Product innovation and marketing are the only enduring
competitive advantage companies can use to survive and thrive in the
marketplace. In the next seven weeks, you are going to participate in designing
and writing a marketing plan for a product or service of your choosing. Your
active participation in this project is essential to building your understanding
of marketing and secondly, you can use a well written marketing plan to show
prospective employers a sample of your work.
A marketing plan is a travel guide for the marketing activities
of an organization for a specified future period of time. The plan can be used
internally to guide the marketing activities or it can be used to communicate
with external audiences to raise capital. Important questions to keep in mind as
you design your plan are:
- Is the marketing idea valid?
- What is unique or distinctive about the product or service that
separates it from substitutes and competitors?
- Does a viable market exist for the product or service?
- Are the financial projections sound?
- Is the management team competent?
- How will the investors/debtors get their money back with a
return on their investment?
In order to help you answer these questions and many others the
course provides the following:
- "Building an Effective Marketing Plan" as Appendix A on page 54
of your textbook. (Includes example of a marketing plan)
- "Financial Aspects of Marketing" as Appendix B on page 380 of
- A sample student written marketing plan located in Doc
- A marketing plan outline located in Doc Sharing. (Your focus
should be on content and not structure)
- A marketing plan student guide that describes each section of
the marketing plan.
- A grading rubric for the marketing plan.
- At the end of each chapter in your textbook, you will complete
the Building Your Marketing Plan (BYMP) exercise and use this
information as input into your plan.
Building Your Marketing Plan (BYMP)
Your final marketing plan should be
between 4,000 and 6,000 words and must follow all APA guidelines. A sample
marketing plan is providing in Doc Sharing.
BYMP Week 1 (20 points)
- Page 23 - Select your product or service and write a
company description as shown in Appendix A
- Page 51 (item 2 only) - Write the mission statement,
goals, competitive advantage and perform a SWOT analysis.
BYMP Week 2 (30 points):
- Page 91 - Identify trends related to the social,
economic, technological, competitive, and regulatory forces that relate to your
product or service and explain how each force represents a threat or an
- Page 139 - Perform a consumer analysis for the
product or service in your marketing plan. You will use this in your marketing
- Page 161 - Estimate size of market using research
you have done by analyzing information you can find in industry and trade
publications and associations. By using the Internet to also research articles
written by trade journals and industry experts and spokesmen. The government
census is also a great resource for such industry statistics to help formulate
market estimates and forecasts: U.S. Census
BYMP Week 3 (20 points):
- Page 222 - Identify the most useful information you
would most like to have and identify a source for the data.
- Page 248 - Prepare a market-product grid to focus
your marketing and forecast sales.
BYMP Week 4 (20 points):
- Page 275 - Fine tune your product strategy and
identify points of difference of the product and generate ideas for new
- Page 304 - Identify stage in product life cycle,
marketing mix, branding and packaging strategies.
BYMP Week 5 (20 points):
- Page 352 - Establish preliminary pricing and
calculate break-even under different pricing assumptions.
- Page 378 - Establish final pricing.
BYMP Week 6 (40 points)
- Page 411 - Identify channels and intermediaries for
your marketing plan.
- Page 485 - Develop promotion strategy for your
- Page 517 - Augment your promotion strategy with
advertising and sales promotion.
- Page 597 - (items 1, 2, 3 only) Draw organization
chart, Gantt chart and list critical success factors for your marketing
The above 15 assignments are to be used to provide
input to your final written marketing plan. An outline and sample are in Doc