Chapter 3

Marketing planning for services: the process


In this chapter, we will take an overview of the strategic marketing planning process for services, shown above, and also a brief look at some of its component parts. We will also consider some of the reasons why service organizations do not always manage to take advantage of the benefits that strategic marketing planning should bring. The four phases shown above will be examined in detail later in Chapters 5 to 10.

What is marketing planning?

In essence, marketing planning is a series of activities which are tackled in a logical sequence in a way that leads to the setting of marketing objectives and the devising of programmes to meet them. Thus, the marketing plan becomes a framework for identifying where and why marketing resources are going to be allocated, when they are to come into play and how they are to be integrated in order to make maximum impact.

The output of this process is the strategic marketing plan, the contents of which will be spelled out later in this chapter.

Marketing plans are now an essential aspect of business

As we saw in the previous chapter, when business life was less volatile and complex than it is today service companies were able to survive and sometimes prosper without paying very much attention to marketing planning. Indeed, there are no doubt a few fortunate companies who are still in ...

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