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Marketing Plan Outline

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What is the company's initial proposed market?
  • local
  • provincial
  • western provinces
  • national
How does the company fit in the chain of basic markets?
  • consumer
  • industrial
  • government
  • international
  • supplier
  • manufacturer
  • wholesaler
What are the target market boundaries?
  • by consumer group
  • geographically
Define the dollar value of total potential sales within the proposed target market.

Describe the targeted user groups by age, gender, lifestyle, values (major customer groups).

Define the company's sales level objectives and what percentage of total market share they represent.

Describe how planned production capability compares to proposed market demand.

Outline any outside influencing factors which may affect the marketability of the product, and how they can be overcome:
  • packaging/labelling regulations
  • GST (effect on consumer price acceptance)
  • buyer preferences (health food vs. junk food)
  • technology changes to production (extrusion method)
Describe when the product/service is usually purchased; on impulse or as a regular grocery shopping item. Does the proposed marketing strategy address these trends?

Who usually does the purchasing of the product/service? Who makes the purchasing decision? Is the marketing strategy properly directed to this group?

Describe the varieties of the product available:
  • by flavour
  • by size of package
What are the markets for each of the above?

Where is the product normally purchased?
  • supermarkets
  • grocery stores
  • convenience stores
  • snack bars
  • gas bars
  • vending machines
  • schools
Are the marketing efforts properly targeted to these locations?

Market Demands

Who is the competition?

What are their products/services?

How does this product/service compare by quality, price, packaging and variety?

What percentage of the total market does each competitor enjoy?

What can this company realistically expect to obtain as market share (provide sales forecasts)?

What does the public normally demand from this type of product/service? Does it meet these demands?

Does the packaging (sales aids/point of purchase displays) emphasize the qualities of the product/service?

What level of sales growth is anticipated over the next three years? Can the plan deliver the production levels necessary to support this growth?

What are the company's long range plans?

Product Pricing

What is the consumer acceptance price range for this type of product/service? How does the proposed product's/service's price compare?

Is there sufficient margin between the manufacturer's cost and the consumer acceptance price level to provide for markups at the wholesale, distributor and retail level?

Does the price allow for freight, projected profit, price fluctuations in the market place and consumer interpretation of value?

Are coupons or discounts being considered to promote consumers to try other flavours, etc.?

Product Introduction

What is the product cost breakdown?
  • Costs of goods sold
  • direct labour
  • direct materials
  • Operating expenses
  • selling expenses
  • communications expense
  • general and administration expenses (including freight)
What markups are allowed at each level of distribution (markup chain and channel pricing)?

For example:
Manufacturer Wholesaler Retailer
Cost 90% Cost 80% Cost 60%
+ + +
Markup 10% Markup 20% Markup 40%
= = =
Selling Price 100% Selling Price 100% Selling Price 100%

Are the most economical/cost efficient methods of processing and packaging utilized (including raw materials inputs) to keep product/service costs down?

Distribution Channels

How does the company plan to get the product/service to the end user? What channel of distribution is to be used?
  • direct—manufacturer to consumer
  • one stage—manufacturer to retailer to consumer
  • traditional—manufacturer to wholesaler to retailer to consumer
  • multi-stage—manufacturer to broker to wholesaler to retailer to consumer
Who/what company will carry out the distribution?

Are commissioned salespersons to be used?

What are the costs associated with the proposed distribution channels?

How do these channels affect delivery/production time frames?

What are delivery terms?

How are products to be packaged for shipping, end-user display? What physical handling is required?

Are display aids (clip racks, bins, etc.) to be provided to retailers?

Does packaging meet regulatory agency requirements (labelling, seals, etc.)?

Is packaging eye appealing, complementary to product, portraying universal labelling, coded, priced?

Is there a method for feedback on customer satisfaction, quality control?

What minimum shipping orders are required? (cost efficient)

What minimum inventory levels must be maintained to ensure no loss of sales due to late deliveries, back orders, split shipments?

What system is to be used for processing orders, shipping, billing?

What trade terms will be offered?


Describe the company's "communications package".

For example:
  • advertising
  • selling
  • sales promotion
  • publicity
How much is budgeted in Year 1 in each category?

What percentage of each media is to be used in your overall advertising package?
  • television
  • radio
  • newspapers
  • magazines
  • billboards
  • business cards
  • co-operative advertising with wholesalers/retailers
  • other

What type of sales persons are to be used—food brokers, commissioned salespersons, etc.?

What tools are to be provided to salespersons to assist getting orders (volume discounts, purchasing shelf space, etc.)?

Will a sales training program be offered?

How will sales effectiveness be measured?

What incentives will be offered to salespersons for new accounts, achievements?

Sales Promotion

What sales promotion activities are planned?

point of purchase displays/sales aids
  • samples
  • coupons
What costs are associated with each?


How does the company plan to "kick off" the introduction of the product using publicity?
  • endorsements (Sask-Made)
  • testimonials
  • referrals
  • truck signs
  • consistent visual theme

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