How to Set Your Marketing Priorities

How to Set Your Marketing Priorities

To effectively use your company’s resources when it comes to marketing—and to achieve measurable marketing results—you need to set your marketing priorities.

Just as you need to make strategic business decisions around where to allocate resources for other aspects in your business—from technology, to equipment, to hiring and staffing—you must determine how to spend your marketing resources as well.

To effectively use your company’s resources when it comes to marketing—and to achieve measurable marketing results—you need to set your marketing priorities.

Typically, companies get stuck when setting marketing priorities because they’ve leapt into marketing activity before covering the overall business groundwork first. In this article, we’ll address how you can look at your overall business and its objectives to better set effective marketing goals that wisely use company resources and better understand what you need for marketing in the months ahead.

Clarify Your Business Goals

Before you can begin setting your marketing priorities, you must become crystal clear on your business goals. You can’t determine what marketing activity to take first without knowing your business’s immediate objectives.

After all, your company’s marketing must always serve your company’s goals, which means that marketing goals must cascade from business goals in a step-wise, logical fashion. You can only set marketing goals—which will guide your marketing plan—once you have clearly defined business goals in place.

Understand What Marketing Can Achieve

When you’re ready to set marketing goals, you next must come to terms with what marketing can and cannot reasonably achieve for your company, especially given available resources.

For example, without adequate budgets for advertising and promotional costs and without the funds to fuel a creative team to develop campaigns, marketing cannot achieve national brand awareness in a short timeframe. However, with adequate budgets, a quality strategic marketing plan, and enough time to let the work return on the investment, advertising campaigns will pay dividends.

Another example: Marketing cannot close a highly consultative sale, which almost always requires a salesperson. However, marketing can make the target market aware of your offering and can make the phone ring for that salesperson—thereby increasing the value of her time working for you.

You’ll set yourself up for failure if your expectations for marketing don’t align with the true value of what marketing can do for you. When you understand what marketing can do, and when you can align it with your business objectives, you’re on your way.

Understand Marketing Timelines

A common pitfall is to assume that marketing works like a faucet: You simply turn a valve to start and stop the flow. (Wouldn’t that be nice?)

Unfortunately, good marketing takes time to set up properly. Your marketing team needs to develop target audience profiles and key messages that will get the right people to act—and then it needs to create the campaign creative and all attendant assets and channels. It’s a lot of work, and the right team can get it done quickly—yet no team can get it all done overnight to your satisfaction.

Once you’ve set your marketing goals, you need to ensure you give your marketing enough lead time to put together a quality effort that delivers measurable results. Start far ahead of when you think you want to see results—you can’t go wrong with having too much time, and you can go terribly wrong for not having enough.

Rank Your Priorities

With enough time to put together the foundational work needed for a robust, measurable marketing plan, you’ll have the quality time to gather the information needed to determine what to do for marketing, when to do it, and how much to budget for each piece of it. You will have the time to determine what kind of team you need to execute it as well.

We compare it to setting up a field of dominoes: The set-up takes planning, thought, analysis, and time—and it results in a smooth, high-quality result. If you have enough time to set up your marketing dominoes, you’ll be surprised at how obvious determining what to do and when turns out to be.

This is where you’ll see the folly in trying to plan for marketing without taking the time to plan for marketing. (Though when you try, you aren’t alone—we see it at FrogDog all the time.)

With the groundwork in place, the prioritization falls into place as well.

Now You’re Ready to Do Marketing

As a recap: With an understanding of your business priorities, you can set your marketing goals. With your marketing goals in mind, you can develop a marketing strategy and plan that best serves them. And then—only then—does it make sense to take put your marketing efforts in play.

Need help setting your marketing priorities? Contact FrogDog today.

Posted: Oct 07, 2019
Updated: Aug 21, 2020
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