In the old days, business could survive without much marketing effort. If you put together a team of good people, deliver strong service to clients, you might get by just fine on repeat business and client referrals. For many, those days are gone. While repeat business and referrals are still necessary to grow, they’re no longer enough to succeed. You need effective marketing plans and a creative business development to bring in a steady stream of growth to your organization.
When the challenges of daily operations and the success of your current plan frequently absorb your attention, it is easy to forget that customer priorities and technology are constantly changing. As an organization moves through its cycles, marketing objectives need to change with it to capture the extent of the market. Surprisingly, the majority of businesses don't have strategic business plans for future growth. So what do they do when unexpected external events make a business plan jump from one phase to another before their eyes? Factors such as innovation, regulation, trade restrictions, aggressive pricing, hyperinflation and even war can cause value to shift. Ultimately, they lead to tunnel vision and slowly loose it like a sinking ship.
If your own industry is the one you are trying to analyze, vision is often distorted by past patterns of success and the industry standards that have defined and diluted the competitive field. To an outsider who can dispassionately observe a particular industry, identifying the nontraditional players that may dominate the industry in the next decade can be done easier. Having a clear and complete competitive field of vision enables you to anticipate the phase shifts and maximize your organization’s growth. Absence of a long term plan can lead to unexpected collapse.
When companies are small, they listen to their customers; when they became a mid size company, they strike a balance in between the company and the customer; and large companies begin to ignore the customer needs and a priorities and focused on shareholder value instead.
Today's customers are choosing products and companies that satisfy an even deeper connection needs for creativity, community, and idealism. Leading companies have realized they must make plans to reach these highly aware, technology-enabled customers, and that the old rules of marketing have lost its impact. Instead, you must create products, services, and corporate cultures that inspire, include, and reflect their customers' values. Failure to communicate is the most common reason given for problems that develop in any organization from business, government and even personal relationships.