Oct. 24, 2022

Why You Need a Marketing Plan (No Matter Your Budget)

In this episode, Kristina Stubblefield talks about why marketing plans are essential for all businesses. A marketing plan is a strategic roadmap that can help you set goals, stay consistent, stick to a budget and keep you motivated. An effective marketing plan can help you achieve your business goals. 

"Having a plan of action for marketing your business allows you to get the most out of your marketing dollars."

In this episode you will learn:
1.    What is a marketing plan?
2.    Why is it important to have a marketing plan?
3.    What are some things to consider when creating a marketing plan?

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Chapter Summaries:
[00:00:01] - Kristina Stubblefield is talking about marketing plans. She believes everyone should have a marketing plan, no matter what the size of their marketing budget. 
[00:00:40] - A marketing plan is a strategic roadmap that businesses use to organize, execute and track their marketing strategy over any given period. Having a plan of action for marketing your business allows you to get the most out of your marketing dollars. Marketing your business is important because it needs to be divided out throughout the whole year.
[00:06:39] - In the digital landscape, you have to be consistent to stay visible. Having a marketing plan can help you and your business with getting your name out there. 
[00:09:45] - Having a marketing plan can help you reach your goals and book the number of events you want to book. If you don't have the knowledge or experience or don't feel completely comfortable with coming up with a plan on your own, reach out to me or someone to help you.

