THURSDAY: CONVERTING YOUR OBJECTIVES INTO ACTIONS PLANS.
These are three steps you have to go through to convert each of your objectives (from yesterday) into a strategy, or action plan:
- Look at the options.
- Consider the practicalities.
- Select the best route.
LOOK AT THE OPTIONS:
For the most objectives, you have set, you will that there are a number of ways to achieve them; in other words, you have the number of options.
For a moment, simply write down the possibilities. We’ll discuss how to pick the right one in a minute.
The important thing is to think as freely as possible to make sure you consider everything that might be useful. This is a process in which imaginative thinking and open-minded approach are valuable. Try to brainstorm ideas for this with the other people if you can; it’s an excellent way to generate ideas.
FIVE KEY AREAS OF MARKETING:
Most of your objectives will fall into one of these categories.
- Increase awareness of your company and your product or services.
- Increase existing customers loyalty.
- Secure sales.
- Generate higher turnover.
- Increase your knowledge of your market.
MAKE IT MORE SPECIFIC:
Of course, they are not the whole story: each of the above points still begs several questions that need answering.
- Increase awareness through exhibitions.
- Increase loyalty by making more contacts with customers.
- Secure sales by improving staff training.
- Increase market knowledge by commissioning the research.
CONSIDER THE PRACTICALITIES:
The way to do this is to examine the implications of each option from a practical point of view. In each case you need to calculate:
- The potential revenue.
- The cost.
- The time implications.
- The staffing implications.
- The training.
- The transport implications.
You should have enough information to be able to do these calculations quite easily. Then you will be ready to weigh up the options against each other. If any of your calculations show that a particular option won’t be cost-effective, either revise it or abandon it.
SELECT THE BEST ROUTE:
If you find that there isn’t much to choose between two or more of the options, don’t waste time on deciding which options to take. If either will do the job equally well, pick either; it probably doesn’t matter which you choose.
There is one thing, however, you must consider: combining options.
TIP: WHEN IT COMES TO OBJECTIVES THAT RELATE TO INCREASING AWARENESS OF YOUR COMPANY, OR YOUR PRODUCTS OR SERVICES, YOU’LL FIND THAT SEVERAL APPROACHES WILL OFTEN WORK. THEY CAN FREQUENTLY BE MIXED WITH OFTEN SUPPORT EACH OTHER TO GIVE YOU A BETTER RESULT THAN THEY EVER COULD ALONE.
YOUR FINISHED ACTION PLAN:
At the end of all this, you will have a clear list of objectives, and you will have drawn up your action plan for meeting each one. This should not only outline how you will meet each objective but also give you a schedule for doing so.
Today you’ve gone through the process of converting your objectives into workable marketing strategy or action plan. You took the steps needed to work out how you’re going to get from where you are to where you want to be.
Some areas will be challenging and at times frustrating, especially if you don’t have all the information you need, and taking an educated guess will have to do.