I’m thinking of trying to entice Harrison Ford in to making a Dr “Indiana” Jones comeback. To help find the lost Marketing Plans.

It’s time to help bridge the gap between business plans and tactical marketing communications activity.

“Where have all the marketing plans gone?”

It’s a question that most business leaders that I come across are asking.

And for many of my clients, it feels like a lost art – a well articulated marketing plan that builds out of a clear business mission, vision and purpose. A plan that is grounded in authentic values with differentiated proof points, and a clear personality that binds behaviours, and plays into creating amazing customer experiences.

Has digital technology made us too short sighted?

I’m wondering if all this digital technology and innovation has made us too short sighted. Maybe we’ve lost the notion of sustainable competitive advantage due to the speed that competitors can react to your moves.

And maybe we’ve taken our eye off the ball due to the complexity of the digital & technology ecosystem.

In the quest to chase measureable results and prove that marketing works, it feels like many marketers are failing to ground activity in a solid marketing plan. Instead, they’re finding themselves developing amazing activity, but not necessarily knowing what is driving profit for the business.

Many are getting lost in a sea of social media, and an ocean of content that looks incredible but actually fails to deliver any demonstrable effect to the bottom line.

Challenging the status quo

I’m working with an inventive financial services client at the moment. We’ve helped turn their functional and technical product and service offering into a human era positioning. Creating a more emotionally engaging value proposition that resonates with the business market that they are targeting. How?

By following a proven planning process:

What – what are the growth objectives, what are the defined product and service benefits and experiences, what is the agreed brand personality

Who –  who are the most valuable customers/consumers and what is their defining profile and attributes

Where – where are the most relevant touch points and how will they trigger behavioural change throughout a consumer’s life cycle

How – how does the marketing plan align to the business plan, and how will success be identified and measured to prove a return on investment

Does your marketing plan detail this on a page? Or is it time to take a second look?