How to create a simple marketing plan for your small business

If you’re an entrepreneur or a small business owner, I’d like to ask you a question.


Do you have a marketing plan?

If you answered, “Um, no, not really….”, then you’re not alone. In fact, you’ve given me the answer I usually get when I ask that question!

The truth is that most local business owners don’t have a marketing plan, and I understand why….

Most entrepreneurs start their business because of a love of what they do – whether that’s bookkeeping, beauty, baking or building. 

They don’t start a business to spend time putting together marketing plans and mastering marketing techniques, and they most probably won’t have banked on marketing having to be such a large task on their business to-do list!

But unfortunately, that’s the reality. If you want to grow your business, then you need to attract more customers.

In order to attract more customers, you need to do some marketing.

In order to do the right marketing, you need to plan a few things – and that’s where a marketing plan can come in useful. But let’s back up a little...


What is a marketing strategy? 

A marketing plan, sometimes called a marketing strategy, covers all the information you need to be thinking about when looking to do more marketing on your business. 

To explain, here’s an analogy I sometimes use…

If you decided to build an extension to your house, would you just go out and buy a load of bricks? Or would you have some plans made up, so you could decide what you wanted the end result to look like, and budget for it properly. (I really hope you wouldn’t just go out and buy bricks….!)

Well, it’s just the same with marketing your business. You need to plan to get the end result you want.

Unfortunately, many business owners just ‘buy bricks’, because they just want to get their marketing activity moving quickly, whether the ‘bricks’ are newspaper adverts or Facebook Ads!   But rushing ahead isn’t a good idea!

Lack of planning is a common reason why small business owners can sometimes find the results from their marketing efforts disappointing, and ineffective at bringing in new business. The planned approach is a much more successful way forward...

So, think of your marketing plan a bit like a set of architect drawings. It sets out what you’re wanting to achieve and gives you a route to get there. It shows you a success blueprint – including where the doors and windows are so you can check there’ll be enough light and access. Or, in the case of a marketing plan, where enough of your target audience is hanging out, and where you want to put your important marketing messages!


A Success Blueprint for Marketing

So, your marketing plan gives you somewhere to plan out what you want to achieve, and a success blueprint to follow.  As well as incorporating your goals, it looks at the type of customers you’re looking to attract, how competitive your marketplace is, how your business can stand out from the rest, your pricing structure, your planned marketing activity for the period, the kind of marketing budget you have to work with and some of the key performance indicators.

Phew! That sounds like hard work doesn’t it.  In fact, I imagine that’s another reason local business owners don’t rush to do a marketing plan, as they imagine a marketing plan has to involve reams of paper, an executive summary at the front and tonnes of appendices at the back!

But that isn't necessary. There’s an easier way…. Which is why many small business owners love my ONE SHEET MARKETING STRATEGY CHEAT!  It makes marketing planning so quick and simple. 

It covers all the questions you need to answer to put together a simple marketing strategy, but in one sheet – which is only 2-sides of A4 paper.

Obviously, if you want to write more, that’s your choice. But sometimes, less is more. Getting the base information onto this sheet can really help you get your head clear about where you are now and where you want to get to. It gives you the big picture vision to enable you to take action.

If you’d like a copy of the One Sheet Marketing Strategy Cheat, just CLICK HERE.


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