The Maverick Rule of Predictability is business, sales, and marketing plans based on what will happen in the future are usually wrong!
Well all good plans have to predict the future right? Tell that to the weather man, or the book makers in Vegas. What about IBM and Apple? Who predicted their future?
Let's look at forecasting the competition's reaction to your plans. It is important to consider what can and what if when making projections. Also consider the long view versus the short view. Most problems come from short-term financial thinking.
When planning in the short term, come up with an angle or word (phase) that can differentiates you and your company.
When planning in the long term, set up a coherent marketing direction that will build your business around your angle or word.
Planning is a method to success.
But how can you deal with unpredictability?
While you cannot predict the future or even the weather on Friday, you can look at trends and take advantage of this change. Be careful because someone needs to distinguish the trend and the direction. Also make sure you look under the hood. Fads can be dressed like trends.
Another thing to consider is history does not always repeat itself.
In the end there is a difference between predicting and chance taking on your business future. Remember no one can predict the future and your marketing plan should not try to!