You need a new marketing plan
Most marketers work to a clear vision for their organisation. But how many translate that into a clear marketing plan?
Imagine you’re going on a road trip. You’ve got fuel, you’ve packed snacks, your passengers are on board. You turn on the engine, drive to the bottom of your road and… where are you headed? Left or right? Where’s your final destination?
Communicating without a clear plan is a bit like starting that road trip. The chances are you’ll end up going around in circles.
It’s all too easy to do ‘what we always do’, whether that’s tradeshows or digital advertising. But to be truly effective you need a clear, costed plan. A plan that shows you where you’re going, who you’re taking along and how you’ll get there.
And that’s even more important in our new post-virus world, where your bread and butter marketing activities may no longer be an option. Who knows when tradeshows might be viable – or safe – again?
You need a roadmap
Your marketing plan – and budget – should be a clear roadmap to guide you. Working through these questions will help you to make sure that your plan is robust, competitive and able to support your organisation.
What’s your destination?
Your organisation might have had a clear vision and objectives before the crisis, but a lot will have changed. We suggest that all of our clients review their strategic goals and stress-test them for this new environment. If you’re unsure of how to do this. We can help.
It’s not all bad news. While some of your strategies may no longer be viable, chances are there are some new opportunities too.
Who’s going with you?
In the same way that you’re having to re-evaluate your plans, so will your customers. Their needs and budget will also have changed.
Sense-check your offering and communications tactics for your key clients. Much of this information can come internally from business development teams or from external feedback on social media and other digital channels.
If you’re unsure though, ask your customers directly. Short interviews with key contacts not only highlight how much you value their business, but can give you a clear guide on how to best meet their needs.
How much should you spend, and what on?
Once you’ve a clear understanding of what really matters to your customers, you can plan your activities.
Your stops on the journey, as it were.
We’re often asked ‘how much should my marketing budget be?’ And the answer is…it depends. As a rule new companies (less than 5 years old) should spend between 12-20% of their gross revenue on marketing. For established companies, it should be a bit less, from 6-12%.
Right now, that might sound unrealistic, especially as many marketing budgets have been cut.
A better approach is to work out the lifetime value of your customer. Richard Byrd (www.thebluebyrd.com) suggests that if your typical customer signs a 10 year contract for $25,000 a year for your product, then their lifetime value to you is $250,000. With that information, you can decide how much you want to spend to acquire them. Are you willing to spend $1,000 to get them to sign? It sounds like a pretty good deal.
Armed with this information, you can decide how best to spend your budget. Spending your funds effectively means reaching the right people, for the lowest cost. We can help you to analyse your marketing activities and advise you on which ones are giving you the best return.
Working with clients from big to small, across a variety of industry sectors, means that we can help devise a marketing plan that delivers against your strategic goals in a targeted and cost-effective way.
Are we there yet?
Your marketing plan will help keep you on track, avoiding the diversions of reacting to every new idea, request or offer that comes across your desk.
Working in partnership we can track the results of each activity and adjust your plan to build in learnings, ensuring your efforts are aligned with those of your business and your customers. So that when you get asked ‘are we there yet?’ from the upper floors, you can confidently answer ‘yes’.
Start your conversation with us today: firstname.lastname@example.org