Every small business should have a marketing plan. This is a critical tool that will help keep you focused on marketing your business, and is very easy to put together. Simply follow the 6 steps below to build a simple and effective marketing plan for your business!

Step 1 - What is the overall objective of your marketing?

Is it to generate clients? Increase visibility? Increase your profits? Generate a reputation? The first step to a great plan is to determine what your objective is. The more specific, the better.

Step 2 - What is your competitive advantage?

Define what your unique advantage is. I stress the word unique. The more unique your advantage is, the more likely you are to have a successful business.

Step 3 - Define your target market

This is a critical step. You must define who it is that you are targeting with your marketing. The more focused your target market, the more likely you are to succeed.

Step 4 - Determine your marketing weapons

What marketing tools do you plan to utilize? Brochures, a website, networking, direct mail, seminars? Define a suite of marketing weapons that you will utilize to market to your target audience.

Step 5 - Describe your niche

What is your unique value proposition to your customers? What problem are you solving for them? What exactly are you going to deliver? Keep in mind that customers buy solutions to their problems. Make sure your value proposition addresses this.

Step 6 - Determine your budget

A good rule of thumb for small businesses is 4% of your gross revenue. Consider spending 60% on existing clients, 30% of generating new clients, and 10% on miscellaneous marketing costs.

By following the 6 steps, you will be able to quickly build a simple and effective marketing plan to grow your business. And remember, the one thing that will help you more than anything with your marketing is sticking to your plan! Most people give up way too early.

Happy marketing!

Author's Bio: 

Tom Kelly is a Profession Business Coach that specializes in working with small business owners, entrepreneurs, and salespeople. He can be reached at (773) 907-0921, or at http://www.potentialinmotion.com .

Copyright © Tom Kelly, Potential In Motion, Inc.TM 2003