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Website: https://kristinastubblefield.com/
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LinkedIN: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kristina-stubblefield-057074a/
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Thank you for tuning in to WedPro Business Solutions. I'm your host, Kristina Stubblefield. I am going to be talking about marketing plans today. I hope you are ready for this episode. And let me just say this no matter what kind of marketing budget, maybe you don't have one, maybe you have a small one or a large marketing budget you will want to tune into what I have to share with you.
Because in my opinion, it doesn't matter the size of your marketing budget or if you don't have one, everyone should have a marketing plan. So let's first start off by talking about what in the heck is a marketing plan? And I really like how HubSpot describes a marketing plan. A strategic roadmap that businesses use to organize, execute and track their marketing strategy over any given period. They can include different marketing strategies from various marketing across multiple platforms, all working towards the same business goals.
So, as I said, in my opinion, it doesn't matter what type of budget you're working with $1,000 a year or $12,000 a year. It doesn't matter having a strategic plan on how you will allocate your money depending on if you do your plan number one for the year, then do you break it down quarterly, monthly? That all depends on how you want your marketing plan to be laid out. So I want to dive into this topic even further. There are so many different marketing avenues out there and this episode isn't about where you should spend your marketing dollars or anything like that.
I just want to talk about the importance of having a plan. We all know life can happen, things can happen in business and in the world. Having a plan of action is what I call it for marketing your business allows you to get the most out of your marketing dollars. And that's why I say it's so important, whether you have a small or large marketing budget, to have a plan. Sometimes I work with people to help come up with a marketing plan for their advertising or marketing dollars.
I may not do anything else with them other than sitting down, helping them develop a roadmap for the upcoming year. There are some people that I sat down with once a quarter and not only do we go over their marketing plans, but we go over their marketing. What has worked hasn't worked. But my point to sharing this with you, if you don't work with a strategist or a coach or a guru or a consultant or whatever title you want to throw on a person that can help you with this, I really think you should consider it unless you have a background in marketing or advertising. And to be honest with you, I still work with some of those people as well.
Because digital marketing is an everchanging landscape I don't need to sit here and tell you about. There's new platforms that come along. There's different search engines, there's a lot of different things to choose from, especially for wedding professionals to market their business. So having that one on one time with someone to help you develop a strategic plan can be a very big benefit for your business. It can help you not waste money, but it can also help you divide out the money you do have to spend.
Because with digital marketing it's 24/7 people work for 2nd, 3rd shift, all different times people are searching for businesses online. And again, I'm sticking mainly with online advertising. There's offline advertising as well, wedding shows, publications, organizations, chambers, many different things. And really having that roadmap can help you get the most I've already set out of your money, but also out of your time. For most wedding professionals, a lot of them are solopreneurs or have very small teams, and that's okay.
But being able to utilize your time and money, it's even better. So taking the time to sit down with a pen and piece of paper or a digital notepad if you choose to do it that way, or Excel, whatever works best for you. And put thought to how much money are you going to set aside for marketing your business? That's what a marketing budget is. How much money do you have to spend?
You have to be realistic with your numbers, and that's a topic for another day. Being realistic with your numbers and honestly, what amount of money can you spend? Marketing your business is really important because it needs to be divided out throughout the whole year. So honesty is the best policy. With your marketing dollars, you can always add to, but making sure it's divided out over twelve months is really important.
Also, it then allows you, let's just say you have $6,000 for the next year to market your business. And I'm throwing these numbers out there. So that would be $500 a month for twelve months, let's say. Now you can really dive into, okay, I have $500 a month that I'm going to spend on my business, on marketing and advertising, it where am I spending that money? It allows you to allocate your money in different areas and hopefully where your target audience lives, plays, whatever.
Wherever your target audience, hopefully ideal client is spending their time, whether that be online or offline. And I think with the digital landscape, when you hear of the words, you've got to be consistent. That's not just because I want you doing stuff every day or a couple of times a week. That's the honest truth. You have to stay consistent to stay visible.
You have to keep things out there on the World Wide web for most businesses, you have to be present online, you have to have updated information. Now, with social media platforms, of course you can increase your reach. The people that see your information, your post, your business, by running boost in ads or Google Ads. There are so many different options. But unless you have that number to break down for the year, the quarter, the month, you cannot stay consistent if you're all over the place or if you do this, okay, I'm halfway through the year, I haven't booked as many events as I want, okay?
I need to have a discussion with someone or I need to start running ads for my business. People are looking for immediate results. In that case, that puts you more in a desperate situation where if you would have kept your name out there consistently over the year, people seeing post, people seeing ads, or boost whatever you're doing in your business, that's really important because in the wedding industry, someone finding your information. They could be getting married in twelve months, 18 months, not next month. So really, having a plan can help you and your business with getting your name out there with booking events.
And this can be so frustrating for people, because a lot of times people will get to know me and they'll be honest and they'll be like I didn't want to sound like I didn't know what I was talking about. But I've been doing business for ten years and I've never sat down and done a marketing plan. I've never really thought about spending X number of dollars every month to keep my name out there. That's not silly. I don't look at people differently, to be honest with you.
I respect someone to have the guts, the courage to ask, to say, hey, can you explain this to me? I don't get it. If I keep hearing this terminology, I don't fully understand it. Being in business takes enough courage to show up every day for your business, to show up at these events and deliver your products or services. It's a lot.
And I constantly feel, when I talk about different solutions to wedding professionals pain points, that it seems like, gosh, I want to make sure this is not perceived as up. There she goes, adding something else to my plate. I want you to be able to get the most not out of business, but also out of life. And having a marketing plan can help you reach your goals. It can help you book the number of events you want to book.
Now, I can't sit here and magically share with you your marketing budget should be X number of dollars per year. If I did, I would just be throwing out a number to you, because it really depends on the industry. Are your competitors running ads? What content do they have out there? There is a lot that goes into it.
But I'm here to share with you one thing. There's never been a better time, in my opinion, with marketing for small businesses. And you want me to share with you why? Well, of course you do. Short form video.
Now, I didn't say you were going to like my answer. I was just going to say I'm going to share it with you. Short form video allows you to be yourself. It allows people to connect to you. So when you're figuring out your marketing budgets and your marketing plan, I hope that you will listen and say to yourself, now I know I've got to do short form video.
And the reason I mention this is because when you're doing a marketing plan and you know you want to do short form video, but you know, you don't want to do editing, you know, you don't want to do this, you want to do that. Well, this is the time where you figure out what can be offloaded, what can be taken off my plate. I record these videos and I can send them to an editor. That's why I sit here and talk about a marketing plan and your budget because short form video is not going anywhere. It's not.
I mean, we've got YouTube shorts now. You know, there's Instagram, Reels, Tik Toks. There'll be something else, I'm sure, here soon. And if that's how engaged couples are finding wedding vendors to choose from for their special day, you want to be part of that conversation. You want to have a shot at booking those events.
So I hope that you will take into consideration how important it is to sit down with your thoughts, get honest with yourself about your numbers. From a standpoint of a marketing budget. Now, that may take a whole different conversation, that's deeper figuring out your numbers. I don't want you to necessarily just pull a number out of thin air. I'd like to spend $6,000 next year.
Again, being honest is so important. I've said that throughout this episode. You have to be honest to come up with a plan because the whole point in spending time with a piece of paper or your digital notebook and writing down your ideas and figuring out how much you want to spend and what do you want to spend that on. Or do I need to get with a consultant to help me come up with a roadmap for my marketing? If you don't know someone, all you have to do is reach out.
You can schedule a time with me, a discovery call, and we can see if we're a good fit. I help people with this all the time, and sometimes it's the only thing I do. I don't do anything else for them other than help them come up with a roadmap with their marketing plan and how they can utilize the money that they have in their marketing budget. I definitely encourage you if you don't have the knowledge or experience or don't feel completely comfortable with coming up with this on your own to get someone to help you. If it's not me, reach out to someone.
It's going to be well worth it because of all of the different avenues and things you can do. Having a plan will help you get the most out of your money. No matter the amount, it is free. Facebook Group if you have not already where there's other wedding professionals in there that you can bounce ideas off of. I also drop additional information throughout the week in that Facebook Group.
I hope that you found this helpful. Thank you so much for tuning in. Until next time, take care.