Are you looking for a way to improve your company’s marketing strategy in driving more website traffic?
Your business might be facing a huge obstacle, like not reaching your target audience, which can cause a lot of issues. To prevent these issues from happening again, you’ll want to implement the best strategy possible.
One of the many strategies you can consider implementing is tactical planning.
There are other types of planning such as strategic planning, where leaders define the vision, goals and objectives of the company, as well as operational planning to further define strategic planning.
However, if you’re looking for a way to break down your short-term goals to achieve a long-term goal, then you’re at the right place.
Enough said, let’s look into tactical planning, its benefits and challenges, and how you can create one especially for your digital marketing strategy.
What is Tactical Planning? Tactical Planning Definition Explained
Tactical planning is an essential part of any business plan. It’s all about creating and implementing short-term and long-term strategies that will help achieve objectives.
This will help the business make strategic decisions based on the current situation, and to adjust plans as necessary. Tactical planning also helps companies get a better sense of where they are currently situated, and what needs to be done in order to reach their business goals.
Tactical planning can also be used when a team or corporation needs to react quickly to certain issues or circumstances. For instance, a business needs to adapt to fulfill a specific request from a client who wants to start a TikTok platform.
Using tactical management, the business can look into a number of small steps, such as creating an account and looking into tiktok small business ideas to help fulfill this request.
This makes it different from strategic planning vs operational planning, which both function differently. Here’s how they differ from each other:
Strategic VS Tactical Planning
The difference between tactical VS strategic planning is based on the type of goals and how long it takes to achieve it.
Strategic planning focuses on the long term, with overarching objectives that a company or person wishes to accomplish. Tactical planning helps support this strategic plan by specifying the immediate tasks and actions that need to be taken.
Tactical VS Operational Planning
Operational plans focus on the organization itself and how it will typically carry out actions in order to achieve the organization’s objective. On the other hand, tactical plans ask specific questions about what has to happen in order to achieve a strategic goal.
The goal of technical planning is to ensure that current and future needs are met while minimizing risks.
This is why the process of technical planning includes understanding the environment and situation the business is in, gathering information of available tools and resources, as well as understanding the requirements of the goal.
With a clearly defined strategy and a sound technical plan, you can expect the plan to be successfully implemented.
When to Use Tactical Plans?
Technical planning can be used to manage a variety of different aspects of your business, such as:
- Website design
- Development timelines
- System upgrades
- Marketing campaigns
- And more
On a broader perspective, tactical planning can be used in a variety of situations as well. This includes:
- When a business needs to make a decision as soon as possible.
- When a diversion strategy is needed to find chances or avoid problems.
- When a team or organization needs to decide how to proceed in order to accomplish the objectives of a strategic plan that has been implemented.
- When an organization or group prioritizes short-term achievements over long-term goals.
With how useful tactical planning is, it’s important to remember that technical planning isn’t magic – it simply allows you to anticipate potential problems more effectively and take appropriate actions.
By planning, implementing, and completing the tactical plan prepared, the business should achieve its medium or long term business goals.
Elements Involved In a Tactical Plan
There are a few elements involved in the creation of your tactical plan.
It’s important to note that each element of your tactical planning process should be analyzed using SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) and SMART (Specificity, Measurability, Averaged Resilience to Trends, Time-frame).
This will help you understand both the advantages and disadvantages of each factor while enabling you to make informed decisions about how best to address them.
With this in mind, here are five elements you should look into for your tactical plan:
The entire purpose of using tactical planning is to achieve goals. Using the SMART analysis, you can make your goals more achievable as it becomes easier to define.
For example, rather than stating your goal as getting more organic visits through content as it’s too vague, you can instead state your goal as publishing 5 articles each week that generate 500+ social shares and 2,000+ organic visits.
Tactics are methods that can be applied in tactical planning to make achieving corporate objectives possible. There’s no defined deadline for completion when it comes to tactics, but they do help move things along in the direction of the goal.
Using the example of publishing 5 articles a week, the tactics involved would include:
- Research the latest trends in online marketing to find inspiration for topic articles and ranking keywords
- Write targeted, relevant topics using the right keywords
- Use engaging writing style
- Find out how to manipulate ctr for more clicks
Taking action to realize each short term goal set is next. This is where specific steps are outlined to help you achieve the end result.
Continuing on with the article example, this means listing out the popular topics and best keywords you can use to achieve the goal. This could also include hiring competent writers who are capable of copywriting in a more engaged style.
Achieving goals not only requires planning and action, but resources as well. Materials, labor force, equipment, finances, outsourcing products, and other resources may be required for a successful tactical plan.
This also includes using available systems online to find relevant keywords, or even using Google Drive to back up written content.
Timing is crucial for tactical planning as the goal is to achieve it as soon as possible. Everything needs to be completed in the correct order, so it’s good to state the actionable steps needed to get there. Without this, a significant amount of time and additional money will be lost in the process.
So if your strategic planning strategy for your content is that it must be achieved in the following year, the tactical plan needs to achieve this in a shorter time.
