Have this post read to you in a natural voice, so you can do other things:
It’s insane how many free marketing plans there are out there! From Google docs to word docs, to generators – there is bound to be something that is right for you and your team.
This is crazy because there are so many people out there trying to:
- Sell marketing plans for ridiculous amounts of money.
- Sell courses that basically just tell you how to do what’s in these plans.
- Or make you think you need to go back to college, just to get what you can find for free on the internet.
Make no mistake. There’s enough information out there on the internet, that will be even more than what a college professor could tell you. The truth perhaps, is more nuanced, being that formal education has tons of amazing auxiliary benefits (like networking, and discipline building) the truth remains – these marketing plans hold way more value than you might think is freely available.
Table of Contents
1. Free ‘Ideal Marketing Plan’ – Google Document – Link
2. Free Marketing Plan Template, Word Document – Hubspot – Link
3. Marketing Plan Generator – Hubspot – Link
4. Free Marketing Plan Word Doc + Excel Spreadsheet – Vital – Link
5. Free Marketing Plan Word Google Doc Template – AddThis Academy – Link
6. Free Annual Marketing Presentation Plan – Piktochart – Link
7. Free Marketing Planning Tool – Doc – Marketing Donut – Link
20 More Free Templates
- Content Marketing Strategy Template – Buffer
- Free One-Page Marketing Budgeting Template – Hook Agency
- Simplify Your Content Marketing Strategy With a One-Page Plan – Content Marketing Institute
- One-Page Content Marketing Plan – UncommonlySocial
- How to Create a Marketing Strategy That Will Skyrocket Your Results By 9,360% – CoSchedule
- Marketing Plan Outline – QuickMBA
- Multi-channel Marketing on a $2,000 Budget: A Sample Plan – BusinessTown
- Plan Your Marketing Like a Pro – Business.com
- Marketing Plan Template – Forbes
- Small Business Marketing Plan Template – ProfitWorks
- Marketing Strategy Template – David Meerman Scott
- Examples of Marketing Strategies for Small Businesses – ThriveHive
- Sample Marketing Plan – Houghton Mifflin Company
- Marketing Plan Template – Marketer Gizmo
- Nonprofit Marketing Plan Template – Nancy And Kivi
- Developing A Marketing Plan Example – Agricultural Extension Service at the University of Tennessee
- Marketing Plan Template – The Business Victoria
- Marketing Plan Outline – University of Wisconsin Oshkosh Small Business Development Center
- A Marketing Plan – Network Jungle
- How to Build a Go-To Market Plan – Chief Outsiders
5 Quick Stats About Marketing Budgets
- 48% of companies are reporting spending between 4-10% of revenue on marketing – Source: Hook Agency
- 50%+ of companies say the highest ROI activities are related to search – In particular paid search, SEO & content marketing. Source: Hook Agency
- 44.4% of companies said that the top marketing objective for their company was to increase leads. Source: Hook Agency
- 69.7% of people said they were spending less than half of their marketing budgets on digital/online marketing for 2020. Source: Hook Agency
- The average revenue % – spent on marketing is 11.2%. Source: Brafton/Gardner CMO
These may just be starting points for you and your company – marketing plan templates, tools, and strategies really only can introduce some concepts and prepare you for action.
Because each company has it’s own unique market and it’s own unique needs. We suggest reviewing these marketing strategy tools and documents. Perhaps you’ll identify one that best fits you, but then changing it to best fit your organization.
We wish you luck in planning your companies next steps for marketing. Most importantly – have fun!
Bonus: An Easy, Free Marketing Budgeting One Page Template
If you want to create a marketing budget – the first important step is to determine what’s a reasonable budget for your particular industry. That can mean as low as 4% for medical markets or really high ‘cost of goods sold’ services, and as high as 40-50% in B2C products – but generally, it’s around 6-12% on average.
