Vol. 1, Issue 1
CMI provides creative services for business and senior-level decision makers who proactively seek to deliver an exceptional key-stakeholder brand experience.
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How To Create a Word of Mouth Marketing Plan
How Do I Create the Plan?
Step 1, 2, 3…
Word-of-mouth, marketing buzz, blog, viral, grassroots, cause- influencers, social media Web 2.0, Facebook, YouTube, MySpace, and Digg — as well as ambassador programs, work with traditional media and are powerful and useful resources for your marketing plan.
Marketing plans, those binder enclosed papers with words and ideas printed so thoughtfully on them, seem to hold no particular interest to those with vague-to-little knowledge of this intricate field. To some, the sole purpose of the Marketing Plan is to secure financing. Otherwise, it is viewed as a waste of time, a lost cause. To the wise and advanced businessperson, the marketing plan opens gates to foresee your company’s future, to give you guidance, and develop a sturdy, backboned company.
Whether you’re a small- or large company, or somewhere nudged in between, having your own plan is an essential part of business growth. On average, a large company’s plan consists somewhere in the hundred-page ball park. Don’t fret, if you’re worried that you may not quite fit into the “large” category, having a marketing plan in the half-dozen page range should suit you well. Don’t forget to keep a performance log focusing on monthly sales/marketing reports.
When creating your plan, make sure it covers a year’s span. Reasonably, things never stay dormant, people come and go, markets appear and disappear, and customers are gained and lost. If you predict a long, well-lived company (as we hope you do) you should start writing plans that address the medium-term future — two to four years down the road.
1. Step One
Describe your product or service in detail. What are its most significant features? Is the product still in development, or is it ready to roll?
2. Step Two
Identify your target market. Who will this product appeal to most? Include all marketing researching, including historical figures for sales of our type of product.
3. Step Three
Size up the competition. Who are your major competitors? How does your product compare to theirs? How strong of a foothold do they have in the market? Look at the methods they use to market their products.
4. Step Four
Detail your marketing strategy. How will Word-of-Mouth advertise and market your product? Which features of the product will you focus on? What will be the product’s price and why?
5. Step Five
Describe your operations. Include your plan for customer service, proposed credit and sales terms, qualifications and achievements of your management team, and the physical location of your business.
Tips & Warnings:
Divide the plan into sections based on the above topics. Begin with a summary that gives an overall picture of your product and its winning features.
In each section of the plan, always try to show how your Word-of-Mouth product and strategy beats the competition.
Marketing plans can be just a few pages or as lengthy as novels. But keep in mind that the more thorough you are in supporting your plan with research, detailed information and financial projections, the more likely you will be to gain support from investors or lenders.
Have an accountant review your financial projections for accuracy.
Have the plan copy-edited and proofread by a reliable source.
Given that you’re a new company or just trying to get on the right track, you should allow yourself a couple of months to write out the plan. Consider this task as the barbell weights to a body-builder’s muscle growth. Contrary to most popular belief, writing the plan can, in some ways, be a more challenging and difficult task due to “over-thinking” what to do and how to do it. Most plans start at the beginning of the year, or the beginning of the fiscal year.
Let’s say, for instance, you’ve started or nearly completed your marketing plan… What’s next? Show your plan to other in your company for feedback. You want to get others involved because it allows your plan to get proper support. Seeking help not only ensures a potentially greater plan by gaining realistic input from those who know what the company needs or the direction it should take, but also uncovers any unforseen marketing strategies and opportunities.
If you are too busy, or not interested in doing these steps let, CMI help you get this done. Call Brian Jones at 212-598-4567, ext. 205 and we will help you begin the new year with a fresh start and a new strategic marketing or communications plan.