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Strategy/Marketing Plan

Forecasting/Econometrics -- how to generate forecasts, plus software to aid in the process

Internal Data -- get in-depth customer analytics from our affiliate, Total Customer Analytics.  See how they can help with your SWOT analysis

Secondary Market Research -- secondary market research sources to help build a strategy

Primary Market Research -- if you need new data to build your strategy, these sources can help

Analysis Software -- software that generates plans and analysis the "soft" data that is often part of strategy development

Magazines -- magazines about marketing strategy

Books -- books about marketing strategy

Associations -- professional associations for strategy pros

Check out marketing plan sample outlines from our sponsor, InfoTech Marketing



Institute of Business Forecasting  -- the primary mission of the Institute is to disseminate knowledge about business forecasting and planning

Forecasting Principles -- seeks to summarize all useful knowledge about forecasting so that it can be used by researchers, practitioners, and educators. This knowledge is provided as principles (guidelines, prescription, rules, conditions, action statements, or advice about what to do in given situations).  Useful links.  From The Wharton School.

Brainreserve trends -- various societal trend forecasts from popular forecaster Faith Popcorn

Battelle Technology Forecasts -- interesting technology forecasts.  Not a lot of depth, but you can see summary forecasts from a leading innovation organization

Global Business Network -- a unique learning community based on ruthless curiosity, collaboration, and powerful new tools for thinking about and shaping the future.  Publishes scenario forecasts

2025 -- book by futurist Joseph Coates with downloadable chapters

Also see the data page for economic forecasts

Alliance for Innovative Manufacturing at Stanford -- while not a forecast per se, interesting videos about how everyday things are made.  Need high-speed Internet connection to view


Exel-lent Marketing Formulas -- Microsoft® Excel add-in's forecasting page with seasonality, exponential smoothing, and diffusion curves.  Can buy complete add-in with 55 functions/macros for sales & marketing pros, and can also download a trial version.  The complete add-in also contains strategy functions.

SAS Institute -- The SAS System contains modules for econometric modeling and time-series forecasting

Eviews -- Designed for the new generation of 32-bit Windows operating systems, and featuring major enhancements to both data management and modeling tools, EViews continues to set the standard for econometric analysis, forecasting, and modeling software...

Crystal Ball -- Crystal Ball is a spreadsheet add-in program that uses Monte Carlo simulation to help you analyze the risks and uncertainties associated with your models. Features include sensitivity analysis, correlation, and distribution fitting to historical data.

Forecast Pro  -- uses proven statistical forecasting methods, coupled with a powerful expert system, to bring you unsurpassed forecasting accuracy.  Whether you are forecasting sales, revenues, demand for service or any other important variable, Forecast Pro will make your work easier, quicker and more accurate. 

Books: by logoamazon.gif (1557 bytes)

Business Forecasting -- John E Hanke and Arthur G Reitsch.   Hardcover.  Reviews
The publisher, Prentice Hall Business Publishing This top selling text presents, in a straightforward, application-driven manner, the basic statistical techniques that are useful for preparing individual business forecasts and long-range plans. The emphasis is on the application of techniques by management for decision-making. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Forecasting:  Methods and Applications --  Steven Wheelwright, Spyros G Makridakis (Ed.).  Paperback.  4½ Star Customer Review. Review:The publisher, John Wiley & Sons: Presents a wide range of forecasting methods useful for undergraduate or graduate students majoring in business management, economics, or engineering. Develops skills for selecting the proper methodology. Integrates forecasting with the planning and decision-making activities within an organization. Methods of forecasting include: decomposition, regression analysis, and econometrics. Stresses the strengths and weaknesses of the individual methods in various types of organizational areas. Numerous examples are included. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Clicking : 17 Trends That Drive Your Business -- And Your Life --by Faith Popcorn, Lys Marigold.  Paperback - 464 pages Revised edition (January 1998).   Amazon Review. Heralded as "the Nostradamus of marketing" by Fortune magazine, Faith Popcorn is the premier trend guru; her national bestseller The Popcorn Report identified the business and personal trends that took off in the early 90's, from "cocooning" to "cashing out." Nobody has been more accurate in demonstrating how to profit from tracking the trends, and in Clicking, Popcorn describes how to CLICK into more recently identified trends to future-fit themselves professionally and personally. Clicking is an invaluable road map to the newest lifestyle trends. It's about possibilities, taking chances, and taking charge of the future -- now.

