Guide to Starting and Operating a Small Business | 2018 Guide to Starting and Operating a Small Business - Page 51

purchase decision? • • • • • • • Billboards, vehicle signs Point-of-purchase displays Product photos, exhibits, samples Telemarketing Referral incentives Word-of-mouth Personal selling Which tools energize your target customers? Communication Strategy Build your overall communication strategy around your customer. What media do they see/hear? How long does it take them to make a purchase decision? Where are they located? How much budget do you have to commit to communications? What combination of marketing materials work best to accomplish your goals? Consistent Message Media Frequency Reach Cost per contact Each promotional tool is designed for a purpose. General awareness ads may appear on a billboard, while point of purchase displays encourage an immediate purchase. Blending advertising, public relations, publicity and word of mouth works best – a combination of tactics – on a consistent schedule. Be sure to track which media are most effective. • • • • • • Determine consistent message and look Clarify purpose of each tool Consider frequency, reach, cost per contact Plan on 8 – 12 touches minimum (One-time advertising rarely works.) Practice your elevator pitch: your word-of-mouth marketing Be sure to include a Call to Action (What do you want customers to DO? Marketing Plan Your marketing plan includes an analysis of your target market, summarizes your goals, and breaks those marketing goals down into actionable, scheduled tactics. Begin with the end in mind. What do you want to accomplish this year and in three years from now? Key Elements of a Marketing Plan What do you want to accomplish this year? • Annual Sales • Net Income • Number of customers • Other ways to measure success? • What do you want to accomplish in 3-5 years? • Ongoing client database of repeat customers • Annual growth rate of xx% • Who is responsible for marketing/sales goals? • Who is responsible for marketing/sales implementation? 49