The Marketing Plan: How to Prepare and Implement It

The Marketing Plan: How to Prepare and Implement It

by William M. Luther

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The rules for creating marketing plans have changed…and if you’re not up to speed with developments like search engine optimization (SEO), social networking sites, pay-per-click, and other Web 2.0–based methods, you and your company are going to be left behind.

In this brand new edition of Bill Luther’s

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The rules for creating marketing plans have changed…and if you’re not up to speed with developments like search engine optimization (SEO), social networking sites, pay-per-click, and other Web 2.0–based methods, you and your company are going to be left behind.

In this brand new edition of Bill Luther’s classic resource The Marketing Plan, you’ll learn everything you need to create your own marketing plan, using the latest strategies at your disposal. From competitive and market analysis to planning, budgeting, brand development, and management—featuring case studies and examples from major brand successes of recent years—the book shows you how to identify your marketing objectives and deploy specific strategies for every stage of the marketing cycle. You’ll learn how to:

• Analyze your company’s market, competition, business, and customers.

• Select profitable markets.

• Isolate critical business strengths.

• Develop a brand personality.

• Act on strategies.

• Gather feedback using measurable objectives and market research.

Whether you’re a marketing plan veteran or have never created a marketing plan before, this book will help you navigate the perilous new marketing landscape. It’s filled with helpful interactive question-and-answer sections, and new material on taking advantage of sales promotions; how public relations can affect your bottom line; managing your entire marketing plan; and much more.

Best yet, this new edition gives you complete access to online software that will assist you in decision making, pricing, budget calculations, sales projections, and more! You’ll find the Fourth Edition of this long-trusted guide indispensable…and the only thing you’ll need to quickly and easily design a complete marketing plan of your own.

William M. Luther, former vice president of Grey Advertising, is a well-known management and marketing consultant and a prolific seminar leader. His specialties include strategic planning, sales management, new product development, advertising, and sales promotion. He is the author of two books on business planning and the three previous editions of this book.

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The fourth edition of The Marketing Plan differs in a number of

ways from its predecessor, published ten years ago. It includes

ten more years of the experiences and knowledge gained from

helping companies write their marketing plans—in boom

economies and in bust. The book walks you through every part

of the plan, with detailed analysis of case histories. After reviewing

each case, you can insert on the accompanying software

the data for your own company and complete your

marketing objectives and strategies. By the time you finish the

book, you can have a complete, written marketing plan for your

own business.

If you go to the AMACOM website, you can download my

computer marketing plan “what if” software models, free of

charge. These allow you to insert your own data into the files and

see the results for your business. The web address is www For best results and

ease of use, you should download the software to either a CD or

your hard drive. Then you can go try different data until you get

the results you are seeking, such as the most effective positioning

of your business, your best target audience, most favorable

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pricing, sufficient advertising and sales promotion weight, viable

public relations plans, and enviable customer service plans.

This edition can also better help you develop a popular Internet

site and enable you to become a strong player in the new world

of social media.

The software comes in three parts: case history “what if”

files; “what if” files with formulas for inserting your own

company data; and marketing plan (and other) worksheets

where you insert your objectives and strategies. Although the

book discusses each case history, at your leisure you should

bring up these files and alter some of the inserted data and

then look at the resulting outcomes. Practicing on the case

history files will enable you to see how the formulas work before

you start inserting your company data into your own section

of the software.

The software is easy to use. You use a spreadsheet like Microsoft

Excel for the “what if” files and a word processing program

like Microsoft Word for the marketing plan objectives and

strategies and other worksheets. The files that have a “C” in

front of the name are the case histories. The file names that do

not begin with a “C” before the name are the modules into

which you insert your own company data.

When these files are completed, you should print them out

and put them into a document called a “fact book.” This is supporting

data for your objectives and strategies and by inserting

the files in this different document, you keep your actual marketing

plan short and concise—so everyone will read and act

on it. Your fact book will probably number over a hundred

pages and your marketing plan should only consist of your objectives

and strategies and therefore can be less than twenty

pages. The third part of the software, in the folder labeled

“Worksheets,” contains Word files into which you can insert

your objectives and strategies for each component of your

marketing plan, along with other useful worksheets. If you

complete each module as you go through the book, your plan

will be written by the end of the last chapter.

The marketing plan belongs on the top of the desk of

everyone involved with marketing so it can constantly be monitored;

the fact book can go on their shelves. If you began to

miss an objective, you return to the fact book and make the

necessary changes to support your revised objectives and


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