- Defining Your Target Audience
Your goal might be to get more clients. If so, you will want to drive a campaign with mass appeal to your target audience. On the other hand, you might want to create a brand commitment among current customers. This narrows your target further and may change the kinds of advertising media you use to promote your business. Another plan companies sometimes have is just building recognition of their brand. They might be using an auxiliary advertising method where they are letting people know that they are engaging in the community or raising money for charities. However, the good feelings rub off on their business. Whatever your purpose is, write it down in as short a form as possible.
- Design Your Actions
Decide how you want to do your advertising to fulfill your purpose. Think about what the media will best help you meet your objectives. Think about what message you are sending to your target audience, and how you will reach them with that advertising message. Consider a timeline for your campaign – when it will start and how long it will last.
Part of your advertising plan has to be examining the cost of your actions. You might find that you need to do some rethinking when you find out how much a certain type of campaign will cost. If you cannot furnish the type of campaign you had envisioned, you can work out a settlement that will yield you similar results. If instead your budget allows you more advertising than you had planned for, you might want to go back to the creative side and figure out more ways to further enhance your advertising message.
- Scale Your Results
No strategic advertising plan would be complete without the ability to measure the way it turned out. There are several ways to do this. You might check to see if there is a difference in sales immediately after each television commercial. Another option is to make a special offer listed only in your advertising, and count how many people react. If you are doing an Internet campaign, there are all kinds of software tools you can use to see how many people are communicating with your advertising.
Once you know whether the campaign has worked or not, you will have a better idea of whether to continue in the same vein. You might have stumbled upon a compelling brand representative, slogan, or visual image that people respond to positively. When that happens, you know your advertising is on the right track.