The Marketing Plan is a highly detailed, heavily researched and, hopefully, well written report that many inside and possibly outside the organization will evaluate. In many respects, the Marketing Plan is the most important document produced by marketers as it not only helps to justify what has occurred in the past, but is critical for explaining where a company intends to go in the future.
Th Marketing Plan is widely used by both large large corporate marketing departments and also by small startup companies. It is particularly important for marketers who seek funding for new projects or to expand existing products or services.
In the first section of our highly detailed Principles of Marketing Tutorials we lay the groundwork for our study of the field of marketing with a close look at marketing’s key concepts and the important tasks marketers perform.
We will see that marketing encompasses a wide array of business decisions that are essential to the success of nearly all organizations.
Possibly the most challenging concept in marketing deals with understanding why buyers do what they do (or don’t do). But such knowledge is critical for marketers since having a strong understanding of buyer behavior will help shed light on what is important to the customer and also suggest the important influences on customer decision-making. Using this information, marketers can create marketing programs that they believe will be of interest to customers.
In the Product Decisions tutorial, we showed that marketers are confronted with many issues when building the product component of their marketing strategy. While product decisions represent just one aspect of marketer’s overall activities, these decisions are often the most important because they lead directly to the reasons (i.e., benefits offered, solutions to problems) for why the customer decides to choose the organization’s goods, services or ideas.
In this section of the Principles of Marketing Tutorials we take all that has been discussed to this point and see how marketers use this information to manage business decisions. In particular, in this tutorial we focus attention on the importance of marketing planning with special attention given to the role marketing strategy plays in the planning process. For marketers planning is an essential task that must be continually undertaken.