09 December 2020
Caroline Walker, Director of PR & Content

Creating a marketing strategy: Writing a plan

Creating a marketing strategy: Writing a plan

The third blog in our series details how to create a marketing strategy, what to include when writing your strategy. 

Once you have collated insight about previous marketing activity and held a meeting with stakeholders, putting pen to paper might feel challenging. However, structuring your strategy around these elements will help your strategy start to take shape. 

Use your research to tell a story
Your marketing strategy is likely to remain an internal document that will help you to secure stakeholder buy-in and budget for campaign activity. Bring together the competitor research and current brand position in the marketplace to introduce the document. Consider who will be reading it, if it is also likely to be read by non-marketing professionals, use data infographics and insight to communicate your ideas succinctly.

Define your audience
You’ve taken the time to understand who your key audiences are, so include profiles in the strategy, so it is easy to refer back to. Tailor key messages for each of these audiences. Keeping these audiences front of mind when developing any future campaigns or communications is critical to success. 

Think unique
At the core of your strategy, outline your unique selling proposition (USP). This defines what differentiates you from your competitors, why people should buy from you and what makes you stand out. This embodies all parts of the business from product, service, recruitment and should be communicated as part of all campaigns. 

Create a timeline
Use your established goals to shape a delivery timeline. Work backwards to detail the steps and progress milestones that you need to reach to achieve them. This tool ensures you stay on track and helps other stakeholders to understand priorities. 

Establish brand guidelines
Full brand guidelines are often stored separately to the strategy, as they are helpful resources for graphic designers, copywriters and freelancers. While they tend to detail minutiae including font, colours and logo preferences, it is essential to ensure any core brand values, aspirations and messages are clearly included in your strategy as these should drive all marketing activity. 

Calculate budget and detail output
Provide a breakdown of anticipated costs and the results you expect to secure with the spend. We often adopt a shopping list style approach to breakdown the collateral that needs to be produced, who will be responsible for delivery and the role it plays in the broader strategy.

Consider detailing whether new photography, websites or brochures are required, as well as activity such as PR, social media management and email marketing. 

In the next blog post, we will address how to roll out a strategy. 

To discuss marketing and communications strategies, contact Caroline Walker or call 01732 779 087.


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