New Month/Season/Year—Where are You Headed?

Set Your Marketing Goals

This updated marketing plan template takes you from big-picture goals to the right methods, activities, required skills, and budget, and impact! Preview the plan template here.

Eeesh! Those New Year, Jewish New Year, or this season/month/week resolutions—including the ones we set for marketing and fundraising work—are so hard to keep.

That’s because most marketing resolutions are specific action items (to-dos)—I am going to get this email list cleaned up this month, or I’m going to start posting our available dogs twice daily on Instagram—rather than guiding goals—the real “what we want to achieve.” Then, when things change in the environment in which we work—making those actions irrelevant or too difficult— or there’s no clear framework for assessment and adaptation, our aspirations come to a dead stop. As your marketing resolutions fade, you’re stuck in the same place you’ve been.

Instead, resolve to follow this proven path to effective marketing planning:

  1. Articulate your marketing goals (a.k.a. resolutions) for the near future—start with a max of three smart, realistic, and attainable goals for the next 90 days. Warning! Establishing too many goals is pure self-sabotage.
    If you’re pressured to go beyond that timeframe or add goals, push back as hard as you can. Planning too far ahead in this quickly-changing environment is a waste of time and effort. But once you have baseline metrics and anecdotal input from which to make marketing decisions, build the next plan out to cover six months.
  2. Outline the specific, tangible benchmarks that best show you’re progressing (or not) towards these goals. You have to be able to SEE these benchmarks for them to show how you’re doing. Include metrics and other insights from anecdotes and survey findings, to calls or interviews with representative audiences.
  3. Create a nitty-gritty work plan of the actions most likely to get you to goals, including the often-overlooked BIG THREE—1) skills required to execute each action; 2) time required; and 3) who does what.
  4. Monitor your benchmarks on a frequent, ongoing basis and adjust actions accordingly. Even if this means you don’t execute all planned communications, you’ll get better results. Stay accountable to yourself and your colleagues. Action without benchmarking wastes your time and effort.

Get your updated marketing plan template now.
It’s a proven path to getting attention and driving actions you need!

Nancy Schwartz in Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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