Positioning also includes submitting your web-
site to the major search engines. List these
engines in your plan.
The communication process you have with site
visitors is also important. How do you commu-
nicate to potential customers in the online
world? In fact, how do you communicate to
any visitor that communicates with you
through your digital presence? I like the term
digital presence better than website because
websites as they are today are only one way to
access a company over the Internet. In your
marketing plan, think about how you are com-
municating to potential customers through
Internet-enabled devices, such as handheld
computers, PDAs, cell phones, TVs, cars, refrig-
erators, and microwave ovens.
As in other parts of your plan, keep your writ-
ing simple. Too much jargon in both technical
and business terms can turn off the reader.
Write a Business Plan In No Time
Search engines are one of
the Web’s major resources
for driving qualified traffic.Being listed in
the top search engines on the Internet is
very important if you want your website to
be found.Most people use search engines
when looking for products,information, or
services on the Internet.Here are some of
the top search engines you should submit
your website to:
• AOL Search—http://search.aol.com
• Ask Jeeves—http://www.
• Open Directory—http://dmoz.org
To do list
Describe your advertising vehicles
Decide whether you’ll use an advertising agency
Consider direct response and telemarketing
Plan to acquire customers online
Create a media buy schedule
The second platform, in your marketing strategy is acquisition. The objective of every
company, of course, is to acquire customers. When describing your acquisition plan,
first choose the marketing vehicles and then explain how best they can enable you
to reach your target market. Make sure you describe the phases of your advertising
plan. For example, is your budget heavier in the first few months of the year and
later tapers off, or do you have a consistent acquisition campaign running for many
Don’t make the mistake of being too general in your description (“I will buy ads on
local newspapers and radio”) or too unrealistic (“I will spend no money on advertis-
ing because I will trade my product or service for ad space”) in your marketing plan.
Describing Your Advertising Placements
When describing your advertising vehicles, be specific in their size, frequency, and
type. If you plan to run print ads, you need to state the size of the ads and if they
are black and white or in color. If you plan to buy radio or TV ads, state how long
the spot is (30 seconds, one minute) and its frequency (once a day, twice a day, and
Trade shows are another type of acquisition strategy, if it applies to your business.
Trade shows can offer you good exposure to clients or customers in your market. List
in your plan the names and dates of the trade shows you plan to attend or display
products or services. If you offer any show specials, describe them in your plan. And
if you plan to advertise in the show directory, state this also.
The expected results of your marketing effort should be realistically based upon the
proposed marketing budget in your financial plan. State where you will put your
advertising dollars, why you chose those methods, how your message will reach your
target market, when your advertising campaign will begin, how much your plan
will cost (including both placement cost and production of your ads) and what for-
mat your advertising will take. Mention if you will be using co-op dollars to help
fund your advertising plan. If so, detail how much will bee paid cooperatively with
by vendors or distributors and by whom. Back up your decisions and include copies
of your promotional materials, such as brochures, direct mail advertisements, and
flyers, in the Supporting Documents section of your plan.
Be sure to give a line item description in your
financial plan of each advertising method you
use to market your business. You should outline
the proposed mix of your advertising media, use
of publicity, and/or other promotional programs.
Are you doing a saturation advertising cam-
paign, a direct response promotion, telemarket-
ing, distributing brochures or catalogs, or buying leads? The cost of these must be
reflected in your financial plan.
As for the number of people you would like to reach, if you are on a limited budget,
it might be better to reach fewer, more likely prospects more often, than too many
people occasionally. And don’t make the mistake of attacking an entire market
instead of a narrow niche.
CHAPTER 8 Crafting Your Marketing Strategy
A good advertising campaign
relies on message repetition.
Say the same message in one or two media
types over and over again.