Marketers have a saying: “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will take you there.” Without planning and a sound strategy, how can you know where you are going or what you need to do to get there? Here are five steps to develop your marketing plan. For a more detailed reference, check out our ebook, Preparing Your 12-Month Marketing Plan.
Top-level reflection: In the daily hurly-burly of competitive business, it's hard to turn your attention to the big picture, especially those parts that aren't directly related to the daily operations. You need to take time periodically to really think about your business--whether it's providing you and your employees with what you want, whether there aren't some innovative wrinkles you can add, whether you're getting all you can out of your products, your sales staff and your markets. Writing your marketing plan is the best time to do this high-level thinking. Some companies send their top marketing people away to a retreat. Others go to the home of a principal. Some do marketing plan development at a local motel, away from phones and fax machines, so they can devote themselves solely to thinking hard and drawing the most accurate sketches they can of the immediate future of the business.
In a recent post, Bluetext Creative Director Jason Siegel described the differences between a top digital marketing companies, top marketing companies and top marketing agencies. The answer was in the range of services they provide. In this post, we’ll answer another frequently asked question: What’s the difference between a marketing firm and a marketing agency? This is more than a trivial question, and and it can be confusing. But here’s one reason why it is an important question to address: The term “marketing firms” (as well as “top marketing firms”) is by far the most widely used search term when looking for information on vendors that provide marketing services.
The social media marketing team at Thrive offers custom solutions for your specific needs when it comes to social media. Whether you're looking to increase the likes or follows of your brand's page or if you need a targeted campaign to generate revenue and new customers. These are some of the following services you can expect from your dedicated social media specialist at Thrive:
Unlike smaller digital advertising agencies, there is nothing cookie cutter about us. We create completely customized strategies based on your business goals and can easily pivot as your company scales and evolves. We also have a much more conservative pricing structure compared to large mega-agencies. We won’t tell you to blow all of your marketing dollars on a huge placement. Instead, we have an eye for ROI when advising you on how to spend your money.
If you value taking your time to make sure everything is right, you don’t want to partner with a company that cuts corners and focuses on producing quick campaigns. It will make it hard for your business to work with that Internet marketing company. If you want to have the most effective campaign, you need to partner with an Internet marketing company that is on the same page as your business.

