When my husband and I purchased a fixer upper, we knew we had found a mid-century diamond in the rough that would become our forever home. We quickly set about creating a design plan that resembled a marketing plan – and for good reason.

A marketing plan ensures that stakeholders are on the same page, specific goals are set, strategies are outlined, tactics are implemented, budgets are set, timelines are established, results are measured, and, if needed, adjustments are made. If its creation, implementation, and evaluation are given the appropriate attention, a marketing plan will deliver successful results.

Getting on the Same Page

We’re fortunate that we share a love of mid-century modern design, so we were immediately in sync. You’ll find no shabby chic accents or hints of French Provincial anywhere within our walls.

Inside corporate America, however, not everyone is quite so harmonious. When creating a marketing plan, it’s critical that stakeholders perform a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) analysis to determine where they have the greatest chance to optimize opportunities for the largest return on their investment. The journey to this critical destination won’t be an easy one, but when the dust settles, the stakeholders should be in agreement.

Goal Setting

After spending time in the house, we realized that a pattern of low horizontal lines in almost every room is what gave our home its mid-century feel. To emphasize that design element whenever possible, we made sure our design and purchase decisions backed that up. When the time came to select tile, cabinet hardware, furniture, and more, items that were low, horizontal, and very linear were immediately deemed strong possibilities. Our contractor couldn’t believe how quickly, easily, and confidently we made decisions.

If you follow your marketing plan, you can make decisions with confidence, too. If your plan determines that your target audience is accountants in Sarasota, don’t be tempted when an opportunity to reach tradesmen in Lake Worth arises. Yes, tradesmen might be good customers, but you’ve identified the target audience that will be the most beneficial to your business. Stick to that!


Knowing that time and money were limited, we prioritized the parts of our home that needed immediate attention and which projects did not. Anything that was not related to our kitchen, bathrooms, home office, or master bedroom would have to wait. Even if we discovered a funky retro cocktail bar for the soon-to-be hipster lounge – we would have to pass. Perhaps with a knot of regret in my stomach, but we passed.

The same can be applied to your marketing plan. Stick to your target audience and the media or method outlined in the marketing plan. If you seem to be encountering a few obstacles, remain focused. Don’t get distracted by what may appear to be low-hanging fruit. Any account worth pursuing should be included in the plan.


Working closely with our contractor, we knew who was responsible for what and in what order things should proceed. We knew that refinishing the terrazzo before the plumbing was relocated would be throwing money down the drain.

Promoting your unique value proposition before your people are trained to deliver it, launching a digital ad campaign before your landing page is live, or advertising in a media that is not highly viewed by your audience is throwing money away.


You can’t tell but this page is stained with tears. Despite approaching our contractor’s original plan with a big red pen and marking through items that we wanted but couldn’t afford, we still went over budget. This will come as no surprise to anyone who’s remodeled a home. It’s the nature of the beast. But in our case, the beast was an insatiable monster who demanded a new roof and then had the nerve to greedily demand the sacrifice of all interior walls and a majority of the ceiling due to unseen termite damage.

Let our experience serve as a cautionary tale to control the expenses you can and to have a contingency plan. Do not even be tempted to say yes to even an inexpensive ad in the church bulletin or high school paper. If it’s not in your plan, the answer is no.


Before a tenant for our previous home signed the lease, our contractor assured us that our house would be ready to move in by a set date. As the date crept closer, our contractor was falling further and further behind schedule despite our constant requests for updates. When the big day arrived, we were able to move in with a temporary toilet, no running water, and electricity turned on just hours before. Apparently in contractor school, you are taught to overpromise, underdeliver, ignore phone calls, and dash dreams and our contractor obviously graduated with honors.

Fortunately, in marketing, you have more control and can monitor your progress against your plan’s timeline. If you fall behind, don’t let it have a domino effect on your plan. Identify the issue, make up the time or adjust the plan.

Evaluation and Adjustment

In the end, we followed our plan and got the desired results. We love our mid-century jewel and marvel daily at what we created. And, except for the credit card bills, the horrors of the renovation are a distant memory.

By continually revisiting your plan, you can compare actual results against your goals and make the required adjustments. Besides carpeting over terrazzo, there’s no greater sin than creating a marketing plan that collects dust.

Design your success with a comprehensive strategic marketing plan. Need help? Contact the branding and marketing specialists at Electrum Branding.