As planning for 2017 is well underway for most organizations, it is important to take stock of what performed well in the prior year to provide a base estimate for performance in 2017. With a good estimate to work from, the process of aligning your 2017 marketing plan to your revenue goal can begin. The challenge? Core messaging, key offers, supporting topics, and marketing tactics all have to evolve to remain effective, and estimates rarely reflect the extra tuning, testing, and evolution of your marketing mix that may be necessary to perform at a consistent or improving level throughout the year.
Is your marketing planning happening in the right order?
Copy and pasting your strategy and tactics year over year is a dangerous approach to marketing planning. Ensuring that you have the Right Offer for the Right Market is essential before you begin planning out the marketing mix to drive the messaging home. Supporting stories and content become a part of that messaging to help reinforce your core offers in your campaigns, and then tactics are used, ideally with a strong blend of tactic types, to deliver these offers to your intended market. Validation of offers and content is an essential step before committing dollars to campaigns, as well as ensuring that contacts aren’t being peppered with the same story they chose not to engage with last year.
Creating Silo Estimates for Tactics & Results Doesn’t Work
What frequently gets overlooked in that evaluation of individual tactics is how each tactic may have impacted the other throughout the course of the year.
With the number of search and private browsing capabilities that exist, prospects have more control over their own buyers journey than ever before. People have become less likely to directly click on an interesting email, and more likely to execute a web search to find your content. Why? Because they’ve learned that clicking emails leads to call backs from reps, calls that the buyer may not be ready to take yet. Re-marketing ads are an effective remedy for this, enabling ongoing brand recognition for your solutions, and can get tiered in a way so the ads reflect the level of engagement that a prospect has had with your site. Integrating these ads into social platforms increases your relevance. Persistent, consistent, and well spaced phone touches and voicemails, done right, help improve the likeliness of the prospect evolving to a full sales cycle.
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The marketing mix drives visibility of message
In the end, the marketing mix is what counts in getting your message delivered and noticed. Do your sales reps send a LinkedIn invitation and an email to a prospect within a few minutes of each other? If so, and the social invite goes to the work address of the prospect, your rep and your organization come off looking desperate for conversation. Each of those tactics count as a touch of a contact, and need to be appropriately spaced out. Marketing email blasts fall into this equation as well, and any telemarketing or lead generation efforts need to be aligned with your blast cycle to ensure a strong delivery of your core message and offers.
But … how strong is your message?
Are you following a strong blend of tactics that don’t flood your contacts with lots of simultaneous touches? Are your prospects converting to sales cycles? If you’re not seeing the conversion rate that you’re expecting, then becomes a question centered on Offers and supporting messaging.
And … how disciplined is your delivery?
Sometimes, taking a strong, comprehensive look at these topics can be helped by reviewing it with outside experts. Frantz Group has designed a workshop style approach to this process called the Right Offer Workshop. As you’re beginning to put together your plans for 2017, we stand ready to assist you with developing a properly sequenced plan, including market validated offers geared for your target markets, with an appropriate mix of tactics for the offer and target audience, so you have a better approach to drive consistent lead and revenue performance this year.