We use a process elegant in its simplicity for helping our clients create meaningful, credible and executable 12-month marketing plans. The end result is a marketing roadmap that all key company stakeholders (sales, marketing, finance, operations, etc.) are aligned with. Marketing then no longer has to continually keep “going back to well” and justifying budgets and tactics as they are all tied to strategic initiatives and revenue goals.
Here’s what we do:
- Have our client agree upon between 2-4 overall 12-month company GOALS
- Help the client translate these goals into (SMART) OBJECTIVES
- Time-bound (i.e. 12 months)
- Mutually determine STRATEGIC Initiatives to meet the goals
- Document sales processes (current and proposed)
- Develop profiles of prospect stakeholders in the sales process (helps ensure ultimate tactics are rifle-shots vs. shotgun blasts)
- Tie them to revenue objectives and realistic budgets
- Investigate and detail the TACTICS to execute the strategic initiatives
- Document the budgetary costs, resource requirements and timeframes for each
Prior to coming onsite to begin the GOAL session we create questionnaires to be completed by various client stakeholders (execs, employees, customers, partners, etc.) A competitive matrix and initial SWOT analysis is created. We then go onsite and meet with all of the main stakeholders. The onsite component is either one full day, or optimally, 2 half-days back-to-back. During these sessions (often heated, frankly) we nail down the GOALS, OBJECTIVES and STRATEGIC Initiatives.
Upon conclusion of the onsite sessions we use the agreed upon strategic initiatives to investigate, analyze, compare and document recommended TACTICS. The deliverable is a credible, executable 12-month marketing plan that has precise tactics tied directly to the goals of the company.
In an ideal world we can get this done in 3 weeks but our experience with our clients demonstrates that it takes four to five weeks. Doing the investigative work prior to the onsite meetings makes the meetings a lot more meaningful and valuable. It is very difficult to get senior executives in a room all together so it is important that the time with them as a group is well spent. Further, to do a credible job recommending tactics requires a lot of expertise, analysis and thought. We do not ‘cookie-cutter’ these.
Our clients find the process and the result extremely valuable and find that it saves them money by not wasting budgets on useless and/or misaligned tactics. One of our clients is using the plan to present to its investors to justify their marketing spend for the next fiscal year.
Going to Market is Like Going to War, without a thoughtful plan you are doomed.
Contact me to learn more.