Step 5 - Marketing Your Business
Whether you are considering a new store or reviewing your market niche, it is important to have a business and marketing plan. Every grocery store exists in a unique position within a community. It is because of this uniqueness, business planners suggest that following a “standardized template” may miss important market opportunities. Tim Berry, business planning expert, suggests that using someone else's business plan is comparable to using someone else’s medical checkup instead of going to the doctor yourself!
Because business marketing plans need to be catered to the business, sample business marketing plans are often of little use. However, some common plan elements can be defined. Berry & Wilson (2004, p. 7-8) suggest the following minimum essential contents of a marketing plan:
- Situational Analysis: Information including a market analysis, a SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats), and a competitive analysis. The market analysis should include market forecast, segmentation, customer information, and market needs analysis.
- Marketing Strategy: A section that includes: a mission statement, objectives, focused strategy, market segment, and product positioning.
- Sales Forecast: Including sales tracking and analysis of actual vs. forecasted sales by product, market segment, and other elements as appropriate.
- Expense budget includes tracking and analysis of plan vs. actual expenses, sales tactic and promotion analysis, and other elements as appropriate.
Marketing Plan Development Assistance:
NebraskAccess provides a database of statewide resources for starting a business in Nebraska.
The KSBDC is a partnership program with the US Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Kansas Dept. of Commerce. The KSBDC is partially funded by the US Small Business Administration. SBA's funding is not an endorsement of any products, opinions, or services. SBA funded programs are extended to the public on a nondiscriminatory basis.