Efficient marketing is crucial to your business. It spreads brand awareness, engages with potential (and existing) customers, and of course, drives business to your website and increases revenue.
Most marketers would acknowledge that a full year can bring many changes in trends, tastes, and technology used. However, they would also emphasize the importance of having a good plan to follow, a marketing agenda that identifies what their particular organization’s goals are and what they might have to do to achieve those goals. In this blog post, we’ll examine eight things you should be including in your marketing agenda.
A marketing agenda is a document that highlights the different points and factors you want to discuss, including in any marketing strategy or plan. It can be used to discuss long-term plans (usually up to a year), or it can be used in the short-term or for a particular campaign. It should align with the business’s values and mission and should focus on specific goals.
Your marketing agenda should identify what your main goals are. For example, a short-term goal may be to increase brand awareness, and a long-term goal could be to improve conversion and retention rates and see better CSATs (customer satisfaction scores). Any marketing agenda should also include timeframes, tactics, and how success will be measured.
The foundation of any marketing agenda and strategy, your goals should set out what it is you want to achieve. Your C-suite may have set out certain targets they want to achieve and when they want them achieved. Some goals may be annual or quarterly, while others may be monthly. You should also identify what goals are to be prioritized over others.
The goals set out in your marketing agenda inform you as to what tactics you will use to get past the finish line. It will inform you about the best online marketing tactics as well as the best offline ones. They help you formulate a strategy that will decide how you approach marketing your business within the associated timeframes. Knowing where you want particular areas of the business to be by the end of a given period is perhaps the most important item on your marketing agenda.
So, you now know what your goals are, but how will you measure success for each of them? Identifying the relevant metrics related to each of your goals is also essential. Depending on the timeframe involved, you also want to check those metrics regularly to ensure your current tactics are working towards the goal or whether you want to change or tweak them.
For example, with brand awareness, there are a few different metrics you may want to use. You could use Google Analytics or similar to measure traffic or a social listening tool that can collect relevant data from social media or the web as a whole. Metrics are important as it is your focus on how well your strategies are working.
This item on your marketing agenda depends on the size of your marketing team. Who will be responsible for different aspects of your overall strategy or specific campaigns? Will any of your marketing efforts be outsourced? For example, you might choose to use an external agency for specialized services. Having an effective marketing strategy includes assigning the right people to carry out different tasks.
Knowing who will be doing what is crucial to progress. For larger marketing teams, and when there is more than one person involved in a task, you should also identify who is responsible for monitoring and/or reporting. If you do have a larger team, schedule regular meetings with the leads so they can update you on progress. Another essential component here is the “when.” What timeframes will be allowed, and when will a task begin and end?
Another helpful item to include on your marketing agenda is identifying what obstacles might exist that could stop you from achieving your set goals. Having a clear idea of any barriers that exist will help you plan how to overcome those barriers. Without knowing what obstacles exist and how you will deal with them, some of your marketing strategies may be doomed from the start.
Moving forward from your initial marketing agenda planning meeting, you will need to plan for regular meetings that can see how things are going. Again, the format of these meetings will depend on the size of your marketing team. With a small marketing team, the whole team can meet to discuss progress. With larger teams, you may want to just meet with leads and/or supervisors and they can then give feedback to their team.
Of course, the frequency of such meetings will depend on the timeframe allotted to a goal or task. If the goal is an annual one, then you may choose to have monthly meetings; if it is a short-term one (such as a campaign), you may want to hold progress meetings weekly or even more frequently. The thing to focus on is how often you are collecting data on the progress of any task.
As well as measuring progress toward your goals, you should also plan to look at how different messaging is working. A campaign to launch a new product may involve different tactics across multiple platforms. Looking closely at how well customers and potential customers have engaged with different forms of messaging can help you improve overall performance.
For example, let’s say you have set a goal of increasing the number of affiliate marketers your organization has. You may have employed different tactics, such as using affiliate marketing templates, to reach out to potential affiliate marketers. Knowing how well each tactic has worked can enable you to make informed decisions as to whether any tactics need to be changed.
You can’t plan marketing tactics without knowing who those tactics are aimed at. You should be looking at building a series of buyer personas, data that identifies your ideal customers. For most companies, these personas will cross different demographic groups and can contain details such as age, gender, and geographical location.
Just reaching large numbers of people is not enough to achieve your goals. You need to be sure that you are reaching people who will have an interest in (or need for) your products and services and who will be likely to buy from you. As well as their demographic data, you should also be considering the possible pain points they may experience, and how you can make the customer journey better for them.
Just as you need to identify demographic targets in your marketing agenda, you should also know who your closest competitors are and look closely at their own marketing efforts. There is little point in using similar tactics if they have not worked for your competitors, but there can be a major advantage in seeing what has worked for them in the past.
You can also spot weaknesses in their strategy that you may be able to exploit to your advantage. For example, if you notice that they have not used “how to” videos to explain the use of any technical products, then this is something you can add to your marketing repertoire, thus appealing to customers who want an easy guide to products.
Getting your marketing strategy right is integral to your organisation’s success, and that journey starts with good planning and an appropriate marketing agenda. You have to decide which areas and tactics will produce the best results and will help you achieve the desired goals. You also need to decide where to focus your efforts. Knowing the best tips for social media marketing can be very different from knowing how to utilize traditional advertising, for example.
Think of your marketing agenda as a map that will help you reach your destination. It can help you decide on your route, areas to avoid, and the quickest (or best) way to reach where you want to be. By having a good initial marketing agenda, you can better plan the strategies and tactics you will use moving forward.
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