It’s every marketer’s worst nightmare: getting their marketing budget approved by a management team or a Board that doesn’t necessarily understand what they’re trying to achieve. If you’re in this boat, we’ve got some tips that’ll make your life easier.
When it comes to securing budget, it can often become a case of every woman or man for themselves within any organisation. In today’s marketing landscape, you do need to pay to play so if you’re a marketer wrestling with your management team or Board about an upcoming budget, being able to communicate effectively is the key to your success.
We never back away from a good challenge here at Woven HQ so we’ve picked our brains to come up with an easy-to-follow guide you can keep handy whenever it’s budget approval time!
Always be aware of your organisation’s goals
Any good Strategy, regardless of which area of focus we’re talking about, contributes towards a company’s short and long-term business goals. As a marketer, you need to know and understand what these goals are and then figure out how your Strategy contributes to the bigger picture. Know that your goals as a Marketing department, may very well differ from those that are at the top of the list for your IT and Operations department. It’s always best to create a Marketing Strategy where you can plan out your activity and cost out the line items for transparency reasons.
Set realistic goals
There are many facets to a quality Marketing Strategy and you need to realise that you can’t jump from one to 100 in a matter of days - it’s not realistic. While your superiors are likely to have high expectations for your marketing department, quality marketing takes time, experimentation and above all else, patience and expertise. Sure, set the bar high but be mindful of your approach - break-up key deliverables into smaller chunks if you find that you’re feeling overwhelmed by what you’ve got on paper.
Each goal needs to be measurable
As marketers in 2018 and beyond, we’re spoilt in terms of the amount of data we have on-hand to work with and the technology that’s at our fingertips. Any goal you set needs to be measurable, which means you need to identify the right metric as soon as you set a goal. Again, know that your marketing metrics could be different from your IT or Operations’ department’s metrics. What you really want to focus on is Return on Investment (ROI) to ensure that you’re getting the most bang for your marketing buck. When preparing your goals and key metrics, be inclusive with as many other departments as you need to be - this leads to better team work because each department is communicating with one another. It also helps you to get buy-in and support from the ‘powers that be’ down the track.
Ask your management team what the priorities should be
There’s no need to ‘guess’ what your management team wants from your department. The better you’re able to communicate with the people who are ultimately going to approve your budget, the more likely you are to hit the nail on the head with your Strategy and secure budget approval. Also, it’s incredibly important to ensure that your Strategy can be understood by the people it’s being prepared for. In other words, don’t jam-pack it with jargon that the majority of your management team or Board is unlikely to understand as that ultimately won’t help your endgame.
Don’t get distracted by shiny new tech
Data gives us the power to work with strategies that are most likely to deliver results for your organisation. Sure, be innovative and aware of what else is out there and what’s on the horizon but don’t get sidetracked by shiny new technology or fads. Work with proven technologies that give your company the best chance of increasing your bottom line.
Reach out for help when creating your roadmap and costings
The best budgets don’t revolve around guesswork. When you’re putting together your Strategy, get the most accurate information down on paper by asking for the information required internally and externally. Use the relationships you’ve built with your vendors to ensure that the Strategy and budget you put in front of management/Board, is as accurate as possible.
Forget about the days when you had to dread getting your marketing budget approved. Follow these tips to ensure that the process is as seamless and as stress-less for you as possible. As always, if you need any help putting your marketing budget together, our team at Woven is here to help. Contact us today for a confidential chat with one of our marketing experts.