Gathering information: this stage is based on the concept of marketing audit. After performing the audit of the macro_environment by analyzing the STEP factors (social, technologic, economic and politic), we should turn the focus upon the immediate extern environment (the micro_environment) and analyze the competitive environment, the costs and the market. Finally, we will conclude with the SWOT analysis, by this way we will have a general view upon the internal environment compared to the external one. The SWOT analysis combine the two perspectives, from the inside and from the outside, because the Strengths and the Weaknesses are internal issues of an organization, while the Opportunities and Threads come from the outside.
Monitoring and Control: the purpose of this section is to make sure that all 9 sections are followed and the proposed objectives are being achieved. Apart from these 10 sections a marketing plan in order to be successful it needs to have 3 characteristics. The plan must be flexible, because the business environment is changing rapidly and the plan needs to be able to adapt in order to achieve the objectives that have been set.