What is the difference between a Marketing Plan and Strategy?

What is the difference between a Marketing Plan and Strategy?

difference between a Marketing Plan and Strategy
Marketing ManagementMarketing planMarketing Plan and StrategyStrategic LeadershipStrategiesStrategy

What is the difference between a Marketing Plan and Strategy?

Before we dig into the differences between a marketing plan and a strategy, we need to understand what they are.

Marketing Strategy

A marketing strategy is an organization’s overall goals and the blueprint upon which all marketing activities are conducted. It is an eagle-eyed view of the company and its marketing needs as a whole. What this means is that it looks at the large-scale picture, identifying its target market and brand positioning. What should the company’s marketing goals be? Who should use the product or service? With all this in mind, what is the marketing department’s function in this business?

The latter considers many factors when deciding between a marketing plan and strategy.

  • Firstly, it looks into what competitor businesses are doing and how they brand and position themselves.
  • Secondly, it carefully examines who the business is trying to reach—the ideal customer base.
  • Third, it takes them into account as it decides how to present the unique features of the company’s product/service. This matters, as it differentiates the product/service from others on the market.

Lastly, communication tone. This involves everything, from how internal messages discuss or present the product/service to marketing communications to everyone else.

Marketing Plan

As many may be familiar with, a marketing plan is a series of tactical decisions that implement the overarching marketing strategy. So, between a marketing plan and strategy, the marketing plan is the detailed, actionable to-do list that we’re most familiar with. It takes guidance from the established marketing strategy and gets down to the nitty-gritty. This is where everyday matters like how many people get hired for the marketing team or how the budget is distributed get decided. That aside, of course, it must also allocate resources like time and energy. Finally, marketing plans are typically held accountable to pre-established key performance indicators.

And so, regarding a marketing plan and strategy, a marketing plan must feature ideas to tackle some factors.

First, the business’s branding can take its cues from its market positioning and must include details like official fonts and colors. It must also account for the brand’s tone of voice and implement it everywhere.

The second factor is its content strategy. How often will potential customers be engaged? What does the brand have to say? How can it creatively engage with its audience?

Thirdly, budgeting is king. Every good campaign should have a properly planned budget- for funds and time. The marketing plan should account for the marketing strategy’s goals as it allocates its funding and time to campaigns.

The fourth factor to tackle is: which channels best suit the company’s communication style? All popular social media platforms have their own tone of voice, and most brands create multiple variations of a post to accommodate that.

Lastly, a very important factor that directly affects marketing employees is responsibilities. Who handles which part of the campaign? Who is in charge of designing or content creation? Which team member writes the necessary copies? Responsibilities should be assigned to team members to avoid losing time or causing confusion.

UAE and its Rising Demand for Marketing Professionals

The UAE is not just a robust consumer market for big multinational brands. It is also a tourism hub, thanks to Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Apart from that, it has emerged as a globally recognized luxury spot.

Reports suggest that the region will become the fastest-growing advertising market in the world in the coming years. A Warc Media report stated that 2024 will see the advertising market reach a value of $6.9 billion. As such, organizations are poised to enact new marketing plans and strategies.

Marketing Plan vs Marketing Strategy

While marketing plans and strategies are ultimately just different handles on the same tool, they remain distinct, symbiotic workflows. As per our previous discussion of the definition of the two hints, a marketing plan cannot exist without a marketing strategy to guide it. Similarly, a marketing strategy is useless without implementation. There are three main differences to note.

  • Simply put, a marketing strategy is characterized differently from a marketing plan. Marketing strategies address business needs on a large scale, identifying problem areas and growth spots. And the marketing plan is like its intangible arm, guiding detailed plans to execute the strategy.
  • Secondly, their objectives. A marketing strategy aligns the goals of the marketing department with the organization itself. Meanwhile, a marketing plan focuses on envisioning the actual steps to take to realize these goals. It is more detailed, while the marketing strategy is like an overview.
  • Last, they concern themselves with different things. A marketing strategy identifies what the business needs, and relates to target markets, competitors, branding, and positioning. Then, the marketing plan focuses on the strategic actions that will help achieve the goals that the marketing strategy sets.

The rapid rise in the regional advertising market will inevitably lead to calls for more qualified professionals. That aside, technological changes will require marketers to stay sharp and stay abreast. Industry experts with recent or updated degrees and skills (Leadership Skills) set in marketing will be in demand. As the world evolves, many turn to online degrees to stay ahead of the curve in their industries.


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