Statistics show that upwards of 50% of small businesses operate without a marketing plan. Particularly when there are no outside investors or boards to report to, small and medium sized businesses decide to just "go with the flow". Marketing seems to be the piece on their budget that they think can easily be cut when times are tough, and they figure they will just take advantage of opportunities when they can.
Marketing is really much more than a budget line item. We know that marketing can be a burden for smaller businesses, since the owners and management are focused on operations and production. But to establish a marketing plan allows businesses of all sizes that opportunity to scale and grow, to test new things, and to really invest in the types of marketing that will help them grow. Marketing plans are the key to success for businesses of all sizes, in all industries, regardless of whether they are start ups, growing, or established.