In the world of marketing, planning can make perfect. Whether you are running a short-term campaign, or are mapping out your activities for the year, it helps to have a plan in writing, giving clarity to you, your marketing team, and others within your organisation.
Gone are the days when a scribbled ‘to do list’ is sufficient. A clear electronic record can be crucial to ensuring that your marketing activities are organised, and that you can view the ‘bigger picture’ of your progress. In this blog, we run you through some key facets of making a marketing plan:
Excel at Excel
For many, Microsoft Excel spreadsheets represent the best means of creating a marketing plan. You’ll be able to form your plan out of the rows and columns provided, making it clear for readers. You’ll also be able to link to web pages, and share it easily via email or another working group, allowing multiple users to edit it. Don’t be afraid to use colour coding in order to allow each row or column to stand out, and ensure your boxes are big enough for the content you will add in!
Your column headings can be crucial to the formation of your plan. You could title the first as ‘Key Objective’ or ‘Campaign’. This will allow you to group each marketing activity into a separate marketing purpose or campaign, depending on your marketing objectives. Next comes ‘Activity’ in which you can summarise exactly what you plan to do in a few words – ‘Poster Printing‘, for example. You could add a ‘Timeline’ column next to this, allowing you to break down the activity into tasks and their respective projected completion dates. And finally, ‘Status’ will allow you to keep track of whether the activity has yet to be started, is in progress, or is complete.
Marketing plans are ‘alive’
Think of your marketing plan document as a work in progress – you will naturally have activities which are added in, edited, or perhaps taken out. By keeping an up to date version of your marketing plan, you’ll be able to view a snapshot of your marketing campaigns at any given time.
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