Last week, I was asked to review a business plan for a web startup. The plan was 47 pages long with lots of detailed feature specifications and financial projections.
The business idea is sound. It’s a variation on a proven business model that’s square in the strike zone of the founder. He’s been in the industry for a couple of decades and understands the business inside and out.
There’s only one problem: the marketing section of the business plan is 2, half pages. The gist of the short-term marketing plan is “let them find us,” which is a quote taken directly from the plan.
A lot of first time entrepreneurs think their business is the field of dreams. As I’ve pointed out multiple times, they think that if they build it, everyone will flock to it. But it doesn’t happen that way. If you build it, the only way to get people there is to drive, drag, push or pull them there.
Yesterday, I reviewed the marketing plan for PinkDefenseWeapons.com (Check them out!). One of the business partners is a marketing professional and she created a great marketing plan.
The only thing it was lacking was the budget, but it detailed all of the marketing efforts and how they’ll be rolled out over the next year. She had line items for publicity, blogger and journalist outreach, paid advertising, social media, newsletters, and more. Now THAT’S a marketing plan!
In a previous blog post, I wrote about The Seller and The Maker. Short changing the marketing plan is a classic “maker” mistake. They think, “My idea is so wonderful, it sells itself! Everyone will want to buy it! ”
The “seller,” on the other hand, thinks, “My idea is so wonderful, I can’t wait to tell the world about it! Everyone in my target market will want to buy it!”
A good marketing plan starts with a budget and details how each dollar will be spent. Scheduling the marketing spend and roll out over the first year of operations is even better. Combine all that with a detailed analysis of your target market and you’re golden!
Take a lesson from Pink Defense Weapons and give your marketing plan the love it deserves.
Tell us about your field of dreams and how you plan to market it in the comments below.