Across the globe, businesses are finding a main lesson learned: “The way we have been doing things is just not working anymore.”  The imperative: engage in cost effective marketing that delivers ROI and performance – and be able to prove it.
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If you do not yet have a marketing plan for next year, stop and make one now.  Don’t begin the New Year without one.  As you are evaluating the variety of tactics you will bring to the marketing arena, here is a pre-flight checklist that I use and have found extremely useful in defining creative-winning marketing activities and helping the activities stay focused on the objective (Cost-effective leads that quickly convert to sales).  In addition, successful completion of this checklist will give you a toolkit of and solid answers to substantiate performance, ROI and value of your marketing spend to your C-levels and stakeholders.
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Marketing Planning Checklist

  1. Who is your target for this Tactic?
  2. What do you know about them? Are there timing/behavioral/demographic/psychographic items that this tactic can take advantage of?
  3. What about this tactic is specifically suited to reach them and compel their attention?  Are there any tweaks you can do to further insure this reach success?
  4. What is the best deployment of timeline(s) for this tactic and target?
  5. What is your measure for Success for this tactic?  Be ready willing an able to test, review and tweak often. (In other words – have a plan B, C, D & E… on deck)

And of utmost importance…6. How will you track this tactic?
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I have found that if you can eloquently answer questions 1 through 5 – and you can’t definitively answer #6, then you need to go back to the drawing board.
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In today’s economy, tracking measurable results is the litmus test.  My best advice for selecting your marketing tactics in the New Year: Figure out a way to track it, or you probably should not be dedicating your precious time and resources to it.
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