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MARKETING PLAN
 
 
MARKETING PLAN
Course in Business Comunications
 
MARKETING PLAN Course

The following course in Human Communication Processes is provided in its entirety by Atlantic International University's "Open Access Initiative" which strives to make knowledge and education readily available to those seeking advancement regardless of their socio-economic situation, location or other previously limiting factors. The University's Open Courses are free and do not require any purchase or registration, they are open to the public.

The course in MARKETING PLAN contains the following:

  • Lessons in video format with explaination of theoratical content.
  • Complementary activities that will make research more about the topic , as well as put into practice what you studied in the lesson. These activities are not part of their final evaluation.
  • Texts supporting explained in the video.
  • Evaluation questionnaire, that will grant access to the next lesson after approval.
  • Final exam for overall evaluation of the course.

The Administrative Staff may be part of a degree program paying up to three college credits. The lessons of the course can be taken on line Through distance learning. The content and access are open to the public according to the "Open Access" and " Open Access " Atlantic International University initiative. Participants who wish to receive credit and / or term certificate , must register as students.


Lesson 1: What is a marketing plan?

As a student, you likely plan out much in your life—where to meet for dinner, how much time to spend studying for exams, which courses to take next semester, how to get home for winter break, and so on. Plans enable us to figure out where we want to go and how we might get there.

For a firm, the goal is not much different. Any company that wants to succeed (which means any firm whatsoever) needs to plan for a variety of contingencies, (such as growth of the company, the amount of capital needed to run the company in start up, how many employees will there be, where will the company headquarters be, etc.) marketing represents one of the most significant contingencies. A marketing plan is a written document composed of an analysis of the current marketing (the business activity of presenting products or services in such a way as to make them desirable) situation, opportunities and threats for the firm. Marketing objectives and strategies are specified in terms of the four Ps, product, price, place (distribution) and promotion.

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Lesson 2: Internal Situation

Whether you are starting a new business or taking an existing business in a new direction, a marketing plan and company description are essential parts of the process. They will help you focus on your company's goals, target markets, competitors and strategies for growth and development. As you write a marketing plan, work to target it to a specific audience to ensure that the resulting materials and activities will be more focused and effective.

The company description section of the business plan is the first section of the plan you will actually write. It describes what the company is like inside and tends to constrain decision making later when you evaluate alternatives. Crafting a great company description will help give a general direction of the business and show any potential lenders or partners what your business is all about.

It describes issues like the values and norms within the organization. It will describe dimensions of the organization that tell us how fast the organization can move and what the organization values.

 

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Lesson 3: External Situation


A  environmental analysis helps a business understand external forces that can affect it. The environment, or external forces, are often factors that a business cannot control, yet it is important to be aware of environmental concerns when preparing a marketing plan or introducing a new product to the market.

The most common method for preparing a marketing environmental analysis is to conduct a PESTLE analysis, which stands for Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Legal and Environmental, areas affecting a business.

PESTLE analysis is a useful tool for any business. Easy to use and understand, PESTLE analysis provides a methodology for critically examining the external factors that may affect the business itself, its operations and/or its strategy.


The most important aspect to remember is that PESTLE analysis is nothing more than a framework for determining the external factors that may affect a business. PESTLE analysis itself is not intended as a rigid structure that requires lists upon lists in tightly defined categories. The greatest strength of PESTLE analysis is its ability to facilitate brainstorming about factors that are outside the company's control but which affect the business nevertheless.

 

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Lesson 4: Assumptions of market, opportunities, and threats


A SWOT analysis (alternatively SWOT Matrix) is a structured planning    method used to evaluate the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats involved in a project or in a business venture.
A SWOT analysis can be carried out for a product, place, industry or person. It involves specifying the objective of the business venture or project and identifying the internal and external factors that are favorable and unfavorable to achieving that objective.

The technique is credited to Albert Humphrey, who led a convention at the Stanford Research Institute (now SRI International) in the 1960s and 1970s using data from Fortune 500 companies. The degree to which the internal environment of the firm matches with the external environment is expressed by the concept of strategic fit.

