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Wedding Business Marketing – Planning Your Success

Creating a marketing plan for your wedding business doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some common questions about planning.
 
Q. What will a marketing plan do for me?
 
A. A properly constructed marketing plan helps you design your service so that it’s more attractive and visible to potential buyers. It can also help you be more profitable.
 
Q. What should a good plan include?
 
A. First off writing marketing plan is an opportunity for you to take an objective look at your business. It forces you to look at facts instead of blindly preceding on guesswork. You need to look at the needs of your customers, trends in the market as well as your competition is.

You need to figure out exactly who your customers are. Is your target market the affluent, older bride or is it the younger, middle-class bride? Knowing your ideal client will help you decide how to reach her.

 
Q. When should you decide on how much to charge?
 
A. The planning process is your opportunity to decide on your pricing strategy. You also need to take a careful look at your brand’s personality and your positioning statement.
 
Q. What’s a positioning statement?
 
A. Positioning is nothing more than how you were potential customer perceives your business. Are you the friendly and approachable planner? Are you a cost-cutting wedding planner? Are you the exotic destination-wedding planner? Carefully consider how you wish to be perceived in your market.
 
Q. Is a marketing plan only good for new businesses? Can it help me get repeat customers?
 
A. Absolutely. A solid marketing plan is not just about attracting new customers it also includes how you will deliver the outstanding service that’s required to generate word-of-mouth referrals.
 
Q. How many pages should my marketing plan be?
 
A. There is no hard and fast rule on how many pages of marketing plan should be. The size of the document is not as important as the thinking that goes behind it. You want and make sure that your marketing plan is actionable in other words you can take this document and use it as your road-map to achieving your goals.
 
Q. Should I hire someone to write it?
 
A. You should never abdicate planning your business to anybody else. A marketing plan is not a document or impressing bankers. The only thing that really impresses bankers is consistently generating profits. The decisions you make in a marketing plan affect what you were going to be doing next week next month or next year. You have to be intimately involved in creating a marketing plan that resonates with you your values and your objectives.
 
Q. What mistakes do wedding planners make when they create a marketing plan?
 
A. They fail to use the plan as a road-map to guide every business decision. They seem to forget about the plan and wing it instead. Simply typing up a marketing plan putting it in a three ring binder and leaving it there is not going to help you grow your business. I’d rather see you write a marketing plan on the back of a napkin that actionable than having a 70 page typeset dead document.
 
Q. Any other advice?
 
A.  There’s lots to learn about marketing. Don’t get overwhelmed. There are plenty of resources out there to help you grow your business intelligently.

How to Develop a Marketing Plan Quickly

Marketing directors usually have the task of developing the marketing strategy that a company will follow. This can mean looking at the ways in which the success of a service can be determined through customer feedback. As a director in marketing, you may have the task of having to analyze trends for your company to see exactly what the customer needs and is searching for. You will also need to know who is your largest competitor and tailor a marketing plan that can counteract an strategies they currently have going. Therefore, it might be necessary to develop a marketing plan quickly to do so.

Keep in mind that quick in this case does not mean that the key elements will be missing, but rather enough research will be completed, so that when it comes time to write the plan, it flows easily and is effortless. The task for the marketing director is not only to develop a marketing plan quickly but also to do so within the resources and distinct capabilities of the company. Basically what the company has at hand and available to them. This task can be challenging for some people, even those trained in marketing.

Two key elements need to be at work for a marketing director to quickly develop a plan that is going to be effective. First the company must have a clear understanding of what it is hoping to achieve with its marketing strategy. If the company is vague in the success it hopes to achieve, then it can really measure if its level of success, as there is nothing to measure it against. Instead the company should be challenged to state clear objectives such as, an increase of customers by 10 percent. Therefore, if marketing results in 12 percent more customers, then the company can stay that the campaign was successful.

Another key element that a marketing director will need to quickly develop a plan is a knowledge of a product. As the head of the marketing team, there is no one other than the product designer who should know more about the product that you will implementing a strategy for. Therefore, a quick plan can only really be accomplished if you have thorough product knowledge.

However, developing a plan quickly should not be the only reason to have thorough knowledge of a product. Instead it is beneficial to know what you are selling regardless of the circumstances. Therefore, when it is time to sit down to quickly develop your marketing plan, you would have an understanding of the two key elements that will help you in constructing it. From there it is just a matter of using a marketing plan template to fill in the necessary details.

