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Do You Need a Marketing Strategy or Marketing Plan?

Wednesday 21 February 2018

9 minute read

By Rachel Townsend Green

Marketing often gets a bad press – it’s the element of the business mix that people feel is intangible, it’s a ‘nice to have’ and often the first in the firing line when budget cuts are needed.

Although many of us would argue that it is actually a resource which needs to be increased in times of need rather than scaled back.

Often regarded as a lesser relation of business services, it is, however, an essential part of your overarching business strategy – it should meld with and compliment your business drivers, needs and goals. 

Many of the misconceptions are a result of fundamental misconceptions of exactly what this marketing ‘being’ is, why you need it and how to harness it.  Throw into the mix the increased accessibility of marketing tools enabled by digital and technological advances and, suddenly, the choice is overwhelming and often people assume that they can just do it themselves.

So, in order to shed some light, we are going to go back to basics, share some of the fundamentals and explain why the implementation of robust marketing techniques in order to better engage with your existing (and, very importantly) potential clients is essential to any business.

It’s fair to say that much of the confusion that exists is down to some inconsistencies in the way in which things are labelled or referred to – for example – do you need a marketing strategy?  A marketing plan?  What are they?  Are they the same or are they different?

In a nutshell, they are different and the following series of blogs will explain what they are, why you need them, how to do them and how to monitor them (and why that’s important too).

Without going into reams and reams of detail here…

  • Your marketing strategy is your top-level game plan for business maintenance or growth and integrates with other elements of your overall business plan – what you want to achieve. 
  • Your marketing plan is the roadmap – the ‘how to’ – what you will actually do to get to the goals identified. 

Having both is essential to success. 

You may have a whole plan to release content and can undertake a wide variety of efforts in order to engage with a wider audience but it will probably fall flat or miss the mark if it is not built upon the firm foundations of an informed and researched strategy.

So, you can see already that although often used interchangeably in the world of marketing, plan and strategy are, in actual fact, two entirely different things – both important and contributory to your success.

Find more like this via Marketing Strategy.

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