After a detailed strategic process, you and your team have completed your marketing plan for the year. You have sold the executive team and thrilled the board with the goals and strategies outlined in your plan. Now the question is, can you efficiently and accurately execute your plan to achieve your goals?
Building a marketing plan is difficult due to all the data and dynamics that marketing must analyze and navigate to create the plan. Some of the data and dynamics necessary to shape your marketing plan include:
Historical data: Historical numbers that forecast future results.
Unfortunately, these considerations do not disappear after the plan has been written and execution has started. Data, market, and internal analysis needs to be conducted throughout the year. Any changes to the assumptions used as the basis of your plan will result in modifications to your plan. For this reason, you need to keep on top of business dynamics and review your assumptions on a monthly or quarterly basis. Changes will require agile replanning to stay in alignment with company goals.
One of the most challenging and important aspects of the marketing profession is to stay current on market dynamics and install a structure to quickly react to them. Unfortunately, many marketers today are too busy with execution to notice changes in the marketplace or adapt to internal issues outside of their domain. This makes the team less agile. Below is a partial list of the many reasons your plan will end up being ineffective and will require a change in direction.
This list above can look daunting, but it will occur whether you like it or not. The question is, if change is necessary, will you make the required adjustments?
The second reason plans fail is that the stated goals were never grounded. If you notice that you and your team are struggling to achieve your goals, this will require you to readdress the assumptions that were made to form the foundation for the plan. Some common reasons for building a marketing plan that misses its mark include:
Before you execute your plan, ensure you have avoided or addressed each of the points above. Having no strategic alignment and team buy-in are two of the most common pitfalls but are the easiest to fix with processes that create visibility, consistency, and measurement. These three elements will help you achieve operational excellence.
Download our eBook, “How to Execute a Marketing Plan with Operational Excellence” today, and learn how to efficiently and accurately execute your plan to achieve your goals.