Back in 2016, Revenue River Marketing worked with a construction products distributor to redesign its website. The client's old website was slow, making it a less than ideal resource for communicating with customers and providing top-notch customer service. Revenue River Marketing led the redesign and ensured the updated website had e-commerce features that integrated with the client's enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. Revenue River Marketing then went on to create content for a blog and social media sites.
The distribution plan explains how you’ll deliver your product or service. If you’re offering online software, your product could be distributed through your website. If you’re running a local clothes shop, you distribute your products through your shop. So you see, the distribution channel needs to be aligned with your product. Hence, you need to answer the following questions:
After defining your distribution channel(s), it’s time to make sure that you really need to deliver your product or service. First of all, you need to define the message that should be conveyed to your buyer personas. Afterwards, let’s look at suitable promotion channels that can be used to acquire new customers. Obviously, they should be channels you can find your buyer personas in. But the range of possibilities still seems to be endless.
Preparation is key. Abraham Lincoln once said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” Whether you are chopping down a tree or executing an integrated marketing plan, the steps you take ahead of time to lay out your plan and ensure you have all of the proper (and optimized) tools, are crucial to your marketing success.
Matt Bowman and Thrive Internet Marketing is the best web development firm we have worked with as a company. Demilec USA has gone through this process a couple times before and the Thrive team was far and away the best one we have worked with. We came in on budget and on time.  We really appreciate their creativity as well as their customer service. Thank you again.
In a direct distribution channel, the product or service goes directly from the manufacturer to the consumer. In a one stage distribution channel, it goes from manufacturer to retailer to consumer. The traditional distribution channel is from manufacturer to wholesaler to retailer to consumer. Outline all the different companies, people and/or technologies that will be involved in the process of getting your product or service to your customer.
Googles Keyword Tool is a little bit different because it does not give you the total number of searches, it just tells you if the search activity is low or high on a 1 to 5 scale. But, it has another useful tool that allows you to put in your website (or a competitors website) and then it will analyze the site and spit out keywords that are related to the site. This part of the tool is useful if you dont really know where to start on finding keywords.
Sup Sean, enjoyed this series of seo optimization. You keep your articles short and straight to the point. Easy to understand. Anyways, just a heads up, I’m working on a website to help local independent businesses here in the Bay Area CA. I want to curate easy to understand social media, seo and mobile marketing articles so that they can access high-quality content on one page. I won’t just copy and paste articles but provide a brief summary and the link back to the original author’s site.
Standard to any business or marketing plan is the SWOT analysis. The SWOT analysis should help you clearly define your strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats so that you can develop goals and objectives that are on point and tied to your overall mission. The SWOT analysis will also enable you to understand what differentiates you from your competition and how you should position yourself in the market. It will also help in developing your messaging and your unique selling proposition. Brutal honesty is imperative to a truly insightful SWOT. Use bullets and aim for 4–5 in each section. Limiting your lists will help you to focus on the most critical points and help retain focus.
After being disappointed with their paid search results, a West Coast public university hired HawkSEM to boost its paid advertising game. The project is ongoing and includes Google AdWords and retargeting campaigns that aim to attract students to programs within the university such as master's or business certificate opportunities. HawkSEM takes a hands-on approach, developing the paid advertising strategy, creating ad copy, managing the university's bids, and tracking progress. The results? Forty-percent more leads at half the cost.
SoftProdigy supplied SEO strategy assistance to expand the client's brand presence. SoftProdigy's digital marketing campaign helped improve the client's reputation after they received negative business reviews on the first page of Google results. Organic traffic increased by 180%, and social media campaigns led to a 1,100% increase in the client's social media marketing reach.
Repeat this exercise for as many topic buckets as you have. And remember, if you're having trouble coming up with relevant search terms, you can always head on over to your employees on the front lines -- like Sales or Services -- and ask them what types of terms their prospects and customers use, or common questions they have. Those are often great starting points for keyword research.
If you do decide that building an agency is what you want to do, create an LLC or SCorp. This will grant you personal legal security if something goes terribly wrong (lawsuits). It also allows you a multitude of tax benefits. I would suggest getting an LLC or SCorp established as soon as possible as it also legitimizes your business in both the eyes of the client and Uncle Sam.
The final section of your plan includes a brief breakdown of the costs associated with each of your tactics. So if you plan to exhibit at three trade shows per year, for example, you'll include the costs to participate in the shows and prepare your booth and marketing materials. If you find the tactics you've selected are too costly, you can go back and make revisions before you arrive at a final budget.
Xaxis is The Outcome Media Company that combines advanced artificial intelligence with data and proven expertise to optimize programmatic media investments. With 1,800 programmatic experts, Xaxis has over 3,000 clients in 47 markets across North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East. Xaxis is a member of WPP’s GroupM. Learn more.
It's also important to understand exactly what motivates customers to buy. Are your clients looking for savings or a way to simplify their lives, for example, or are they just shopping for pleasure? Ask yourself why they would buy your product or service. In the same vein, you may want to know what keeps customers away from your competitors’ products or services. Are they too costly? Do they lack something unique? These insights will help you develop a product or service that outshines the competition.
In Keyword Planner, formerly known as the Keyword Tool, you can get search volume and traffic estimates for keywords you're considering. Unfortunately, when Google transitioned from Keyword Tool to Keyword Planner, they stripped out a lot of the more interesting functionality. But you can make up for it a bit if you take the information you learn from Keyword Planner and use Google Trends to fill in some blanks.
JPL is one of the Mid-Atlantic’s largest integrated marketing agencies. We provide strategy and execution in four core practice areas: brand & integrated marketing, digital, content creation and employee engagement & internal communications. We are a member of the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) and a 17-time Best Place to Work in PA.
At the top end you have your cold leads, people who are completely unaware of your brand’s existence, and you want to figure out how to grab their awareness and interest. Once you do, you’ll need to figure out a way to turn them into hot leads by generating a sense of desire. And finally, you’ll capitalize on that desire by asking them to perform a specific action, whether it’s subscribing to your email list or purchasing a product.
Adobe. Few software companies survived and thrived through Microsoft's (MSFT) predatory onslaught: IBM/Lotus, Oracle (ORCL), Apple, SAP (SAP), and Adobe (ADBE). Somehow, this relatively small company has come up with products that practically every "knowledge worker" needs to use on a daily basis. It should come as no surprise that its current marketing chief, Ann Lewnes, launched Intel's (INTC) vaunted Pentium product brand and managed the "Intel Inside" program. Also, its founders are great guys.

Preparation is key. Abraham Lincoln once said, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe.” Whether you are chopping down a tree or executing an integrated marketing plan, the steps you take ahead of time to lay out your plan and ensure you have all of the proper (and optimized) tools, are crucial to your marketing success.

Your mission statement is the foundation of your marketing plan. Although it may not play a direct role in your marketing activities, the mission statement focuses on your business goals and helps you make sure that your marketing activities support the business's overall objectives. It's an effective tool to refer back to whenever you start to question if you are still on the right track.
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