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Planning how companies communicate with customers has always been an important aspect of marketing strategy. But the introduction of new omnichannel marketing technologies in the era of digital disruption makes it even more crucial today

The pace of innovation continues to drive new options for reaching customers across a number of key channels. Savvy business leaders know that to thrive in this market, they must be ready to adapt and develop their strategies. For example, Omnichannel marketing is now recognized as an essential approach for all businesses with an online presence. But how does omnichannel relate back to your customer? Twenty years ago, when digital channels didn’t have the diversity and importance they do now, the choice of which channel to use and how best to connect with customers didn’t influence customer service outcomes so heavily. Today, however, customers have an astounding number of options for communicating with companies — and businesses…

What are the essential parts of a multichannel marketing plan template?

Multichannel marketing, or omnichannel marketing, is the process of utilizing online and offline marketing communications channels to target and engage with your customers. As outlined in our popular Learning Path module, structure a plan using the RACE Planning framework, the purpose of a multichannel marketing strategy is to empower marketers and managers to plan, manage and optimize the resources needed to achieve business sales targets. The timeframe is typically annual but potentially longer-term, such as 18 months to three years. Examples of communications channels could include, for example: Websites Physical stores Catalogs E-mail marketing TV Text messaging Blogging Direct mail The goal is to deliver leads and sales targets for defined products and services, which can apply to an organization as a whole, or a single market if there are multiple markets and product or service categories. An effective omnichannel approach to marketing…

Structure your next big marketing campaign using the 5-step RACE Framework to inform your strategy. Integrated across plan, reach, act, convert and engage, our marketing solutions are proven to win more customers and accelerate your ROI

Have you got an up-to-date marketing campaign planning process? Creating ad-hoc campaigns, or re-using previous successful approaches, can be the time-saver you need to get a new campaign up and running. But, without understanding the wider PESTLE issues before planning a campaign, you could target the wrong audience with incorrect messaging, or even cause offense. Keep reading for examples of marketing campaigns that do just that, plus our recommended tools for your marketing campaign PR management.

What is the RACE Framework?

The RACE Framework supports managers and marketers to integrate all their key channels and tactics into one plan. Apply the RACE Framework to streamline your marketing strategy today, so you can clearly track and manage your campaign…

How to strategically manage your marketing spend in 2022 with 8 integrated marketing budget templates

Setting strategic and channel direction, working toward commercial objectives and KPIs and monitoring success is great, but if you're not tracking your ROI per channel it's hard to understand how much money you've had to spend to see a return. That's why you need a practical, accessible marketing budget.

How much budget is allocated to marketing?

According to the February CMO survey, marketing budgets were expected to grow 6.7% in 2020. However, the July edition found the real-term figures had shrunk in the wake of the pandemic and global recession, equating to a rise of 1.6% in marketing budgets overall over this year. In a competitive environment for marketers, reporting and forecasting marketing spend is more important than ever. Meaning if you can't prove a tactic has been successful, it will be even more difficult…

Discover our top 7 recommended different types of marketing plan options for developing and streamlining your marketing planning activities

Planning is a must for any business that wants to succeed, but choosing the right type of plan to define your strategy and structuring it can be difficult. Especially since there are so many different types of marketing plan within marketing and business, all with a different scope. The challenge is compounded if you are new to creating plans, or to the culture of planning within a business. It seems that the difficulty of choosing the right type of plan and how to structure it to deliver results stops many in their tracks. Our research shows that, shockingly, as many as half of businesses don't have a digital marketing plan or, perhaps worse, a marketing plan on which to base it. [si_guide_block id="95323" title="Download our FREE Resource - Understanding different types…

From SMART to SMARTER marketing objectives: Discover how to define marketing objectives, measure your digital marketing goals, and use data to inform your marketing strategy

When identifying specific marketing objectives to support your long-term goals, it is common practice to apply the widely used SMART mnemonic. You will know that SMART is used to assess the suitability of objectives set to drive different strategies or the improvement of the full range of business processes. By definition, an effective SMART marketing objective is: Specific, measurable, actionable, relevant, and time-bound. One of the main reasons we called our site and service SMART Insights is because we help marketers succeed through using a more structured approach to their marketing strategy and planning. If you're looking to transform your approach to digital data, media, and customer experiences, why not use the Smart Insights RACE Framework? Identify your problems, and discuss solutions that work for your business. …

An integrated marketing strategy means every element of your marketing plan must contribute towards your vision for the business, or be cut out of the day to day workload

Lack of integration between strategic vision and the tactics needed to get there is a problem I often find when reviewing marketing strategies. That's why I created the RACE Framework as a simple one-page summary to unify your marketing strategy through goals, objectives, and KPIs. This is true whether I'm reviewing student assignments or mentoring marketers creating real-world marketing strategies. More often than not, I find myself reading about different aspects of marketing objectives and tactics that just don't line up with each other - and leave you questioning why. These issues can be magnified by marketing strategy structure - the way the document is split up into separate sections. Without a unifying framework, it's not clear how each strategy is supporting a goal or…

Marketing plan integrating the RACE Framework alongside PR Smith's SOSTAC® planning model

Given the increasingly omnichannel nature of marketing today, applying an effective, data-driven approach to your marketing strategy is more important than ever. But it can be difficult finding a structure that works for your team and integrates your objectives across your customers' journeys. That's where SOSTAC® and the RACE Framework come in. For marketers looking to rapidly grow their businesses through an insights-driven, efficient and streamlined marketing strategy, we recommend utilizing the Smart Insights RACE framework to get started. This popular structure enables marketing managers and teams to critically evaluate each stage of their marketing funnels across the customer lifecycle of Plan - Reach - Act - Convert - and Engage. SOSTAC® is another widely used tool for marketing and business planning.  The positioning of the SOSTAC® planning model divides up the close working that agile digital marketers seek to create…

Use our digital marketing strategy template integrated across the RACE Framework to plan and get ahead in your digital marketing

We all know the old saying “if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail”, but when it comes to digital marketing, this really is the case. It has never been more important than it is now to create a digital marketing strategy template so you can plan, manage and optimize your online activities. Today, digital media is vital when it comes to driving leads and sales, meaning marketers need to understand how best to engage and convert online audiences. Despite this, our research shows that many businesses still don’t have a digital marketing plan. As a result, companies are missing out on the benefits of having a digital marketing plan integrated into their overall marketing plan or as a separate roadmap for digital transformation. At a time when marketers are increasingly…

7 steps to creating an effective marketing plan

A marketing plan is a bit like a job description for your company. Everyone should have one, but they’re often not fit for purpose, out of date and reviewed infrequently... Research has shown that businesses with plans succeed, outperform competitors, and retain staff, more than those with no plan. Without a plan there’s no direction for the company or its employees, decisions can be uninformed, opportunities can be missed and threats can damage or destroy the business. Whether you are looking at creating a traditional marketing plan or a multichannel digital marketing plan, here are the seven steps to creating a marketing plan.[si_blog_banner_cta]

What is a marketing plan?

A marketing plan is your place to document the process of managing and optimizing your digital marketing strategy and creating a roadmap for future growth and business development. This includes setting SMART objectives, vision for digital…