What’s the Difference Between a Jewelry Marketing Strategy and Plan?Laryssa
Jewelry entrepreneurs often use the terms “marketing strategy” and “marketing plan” interchangeably. However, the two things are not the same, and you actually need both for your jewelry business. In this blog post, we’ll discuss how the two documents differ and how you can start putting both together.
When you first launched your jewelry business, you may have put together a business plan, which would serve as the roadmap for your business. It probably included elements like a company overview, some information about your business model and products, information about the people involved in your business, and more. You may have even included a section about your approach to marketing and sales.
When was the last time you revisited your business plan and your section about marketing in particular? In 2019, 50% of business owners did not establish any marketing goals, according to the results of a report from Outbound Engine. In addition, 50% of those surveyed did not have a marketing plan for the year, and 58% only spent five hours or fewer on marketing each week. If you don’t have a marketing strategy and plan, then your business is probably lacking direction and vision.
A marketing strategy basically describes the “why” and “what” of your marketing. In a larger organization, the marketing strategy would be handled by the chief marketing officer or CMO. In a small business, the business owner – working alongside a marketing consultant – would be very closely involved in the development of the marketing strategy. Overall, a marketing strategy should unite everyone on your team, especially anyone who’s involved in marketing decision-making or execution.
Typically, a marketing strategy establishes your big-picture goals, so it will run parallel to your overall business strategy, mission statement, and brand identity and values. It may change and evolve over time but should not change as much as the plan, since a strategy ultimately describes what you want to achieve and aligns your marketing vision with your long-term business goals. If you make a major business decision like changing your pricing, then you’ll want your marketing strategy to support the new business goal.
The elements of a marketing strategy will vary from one business to another, but typically a strategy includes a Competitive Analysis, Customer Personas, your marketing budget, your unique selling proposition, an audit of your brand’s strengths and weaknesses, your goals, and your marketing mix (all the channels, platforms, and tactics you’ll be using for your marketing).
In contrast, your marketing plan is the “how” of your marketing. In most organizations, the marketing plan is handled by a marketing manager, who oversees all the moving parts of the plan. A marketing consultant can also help a small business owner devise the appropriate roadmap.
The plan is usually a short-term, tactical guide that describes the campaigns you’ll be implementing to support your marketing strategy, and it should be specific and measurable. For example, your plan may involve a six-month timeline and include details about how you’ll be handling your social media posts and on which platforms, or it could involve a year-long timeline and include details about your approach to email marketing.
A marketing plan will vary greatly based on your individual marketing initiative, but in general it should specify your tactics, the channels and tools you’ll need, any collaborators or stakeholders, your budget, your key performance indicators, the metrics you’ll be using to track your success, and your timeline.
No matter what, you’ll need both a marketing strategy and a marketing plan for your jewelry business because you can’t execute the “how” of your marketing without knowing the “what”, and you won’t get anywhere with your “what” unless you also have a “how”.
Making the most of your strategy and plan
To make the most of your marketing strategy and plan, you’ll want to get used to setting SMART marketing goals. The acronym SMART was first coined in 1981 by George T. Doran, a consultant and former director of corporate planning for Washington Water Power Company. In a paper titled “There’s a S.M.A.R.T. Way to Write Management’s Goals and Objectives”, he designated five key adjectives that should always be associated with a SMART goal: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-based.
To set your SMART marketing goal, you’ll want to be Specific about what you want to accomplish, determine how you’ll want to Measure and assess your progress, keep the goal Attainable, make the goal Relevant to your overall business goals and target customer, and ensure the goal is Time-Based.
In your head, you probably already know exactly what you’d like your marketing to achieve. However, if you don’t commit your strategy to paper (or a digital document), then you’ll never be able to share it with anyone, and you may forget some important aspects. According to data from CoSchedule, “marketers who document their marketing strategy are 538% more likely to report success than those who don’t” (Source). Even if you’re just beginning your journey as a jewelry business owner, and you’re not sure about your strategy, you must document it. Take action; don’t let “analysis paralysis” hold you back from laying the foundation for your marketing strategy. Of course, you’ll also want to record your plan, so that every person who’s involved in executing it knows what to do and what’s expected. Even if you’re the only person creating and executing the marketing plan, you need a guide that will keep you accountable and on track.