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Analysis Software

Decision Explorer -- a proven tool for managing "soft" issues - the qualitative information that surrounds complex or uncertain situations. It allows you to capture in detail thoughts and ideas, to explore them, and gain new understanding and insight.

Business Plan Pro -- software and a site dedicated to supplying information about real implementable plans for small and medium sized businesses.  Contains sample plans and resource links.bplansstandardlogo.gif (2673 bytes)  Purchase now at icon.

        Web Strategy Pro -- Web Strategy Pro guides you through the process of creating a plan for your Internet strategy, and website implementation. Web Strategy Pro works with Business Plan Pro to export and import data, combining plans into one very detailed plan. Web Strategy Pro has all the features of Business Plan Pro, allowing you to collaborate with your partners, co-founder and investors.  Purchase now at icon.

        Marketing Plan Pro -- a prompted, guided, menu-driven software package designed to help you develop and implement a solid, professional marketing plan. Answer a few questions and the Plan Wizard will create a custom outline with tables and charts for your needs. What is your target market? Where is it? How much is it worth? Marketing Plan Pro helps you find the answers.  Buy now at icon.

Business Resource Software -- offers Business Plan Write, an easy to use, comprehensive business plan software; and Business Insight, which evaluates your marketing plan.

Smart Business Plan Suite -- the fastest & easiest way to create business plans & marketing plans!  Create strategic and vital marketing plans with up-to-the-minute, web-based market research. Use the financial Advisor to find capital and build a rock-solid business plan that will impress any investor.

BusinessPlanBuilder -- BizPlanBuilder has been leading the way in business planning software since 1988. This proven tool has been used by hundreds of thousands of business owners and managers to start businesses; evaluate businesses prior to purchase; secure bank and SBA loans, lines of credit, private placements, angel investor and venture capital funding; and take companies successfully to IPOs, acquisitions and mergers. Business consultants, bankers and countless customers have credited BizPlanBuilder as the key to many business successes; they've seen vision accomplished.

MarketingBuilder Interactive -- more than 50 prepared, editable documents and spreadsheets enabling you to plan, implement, and track every aspect of any size marketing plan or program.

Marketing Plan Pro  -- Get detailed instructions for every topic, every table, even rows inside the table -- customized for your business type. Learn by example. Samples for every topic and table are just one click away. Stay on track with the Task Manager. It leads you through every step of your marketing plan. Plus 10 sample plans

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Strategy Magazines

Harvard Business Review -- premier business magazine from one of the leading business schools.

Harvard Business School Publishing

Mercer Management -- contains publications of a leading management consulting company, include their semi-annual journal

The McKinsey Quarterly -- articles on various aspects of management and numerous industries from a leading consulting company.  Must register (free).  Searchable.

Strategy & Business -- sponsored by Booz-Allen & Hamilton, the mission is to put the best business ideas to work.  Contains some good quotes also.  Searchable.

Sloan Management Review -- provides senior managers with the best current management theory and practice. The peer-reviewed, quarterly journal covers all management disciplines, with a particular emphasis on corporate strategy, organizational change, and management of technology and innovation.   Searchable.

California Management Review -- a vehicle of communication between those who study management and those who practice it. CMR publishes articles that are both research-based and address issues of current concern to managers.  Summaries provided.  Indexed.

Strategic Management Journal -- publishes original material concerned with all aspects of strategic management. It is devoted to the improvement and further development of the theory and practice of strategic management and it is designed to appeal to both practicing managers and academics.  Information is available about articles, but no on-line articles

Strategic Change -- collection of authoritative and topical papers which together identify external sources of change, evaluate the options for responding to change, and examine the implementation and management of the change process.  Can view abstracts.

