Everyone who wants to run a business of some kind needs a business plan, it is that simple. It does not matter if you are a small mom and pop business that caters to mostly local customers or if you are a giant enterprise with hundreds of employees and millions of customers – you need a business plan that will help you set your goals, your targets, your strategies and more.
One essential part of every business plan, especially in the advanced stage is definitely marketing. The purpose of marketing it to expand your customer base and grow your business, subsequently leading to increased income, development of the business and its growth.
DIY or hire professionals?
The first question that you need to ask yourself is whether you will be able to do your marketing on your own or whether you need professionals to help you. Some of the things that you need to consider before making the decision is whether you know anything about marketing; whether you are clear about your goals and whether you have the time to do it yourself.
You should understand that if you do decide to do it yourself, you will be quite limited in what you will be able to accomplish. There is a reason why there are professionals who spend their lives perfecting the craft.
Traditional marketing is still the primary course of action for most business owners and for most marketing companies. People can still gain a lot from being advertised in traditional media such as radio, TV and newspapers and magazines. There is also a lot to be gained by organizing events and charities, sending ads through mail and putting up posters and spreading flyers.
Many of these traditional marketing solutions are going to cost you money but they will be reaching a large number of people who will hear about your brand, about your business and your products and this will result in an increase in the number of customers. Furthermore, these traditional marketing techniques still penetrate the largest percentage of the population and do not require too much involvement from them.
In the last decade or so, the importance of online marketing has grown dramatically. First of all, online marketing is a much cheaper option, even if you go with a reputable online PR agency that will take care of all your online marketing efforts. If your budget is really limited, you can do some of it on your own, without even hiring someone. Still, if you want the best possible results, you will still need professional help.
Online marketing is particularly successful in cases when your target customers are young. One thing that you might find interesting is that even small local businesses can benefit greatly from online marketing as almost all of the consumers research their purchases online before buying stuff, even if these are local purchases.
Without marketing, you might as well not exist in today’s business climate. You need to know what you wish to achieve, you need to know what you can do realistically and you need to be sure that the people helping you are the best people for this job. Once you are certain of this, it is time to grow that business of yours and expand your company.