Want to Have a Great Business Year in 2020? Start Planning your Marketing Budget Now
“Hindsight is 20/20,” goes the popular saying — but when we reach the year 2020, you don’t want to be looking back on 2019 and wishing you’d acted more quickly to plan your marketing budget. Take a moment right now to think about these key considerations as a means of jump-starting your marketing budget plans.
Is Your Brand or Company Changing Direction?
Do you plan to court a different target market in 2020? If so, you may want to direct more money toward research and the development of new buyer personas. The buyer persona is a representation of your ideal customer or segment, which is used by marketing to precisely-target customers and prospects with marketing content and tactics. You may need to conduct a fresh set of customer surveys to clarify customer’s specific buying patterns, goals, and challenges. Regardless, an agency is well situated to assist with this important step.
What’s the Norm for Your Industry?
Different industries tend to allocate different percentages of their annual budget toward marketing. Size is another factor. The SBA recommends that you reserve 7 to 8 percent of your gross revenues for marketing if you’re earning up to $5 million per year. Many large corporations allocate from 6 percent to a whopping 46 percent of their revenues toward marketing! Additionally, the SBA recommendation for 2020 includes allocating 55 percent of your budget to digital marketing – a percentage that is growing every year.
Do You Need a Long-Term Strategy or a Quick Score?
Are you in planning mode or growth mode? If you want to focus on long-range business building, more of your marketing budget should go toward inbound marketing content. If you want to make a big splash in a hurry, you may need to focus on improving your website’s SEO. While the decisions around where to allocate your marketing budget can be tricky, relying on an agency to guide your efforts can prove worthwhile.
How Well Is Your Sales Funnel Working?
Successful marketing requires an effective sales funnel that leads your target audience through four distinct phases:
- An initial discovery phase
- A consideration phase
- A conversion phase
- A retention phase
Examine your sales funnel to see where you might be losing prospects or customers. If they’re dropping away in the discovery phase, for instance, you may need to budget for more effective use of social media and PPC; if they lose interest in the consideration phase, you may need to invest in a stronger website, with more compelling product descriptions and supporting material such as case studies. Different clients may respond to your sales funnel tactics in different ways, so be prepared to conduct A/B testing, as needed.
Remember, 2020 will be here before you know it, so start working on next year’s marketing budget today! And, give Haven Media & Marketing a call if we can be of help to you.