Dear entrepreneur,

The confusion

I never thought of this question of whether a marketing budget or a marketing plan comes first. I thought the answer is simple; the marketing plan is prepared first and then based on that the marketing budget is prepared. Recent two interactions with prospective clients opened my eyes that entrepreneurs think marketing budget can be prepared before preparing the marketing plan!

The explanation

In business, the entrepreneur has to prepare a marketing plan first. The path explained in the marketing plan will provide triggers to identify the marketing budget. In the marketing plan, entrepreneur needs to identify answers to questions like:

  1. How you are selling?
  2. Whom you are selling?
  3. How is your market?
  4. Who are your primary competitors?
  5. And many more related questions.

Answers to these questions will decide how you will communicate with the existing and prospective customers. Imagine you want to have a great website for your company but your customers don’t use the Internet! In this case, you can go in for a website which caters to your basic presence on the Internet. Consider your target customers are extensive users of the Internet. Then, you will have to invest extensively in having your effective online presence. Like this, there can be many parameters which will decide how much budget you should have for marketing. But remember, first you need to have a plan and then you can identify budget.

The solution

I recommend you to first create a marketing plan. Then identify list of marketing projects you need to undertake to achieve the marketing goal identified in the plan. So you can have marketing projects like website re-designing, setting up email marketing system, conducting event, and many other projects like these.

If you are still in ‘doubt’, please ‘shout’. I will be eager to answer your queries.

Dr. Sachin Mohan Bhide
Marketing Consultant
Eha Management Consultancy – Marketing consultancy to entrepreneurs

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Comment by Dr. Sachin Mohan Bhide on July 3, 2014 at 9:30am

Thank you for the feedback Anurag!

Comment by anurag gaud on July 3, 2014 at 9:24am

yes, you are right, creating marketing plan is important, also budget is important, working on the plan ,the planners must have an clear idea of the budget alloted to sales and marketing, having clear idea about budget will be helpful in planning the activities. An startup has many business promotion ideas, but have shoestring budget. 

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