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Marketing plan software helps businesses of all sizes put its marketing strategies, techniques and overall marketing goals into a written guide for the owners and the employees of the business to use. When it comes to marketing software, there are three primary types: software that you load on to your computer, programs that you access online and custom marketing plan software programs that pertain to your specific industry or type of business.
The first type of marketing plan software that exists is a CD program that is loaded on to the company computer. These software programs tend to have marketing plan templates with numerous types of industries and businesses included on the software. The marketing software also tends to have a generic template that users of the software can use as a guide to put together a marketing plan, no matter what the business or type of industry.
Similar to the CD that businesses can load on to the business computer system, another of the types of marketing plan software can be accessed online. Online marketing plan software can be free or a paid program. The paid programs allow the business owners or the person writing the business plan to access additional information and have more personalization options than the complimentary versions of this software.
With online marketing plan software, the business sets up a username and password to access the information. The primary advantage of this type of marketing plan software is that the business owner, marketing manager or any other employee involved in putting together the marketing plan can access the software anywhere they have access to a computer and an Internet connection.
A third type of marketing plan software is a custom or specialized software that guides the marketing plan writer to write the business plan as it specifically pertains to the type of business or industry. This type of marketing plan software is the most expensive of the three options because it only provides information on the business type or industry rather than more generalized information about marketing plans.
Another consideration when deciding between these types of marketing plan software programs is to find out any ongoing updates of the software and technical support options. Whether the business purchases a CD software or accesses it on the Internet, the buyer should verify if updates are free or require additional payments and if the cost of the software provides technical support of any kind and for how long.
@MrMoody - I agree, and think that the standalone marketing software program loaded on the computer would be fine for my needs.
I see no benefit in accessing the marketing plan online. This is not the kind of document that I need to access on the go. It’s something that is done in the preparation stage of the business.
You prepare a marketing plan and then share it with other stakeholders in the company so that everyone is on the same page. Regardless of which software you use, however, I think this is as important as the business plan.
Most business plans will have a marketing plan as a subset of the business planning document. But I think the marketing document should be separate to provide more in depth analysis.
While the article doesn’t say, I am assuming that the third kind of marketing planning software – the custom software – can exist on a CD or online.
I am more inclined to think that this would be a software product that is loaded on to your computer. Regardless of the format, however, I think the basic content of marketing planning software is the same.
It will help you identify your target market, evaluate competition, perhaps include things like SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) and then help you to come up with a marketing strategy in writing.
These principles will be the same whether you are using a dedicated software product to create your marketing plan or just using word processing templates. The important thing is to have a plan, and not let the trends of the market carry you along this way or that.
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