What type of collateral in marketing plan?

Hi, I’m a Graphic Designer operating in the midst of the pandemic a bit outside my comfort zone and have an opportunity for some design work but it involves a more helping come up with a more cohesive marketing plan with phases and I have never really come up with the plan to this extent before. It’s like, yea, you need brochure, website, social media, e newsletter, etc. but what all is typically included in a basic marketing plan? Is there a way for a graphic designer to sort of figure out the process to get to a point where I can just do the work? The client doesn’t really know what they need, and probably isn’t looking to spend a lot of money on a legit marketing wizard either. Looking for some thoughts here. Thanks!

Firstly, I would be fully transparent with your client and just say that it’s not your area of expertise, however that it’s a space you’re interested in growing more.

Then you’re going to need to learn about a lot of things designers aren’t taught, but that you’re perfectly positioned to help them with if you’re willing to put in the work and go outside your comfort zone and learn about.

Why do they think they need a marketing plan?
What is the issue they’re having and what are they trying to achive?

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Figuring out the plan is the work, as is implementing it.

Asking a graphic designer to develop a marketing plan is a bit like asking a photographer to plan a wedding. A photographer might be needed at the wedding, but they’re typically not wedding planners.

At my last two jobs, part of my title was that of marketing director, so I have a little experience there. It involves taking off one’s graphic design hat, looking at the bigger objective, then figuring out ways to achieve those objectives. This might involve social media, media buys, paid ads, social media, websites, events of one sort or another, billboards, photographers, press releases, podcasts, videos, etc.

It’s a matter of looking at the bigger objective, identifying the low-hanging fruit, then figuring out how to harvest that fruit in the most cost-effective way, within budget and according to a time frame that’s best suited to achieving the desired results. More often than not, each subsequent part of the marketing plan builds on the parts of the plan that preceded it.

After figuring out the end goal, you need to take an inventory of the available assets. For example, what’s the budget? Is there someone on staff who can do this or that or will it need to be hired out? What’s realistic? What isn’t? What’s a wish list for down the road that the stage might be set for in the more immediate plan. What evidence exists indicating that the plan will work. If not, can evidence be obtained either supporting or suggesting a better approach?

The whole thing is a detailed exercise in strategy and tactics. What’ are the goals? What strategies can be employed to get there? What tactics can we best use to implement those strategies? What are the contingency plans in case things evolve differently than expected? Where in the plan are the best points to do a post-mortem to figure out what’s going well and want isn’t, then shifted as needed based on that data. Finally, how is success measured? Increased sales? Increased market penetration? Increased visits to a website that can be quantified in terms of sales conversions? Keeping track of the data on this kind of thing is important because that’s how levels of success are measured.

And somewhere in all of this, there might be a need for someone to do some graphic design.


There’s no single, stock answer to this. A strategy must be devised based on many factors. That’s the work Marketing people do. Just B laid it out for you quite nicely.

And somewhere in all of this, there might be a need for someone to do some graphic design.


Ok, thanks for the info. Gonna give it the weekend to simmer and figure out how I want to proceed.

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