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    Marketing plan: purpose, strategy, legal and ethical issues, components of plan

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    Marketers must understand the tools of their trade.

    1. What is the overall purpose of a marketing plan?
    2. How do a marketing plan and strategic marketing plan fit together?
    3. What are some legal or ethical issues you may need to consider?
    4. List and describe the various components of a strategic marketing plan?.

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    Why prepare one?

    A marketing plan helps you establish, direct and coordinate your marketing efforts. Preparing a marketing plan forces you to assess what's going on in your marketplace and how it affects your business. It also provides a benchmark for later measurement. Often, simply embarking on the process of preparing a marketing plan guides you in developing a successful marketing strategy.

    Who reads it? Just as a road map guides you on a journey, a marketing plan guides you and your staff to reach your goals; it keeps you from getting off- course.

    Representatives from organizations that plan to lend you money or invest in your business require a business plan-and your marketing plan is a critical component of that business plan.

    What is it?

    A marketing plan contains information about your company and its products, marketing objectives and strategies, as well as how you will measure the success of your marketing activities. It describes all the marketing activities you'll perform during a specified time period (usually one year). You'll also include any background information and research results you used to select those marketing activities. Finally, you'll document the costs associated with your planned marketing activities as well as the measurements you'll use to determine success.

    Most often, a marketing plan is a component of a business plan. A business plan basically states how you plan to run your company-what your goals are how much money it will take to achieve your goals and what activities you'll perform to achieve your goals. Marketing, obviously, is one of those activities. Marketing plans sometimes stand alone but should always support and be closely linked to a company's business objectives.

    You need to have a thorough understanding of the following points to develop a marketing plan:
    ? your products or services and their features and benefits
    ? the problem, need or desire your product or service solves or meets for your customer
    ? your target market and its characteristics and buying habits
    ? current and potential competing products or services

    When should I prepare one?

    Ideally, you will develop your first marketing plan as a component of your overall business plan before you launch your business. If you're already in business without a written plan, however, develop one now with your goals for the next 12 months in mind.

    Update your plan on a regular basis. Last year's strategy may not work given this year's market conditions. Prepare reminders to review and update your marketing plan about every quarter, but at least annually.


    A Strategic Marketing Plan lets you know where you want your company to be next year - and five years from now. Finding the right group of people to help your Strategic marketing plan get you there is not always easy and absolutely essential for success. Every company designs strategic plans to achieve their set objectives and goals. These plans can be short, medium, or long-term, according to the size and scope of the company. It is very important that the company specifies accurately and carefully its mission. The mission is fundamental since it represents the operative functions that the company is going to perform in the market and supply to the consumers. For a company, it is very important to define its mission, and if they are carefully devised they are a source of success for the company. Revised missions have turned the destiny of many companies. The essence of strategic planning is the systematic identification of the opportunities and threats that will arise in the future, which, combined with other important data, supply the base for a company to make ...

    Solution Summary

    The cited solution of 2300+ words presents a comprehensive view of marketing plans from multiple aspects.