Join Drew Boyd for an in-depth discussion in this video Writing the tactical section, part of Writing a Marketing Plan.
- A great marketing strategy only comes to life when you take action. Now it's time to dive in and write the tactical section of your marketing plan. This is where you describe in detail your product or service programs, your pricing approach, your promotion and marketing communications programs, and your channel design. In marketing we call these the four Ps. By product and service programs, these refer to all of the aspects of how products and services perform their job in delivering benefits.
It includes things like the design of the product, how it feels to use it, the packaging of the product, and the people and processes involved in dealing with customers. Now, be sure to describe the entire customer buying experience, which typically includes the following steps. First is the need recognition phase, this is where customers realize they want something. The next step is information search where they gather information from a wide variety of sources.
Now this is a critical step because this is when a customer is most receptive to your message. Once a customer gathers information they evaluate the alternatives based on what features are most important, and which product does the best job in delivering those features. Eventually they go to the purchase phase, where they actually buy the product. Now, you might think that the buying process ends here with the final purchase, but there's one last step called the post-purchase behavior phase. Once customers start using the product they compare the results with their expectations.
Pricing involves two things, setting the actual price the customers will pay, and communicating those prices in an effective way. The price of your product or service implies their value that the consumer should expect from buying it and using it. Your written plan should list the prices you intend to charge, and why they're set at that level. Describe where and when prices will be communicated to the customer, this might be a simple price sticker on your packaging, or you might have prices on your website.
Promotion includes all the things you say outside of the company to the market. This is where you broadcast the value proposition, and other information about the product. It includes advertising, in-store promotions, email campaigns, perhaps social media, and sales promotion. Your written plan should outline the specific programs in terms of where and when you'll promote your products, and finally distribution, these are the programs that create an effective pathway to get the product from the factory into the customers' hands.
Somebody has to take the product, ship it, store it, place it on the shelves, sell it, and possibly service it once the sale is made. Include in your written plan the specific details of where customers can buy your products, which might include store locations, online distributors, and so on. To be an effective marketing plan all four Ps have to work together to convey the value proposition. No one of the four Ps can carry the load.
A good marketer uses all the tactical tools available to make the biggest impact possible.
- Planning for a marketing campaign
- Writing the situation analysis
- Writing the strategic, tactical, and budget sections of the plan
- Leveraging your plan