Are You A Pinball Wizard Marketer?

I remember spending many days in my youth standing at a pinball machine watching the silver ball bouncing and bumping in every direction. It was hard to control where the ball went. Most of my time was spent reacting to what the ball was doing so it wouldn’t get by the flippers and without “tilting” the machine.

What is a Pinball Wizard Marketer?

It’s amazing how many companies market this way. They don’t have a real plan in place but instead make knee jerk decisions to react to what is happening at the time. Sales may be slow so the business owner will say “lets try this” and they do. When that doesn’t work they say ”let’s try that” to only end up with mediocre results and thousands of dollars wasted that they will never get back.

Stop being a Pinball Wizard Marketer. Develop a plan based on fact and not assumptions. Understand your customers and what motivates them. Take the time to decide on the most effective marketing strategies. Develop 30 day/90 day/semi annual and annual schedules for each strategy and then execute. Measure the results and adjust as needed.

The following are items that should be included in your Marketing Plan

General Overview

Based on your product or service describe in general terms the market you plan to serve. Provide a description of the landscape. Is the market made up of consumers or B2B? What industries or areas will you serve? How will your product satisfy unfulfilled needs and wants or improve upon competitors currently serving that market?

Market Potential

Do some research to determine how large the need is for your product. Determine how many potential customers there are for your product within your determined trade area. Look at current competitors and assessment how much business they are currently doing and are there new customers that could be part of the market if there was an improved offering.

Target Market

Once you have determined the total number of clients there are in your chosen market place start to identify what segment of that market your product could best serve. Is there a specific demographic, occupation, education level geographic area that you Ideal Clients have In common? What is their income level, they hobbies or leisure activities? Once you can provide a detailed description of the exact type of customer you want to serve it will become much easier to make informed marketing decision on where to spend your time and resources to create awareness and attract customers.

The 4 P’s

Although the tools and approaches used in marketing have changed considerably in the last couple decades the framework of a marketing plan has not changed. Every Marketing Plan has some accounting of Product, Price, Promotion, and Place.

The following are considerations for each of the 4 P’s:


Give a general description of your product or service. What will it look like and what are it’s major components? What are some of it’s unique characteristics?


What will the pricing structure be? Will you offer package or a la carte pricing? How will the pricing be positioned against your competition?


How and where do you clients get your product or service? Are you going direct or through distribution? Do they call or come to a location?


How will you create awareness for your product? Will you use social media, print or online advertising, networking, trade shows etc. Remember, you don’t have to get specific for the Business Plan. Leave the specifics for your Marketing Strategy. Just describe which tools you plan to use not how you will use them.

Stop being a Pinball Wizard Marketer. Feel free to contact me at 604.374.5934 or email if you have any questions on developing marketing plans or any other business issue. I offer a free 60 minute session to deal with any business issue that you feel is holding your business back.

Tony Malyk

Tony Malyk is a Certified Professional Business Coach and Business Value Accelerator specializing in improving profitability and increasing business value in the manufacturing, distribution, trades and technology sectors.