Author: Jim Riley Last updated: Sunday 23 September, 2012
Macdonald (1995) suggests that several stages have to be completed in order to arrive at a strategic marketing plan. These are summarised in the diagram below:
The extent to which each part of the above process needs to be carried out depends on the size and complexity of the business.
In a small or undiversified business, where senior management have a strong knowledge and detailed understanding of the overall business, it may not be necessary to formalise the marketing planning process.
By contrast, in a highly diversified business, top level management will not have knowledge and expertise that matches subordinate management. In this situation, it makes sense to put formal marketing planning procedures in place throughout the organisation.
From the diagram, the main components of a marketing plan can be summarised as:
Component of the plan
A meaningful statement of the purpose and direction of the business
The overall business objectives that shape the marketing plan
The way the information for marketing planning is organised. Assesses the situation of marketing in the business – the products, resources, distribution methods, market shares, competitors etc
The markets the business is in (and targeting) – size , structure, growth etc
An assessment of the firm’s current position, showing the strengths & weaknesses (internal factors) and opportunities and threats (external factors)
Marketing objectives and strategies
What the marketing function wants to achieve (consistent with corporate objectives) and how it intends to do it (e.g. Ansoff, Porter)
Usually a detailed budget for the next year and an outline budget for the next 2-3 years