Plans are not meant to be defined once and rigidly adhered to for a whole year. As real results start flowing in, and the world around you changes, the most successful marketing teams create scenarios to model out potential changes to the plan. As discovered from our OMI survey less than 60% of marketers build out their plan on scenario planning and less than 50% have a process in place to adapt to strategy changing. This could be something internal like being granted more budget or having to make a cut. It could be something external, like a competitor launching a new product, or a new regulation being announced.
Typically there are three reasons you pass on unplanned opportunities: timing, resources, and budget. But if you have that information at your fingertips, then you can quickly compare a new opportunity against the current plan to determine which will have more impact on the goals. For this reason, the key steps to the evaluation process are:
• Assess if the opportunity helps to achieve the annual marketing goals and is executable
• Prioritize by comparing new opportunities against existing marketing campaigns
• Collaborate with the team to plan for new opportunities and modify existing campaigns.
• Reallocate funds accurately without going over budget
• Re-engage with the original plan to get back on track
A word of caution: Don’t let frequent urgent opportunities distract you from the original goals-based plan, but be flexible if the opportunity is too good to pass up.
Dan Faulkner is co-author of The Next CMO: a guide to operational marketing excellence, and the CTO of Planful, where he is responsible for the technical strategy and delivery of the world’s first AI-powered marketing management platform. Dan has 25 years of high-tech experience, spanning research and development, product management, strategy, and general management. He has deep international experience, having led businesses in Europe, Asia, North America, and South America, delivering complex AI solutions at scale to numerous industries. Dan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Linguistics, and Masters degrees in Speech & Language Processing, and Marketing. He has completed studies in Strategy Implementation at Wharton.
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