All successful marketing projects have one thing in common: they start with a plan.

When working with business owners, I find the best marketing plans are ones that are tactical and consist of a series of actions all aimed at gaining more sales in an organised and well thought out manner.

My view is that a marketing campaign without a plan is about as good as a thesis without research.

Here are tips on how to put a tactical marketing plan in place.

Plan it out

Organise a meeting with your team. Have an agenda based on the steps below, so a scribe can simply fill in the blanks and jot down any new points that arise.

Rally the troops

The best plans are achieved through think-tank scenarios, so in your meeting gather the following information.

Marketing Objectives
Depending on the type and size of your business your goals may vary which will have a flow-on effect, determine later bits in your action plan.

No doubt you will want your strategies to be traced back to sales or more customers. As an alternative set of thinking, increasing the value of sales per customer can be an alternative way to focus on increasing sales and, in most cases, is more effective.

Target Marketing Definition
Segment the market based on customer characteristics an demographics,then pain a picture of the person you’re selling to. Who they are, what they like, and how do they like to be sold and communicated to?

Current Market Position
Before you decide where you are going, look at where you’ve been. Consider why and how your customers do business with you. How are you perceived in the marketplace, and how do you describe what you offer?

The market position of your product must stand out against a backdrop of competitors, so carefully develop a unique selling proposition.

Thinking about your marketing mix is important here -some ideas include:

o Advertising

o Direct marketing

o Sales promotion

o Sponsorship

o Communication methods

o Aesthetic appearance of business and staff

o Range and standard of sales literature

What suits your product and service offer best and where will you get the best ROI?

Action Plan

Develop a timeline of when things should be done and be sure to include dates to monitor results.

Monitoring, Evaluation, and Control

A great tactical marketing plan is a complete waste of time if you don’t allocate time to monitor and evaluate actions down the track. Have a clear picture of what exactly you plan to monitor and who is responsible for respective areas. An action plan is a progressive project that will change and grow with the business.