The Best Sales and Marketing Plan for Your Business

A sales and marketing plan can make a business become fully-prepared not only when it comes to implementing action plans but also when dealing with threats from external forces, operational hazards, and potential threats. It is important for your business to have a sales and marketing plan as it can enable you to develop your market presence, improve your profitability, and create a reliable and memorable corporate brand.

Developing a sales and marketing plan is one of the best things that you can do as a business entity. If you can properly target your desired audience and provide them with what they need, it can be easier for you to achieve sales and marketing milestones. Through this, you can achieve the sustainability that you want for your business.

Knowing how to efficiently put together all the elements necessary for a sales and marketing plan to be deemed comprehensive can help you develop a document that can be highly-usable for your sales and marketing efforts. Make sure that you will have templates, existing samples, formatting guides, and other references on-hand so you can create your desired sales and marketing plan document in the fastest, most efficient, and easiest manner.

Why Use a Sales and Marketing Plan

Not all companies or establishments have a sales and marketing plan. Even if these entities can still continuously operate, there will be opportunities that they might lose since they do not have a concrete plan in relation to their sales and marketing actions. More so, they do not have any process flow to follow which can result to a disorganized operations. These can lead to the possibility of experiencing negative impacts like the inability of the company to realize particular objectives or goals. Aside from the identification of these items, below is a more thorough list of reasons on why it is important for big companies and small establishments to have their own sales and marketing plan:

A sales and marketing plan can help you align the resources of the business with the items that you would like to materialize, realize, and achieve in the future.A sales and marketing plan can enable you to optimize your workforce as well as your other business resources.A sales and marketing plan can promote the timeliness of your sales and marketing actions.A sales and marketing plan can give you the ability to control the sales and marketing events, programs, and activities of the company based on what is necessary to be done or implemented for a given time period.A sales and marketing plan can make it easier for you to collaborate with your stakeholders to ensure the achievement of your desired sales and marketing results.

8-Step Process For Making a Thorough Sales and Marketing Plan

There are no strict procedures that are always necessary to be followed when developing a sales and marketing plan. The creation of the specified document will depend on how you would like to optimize your planning tool and how you will designate work tasks in consideration of your desired output. However, you can follow a standard process which can basically help you identify the common variables that are necessary to be seen in a simple sales and marketing plan. Here is a step-by-step process guide that you can refer to if you want to develop an effective sales and marketing plan for your organization:

1Use a printable and editable sales and marketing plan template for your formatting needs: We recommend you to use a sales and marketing plan template as this tool can help you formally and professionally format the content of your desired document output within a well-structured layout.2Provide a document header and title: If you will include your business header as well as a unique planning document title in the sales and marketing plan, you can easily identify the specified document especially when it is placed together with other business materials and documents.3Present an introduction about the sales and marketing plan and what can be seen in it: Give an initial and brief specification or idea about what the sales and marketing plan is all about as well as the ways on how you will optimize the document to produce desired results.4Have a SWOT analysis: Getting the results of a particular analysis can help you identify the internal and external factors that you have to look into when preparing all your sales and marketing plans of action.5List all your plans of action, sales and marketing strategies, and process implementation tactics: If you can provide all of this information in the body of your planning document, you can have a high potential of making the sales and marketing plan as comprehensive and as usable as possible.6Designate obligations and responsibilities based on workforce deliverable and plan requirements: Since sales and marketing planning is a collaborative endeavor, it is important for your workforce to know their parts in terms of implementing your sales and marketing plan in a timely and efficient manner.7Give a timeline or a schedule of the sales and marketing plan execution: From planning; development; implementing; and assessing your sales and marketing plan, it is imperative for you to effectively utilize the time given to your sales and marketing team/s so you can make the most out of each member’s participation.8Review, evaluate, and finalize your sales and marketing plan draft: You have to browse through the sales and marketing plan for a number of times to make sure that there are no more errors, mistakes, and misleading details that are still present in the planning document.

Merging a Sales Plan and a Marketing Plan

There are companies that use individual sales plans and marketing plans. There are also some that merge these documents into one planning tool especially if the sales and marketing departments are put together in one business division. A few of the reasons why businesses tend to merge their sales plan and marketing plan into one business planning document include the following:

If you will put a sales plan and and a marketing plan together, your output can serve as a general plan for the business’ sales and marketing processes.Putting a sales plan and a marketing plan in one document layout can let the sales team and the marketing team work together to achieve common goals which can be very time-efficient and goal-oriented.Developing a stand-alone sales and marketing plan can present the alignment of the sales and marketing objectives of the business with its overall business vision.Incorporating your sales plan with your marketing plan can let particular stakeholders multi-task to deliver sales and marketing requirements within a given time period.Allowing your sales plan and marketing plan to be presented in one planning tool can help you have a strong and powerful document that can be referred to by both the sales and marketing team within the effective dates of their work implementation.

What Is in a Sales Plan?

