Did you know that only about one-third of marketers have a documented marketing plan?


And, who knows how many marketing plans are well funded, well executed and successful?

Per Marketo, the percentage of brands with documented plans varies as follows:

  • About 60% of small companies (<50 employees) have one.
  • About 80% of large companies (1,001-5,000 employees) have one

In short, because of a lack of documented plan, we find that most brands find it hard to determine if their marketing is working or not, and are generally unhappy with their progress.


When clients engage us to help them with their marketing planning, we recommend our proprietary Marketing Excellence Audit (MAE) to help build and execute their plan. The following outlines the scope of our Marketing Excellence Audit engagement.

We start our process by conducting a review of key stakeholder beliefs regarding:

  • The unique value proposition and perceptions of the Brand
  • The Brand’s advantages, disadvantages and value perceptions
  • The Brand’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats
  • Key stakeholder’s ideas to drive sales and favorable awareness

Then, we look for ways to profitably build your brand via these four Blue Ocean Strategy stages:

  1. Elimination Stage – Determine factors to eliminate that industry/the brand has long competed.
  2. Reduction Stage – Determine which factors should be reduced below the industry standard.
  3. Raise the Bar Stage – Determine which factors should be raised above the industry standard.
  4. Creation Stage – Determine which factors to create that the industry has never offered.

The “elimination” and “reduction” stages are taken to help reduce costs and wasted time.

The “raise the bar” and “creation” steps are taken to increase value.

All four stages combined help drive value innovation, profitability, memorable experiences, repeat and referential business.

Our exhaustive and encompassing Discovery Process involves:

  • One-on-one and group interviews (in person and remotely by phone)
  • Online and/or in person surveys
  • Brand, competitive and industry research

We work in an expeditious and agile fashion to interact with key stakeholders (management, sales, service, customers etc.,) to get a good understanding of your Brand, its challenges and goals. By design, most initial meetings/calls last for about an hour.

After we gather our research and complete our meetings, we typically deliver a report/plan within one month of our engagement agreement satisfying the majority of the 25 key marketing decisions and areas of concentration.

Some areas of concentration may not be applicable to your brand, but the process may lead to key findings and provide actionable marketing direction and ideas for your consideration.

These ideas/direction – which are fleshed out for marketing purposes – will be based on profitably driving sales and favorable brand awareness in a systematic fashion.

BrandMill’s New 10-P’s of Marketing


Marketing professionals use many concepts, strategies and tactics to attract and retain customers, team members and key stakeholders and influentials. These activities comprise different concepts and one of the most important ones is a brand’s marketing mix.

The 4-P Marketing Mix was conceived in the 1960s “Mad Men Era” and is still in use today. However, over the years BrandMill found the concept limiting and added 6-Ps to help it to better advise and build brands. Here is outline of the original 4-P marketing mix (boldfaced) and BrandMill’s additions which serve as a process in which we evaluate all marketing challenges, opportunities and potential ideas/executions for an effective marketing plan:

  1. Brand Promise
  2. Position
  3. People
  5. Product
  6. Price (Value – BrandMill add-on)
  7. Place/Proximity (Distribution)
  8. Promotion
  9. Pace/Process/ Systems
  10. Performance (Proof, KPIs)

10+ – Philanthropy

Our 10-P marketing mix foundation is the screen by which we conduct our 7-Point Marketing Audit and work to discover cost-effective ways to build a brand’s favorable awareness, consideration and trial.

1. Marketing Environment Audit – Macroenvironment
Demographics,Economics, Technology, Politics, Culture

2. Marketing Environment Audit – Tasks
Markets, Customers, Competitors, Distribution & Dealers,
Suppliers, Facilitators & Marketing Firms

3. Marketing Strategy Audit – Business Mission, Marketing Objectives & Goals, Strategy

4. Marketing Organization Audit – Formal Structure, Functional Efficiency, Interface Efficiency

5. Marketing Systems Audit – Marketing Information Systems & Marketing Tech Stack,
Marketing Planning, Marketing Control, New Product Development & Marketing Innovation

6. Marketing Productivity Audit – Profitability Analysis, Cost-Effectiveness

7. Marketing Function Audit – Products, Pricing, Distribution, Advertising, Sales Promotion,
Publicity, Direct Marketing, Social Media, Video Marketing, Website, Email Marketing, Sales Force

If you’d like to talk about how our Marketing Audit could help your brand increase sales and be more profitable, contact Managing Partner, Stephen Wayhart at 412.401.0555.