It All Starts with a Strategy and a Plan

Strategic Marketing Plan

Without a marketing plan your business easily go off course – much like trying to fly by sight flying in IMC (Instrument Meteorological Conditions).

A Strategic Marketing Plan is the foundation to an effective aviation marketing campaign

A strategic marketing plan is a written document that describes a company’s goals and strategies and outlines the tactics the company will use to gain and/or maintain a competitive position in its marketplace. Developing and consistently updating a strategic marketing plan is one of the most important steps a company can take to achieve its objectives for long-term growth and success.

Elements of a Strategic Marketing Plan

To develop an effective marketing plan, follow the basic investigative process of “who, why, what, when and how,” and add “how much” as a budget-planning tool.

Here are the essential elements of a marketing plan:

Who?

Who is the “situation analysis” of your specific marketplace, including company background, products and/or services and the company’s mission. This also identifies your ideal customers by distinct market segments with a detailed profile for each: Who are they? How many? Where are they located? What are their needs and values? What are their buying motives? In addition, Who addresses marketplace issues such as: Who are your competitors? What are their strengths and weaknesses in comparison to your company? What trends, issues and opportunities exist in the marketplace, and what strategic options are available to benefit from them?

Why?

Why focuses on your company’s specific goals and objectives, and what role marketing will play in attaining them. What do you want to accomplish? Goals should be broken down into short- and long-term objectives. For example, to sign up three new aircraft management contracts in the next six months and 20 total contracts within two years. The best goals are S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable and Relevant, with a Timeline for achieving them).

What?

What is the “game plan” through which objectives will be achieved. This determines the marketing strategies to be used. Its primary features are the business’s brand image and the key benefit or promise your firm consistently delivers; how your business is currently perceived by your customers versus how it should be perceived; and the USP (Unique Selling Proposition) – how your business is different or unique from competitors. What also forms the basis of the creative sales message, the theme that runs through all of your marketing.

When?

When is the marketing timeline, the chronology and deadlines for development and implementation of the marketing program: what the tasks are, when they will be implemented and by whom. The more detailed, the better. You should plan your timeline on a forward-looking six-month or annual basis. Break the timeline down by months or weeks, whichever works best for your business.

How?

How is the actual implementation or action plan for the marketing plan. It details which tools, tactics and media are to be used, along with timing and emphasis. How includes the development of the marketing materials required: advertising created, news releases distributed, brochures written, trade shows attended, digital media created. This section also includes the creative techniques you developed for your brand and should detail how your brand’s message will be communicated to your customers.

How Much?

How Much refers to the budget that’s needed to fully implement your marketing program. Your budget should show more than just the sum total set aside for marketing. It should include a breakdown of the amount you plan to spend on each marketing tool and what percentage of the total budget is allocated to each tactic.

“There is an old saying; “you can either fail to plan, or plan to fail.” Lack of planning leads to distractions, and distractions causes failure in execution.”
Rocco Cipriano, President, Aviation Marketing Consulting

7 benefits of a Strategic Marketing Plan:

  1. Encourages a thorough review of all factors that impact success for your business, and brings to light opportunities and pitfalls often overlooked by “winging it.”
  2. Clearly delineates goals, provides a detailed direction and long-range view for your business, and minimizes impulsive decisions which can prove costly.
  3. Provides an accurate market-driven foundation on which to build the rest of your business’s operating plans.
  4. Builds consensus and support with internal staff and departments, fostering coordination and consolidation of efforts. Maximizes efficiency and effectiveness.
  5. Empowers team members to take actions which are appropriate and consistent with the company’s overall marketing goals.
  6. Results in optimum use of your marketing budget and resources.
  7. Facilitates measurement of marketing effectiveness and objective evaluation of past actions and results. Avoids repetition of mistakes, recognizes those tactics providing superior performance and identifies those that underperform.

Let Aviation Marketing Consulting develop a strategic marketing plan for your aviation/aerospace business that will put you on the right course to achieve your business goals.