Marketing Plan

Which issues are the most important?


The first and most obvious response to ” Which issues are the most important?” is that the devil is in the detail. Each operation in your in your business will have specific short term goals, but they must ultimately have the same long term objectives. If any one of these operations is working at cross purposes with the long term objectives you are likely to fail. Therefore, “all” issues are important.

With that as a given you must then ask “who will be reading my business, farming or marketing plan?” For each reader, if the answer to any of the issues raised below is “NO” then you will not achieve your objective.


If you are seeking investment capital and the business plan is to be presented to a venture capitalist, he/she will likely be looking at three critical issues: 1. Is there a need in the marketplace? 2. Is the market large enough to provide a reasonable return on their investment? 3. Does your organization have the personnel and capabilities necessary to penetrate and maintain a position in the marketplace?


If you are seeking a loan and the business/farming plan is to be presented to a banker he/she will have the following concerns: 1. Are you a going business with a positive cash flow? 2. Does your financial statements show a growing and profitable business? 3. Do you have collateral to offer as protection against the loan?


If you are seeking full management buy-in for the plan, each manager will want the following answers: 1. Can I understand and agree with the short term & long term objectives of the plan? 2. Is my responsibility in achieving those objectives clearly discernible? 3. Will the proper implementation of the plan be of benefit to both the enterprise and to me?


If you are planning on selling your business the prospective buyer will want to know the following: 1. What is the short term and long term financial value of the business? 2. Will this business provide new or additional leverage for me in the marketplace? Is there adequate synergy between our products or services and our organizations to ensure a successful integration.





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What physical form should the plan take when it is completed?


You will always want to have a printed version of your business, farming, marketing plan or business profile. Depending on whom you expect to reading the document it may take a form ranging from a paper-clipped set of black & white, loose leaf papers to a formal, bound, full-color document. In addition, our electronic world offers other forms that can be very effective in presenting your document.

For a personal interface with a banker or private investor, a presentation using a tool like “Power Point” can be very effective for graphically portraying and explaining the key issues set forth in your document. It is especially helpful in describing market share issues, employee and sales personnel productivity growth expectations, cash flows and profitability. Also look at our Business Services for details on “Investors Pitches”.

For those instances when you can’t be personally present, having your documents in a secure Internet friendly format can be of great value. Being able to provide remote access for a portion of your complete document to someone who may represent a source of funding for your business is an effective way of screening potential investors.

If you are not a computer professional, some of the above document forms may be a challenge. If you can see the need for them then you should rather use the services of a professional consultant that can help you with these in various ways.









What physical form should the plan take when it is completed? Read More »