In the case of our example, you may want to aim to achieve this in the next 6 months instead. Setting a timetable or deadline will help you move forward and achieve your objectives or get a positive result.
Pros and Cons of Tactical Planning
While it’s tempting to jump into tactical planning, it’s still important to consider the pros and cons of it as it does pose some challenges alongside its benefits. Here’s what you need to know:
Adaptable and can be adjusted depending on the situation
To deliver results, the teams must collaborate, this makes it a problem if one team is unable to meet the standard in the allotted time
Focused and gives real outcomes
Takes a lot of planning, and sometimes planning takes up more time than doing
Gives the team a solid action plan to work with
May slow down the organization’s progress
Serves as a platform for pursuing short term outcomes in the long run
Take all this into consideration when you’re preparing your tactical strategy.
Steps Required During Tactical Planning
As you’re working on your tactical planning, it’s important to go through these steps to ensure you stay on course:
1. Always Align With Company Vision
Tactical planning should be aligned with your company’s vision as all tactics involved should be oriented towards it.
If the company’s vision is to be the best business in Malaysia, then the tactical strategy should align with this. Being vague or hazy about it means your company loses precious time and resources.
2. Clearly Define the Goal
Don’t be vague with the goals of your tactical plan. Make sure the goals are clear so that all teams involved know what they need to do.
When identifying strategies needed, it’s also important for managers to consider the output and effort of the team members to avoid setting up unrealistic expectations.
3. Assign The Action Accordingly
All team members involved should be assigned the actions accordingly so they know what needs to be done to achieve the stated objectives. This makes using the resources available more effective, while preventing any possible confusion and distraction that could lead to further delays.
4. Ensure Actions Are Combined With Objectives
Assigning the action needs to also be tied to goals, as this will make it more likely for team members to achieve them. For example, preparing creative content as an action with the goal of hitting the objective of 200+ shares on social media will make it easier for them to feel a sense of achievement.
5. List Down KPIs
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are meant to direct you toward your objective. They’re a great guide in helping you assess your tactical plan’s development. Clear KPIs and a vision can also help employees act appropriately.
To keep you on track, list down KPIs that are goal-oriented, such as profit, sales targets, organic traffic, social media shares etc.
Further reading: How to Drive Traffic to Your Website
6. Stay Flexible
Tactical planning is all about being flexible. This can be reassuring for teams as the stress and intense pressure to perform actions and hit objectives can hurt the company’s overall performance.
It’s important to remember that every business is different, and things can change in the long run. So having a flexible tactical plan keeps you open to alternative options.
7. Prepare a Plan B
Because of its flexibility, this means having a Plan B is essential. Nothing ever goes as planned after all, and a Plan B helps you avoid plenty of dangers and uncertainty, keeping your team from feeling demoralized should things turn for the worse.
Additionally, this minimizes the negative outcome and keeps the business on course, which is why it’s good to have a plan for emergencies to help cope with the potential loss.
8. Determine Who and What Are Involved
Always get the people involved in the tactical plan. This not only helps you in identifying the SWOT analysis but also in designing the technique in accordance with the department’s needs.
This is why it’s important to delegate the tasks to those who are best suited to complete them.
Access to the proper training, production platforms, and tools and resources is also helpful so get those involved as well. This can help produce the required outcomes, potentially offering excellent financial returns for the firm.
Examples of Tactical Planning
Tactical planning can be used in every possible field or life journey, as it’s about lining up the action needed to achieve the goals laid out.
To give you a better understanding of how this can be used, here are some tactical planning examples:
- Creating a marketing strategy for a small business who wants to make their presence known in their local area. This tactic could involve executing customer research in order to better understand what interests and concerns customers have. The strategy can also tap into the benefits of local SEO to make it easier for the small business to be found when people are looking for their business online.
- For those job hunting, the best approach is always a tactical one. This includes setting realistic goals on when to get that dream job. This is why the tactical plan will revolve around what types of jobs or industries to work in, which cities have the most jobs listed in those categories, how long it usually takes to receive an offer from a company after submitting your resume or application, and other factors specific to your situation. This can help minimize wasted effort and maximize results.
- During election season, those in political parties will want to win over the hearts of the opposing people as much as possible. To achieve this, they employ several tactics that address the issues of the target audience, promising to solve issues that they’re currently facing. They may also promise or begin to construct hospitals, educational facilities, and offer reasonably priced services.
With these examples, it’s clear to see that tactical planning can be used in a variety of situations. As long as there’s a goal to achieve, tactical planning can help you strategize and create timelines to help you in that regard.
Need Help For Your Company’s Tactical Marketing Strategy?
If you’re struggling to get the right people and resources involved for your tactical planning, especially if you want to improve your company’s digital marketing, then consider working with us at One Search Pro.
With our wealth of experience and relevant resources, we can help you develop a tactical plan that can help your company achieve its marketing goals.
From developing the best digital marketing strategy, right down to using our resource of creative services, we can help you in your quest to achieve your company’s objectives and vision.
Contact us today to get started on your ideal marketing strategy with all the right tactics needed to make it all possible.