Establishing Annual Marketing Goals, Objectives and Budgets

Posted by on Oct 19, 2012 in Blogging, Content Management System, Email Marketing, Web Site Design | Comments Off on Establishing Annual Marketing Goals, Objectives and Budgets

Written by Jean Steckler
Steckler eMarketing, Westfield NJ 07090

The autumn season brings football, soccer, fall foliage spectacular views, and … the annual marketing budget process for the next year. No longer a siloed business function, marketing now is responsible for conversion of sales leads in addition to lead generation. That is, marketers are no longer measured on the number of leads generated alone, but also on the quality of those leads.

Cold leads, warm leads, hot leads are all important — but we need to be able to classify each lead and set up the processes and procedures to nuture cold leads to warm, warm to hot. No longer can marketers rely on sales to manually follow-up on all the leads thrown over the wall to them. Effective marketers set up automated systems to fill the void.

If you are sending product information by snail mail to your leads, you are most likely talking to these prospects much too late. Research shows that by engaging a prospect within 2 hours of the prospects interaction with a company (a website visit, email click-through, or other buying cycle activity) produces a significantly higher chance of engaging the prospect in a dialogue over the phone or email. Traditional lead management practices often track prospect activity, but fail to strike while the iron is hot to maximize engagement.

Marketing Sherpa’s 2012 Lead Generation Benchmark Study found a general lack of maturity in the planning and execution of lead generation tactics. In fact, only a quarter of their 1,915 respondents had formal processes with thorough guidelines that they routinely perform.
To beat your competition, lead nurturing needs to be an automated business process as important and as efficient as a payroll process is for your company.

Corporate Sales & Marketing Budget Benchmarks

Sales to individual customers with 1:1 communications is expensive, typically costing 11% of revenues. The sales budget which covers sales demos, proposals, and contract negotiations are time-consuming and costly. The more qualified the lead, the better return on the sales investment. In 2013, market leaders will improve their processes and procedures to automate lead nurturing throughout their sales funnel.

To accomplish this, marketing budgets can range from 2% of revenues to 20%, depending on the industry, business size, and growth stage of the business, with newer businesses requiring more investment in marketing. Small businesses with revenues less than $5 million should allocate 7-8% of revenues to marketing to cover website, blogs and social networks, sales collateral, campaigns, advertising, e-newsletters, public relations, direct mail, tradeshows and events. Established companies with margins in the range of 10-12 percent typically devote 3-5% of revenues to marketing.

Effectiveness and Difficulty of Marketing Channels

Jean Steckler
Steckler eMarketing
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