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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 Everyone should have one, but they’re often not fit for purpose, out of date and reviewed infrequently...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…

From SMART to SMARTER marketing objectives: Discover how to define marketing objectives, measure your digital marketing channels and campaigns, and use data to inform 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. We've got marketing tools and techniques to support you in defining and measuring your marketing objectives, so you can use data to inform your marketing strategy. If you're looking for a winning marketing strategy to…

Six different types of marketing plan - our recommended 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_blog_banner_cta] [si_guide_block id="95323" title="Download our FREE Resource -…

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…

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…

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…

What are the essential parts of a business plan template?

Understanding and creating different types of marketing plans and knowing when they are needed is essential to creating a thriving business. But it can be difficult to know which type of plan to use when and how best to structure them. In this article, we look at the essential parts of a business plan and show how to lay it out. Our new, free PDF download detailing the different types of marketing plans will help you structure different types of plan and gives recommendations on how to make them effective.

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What is a business plan?

A business plan…

The Ansoff Model is a matrix that helps marketing leaders identify business growth opportunities for their marketing strategies in a challenging market

What is the Ansoff Model?

Also referred to as the Ansoff matrix, due to its grid format, the Ansoff Model helps marketers identify opportunities to grow revenue for a business through developing new products and services or "tapping into" new markets. So it's sometimes known as the ‘Product-Market Matrix’ instead of the ‘Ansoff Matrix’. The Ansoff Model's focus on growth means that it's one of the most widely used marketing models. It is used to evaluate opportunities for companies to increase their sales through showing alternative combinations for new markets (i.e. customer segments and geographical locations) against products and services offering four strategies as shown.

How to use the Ansoff Matrix

Strategic questions that can be answered using the matrix include: Market Penetration:…

To give your business the best chance of success, you need to invest in marketing skills. For a simple reason: marketing provides visibility for your products and converts customers.

Having said that, investing in marketing skills goes beyond just buying marketing tools and hoping for the best. Those tools will only be effective when your marketers have the training to utilize them effectively. Accelerating learning is one of the most important organizational factors in business growth, and a crucial step to being 'future-ready', according to McKinsey's 2021 study. Of course, for managers, holding on to skilled employees is also important. Future-ready companies recognize that talent is their 'scarcest form of capital'. In this blog post, you’ll find 10 vital marketing skills that your business should start investing in today.

1. Interpersonal relationship skills

Even though a lot of marketing is done online today, marketers still end up interacting with their co-workers and…