As Marketers we have all been asked that question by our superiors, clients, other employees in the business and members of your own team even.
In years gone by I have winced when I have been asked that question, actively changed direction in the office when someone was heading towards me that I just knew would ask me! At the time I was looking after a small but very efficient marketing team and we were getting on with things in our own little way. Until the new boss started, he had marketing qualifications coming out of his ears, he spoke the jargon, talked in acronyms, kept asking me if we had a SWOT for that product launch, or what the sales funnel was for this. I was left feeling a little bit inadequate.
It was our monthly meeting and he said, “Can I get a copy of your marketing plan?” Like a rabbit caught in the headlights I blurted out “Yes, sure I will send it over, no problem”. I left his office thinking words that I can’t possibly use on here, but I think you get the gist! It was 3pm, he wanted to see a copy of my all singing, all dancing marketing plan (that didn’t exist) if I could just get to 5pm without him remembering to ask me I could spend the whole night getting one put together and I would send It in the morning. So, I headed home, cancelled my evening and set to work.
It was August so we were 8 months into the year, I started thinking of everything that my mini marketing team had done so far that year. The events, exhibitions, product launches, company branding, brochures, leaflets, press releases, website updates, social media, email communications, blog posts, colleague engagement schemes, etc etc.. How had all this happened without a marketing plan? How had we got ourselves together and done this? Well we had a list, that’s how (I LOVE a list!). We had a big shared list that was never ending, that members of the team added to, it included ides from the sales team, orders from above, nice marketing ideas we had seen other companies do, it also had a pretty substantial list called jobs for the future!
Within the list we had dates of when we were going to try and get these tasks done by, we also had a note as to how we were going to get them done i.e by us or by one of our agency partners. So we actually had that marketing plan all along, it worked for us, it got jobs done, it was substantially growing the company! So I high fived myself, skipped downstairs and poured myself a glass of wine!
So in summary don’t feel bad for focusing on the tactical activity and the here and now, because that is what drives results. However, it is equally important not to lose sight of the long term goals, even if this is a separate list called jobs for the future!
Regardless of how sophisticated your current marketing communications are, at IOL we can help you with your mini and maxi marketing strategies! Each business is different, every team needs help in different areas, we can tailor a solution just for you to increase lead conversions and keep those bosses happy!