Market Leader -- focuses on the strategic factors that deliver growth, shareholder value and brand strength. Taking the lead from some of the world’s foremost business people, it aims to bring to its readers unparalleled access to the most powerful and effective strategies in business today. Market Leader is vital reading for both senior management and those from the academic community involved in teaching and research into business and marketing issues.  Published quarterly by the Marketing Society (U.K.).

Reading Recommendations in Marketing & Strategy  -- no links, but lists of books and magazines recommended by a marketing professor.

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Journal of Strategy & Business Books -- Strategy & Business has joined forces with book publisher Jossey-Bass to produce a series of books which reflect the character of the magazine itself - innovative, insightful, thought-provoking, and always highly pragmatic.

Institute of Business Forecasting -- geared towards the professional whose responsibilities include forecasting and planning.   Limited number of books.

logoamazon.gif (1557 bytes) -- the Web's largest on-line book seller.


Wharton on Dynamic Competitive Strategy --  George S. Day (Ed), David J. Reibstein (Ed), Robert E. Gunther (Contributor). Hardcover.  4½ Star Customer Review.  Synopsis: This book will provide managers and students of competitive markets with an advanced tool box of innovative methods, techniques, and approaches they can use when facing competitive challenges. It's a text to guide the thinking of practitioners who face immediate and long-run challenges from their competition.

Competitive Strategy : Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors --  Michael E. Porter.  Hardcover.  4½ Star Customer Review.  Book Description: Competitive Strategy has transformed the theory, practice, and teaching of business strategy throughout the world. Electrifying in its simplicity -- like all great breakthroughs -- Porter's analysis of industries captures the complexity of industry competition in five underlying forces. Porter introduces one of the most powerful competitive tools yet developed: his three generic strategies -- lowest cost, differentiation, and focus -- which bring structure to the task of strategic positioning. He shows how competitive advantage can be defined in terms of relative cost and relative prices, thus linking it directly to profitability, and presents a whole new perspective on how profit is created and divided. In the almost two decades since publication, Porter's framework for predicting competitor behavior has transformed the way in which companies look at their rivals and has given rise to the new discipline of competitor assessment.

In Search of Excellence : Lessons from America's Best-Run Companies -- Thomas Peters, Robert H. Waterman.  Paperback.  4 Star Customer Review.   Synopsis: An American business management "bible" since 1982, In Search of Excellence presents eight specific management principles common to successful companies.

Perspectives on Strategy : From the Boston Consulting Group Perspectives on Strategy : From the Boston Consulting Group --  Carl W. Stern (Editor), George Stalk (Editor), Boston Consulting Group, John S. Clarkeson Hardcover.  4 Star Customer Review. Reviews: The publisher: John Wiley & Sons: A collection of the best thinking from the highly acclaimed management consulting firm. For the past thirty years, BCG has changed the face of business with their innovative thinking in such areas as brand management, marketing strategies, leadership, and customer value. Now, for the first time, you can read up on all of BCG's groundbreaking ideas under one cover.

Marketing Management: Analysis, Planning, Implementation and Control -- Phillip Kotler.   Hardcover.  4½ Star Customer Review. Reviews The publisher, Prentice Hall Business Publishing: Best-seller world-wide, the ninth edition of this classic text highlights the most recent trends and developments in global marketing. It emphasizes the importance of teamwork between marketing and all the other functions of the business; introduces new perspectives in successful strategic market planning; and presents additional company examples of creative, market- focused, and customer-driven action. Kotler underscores the importance of computers, telecommunications, and other new technologies in improving marketing planning and performance.


coverRadical Marketing: From Harvard to Harley, Lessons from Ten That Broke The Rules and Made It Big -- Sam Hill, Glen Rifkin.  Hardcover.   5 Star Customer Rating. Info Tech Marketing's "Best Bet."   Review from Booklist, January 1, 1999This is a fascinating, must-read marketing book by a consultant and a business journalist who urge companies not only to break traditional marketing rules but also to design a whole new game. The authors describe radical marketers and identify 10 notable ones, including Harley-Davidson Motorcycles, Iams Company, Boston Beer, EMC Corp., Snap-On-Tools, and the Harvard Business School. Traditional marketing is big, expensive, complex, and heavily reliant on advertising. Radical marketing has a strong visceral tie to a specific audience--radical marketeers "look" like their market. Their only reality is a quality product and the person using the product. The authors' 10 rules for radical marketing include the CEO's owning the marketing function; a small marketing department; seeking growth and expansion over profits; and respect for the customers while meeting with them personally to develop new ideas. Radical marketers do something different, something impossible that bucks tradition in their industry. Although some of the advice is not new, the authors skillfully challenge the common understanding of marketing with valuable new rules. Mary Whaley Copyright© 1999, American Library Association. All rights reserved

