With the myriad of marketing techniques and tools available to companies today, knowing where to prioritize your marketing activities can be daunting, especially when your goal is to get the most bang for your buck.
Yes, your budget for marketing can be turned into revenue.
Take Steve Jobs as an example.
In the mid-90s, Jobs took a company that was on the brink of extinction and flipped it over into the world’s most successful brand.
How? He was a genius marketer. He understood just how vital a role marketing plays in a business’s success.
In today’s online world, marketing is largely centered around lead generation:
- 79% of B2B marketers report that the ideal number of fields on download forms and web registration is 3 – 5
- 53% of marketers report that half or more of their marketing budget is allocated to lead generation
- 58% of marketers have said that their lead generation budget is set to increase in the next year
Used wisely, you can leverage revenue-producing results from your market endeavors and increase your budget, changing the way your organization views marketing.
Steve Jobs said, “innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” So, let’s look at how you can start leading your budget into a revenue producing plan.
1. Build a Marketing Plan That Works for All
The marketing plan you design needs to work for everyone across the organization. It needs to be a solid plan that shows just how much revenue you expect to generate.
a. Get Buy-In from All Levels of the Company
The essence of marketing is to create a valuable plan to pull and convert customers. You may know what it takes to do that, but do your CFO, CEO, and CMO get it?
They may hear whispers about the value of content marketing, or SEO, but are they really sold on the ideal of investing in lead generation?
As a professional, it’s your job to convince and convert your company’s leadership to buy into your plan.
b. Dedicate 10 Percent Revenue
Almost 71 percent of marketers spend between 10 to 50 percent of their budgets on marketing, according to a survey of 1,000 marketers.
Of course, this percentage will vary by industry and company.
For example, businesses in highly competitive industries, such as pharmaceuticals and consumer products, often spend between 20 and 50 percent of their net revenue on marketing efforts.
To calculate your company’s ideal budget for marketing:
- Total Revenue x 10 percent = marketing budget needed to grow and gain market share.
2. Dedicate and Focus Your Funding
Next, you need to determine how you will allocate your funding.
a. Split Your Budget by Mediums That Work
Knowing how much you have to spend on marketing is key, but even more critical is how you spend those funds.
This means having a solid plan that outlines the costs of how you are going to split the budget and achieve your marketing goals and ROI within a set timeframe.
If you’re a small business owner, for example, you should be investing in search engine optimization (SEO) and improving search engine rankings which will increase website traffic.
If you’re an entrepreneur, you should be using your budget to make minor website improvements and make use of online marketing tools that will help your business market itself, such as inbound marketing software and content marketing tools.
You may want to allocate some of your budgets to joining professional networks and attending industry-related events, too.
b. Don’t Forget the Free Platforms
Take full advantage of the free platforms around to get your brand noticed, including:
- Social media – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat. Use these platforms to engage with customers and prospects and drive traffic to your website.
- Email – send out email blasts marketing your latest offering or offering valuable information to clients and prospects.
- Website – if your website is already set up, use it to market your brand and business, bring in leads, and convert them to sales.
- Blog – create blogs of noteworthy information, industry-related news, and calls-to-action to bring the customers to you.
- Organic advertising – well-done organic advertising works by building permanent traffic sources for your site. Think along the lines of valuable content hosted on your site and guests posts on other sites.
c. Don’t Spend on What You Don’t Need
If your target audience doesn’t network on LinkedIn, don’t spend money on a business account. If they are not hanging out at industry events, don’t spend money on a ticket. Don’t waste your budget on platforms you don’t need.
3. Hone In On Your Target Audience
When you pay attention to your target audience and the needs your services or products fulfill, you can make smarter budget decisions.
a. Direct Your Marketing Budget to Where Your Customers Look for Information
Example of google analytics
Where do your customers turn to for information? You can set up goals in Google Analytics to measure the source and quantity of leads.
By comparing sources like organic traffic, social media channels, and paid campaigns, you can determine which sources generate the most sales and then fine tune your budget allocation to ensure you are spending where your customers are looking for information.
b. Understand Their Needs and Reach Them Accordingly
Any marketing campaign needs to start with narrow targeting, and that means understanding your target audience’s needs.
For instance, if you know your key demographic is active seniors who use digital media in the morning to catch up on the news, your strategy is going to differ than if your key audience is children of those seniors who are facing dementia. The latter are more likely to engage in digital media in the evening, after work.
4. Make Your Website Sing
Your website can be your greatest lead generator – provided you’re making it sing.
a. Use Your Website to Your Advantage
You need a sharp website before truly investing in marketing. Otherwise, you’re spending money to send people to a site that reflects poorly on your brand.
The point of online marketing is to get people to your site and convert them into paying customers.
Your website should be aesthetically and functionally pleasing, continually maintained, and the design should be refreshed every couple of years.
b. Consumer Website Searches Prior to Buying
- 81% of shoppers do online research before making a purchase.
- 61% use a search engine to find products
- 61% read product reviews before buying something
5. Use Social Media to Your Advantage
We cannot underestimate the power of social media when it comes to lead generation.
a. Take Advantage of Social Media to Reach the Masses
Build your loyal tribes, spend on social media advertising, and drive that traffic to your site.
b. Dedicate Your Budget to Boosting Engagement
Allocate budget to boost engagement and brand recognition through Facebook ads.
6. Generate Leads that Turn into Sales
The overall goal of any marketing plan is to turn leads into sales and generate revenue. For example:
- Use paid ads to drive traffic to your landing pages, site, or blog.
- Pay-per-click can move the needle for your company by securing more leads.
Divvying up a marketing budget isn’t particularly hard, but getting it right takes strategy, thought, and planning.
We know our target markets are mostly hanging out online these days, it’s a matter of making sure we dedicate budget to the right channels and platforms, don’t you think?
And, of course, making sure we don’t waste resources on unnecessary channels.
That being said, let us know which channels you have found return the most revenue for your marketing budget?