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How Marketing Plans Work

Marketing Objectives

Your marketing objectives should be the means to achieve your sales objectives. By working through your target market data and your market segment data, you should come up with marketing objectives that address every group. Your marketing objectives should follow the same rules as the sales objectives, and be measurable, quantifiable (meaning there is a specific number of some sort assigned to each one), and time specific.

You should have a marketing objective that addresses each group in your target market. For this reason, you need to have good data about the sizes of your market, potential market, and your current customer base. To this data, add information such as recognized opportunities, your customers' buying rates, and other behavioral issues. This information will help you estimate the numbers you need to attach to your marketing objectives.

For example, imagine this scenario:

  1. You know your 2,500 customers each bought an average of 2.5 of your widgets last year.
  2. You've also identified a new market of 3,500 potential customers (at your current market share percentage) that you're estimating will buy an average of 2 widgets each for the year.
  3. In addition, you've identified an opportunity to add a service contract for customers that would cost 10% of the product cost.

Your marketing objective for existing customers could then be: To increase your current customers' buying rate by 20% and sell service contracts to 50% of those customers.

Your marketing objective for new customers could then be: Sell your widgets to 50% of the new market, create a buying rate within that group of 2 units per year, and sell service contracts to 50% of that group.

Keep in mind that your current customer base may not all buy again, so you should probably account for the drop in that group's purchases by also adding a goal to retain a specific percentage of your existing customers. Set objectives like these for every segment of your market, based on your data. Then, set up a chart to show the math involved in how your marketing objectives meet your sales objectives. Plug in numbers for your percentages and product prices to show that the totals add up.