It is essential for your sales plan to present all the sales processes, transactions, and actions that can give your business the capability to not only reach its corporate sales quota but also to achieve its other sales-related objectives. To create a comprehensive sales plan, here are some of the standard key points that are expected to be included in the document:

The profiling of the business’ target customers and sales leadsThe sales mission, vision, goals, and objectives of the company that must be instilled in the minds of the sales workforceThe sales strategies and tactics that should be incorporated in the activities of the businessThe revenue targets of the company for the next operational yearThe structure of the sales team based on market segmentation and related assignmentsThe deadlines of particular sales requirementsThe alignment of the sales action plan of the business with the current economic and marketplace conditionThe pricing and positioning metrics, protocols, and regulations that the establishment should followThe sales promotion and advertising processes or programs of the businessThe budget that the business management will allocate for the sales team and its future activitiesThe resources that are necessary to be present to achieve desired sales resultsThe condition of needed sales software, systems, materials, and toolsThe obligations and responsibilities of each sales person and other members of the sales teamThe identification of marketing and prospecting strategies that the sales team should be aware of

What Does a Marketing Plan Contain?

Just like your sales plan, your marketing plan should also be complete. Ensuring the completion of the details of both your sales and marketing plans can help you create a comprehensive and highly-usable sales and marketing planning document. If you want to have a detailed presentation of your marketing activities and related subject matters, your marketing plan must contain the following details:

The analysis of the current marketing performance of the businessThe presentation of the existing market condition based on trends, target market activities, product distribution, and marketing outlet productivityThe marketing strategies and tactics that should be used by the business for its next marketing effortsThe discussion of market analysis, competitor analysis, trend analysis, and SWOT analysis resultsThe identification of the needs, demands, and expectations of the target market of the companyThe alignment of the sales forecast with the desired marketing actions of the managementThe incorporation of sales promotion to particular marketing processesThe marketing segments, regions, and niches that should be given focus with by the marketing teamThe segmentation of the market of the business for proper market positioning and marketing activity implementationThe budget that should be allocated for particular marketing efforts and expendituresThe specification of necessary research and development studies that can enable the business to better its marketing drive and performanceThe marketing, advertising, and promotion services that the company should acquire to achieve specific marketing goalsThe designation of marketing tasks and obligations to the members of the marketing team

Importance of Developing a Sales and Marketing Plan

It is necessary for all sales and marketing team members to be aware of the advantages and benefits that they can get if they will properly deliver what is expected from them. More so, it will be better if they can be knowledgeable of the reasons on why it is very important for an outstanding sales and marketing plan to be created. Here are the ways on how a sales and marketing plan contribute to the successes of the business and its sales and marketing activities or processes:

Using a sales and marketing plan can let your business balance its sales and marketing practices.Creating a sales and marketing plan can help you promote a more collaborative and supportive environment within your sales and marketing departments.Making a sales and marketing plan can give you an idea on how you can use sales processes for your marketing benefits, and the other way around.Drafting a sales and marketing plan can let you prepare a sales and marketing budget in the best and most organized way possible.

Guidelines for Making a Great Sales and Marketing Plan

Do you think you are already ready to come up with the best sales and marketing plan for your business? If there are still some things or areas of the document’s development that you still need help on, do not worry as there are some tips and recommendations that can enable you to have an easy time when developing a planning tool for your sales and marketing teams. Some of the best guidelines that can allow you to effectively make a great sales and marketing plan are as follows:

1Ensure that your sales and marketing plan is time-bound.2Always measure the attainability of your sales and marketing plan.3Make your sales and marketing plan as comprehensive and as organized as possible.4Present your sales and marketing plan key points in a systematic manner.5Refer to your previous or existing sales and marketing plan.6Create a sales and marketing plan based on the identifiable needs and requirements of your business.

Sales and Marketing Plan FAQs

It is essential for your stakeholders to easily understand the content of your sales and marketing plan. With this, you need to always be mindful with how you will format the planning document. Ensure that you will give highlight or focus on your planning key points so involved stakeholders can properly identify their responsibilities and appropriately set their expectations. More so, it is necessary for you to ask questions that can help you broaden your knowledge areas with regards the proper creation and usage of a sales and marketing plan. Below are some of the questions that are frequently asked about a sales and marketing plan:

Is a sales and marketing plan better than separate planning documents for a company’s sales and marketing activities?

How you will develop your sales and marketing plan/s depend on the operations, processes, and internal interactions of your business. A sales and marketing plan can provide you with a more general planning tool. This can be great and more beneficial for companies that have their sales and marketing departments in one umbrella or business division. However, if you have separate sales and marketing team work processes, then we recommend you to have separate sales and marketing plans which you can actually still potentially merge for presentation and business process optimization purposes if you would like to.

Do businesses really need a sales and marketing plan?

If you are a business entity, it is necessary for a you to prepare a sales and marketing plan. You can use the specified document in a lot of ways, from your partner and client presentations up to the organization of your daily work processes. Even if there are still businesses that do not have any sales and marketing plan, we still value the essence of having a planning document for the identification and implementation of needed corporate sales and marketing actions.

Making a sales and marketing plan is actually easy as long as you will remain focused with the action plans that you need to execute. Ensuring that you have usable references can also be very helpful if you want to have impressive and excellent documents that your sales and marketing teams can optimize. Try to maximize the usage of our sales and marketing plan templates and examples so you can have an easy time when creating the particular sales and marketing plan that your organization needs for its next year of business operations.