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Developing a Web Site Marketing Plan

... a Web Site ... PlanPart One of a Four Part ... on "How Much for Just the ... Bobette KyleFor many of us, finding the time and ... to complete ... plan for

Developing a Web Site Marketing Plan
Part One of a Four Part Series
Based on "How Much for Just the Spider?"

by Bobette Kyle

For many of us, finding the time and commitment to complete a
marketing plan for our Web sites is difficult. There are so many
other obligations vying for our attention it is tempting to push
planning to the back burner. Giving into that temptation,
however, means putting your business at a disadvantage. Your
marketing plan is the compass by which you navigate. As
opportunities arise or your business environment changes, the
objective and strategies in your marketing plan will point you
toward the best action. Without a marketing plan, you risk
becoming unfocused in your marketing and are only guessing what
might be best for your business.

In this article, you will learn the parts to a marketing plan. I
will also point you to some marketing plan resources. In parts
two through four of the series, I will discuss objectives,
strategies, and tactics for your Web site marketing plan.

To be most effective, your Web site marketing plan should be a
part of your business marketing plan. By aligning online
marketing with your offline efforts, you can better achieve
overall company objectives. Additionally, you will present a
consistent style and message across all points of contact with
your target audience.

Your Web site marketing plan's focus will be partially determined
by your site's status. If you already have a site in place, your
plan can focus strictly on marketing issues - how to most
effectively market using your existing site. If you have a site
that needs improvement, your plan should incorporate enhancements
into the site’s design in conjunction with marketing activities
(While you may not think of these enhancements as "marketing", in
this case, they are instrumental to an effective plan.). If you
do not yet have a site, you can create one while developing your
Web site marketing plan, with your plan focused on launching the
site. In any case, remember that your objective, strategies, and
tactics will change over time as your situation and focus change.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Parts of a Marketing Plan
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Web site marketing plan is similar to a business marketing
plan, but with a narrower focus. Completing a marketing plan
includes developing strategies and tactics (also called action
plans) that, when implemented, will help you reach your marketing
objectives. Objectives, strategies, and tactics are each
progressively narrower in scope.

The objective addresses the "big picture". In general terms, your
objective answers the question "How will I overcome my main
marketing challenge(s)?" If your company’s main site- related
challenge is figuring out how to use your Web site to help build
client business, for example, an objective for your Web site
marketing plan could be "To enhance online client service as well
as build site awareness and interest with clients."

Strategies support your objective. Your strategies define the
general approaches you will take to meet your objective. For
example, strategies to support the above objective could include
1) improve online communication, information, and education, 2)
build awareness of and interest in your company on the Internet,
and 3) communicate the Web site’s existence and advantages to
existing clients.

Tactics are where the action takes place - these are the things
you will do to bring your strategies to life. Tactics for
strategy 2 in the above example (improve online communication,
information, and education) could include 1) sharing experience
and observations in your industry through participation in
discussion boards, 2) offering an email newsletter, and 3)
listing/submitting your site to targeted search engines and
directories.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Marketing Planning Tools
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The specifics of developing a marketing plan vary according to
the source. All can be effective when used correctly. Some sites
and software that can help you in developing your marketing plan
are below.

Sites

eSOLO’s Marketing Action Plans,
http://www.esolo.com/mapslist.php3 , can help you to come up with
strategies and action plans (tactics) to support common marketing
objectives.

The Web Site Marketing Plan's Marketing Plan Resources page,
http://www.websitemarketingplan.com/sr3.htm , includes several
links and descriptions of sites with marketing plan information.

Software

Each of these software titles takes a slightly different approach
to developing a marketing plan.

- Plan Write® for Marketing,
http://www.businessplansoftware.org/marketing_plan.asp

- WebQuest Pro, http://www.webquestpro.com/

- Marketing Plan Pro, http://www.bplans.com/marketingplans

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Other Articles in this Series
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

In this, the first article of the series, I discussed the
elements of a marketing plan - objective, strategies, and
tactics. In the remaining three articles I will take a closer
look at objectives, strategiesFree Web Content, and tactics you can consider for
your Web site.

Part Two: "Your Web Site's Objectives"
http://www.websitemarketingplan.com/sr8.htm autoresponder:
mailto:ObjectiveArticle@WebSiteMarketingPlan.com

Part Three: "Strategies for Your Web Site Marketing Plan"
http://www.websitemarketingplan.com/strategies.htm autoresponder:
mailto:StrategiesArticle@WebSiteMarketingPlan.com

Part Four: "Choosing Tactics for Your Web Site Marketing Plan"
http://www.websitemarketingplan.com/TacticsArticle.htm
autoresponder: mailto:TacticsArticle@WebSiteMarketingPlan.com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Copyright 2002 Bobette Kyle. All rights reserved.

Source: Free Articles from ArticlesFactory.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Bobette Kyle has over 10 years experience in Corporate Marketing;
Brand and Product Marketing; Field Marketing and Sales; and
Management.
The four part Web site marketing plan series is based on
Bobette's book "How Much For Just the Spider? Strategic Web Site
Marketing for Small-Budget Businesses",
http://www.booklocker.com/books/711.html
http://www.WebSiteMarketingPlan.com



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