Tag Archives: project

6 Elements That Make Planning a Breeze!

I recently was introduced to a wonderful template tool that aids in developing marketing communication plans. This tool was developed in the 1990’s by Paul R. Smith and is called the SOSTAC model, which is actually an acronym for the 6 components needing analysis. I’m currently utilizing this tool in a course I’m taking and have found it truly helpful in organizing my thoughts. I also find that it helps in ensuring that I don’t leave out any critical aspects to my analysis.

So how about I take you through a detailed description of each abbreviated letter and the components required for analysis… Okay? Okay!

The Nitty Gritty

S is for Situational Analysis

This element of the SOSTAC model requires the individual to look at the current situation in detail. This varies depending on the topic at hand. In terms of a marketing plan, one would consider information such as the current source of revenues, existing competitors, and any processes and policies that are in place.

O is for Objectives

The Objectives element is fairly straightforward in the sense that the individual must put in to words concrete goals that are desired.

S is for Strategy

Strategy is one of the most important components of the SOSTAC model; it’s the meat of the meal. This deals with the overall means for getting to the desired objectives. It is likely that this section of the analysis (along with the next) will be the most time consuming.

T is for Tactics

The element of Tactic ties in with Strategy, as it better outlines what particular moves need to be made to carry on the defined strategy. Here we define what tools will be utilized.

A is for Action

After figuring out what we want to do and how we are going to do it, it’s a given that we need to define who is going be the one responsible for getting it done. Assigning tasks, roles and responsibilities is the basis for this section.

C is for Control

After all is said and done, we need to be able to measure how success our plan was in the first place. That’s where the element of Control comes in. Here we define how we will measure success, through the utilization of various metrics.

Illustrating the SOSTAC Model

Now that you have a basic understanding of the components, take a look at this diagram that illustrates the common way in which to present a SOSTAC model.

Adjacent to each element, place each of your associative bullet points.By utilizing this way of organizing your SOSTAC model, you create a standardized, self-explanatory outline of your plan.

You can use this model for more than developing a marketing plan. In fact, you can use it for various types of plans, whether it aid in your professional or personal development .If you’ve found yourself able to give a detailed perspective of each of these categories, then you will have produced a great analysis on whatever topic you desire. I hope you all find this tool as useful as I did… Happy planning!


Adams, B. (2011, June 22). SEO within the SOSTAC® strategy framework. Retrieved March 11, 2012, from State of Search: http://www.stateofsearch.com/seo-within-the-sostac-strategy-framework/

Business Services Agency Ltd. (2012). Developing a Marketing Communciations Plan using the SOSTAC Model: Planning Guide. Retrieved March 11, 2012, from BSA Marketing: http://www.bsamarketing.com/downloads/sostac.pdf

Predrag Putic. (2007). Chess Pieces Image. Retrieved March 11, 2012, from Canadian Chess Academy: http://www3.webng.com/chessteacherno1/

Smith, P. R. (2009). SOSTAC® Planning System. Retrieved March 11, 2012, from Paul R. Smith: http://www.prsmith.org/sostac.html


Hooray for How-to Guides!

I’m the type of person that loves to “do it myself” when it comes to anything I can get my hands on; whether it be a little project, or massive one.

If you’re in a similar boat, then you should check out www.ehow.com (eHow). It’s a neat website I found that provides users with a great deal of information on do-it-yourself (DIY) projects, for free! In addition to providing a multitude of “how-to” guides for hobbies and projects, it also has sections for more serious issues, such as money and banking, and fitness and nutrition.

Honestly, this site is jam packed with loads of useful tips, which is why it has become one of my favourite and frequently visited go-to sites for everyday solutions. Not only is this site helpful for the DIYer’s, but it also comes in handy for marketers as it provides readers with tips and tricks on how to apply marketing theories and strategies in everyday situations.

eHow for Marketers

For all my fellow marketers, check out the following links for marketing related how-to guides and tips:

How to Create a Marketing Plan: http://bit.ly/5IxEwT

How to Market Yourself:  http://bit.ly/AsbExg

How to Conduct Market Research: http://bit.ly/xwCgFX

A Little Background Information…

eHow started up in 1999 and almost went extinct after declaring bankruptcy due to being hit hard with the after effects of the dot-com bust. However, after a few changes in ownership, the eHow site got back on its feet and has been standing strong ever since.

Advantages of eHow

The best thing about eHow has to be its user-friendly format, as every article is written to aid in self-learning through its step by step instruction. On top of this, there are many “how-to” guides in video format, to provide a comprehensive means for learning for the visual user (like myself). Additionally, many of the articles are offered in various languages to accommodate for the DIYers that aren’t strong in the English language, or prefer to read and learn in another language.

Since 2006, Direct Media Inc. has owned this site and has kept it up to date with relevant content, while also revamping it to be in line with new technological trends. One of the ways in which it has done this is by offering a mobile app that allows readers to utilize the website’s content without being next to a computer! Various members use this site as a means for marketing their ideas to the general public, through the free to view features of the site. As an added bonus, readers can promote their favourite articles by sharing them via Facebook, or recommending them using Google’s new +1 button (all of which are easy to do, as eHow has quick links to these options on the side bar of its website).

So before you go off and try to learn a new task on your own, take a looksee at the content available to aid in your venture by visiting www.ehow.com.


Anonymous. (2011, February 8). How to Conduct Market Research. Retrieved 2012, from eHow: How to Videos, Articles & More: http://www.ehow.com/how_14781_conduct-market-research.html

Anonymous. (2012). Retrieved 2012, from eHow: How to Videos, Articles & More: http://www.ehow.com/how_138647_create-marketing-.html

Demand Media Inc. (2012). eHow: How to Videos, Articles & More. Retrieved January 15, 2012, from eHow: http://www.ehow.com/

Herrick, J. (2011). History of eHow. Retrieved January 15, 2012, from wikiHow: http://www.wikihow.com/wikiHow:History-of-eHow

Morgan, A. (2012). How to Market Yourself. Retrieved 2012, from eHow: How to Videos, Articles & More: http://www.ehow.com/how_2309114_market-yourself.html