 

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Lesson 5: Plan of Action strategies

A marketing strategy is a process that can allow an organization to concentrate its limited resources on the greatest opportunities to increase sales and achieve a sustainable competitive advantage. A marketing strategy should be centered around the key concept that customer satisfaction is the main goal. Key part of the general corporate strategy A marketing strategy is most effective when it is an integral component of a firm’s strategy, defining how the organization will successfully engage customers, prospects, and competitors in the market arena, corporate strategies, corporate missions, and corporate goals. As the customer constitutes the source of a company's revenue, marketing strategy is closely linked with sales. A key component of marketing strategy is often to keep marketing in line with a company's overarching mission statement (A mission statement is a statement of the purpose of a company, organization or person, its reason for existing.)

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Lesson 6: Product/Service strategies


Marketers broadly define a product as a bundle of physical, service, and symbolic attributes designed to satisfy consumer wants. Therefore, product strategy involves considerably more than producing a physical good or service. It is a total product concept that includes decisions about package design, brand name, trademarks, warranties, guarantees, product image, and new-product development.

Pricing is one of the most important elements of the marketing mix, (The marketing mix is also called the 4Ps and the 7Ps. The 4Ps are price, place, product and promotion) as it is the only mix, which generates a turnover for the organization. The remaining 3p’s are the variable cost for the organization. It costs to produce and design a product; it costs to distribute a product and costs to promote it.

 

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Lesson 7: Evaluation process


Evaluation is an important part of marketing: it helps your company eliminate ineffective strategies and develop an overall plan that helps build your business. By scheduling regular evaluations of your marketing plan, you can save wasted money by modifying or eliminating campaigns that are not reaching your target market or garnering the response you need. As you plan, build in mechanisms to monitor the success of each marketing effort to make evaluation cheaper and easier.     

A marketing plan is used to reach a target market with a specific message. As time goes by and the marketplace changes, your company's structure and approach must change as well, reflecting the new realities in your area of business. In order to keep your marketing plan effective, you need to evaluate your advertising programs at least once a quarter to keep them up to date

 

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Lesson 8: Product policies


A strategic rule or rules covering how a good or service is promoted to potential consumers. A typical product policy created by a business for a manufactured product might attempt to manage how the item will be perceived by its target market and could also contain information about how durable the product is. The product of the company is its most important asset. The product is not only characterized by his physical features but also by the image that it conveys. Thus, for example, three factors to consider in product policy are product features, packaging and range policies. As to the features, they are the factors that make the clients or participants to consider the product/service good or essential. The quality and the real advantage offered by the product should be in terms of performance or design.

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Lesson 9: Financial consideration

Failure to properly cost and budget your marketing plan could lead to problems. While insufficient funding for such items as equipment or staffing may immediately come to mind when budgeting for the whole business, it's the lack of a properly constructed marketing budget that dooms many marketing plans and campaigns. A marketing budget is the marketing plan written in terms of costs.

Marketing plan budgets are usually created a year in advance. There are a number of elements to include in a marketing plan budget. Start by getting others involved in the process. Determine what marketing services other departments like sales and research and development need. They may have certain projects they need completed in the coming year. Also, expect some ad hoc requests to arise during the year. Therefore, allocate an extra 10 or 15 percent to your marketing budget.

 

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Lesson 10: Analysis of recovery


In any business things can happen for example 'Building Loss'. What happens if you lose your place of business, or your source of financing or unexpected flaws in the product? These are impact scenarios that can affect your business.  Business environments, such as distribution, warehousing, etc. are likely to have additional issues to manage following a disruptive event.

After defining potential threats, documenting the impact scenarios that form the basis of the Analysis of recovery plan is recommended. In general, planning for the most wide-reaching disaster or disturbance is preferable to planning for a smaller scale problem, as almost all smaller scale problems are partial elements of larger disasters.

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