Over the next few weeks, we are going to be exploring the Marketing Plan. Usually when you develop a business plan the plan also incorporates a marketing plan, however, there is nothing stopping you from developing a marketing plan for your business or specific product in isolation of the business plan. You can also review your marketing plan at any stage of your product life cycle.

A marketing plan comprises of eight major areas;

1. Situation Analysis

2.Objectives

3. Marketing Strategy

4. Marketing Programs

5. An Implementation Plan

6. Performance Evaluation & Monitoring

7. Financials

8. Contigency Plans

Visit us every week over the next few weeks to get insights and detailed information about preparing and implementing a marketing plan.

South Africa has arguably one of the most conducive business environments in Africa, however, we have our own challenges as well.

We have the best infrastructure and we continue to invest in additional development. On the other hand we have a young democracy which is marred by political unrest especially within the ruling party, the ANC which continues to experience factions. In addition many view our government as corrupt and in efficient in some areas.

Lately we have also experienced unions issues and strikes which continue to pose a threat to our economy and the Rand. Many lives have been lost in the process, in particular the Marikana massacre which exposed both our government and the strength of our democracy.

Other than that one would feel we have all the ingredients to offer the world the most conducive environment for business as well as for investment.

Relationship Marketing is a form of marketing that emphasizes customer retention and satisfaction than sales. It deals with the long term value of customers and communicating with them beyond just advertising and sales promotional messages.

Margaret Rouse defines relationship marketing as a strategy designed to foster customer loyalty, interaction and long-term engagement.

So what are the benefits to this form of marketing?

Product development is all about solving problems. When a business starts envisioning or designing a product for the market,  the product must be less about what the business wants and more about a solution to a problem identified by the business.

Walt Disney once said “You don’t build it for yourself. You know what the people want and you build it for them.”

This means that businesses need to understand exactly what it is that customers need and create a product that satisfies that gap.

Features

  • Can Small Businesses Merge and Acquire?

    The answer is definitely yes. The first advantage that arises from merging is the increase of economies of scale. Economies of scale do not only increase in terms of the balance sheet but more so in terms of the human resource. For small businesses it is also likely that the balance sheets may have no much glory to show, however, the different shareholders may combine their intellect, experience and that of their personnel to develop a much stronger business.

    Read More
  • Analysing the markets of your business

    It is very important to analyse your markets whether you are starting a business or you are in business already. Existing businesses continuously work on budgets/sales forecasts which should generally be influenced by the prevailing behavior of the market among other factors. You cannot derive your forecasts purely on targets you want to achieve, you have to check your targets against the reality of the market situation.

    Considering the info about your markets is not an excuse for you not to achieve sales forecasts, however, it is a way to ensure that you can marry the right strategy to achieving your targets by using marketing analogies to derive your strategies.

    A good market analysis must consider the following;

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  • Risk Management in Small Businesses

    In a perfect world each individual would jump at an opportunity of running a business free of risks and uncertainties, unfortunately this is not the case, behind every success there is a painful story.

    Starting a small business comes with lots of challenges; entrepreneurs spend time and money developing a good business plan that is fitting for their prospective business. However, the management of risk is often overlooked by entrepreneurs who mistakenly believe that the loss is best dealt with once it has materialized.

    Risk refers to a possible loss which may arise from operations, people, process, systems, and internal as well as external events.  Once these are overlooked in your business operations they will interfere with your company’s financial stability.

    Read More
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