MLM Marketing Plan

No doubt if you are trying to progress on your journey to MLM success and you have been doing some training and some research then you will have discovered the importance of having a good MLM marketing plan in place.

A good MLM marketing plan is vital for many reasons. Four of the most important ones are detailed below:

• It provides you with structure and guidance.
• It helps to support effective time management.
• It actively supports you in achieving your goals.
• It gives you the ability to be able to evaluate your progress.

So you understand the importance of having a good MLM marketing plan in place but how do you go about creating one? Well you could search for basic templates that you could use to start you off, however in my experience these are never as helpful as I hope they will be. That’s because everyone has a different way of working and generally ‘one size fits all’ plans are difficult to find. Instead I recommend that you pull your own plan together, sticking some simple principles and guidelines:

Step 1

Think carefully about the marketing methods that you are going to select to focus on. If you are new to MLM marketing, I suggest that you select one method at a time with the aim of perfecting it before introducing a second method.

Step 2

Split each marketing method out in to its own MLM marketing plan. Each plan should focus purely upon the actions required for that method, where possible detailing the time involved for each action.

Step 3

Provide as much structure as possible within each marketing plan. Break all actions down in to bite size chunks. If you have a monthly action, consider what you need to do on a daily or weekly basis in order for that monthly action to be effective. For big tasks, break them down so you can see step by step, all of the actions required for you to complete the task.

Step 4

Don’t be afraid to go back to your plan and update or re-schedule as often as necessary. Especially in the early days it’s easy to underestimate the time required for certain actions or miss some important actions all together. Make all of your MLM marketing plans work in progress so that you can constantly tweak them until they are as effective as they can be.

Step 5

Pull together one overall plan that incorporates all of your MLM marketing plans. This plan is going to be the key to your time management as well as a guide to keep you on track with all of your individual plans and actions. Without this it is easy to become so consumed with one plan and one set of actions that other plans and required actions start to suffer. Allocate specific amounts of time to each plan and try your best to stick to it.

Step 6

Have scope within your plans to be able to update your progress against your actions. This is vital to being able to plan future actions and required time allocations as well as giving you the opportunity to be able to regularly track your progress against your plan.

Step 7

Before you put any plans in place you should have spent some time setting your goals. These goals should be very clear and burned in to your mind. Make sure these goals are clearly visible on your MLM marketing plans. Even if only at a subconscious level, this will help you to focus on each action with a clear understanding of how it is taking you one step closer to your goals.

As well as these steps there are some general considerations you should have when developing your marketing plans:

• Be realistic. Don’t schedule 10 hour days if you know that there is no chance of you ever working more than 5 hours. This will be completely counter-productive as you will not be able to stick to the timescales allocated and will constantly be chasing your tail and playing catch up. That’s not the most productive way to work!

• Don’t waste too much time on the cosmetics. It’s not how this plan looks that is important. After all, it’s only for your own use. As long as you are comfortable that it provides you with everything that you need then that’s enough – even if it’s not particularly pleasing on the eye.

• Organisation is key. Although it may seem like a waste of time to be planning rather than completing actions, you will complete your actions far more effectively and in a much more timely manner if you have spent some time planning your approach.

Once you have your MLM marketing plans and overall time management plan in place then do your best to stick to it. Try not to procrastinate. I know how easy it is to put the jobs that you don’t really enjoy off until tomorrow and focus on the more enjoyable ones now. To make sure you don’t do this try always to complete your least favourite tasks first. You will be pleased to have them out of the way and you can then enjoy your remaining actions without the constant nag of that task that you’re not looking forward to.

Another good approach to use whenever you need a little boost or head start is to allocate your own action hours or even go the whole hog and have an action day. It’s amazing how much you can get down in an hour if you really put your mind to it. Challenge yourself to see how many actions you can tick off your list in an hour, it can really give you a head start along with a huge sense of satisfaction when you see you list being quickly ticked off! And if you achieve than in an hour – imagine what you could achieve in a day!

So do yourself a favour and whatever you do, do not put this off until tomorrow! Start now, straight away, and pull yourself together a plan that is really going to drive the right actions required to ensure you see the best results possible!

And as always, if I can be of any help along your way, you know where I am. I’ll be happy to help!

Signing off for now! Speak soon..

Laura x