Original insights in international business and marketing
Marketing plans are a dime a dozen. Almost anyone can throw one together without too much effort. Quality and usefulness, of course, are an entirely different matter.
Marketing Plans typically range from blabbering 50+ pages on PowerPoint, to complex Excel worksheets and to simple, one-page documents (much better!). Lately, many Marketing plans have also been streamlined into standard forms and processes. It’s become almost a color-by-numbers exercise (i.e. cookbook) where you receive a corporate template that gets filled with marketing/finance jargon, briefly discussed, filed and ultimately forgotten. Having done a number of these over the years, I am starting to questions their merit, but especially their effectiveness at least in their current form.
There is a military saying that goes: “The best strategic plans disappear after the first bullet is fired.”
How many times have you created marketing plans months ahead of a new fiscal year and found that so much has happened in between (reorganization, acquisitions, economic crisis, new regulations, natural disasters, etc…) that the plan itself becomes either meaningless or severely outdated? I’ve also found that these documents range from being too bloated & complex to being generic to a fault. The point is that creating a Marketing Strategy document is not especially hard (although they are plenty of ways to make it more complicated than it has to be!) and can be completed in as little as a day. The trick, however, is to effectively lay out a living marketing strategy that drives behaviors/actions/results, resonates with the audience, has some grip, and brings focus/clarity to the organization.
Everybody has their own “sauce” for making marketing plans. Here is a simple checklist for things you might want to consider or factor into your next document & strategy:
Thoughts? Comments? Emotional outbursts? Leave a comment!