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Think back to when you were in middle school, or even elementary school, when you first learned how to write. It was difficult, and time consuming and if you skipped the first step, you didn’t get anywhere. While reminiscing, did you think of that first step that you almost missed? The first step was a plan. You had to outline a plan when writing your first story or your first adventure. This is no different than what you need to do today for your marketing plan.
Your marketing plan needs to be a well thought out strategy. Why? Well because you can’t just open your doors and expect people to walk in or to find you online. Your marketing plan should be relevant to your target audience. Your target audience is a group of people who will and can benefit from your product or service. They are the people you want to directly market to in your marketing plan.
Your marketing plan should have these things included with it:
  • The first thing you should do in your marketing plan is decide who you want to target. Your target audience, as mentioned above, are the people you want to purchase your product or service. For instance, if you’re a toy company, you don’t want your company to market to people ages 65+, you want your company to market on kids TV stations, Radio Disney, and other places that children would frequent. 
  • Find out where your target audience hangs out is the second step in your marketing plan. No, not literally hangs out, but where they frequent. This can be online, restaurants, lifestyles, and etc. As an example, Pinterest is a social media platform that is primarily women. People with Etsy accounts and people who have clothing lines would be smart to frequent Pinterest with their latest crafts or their latest styles. By optimizing their Pinterest pages, they can lead the potential customer back to their site and hopefully, finalize the sale. 
  • Now that you have the beginning of your marketing plan, the next step is to find what times to post all of your online content, such as social media and blogs. There are many sites with posting time statistics that are very useful. This is a post from HubSpot, showing the best times and days to post to social media sites. You can also look at your own Google Analytics account. This should always be set up on your website, and this provides insight as to the time people come to your site, read your blog, etc.
  •  Now that you have all of the basics down for your marketing plan, we can get to the next step. Deciding what to post now that you have your target audience and the best posing times. Think about what your product or service. What are some things that people would ask about it? Let’s take this marketing business. People would probably ask:
    How do I make a marketing plan?
    How do I market for a small business?
    What is marketing?
    How do I start my marketing?
    These are all questions that people may ask when looking online or when they want to start exploring more about marketing. This is a good start, but there is also keyword research. This is a bit more complicated, but by doing this research, you can learn what your opportunities are and what words have the most weight with your audience. I’ll explain a little more about that in the next post.

Your marketing plan is now complete! Let’s go over it again just to make sure you understand how and why to do a marketing plan:

  1. Target Audience: People you want to buy your product
  2. Find out where your target audience hangs out: You want to market where they are
  3. Find the best posting times for your networks: These are crucial because you do’t want to be posting when your target audience is asleep
  4. Thinking of your post topics: Think of what your target audience would post and then do some keyword research.
Your marketing plan is now complete! If you have any questions, or need further help with your plan, contact us here. Stay in touch with us on our Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+ pages.
If you enjoyed this article, see our recent ones on What Is Marketing and 3 Things You Need To Do When Starting Your Business
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