If you’re trying to be aggressive and quickly grow, it will be on the high side of averages – and if you are trying just to maintain, or perhaps don’t have the resources to deliver on any large amount of increase in work, it might be better to stay on the slimmer side. Only 2% of companies do no marketing whatsoever.
Here’s a one-page template that you can use to plan your marketing budget!
Things to consider when using the one-page marketing budget template.
It’s better to keep it simple (at least to start) – you’ll want to determine in a general way what your company spent on marketing over the past year and the revenue for this year. When you have that, look at what percentage it was this year – and dial it up or down based on how much quicker or slower you want to grow.
Using the bottom part of the one-page marketing budget template
The idea on the bottom of the template is to break down your marketing budget into what you want to spend on different, specific marketing methods.
- SEO / Content Marketing
- Email Marketing / Automation
- Social Media Marketing
- Paid Ads / Remarketing
- Trade Shows
You should use this list as a starting point – but it doesn’t mean that you have to stop here. You can add new elements, or subtract them if it doesn’t make sense for your business.
Consider what has worked in the past – regarding clear ‘return on investment’ and weight your budget in those areas + the areas that most people perceive high ROI. Content marketing, SEO, and E-mail marketing and marketing automation are some of the biggest areas according to polls of Chief Marketing Officers.
Once again, you have to look at the previous results – and other ones that have high ROI in your industry.
Check out our Marketing Budget Calculator if you’re still looking for some more granular numbers!
Presenting your marketing budget to your boss
There’s no virtue in presenting a long-winded document to a boss. Creating a marketing strategy requires in-depth research, but every boss I’ve ever had has appreciated me boiling down to the key points of my plan, and presenting them in a simple way.
If you need to do a cost analysis and a breakdown of your current website’s analytics, and a deeper ROI analysis you should do those things – but don’t let it stop you from making big moves in your marketing budget this next year. You should be prepared with a clear budget, specific goals, and have reasoning built out for why you need them.
This doesn’t mean you should present all of that information to your CEO – your CFO – or whoever you directly report to. It means you should have it available, but if you make the main points of your plan clear and prepare a simple document to present your marketing budget, you will make it easier to digest.
Once again – this is a starting point. But rather than getting stuck on the finer points, start mocking up a general plan and use it to kick off the discussion for your marketing budget!
Good luck – and I hope this One-Page Marketing Budget Plan/Template is useful for you and your company!
Commonly Asked Questions About Marketing Plan Templates
What are the key elements of a marketing plan?
A budget – every marketing plan needs to give clarity to the amount of money that will need to be spent. The Methods – what are the key platforms and approaches you’ll be using, what percentage of your budget will go to each and why. The Goals – how many leads will this effort be likely to get, and how many more will this be than last year. Some justification for increases – if the budget is going up – why? What can reasonably be expected if the company pushes in these areas, or tries these new approaches? Not every risk will pay off – but there should be some reasonable amount of confidence that some key methods will pay off and why.
How do you write a marketing plan?
Start with a one-sheet that gives all of the absolutely key information without having to read the entire document – some of the most driven and sophisticated business executives in the world, have almost zero time, and creating clarity as quickly as possible is extremely valuable. Yes – you want the rest of the document to detail out the specifics of the budget, the methods, the goals, and even supporting statistics to justify the budget – but each section so be written as clearly and simply as possible, and use graphs and imagery when appropriate.
How long should a marketing plan be?
Your entire marketing plan maybe 5-10-15 pages, but someone should be able to read an executive summary in one page. A smart man once said “I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time,” so I believe writing a longer marketing plan is the start – and the summary should be written afterward.
What’s the number one thing that should be in a marketing plan?
63% of marketers cited ‘increasing traffic and leads’ as their number one priority in their marketing plan – thus, SEO takes the cake for the central method, being that SEO builds your site traffic and leads while also building your site up for the long term. Send us a message if you’d like a free demonstration of how we can increase your leads with our aggressive SEO services.
Watch this quick video to see how savvy businesses save time and hook better leads: