Written In Stone

IV. Plan

Just as a good football team doesn't run onto the field without a game plan, so should a good marketer not hit the streets before putting a solid marketing strategy and plan in place. Need some help? The acronym RACE stands for a formula that marketing professionals have been using for decades: Research, Action plan, Communication, Evaluation.

The first step in any good marketing plan is to do a bit of research, including gathering information about your competition, target audience, and the marketing vehicles available to you. Next, create an action plan with an accompanying time line and budget to organize your efforts and maintain consistency. The communication phase is when you carry out your action plan and, finally, evaluate how your plan is working for you and make adjustments where necessary.

Gwen Moran is a freelance writer and co-author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Business Plans (Alpha, 2010).

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This article was originally published in the July 1999 print edition of Entrepreneur with the headline: Written In Stone.

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