marketing plan and strategy means creating a roadmap for your small
Segment your Market
All customers are not the same.
They have different needs, preferences, and budgets. Segmenting the
market into a group of similar customers can help you develop a
successful marketing strategy. Similar customers will respond in a
similar way to your products, services, prices, and promotion. For
example, some customers prefer to purchase online, others like
talking in person and some customers like to save on everything they
buy. Trying to satisfy every customer with the same approach is not
going to be effective and profitable. Because of that you need to
segment your market in a few segments which are similar and develop
different approaches on how to target these segments, develop
offerings for each segment and promote to each segment.
How can you segment your market?
Here are some examples you can use to thnk about the most
appropriate way to segment your customers:
- previous buying habits
- how they respond to different
Learn more about
Customer Segmentation in Marketing.
After you segment your customers next is to make a list of your
competitors. Ask yourself the following questions:
Who are the major
competitors in this market?
How different they
are in delivering their products and services?
How do they make
How much they
charge and what they offer to the customers?
After you answer
these questions ask yourself what they do better than you do.
Value Proposition / Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
Based on your market and customer segmentation now you can develop a
marketing approach for your business. How I am going to compete and
how I am going to satisfy the customers - your market approach. In
order for your market approach to be successful you have to offer
something different. You need to develop an effective value
proposition or unique selling proposition. The Value proposition
describes the way your business is different and how it will offer
different solutions compared to competitors. in your vaue
proposition you will list your products and service features and the
benefits they deliver to your customers.
you are going to promote your business?
you need to communicate your value proposition to your target market
- communicate effectively, send clear message about your offering
and tell your customers why they should buy your products and
Advertising: print media, TV, radio, internet ads, search engine
optimization, website marketing
Public Relations: press releases, events
Sales Promotion: special offerings, discounts, customer loyalty
Community Involvement: sponsorship
Key to effective marketing is measuring your
promotional activities. Try to measure and keep track of different
promotional activities. For example, how many customers do I get
from my ad in newspaper and how much did it cost me to get these
customers. Now you can compare different alternatives and improve
your marketing return on investment in your next promotions.