What Would Christina Do: How do you build a successful marketing plan?

What Would Christina Do: How do you build a successful marketing plan?

Question: I’m trying to build a marketing plan for my new company. I’ve read your post about the need to be intentional, so can you share best practices for creating an intentional marketing plan?

This is a great question. I could write a book on this question alone. However, let’s take a look at one route you can take when you’re creating a brand new marketing plan: how to build a marketing plan based on goals.

Every company has unique goals they are trying to reach as they look to their future growth and expansion. Identifying these are the first step in developing your marketing plan.

Identifying Company Goals

Determining why and how company goals were established is the first step to creating a successful marketing plan. Every company has a different North Star. Think about it in terms of understanding their intent.

For most companies, this will be revenue-based, but why? What is the endgame? Is it to get funding or go public? Maybe your company wants to be acquired or the company needs to pay off debts. Maybe keeping the shareholders happy is the goal.

To be as effective and intentional as possible, you need to understand these high-level goals.

Identify Professional Goals

Let’s be honest, helping the company reach its goals can’t be void of your professional goals. Once you’re able to identify the company’s goals, be sure to take note of how you would like to grow professionally.

There are many different ways to build a marketing plan, so keeping both your and the company’s goals in mind can help you shape the plan a little easier.

Identify Customers Goals

Oh right – the customer. Let’s not forget about them when we look at and think about goals. Afterall, that is why we are all here. A super easy way to think about it in in terms of the customer journey. Who are they? How do you attract them, then sell to them? And how do you keep them? All of this comes into play as you consider the corporate strategy and goals, and your own goals.

Creating The Plan

Yaya! Congrats! You’ve identified the company’s goals, the customer’s journey and their goals, and your own professional goals. Now you’re ready to create your marketing plan. The first step is to take a look at your Map of Influence.

Your Map of Influence can help you see a clearer picture of what departments need to work together across the customer journey to help the company reach its goals. Each goal can also help you shape your Map of Influence and determine if you need to add more players.

In addition to looking at key players, your Map of Influence will also clearly show the things that your department owns. Seeing this will allow you to make faster decisions when choosing which path to take.

Let’s look at an example.

Let’s say you work for a mid-size business that has a few rounds of funding under its belt. The company needs to have significant revenue growth to get the next round of funding. From there, the goal is to IPO in the next thirty months. Seems straightforward. So now you know that in the short term, the company’s goal is more revenue. Mid-term, the company needs enough revenue growth to entice and excite current and new investors. The long-term goal is an IPO. All the while, it’s critical to at minimum maintain your current customer base, if not expand on on it and those accounts.

How should your marketing plan reflect that?

You might bump up efforts for faster-converting channels to bring in more revenue in the short term or increase the pipeline, which would show investors growth opportunities. Or figure out how you can expand current customer accounts or increase monthly active users (MAUs).

To entice investors, focus on key case studies or a momentum release, to show progress. Or you might focus on having some positive press, which would help investors see the significance of your company in the market.

Having your Map of Influence handy can help make the decisions faster and which players need to be included in the process. Once you have these systems in place, pivoting your marketing plan to prioritize for new company goals should be much easier!

Want to dive even deeper? My book Sway walks you through the G.R.I.T. Marketing Method which will help you be intentional in everything you do.