a halt.
Great marketing plans are based on achievable timescales for promotional activity. By developing and adhering to those timescales, your business will automatically adopt the very valuable habit of getting things done on time, thus hitting deadlines and continuing to grow.
It’ll help you get financing
Once you know what you need to do, marketing-wise, you can identify areas in which you’ll require financial assistance. No bank manager or investor will hand over penny if you can’t present a plan that details exactly what you intend to do with their money. With a marketing plan, you can do just that.
It aligns marketing objectives with business strategy
As daft as it sounds, marketing and business strategy are often far removed from one another. This happens when there is no plan for the former. In such instances, costly adverts, trade shows and other forms of promotion are undertaken, but they bear no relation to the strategy of the business. As a result, they ultimately fail to deliver any meaningful return on investment.
With a marketing plan, organisations can align the overall goals of the business with marketing output. And that’s exactly how it should be.
It helps you develop an enviable public persona
Ok, so your business went through that torrid time three years ago, during which negative coverage of the events reached the press. But that’s past history – it’s time now to rebuild the public image of the company, and you’ll only do that with a proper marketing plan.
By establishing the business as a trusted thought leader, your competitors will soon strive to look like you.
Every organisation, whether it is a government agency or a privately held corporation, has to market its product and services. The marketing plan, which details the organisation’s strategy for promoting itself and its products or services to others so as to increase sales and gain a competitive advantage over others, is the beating heart of the business.