How many times in your career as a consumer have you inquired about a product or a service only to have the provider drop the ball somewhere along the way? You fill out a web form, leave a voicemail, send an email, return a postcard -- you give a clear indication that you are in the market -- only to hear nothing, or get a simple thank you message on the website or in email that “someone” will be contacting you soon… and they don’t.
I get some "pushback" on this point -- the idea that setting your marketing strategy should come a whole lot earlier than "step 3." Some of it is symantics -- of course establishing a Vision for your business 1 year and 5 years down the road is a fundamental step in refining your existing business strategy. As for sliding step 2 "Maximizing the Current" into the mix instead of continuing from Vision on to flesh out an overall marketing strategy, think of it this way.
Recently I conducted a 90 minute workshop for some of the members of a local chamber of commerce. The topic was how to create (and "live") an effective Marketing Plan. Before I even got rolling with the material though one of the attendees reacted with "Wow! an engineer who does Marketing?"
Stock market have your stomach in knots and your head spinning? Talk about stress. What's worse than fretting over things that we just can't control?