Have a Plan Plan Your Work Work Your Plan

Have a Plan, Plan Your Work, and Work Your Plan

Yes, you MUST:

1) Have a Plan

2) Plan Your Work

3) Work Your Plan

You may have heard, 


and it is most certainly true.

Your Marketing Money

If you are a serious small business owner, you understand that it does indeed "take money to make money."  I am convinced that one of the single most important things that I have done (and continue to do) is to embrace this little epigram above.

You cannot get a return when you will not make an investment!

What makes a smart investment instead of a foolish expense?

A Plan3

There is NO END to the amount of money that you can spend in advertising (marketing)!  Since most people are like most people, and most small business owners are like most small business owners, I can safely surmise that you have a limited marketing (or advertising) budget.

There is a big difference between advertising and marketing, by the way.

A key difference between Advertising and Marketing is this:

  • advertising is simply spending money to publish your brand
  • marketing is based upon education and strategic planning and is not fundamentally based upon spending money
  • advertising is a component of marketing, but the marketing strategy is the guide for where and when to spend money

As a rule, I try not to ASSUME ANYTHING!

However, for the sake of argument here and to get to the key things I want to convey here, I will assume that you are at least knowledgeable in your chosen field of business.  It would be better if you were proficient and it would be best if you were expert.

However, even if you are indeed expert in your field, that is not enough.  In many cases (I am not saying this to insult you) it is the EASIEST part.  Why?  You've already accomplished this.

I know that I experienced this personally.  I am EXPERT in my field, but I discovered long ago that people that were not nearly as "good" as I was were more successful than me.

Why?  They were simply better at marketing.  So, I had to start learning HOW To market.  Now, I KNOW how to market and make money teaching other small business owners how to market as well.

1) Have a Plan

A Marketing Plan or a Marketing Strategy is a single component of your overall business plan.  Many small business owners go into business without having a written, formal business plan, and this works for many, but it also is the main reason that most small business startups fail.

Creating a business plan will help you succeed in your business.  It will "force" you to consider things that you may not otherwise think about.

Since most people are like most people, then most small business owners are like most small business owners.  And, since you are a small business owner like most other small business owners, you have a limited budget.


You will not be successful reaching your target if you don't know what it is. 

  • Who do you sell to?
  • What age are they?
  • Are they male or female?
  • How much money do they make?
  • Where do they live?

Divide them into the percentages of your market that they represent.

There are many other identifiers you could isolate about your target and the more you know about them, the better you can craft a marketing message that will impact them. 


This will depend upon too many factors for me to be able to do a good job with this here, but I can offer a few things that should help you come up with this number.

  1. Make a conservative projection of your what you think you'll make in a year.
  2. Divide it by 12.  That is your projected monthly income.
  3. Subtract your monthly operating expenses from this.
  4. What you have left is the MAXIMUM that you can spend.
  5. Identify the best advertising vehicles you can use to reach your target.
  6. Track the performance of your chosen vehicles.  Are they working?
  7. Be willing to experiment.  Not everything you try will work, but if you learn from it, it is not wasted money.


If you are going to be depending upon your website to "convert" your leads, make sure it is ready to convert those leads first.

It will NOT do you any good to get 100 people to your website if none of them pick up the phone or fill in a form or purchase something from you!

2) Plan Your Work

Your Marketing Strategy is your written plan for what you are specifically going to do, how much you will spend and how long you will do it. 

3) Work Your Plan

Due to the nature and difficulty of small business marketing, I think that ANY marketing that you do that at least PAYS FOR ITSELF is something you should consider continuing to do.  As long as you are not LOSING money doing it, you are at least breaking even, but you've got to have a way of measuring the results.

If something is working well, keep doing that for sure and consider investing more in it.  If you've given a particular marketing vehicle adequate time to measure results, and it is underperforming, note it and eliminate it and find some other place to spend that money. 


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