The End Of Marketing As We know It -- Sergio Zyman.  Hardcover.  4½ Star Customer Rating.  Review:Bob Garfield, columnist, Advertising Age: "Always insightful, always provocative and (almost) always right, the irrepressible Sergio Zyman mined his experience at a certain coca-colossus to write a marketing book, a management how-to, and a cola-war memoir all in one."

Selling the Invisible: A Field Guide to Modern Marketing -- Harry Beckwith.  Hardcover.   4½ Star Customer Rating.  Booklist , March 1, 1997.  Advertising professional Beckwith startles and disarms all potential doubting Thomases with one fact--that by the year 2005, 8 out of 10 Americans will be working in a service business. Chapters here are remarkably short; they are intended to convey one point (summarized in one sentence in boldface italics) and are blessedly free of jargon. Hints and tips cover the conventional four Ps of marketing--product, promotion, place, and price--in an irreverent and iconoclastic manner; nothing is sacrosanct. Stories from every corner of life illustrate and drive home messages. In a quandary about pricing? Read the Picasso story to remember, "Don't charge by the hour; charge by the years." About the value of research? Forget questionnaires and focus groups; instead, ask individuals what improvements are needed--not the dreaded "What don't you like?" A very human, much-needed book to savor and be refreshed by. Barbara Jacobs
Copyright© 1997, American Library Association. All rights reserved

The Loyalty Effect -- Frederick Reichheld.  Hardcover.  5 Star Customer Rating.   Synopsis
U.S. corporations now lose half their customers in five years, half their employees in four, and half their investors in less than one. The Loyalty Effect reveals the secrets of successful companies which base their business strategies on loyal relationships. Reichheld lays out the principles that connect value creation, loyalty, growth, and profits, and shows how great companies have used these principles to build loyal customers, loyal employees, and loyal owners.

Intellectual Capital: The New Wealth of Organizations -- Thomas A. Stewart. Hardcover and Paperback.   4½ Star Customer Rating.  Review: Upside Magazine, Jonathan Littman
Thomas Stewart, an editor at Fortune, weaves the genesis of intellectual capital with flair and historical insights. Intellectual capital is the synergy, flexibility and strength gained from focusing and investing in three fundamentals: human capital, structural capital and customer capital. Stewart explains the long-building pressures that are making the tenets of intellectual capital attractive. His book provides compelling trends, anecdotes and guidelines for executives, startups and knowledge workers struggling to discover the secrets of intellectual capital.

Blur: The Speed of Change in the Connected Economy -- Stanley Davis, Christopher Meyer.  Hardcover and Paperback.   4 Star Customer Rating.  Review: Blur: The Speed of Change in the Connected Economy, by Stan Davis and Christopher Meyer, is a shrewd appraisal of the new corporate reality. The authors, who both direct research at the Ernst & Young Center for Business Innovation, maintain that "connectivity, speed, and the growth of intangible value" have catapulted business into a period of unprecedented transition that demands immediate and creative attention. Citing disparate examples including, singer David Bowie, and the Beanie Baby toy phenomenon, they show how a willingness to step away from conventional thinking is crucial for continued success. --Howard Rothman --This text refers to the hardcover edition of this title.

Building Your Marketing Plan -- on-line elementary course in developing a marketing plan.

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Strategic Management Society -- The Strategic Management Society (SMS) is unique in the world in two respects. It brings together the worlds of reflective practice and thoughtful scholarship, combining academics with business people and consultants, the ABCs we call them.

Institute of Business Forecasting  -- the primary mission of the Institute is to disseminate knowledge about business forecasting and planning

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