While you maybe prancing and humming along in your execution of your marketing plans for 2022, you might be tempted to pause a bit. You admire, perhaps even tweak, then admire some more as the marketing efforts you so diligently created is doing its thing.
Heads up! Now is not the time to focus on what’s running smoothly and admiring it. Recognise that your current marketing plan is fine, perhaps even performing above average. But have you thought about if it can be as good, or even better, next year?
Chances are, the pandemic might be all over soon or down to safer levels, and both old and new avenues of doing business might open up. What changes will that bring and what opportunities will come with it, by literally knocking on our doors?
These thoughts should be enough motivation for you to zero in and focus in building an intuitive, comprehensive, and engaging marketing plan for 2023. So turn your office recliner back to its upright and locked position and start creating a perfect marketing plan for 2023.
Steps to Consider in Creating your Marketing Plan for 2023
Every good plan begins with a “Step One.” But do consider when you’re planning next year’s marketing (and advertising), to allow some time to ponder, and perhaps initiate a quick research – how your customers are feeling about the pace and content of your communications with them.
Now is the time to slow down, step back a bit and relieve some pressure they might be feeling in communicating with you. We’ll lay down more of this in the following sections.
That said, let’s dive in.
1. Strategical Planning.
It is ever so tempting to wash, rinse, and repeat as far as marketing plans go. Most especially if the previous marketing plan worked well. Consider the coming changes for 2023, and make sure you understand the bigger picture and the implications it will bring.
Think of your organisation’s long-term business strategy. Are you still keeping focus on the who, what, why, how, and when of your brand’s vision? Congratulations if you are. Then it’s time to re-think your strategy and start building a plan that not only supports your marketing objectives, but also one that encompasses your business objectives.
While we concede that we can’t predict what will happen in the next 12 to 18 months, evaluating the digital market and identifying what you want to achieve are two vital steps in your planning process.
How you prioritise your goals will determine a huge factor in where you will spend your time and resources in 2022 as you set out and prepare to meet those goals in 2023.
Regardless of what type of marketing plan you need to create and determining your marketing strategy, you need to have a clear-cut response to the following questions:
- Do I have the resources that I need?
- What is the vision?
- What is the value?
- Who is my audience?
- What is the goal?
- Do I have channels, and what are they?
- What is the timeline
2. Plan Collaboratively.
As you begin the planning process, it is a critical to collaborate across your organisation. The obvious people you have to involve in marketing planning are:
- Your sales team. For them to understand and to support sales needs and targets.
- Your R&D teams. For them to understand what exactly it is you are marketing.
Once you’ve got your marketing strategy set, it’s also time to define what your key marketing metrics will be. It will help you to measure and track the performance of your marketing efforts. Additionally, they’ll also help you understand how your efforts tie back to your larger objective.
For example, if your main objective is to increase marketing qualified leads (MQLs), then MQLs will be a key metric. You’ll have to ask yourself, “How many MQLs do I need to target, and how many MQLs must I expect each marketing activity to generate to consider this marketing plan a success?”
These types of questions are among what you’ll need to ask yourself when defining your key metrics. You’d want to know what your goal expectations are for your marketing plan before diving in head first.
As, brands are fast becoming inclusive and intertwined, it is essential to continually collaborate across all key internal stakeholders. Keeping in lockstep with operations and your supply chain is paramount to creating an accurate and executable marketing plan, inclusive of formulating the right messaging through the right channels and at the right times.
3. Experiential Planning.
It is only logical that you compartmentalise or bucket your marketing plans by audience, by messages, by channel, by KPIs and by budget allocation. But bear thought that your customers don’t experience your marketing in that manner. Their interaction with your brand is just part of a holistic experience.
You would need to know and feel how it would be in their shoes as you plan. This helps you assess not only how they will respond, but how they might think, feel, behave and perceive about your brand.
And while you will still need to set standard parameters around resources you’d spend and the channels you tap, you should craft your plan to be an end-to-end experience, and not just a string of line items.
4. Plan Through Your Customer’s Eyes.
Earlier, we mentioned you need to be in your customer’s shoes as you plan. Let’s push it further by the need for you to evolve in how you talk, communicate, and interact with your customers.
Change up how you garner customer insights and look beyond your net promoter score, satisfaction surveys and digital analytics. Dig deeper for you to be able to discover insights that are a gold mine of information, and will tell you how the customer is moving through and perceiving their experiences with your brand.
Also, by delving deeper, invite your customers to co-create ideas that will invigorate and inspire your planning and your brand. Think: “If you build it, they might come. If they help you build it, they will come.”
5. Plan by Harnessing Employee’s Brainpower.
We mentioned earlier about collaborating with key divisional stakeholders and sourcing external customer insights, but you also should tap into “customers” who you walk with you and by you in your office every day.
Employees are knowledgeable more than you might think, and they are more than willing to share their thoughts. After all, they are the ones who understand your products or services more than your customers. Additionally, they understand your customers, your culture, your channels, and most especially, your brand/s.
Having their voices embedded in the marketing solution, they will be more receptive and buy into the plan, be instrumental in its delivery and be accountable for its success.
If you integrate these five planning tips with some of the more traditional letters of marketing planning, such as:
- C’s – Category, Competition, and Content.
- P’s – Product, Placement, and Promotion.
- M’s – Mission, Media, and Metrics.
- And other letters of marketing planning.
Do this and your marketing plan will be more strategic, more robust, more grounded – and most importantly, more groundbreaking.
Giving everyone clarity with a strong annual plan, you would be able to keep your entire marketing organisation engaged, focused and aligned in achieving your grandest goals.
To learn more about Marketing Strategy from our Skilled Team at Accentuate Web Design and Marketing, register for a one-hour session. We will pick your brain to see your business objectives and help you create a marketing strategy overview for your business.