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"Marketing Plans are part of a venture's overall strategic effort. To be effective, these plans must be based on the venture's specific goals. Here is an example of a five-step program designed to help entrepreneurs follow a structured approach to developing a market plan: Step 1: Appraise marketing strengths and weaknesses, emphasizing factors that will contribute to the firm's "competitive edge." Consider product design, reliability, durability, price/quality ratios, production capacities and limitations, resources, and need for specialized expertise. Step 2: Develop marketing objectives along with the short-and intermediate-range sales goals necessary to meet those objectives. Next, develop specific sales plans for the current fiscal period. These goals should be clearly stated, measurable, and within the company's capabilities. to be realistic, these goals should require only reasonable efforts and affordable expenditures. Step 3: Develop product/service strategies. The product strategy begins with identifying the end-users, wholesalers, and retailers, as well as their needs and specifications. The product's design, features, performance, cost, and price then should be matched to these needs. Step 4: Develop marketing strategies. Strategies are needed to achieve the company's intermediate- and long range sales goals and long-term marketing objectives. These strategies should include advertising, sales promotion campaigns, trade shows, direct mail, and telemarketing. Strategies also may be necessary for increasing the size of the sales force or marketing new products. Contingency plans will be needed in the event of technological changes, geographic market shifts, or inflation. Step 5: Determine a pricing structure. A firm's pricing structure dictates which customers will be attracted, as well as the type or quality of products/services that will be provided. Many firms believe the market dictates a "competitive" pricing structure. But this is not always the case-many companies with a high price structure are very successful. Regardless of the strategies, customers must believe that the product's price is appropriate. The price of a product or service, therefore, should not be set until marketing strategies have been developed."

Fonte: Kuratko, Donald F.; Hodgetts, Richard M. (2004), Entrepreneurship: Theory, Process, and Practices, Sixth Edition, South-Western/Thompson Learning, p. 249.
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