Inbound Marketing Blogfor Manufacturers and Healthcare Companies
Strategy Guide: 5 Tips For Creating A Quarterly Marketing Plan
A new quarter. A fresh start. Time to try new things and attract new business.
How will you do that?
The first step to making this quarter your best yet is by creating a solid marketing plan to prioritize activities and paves a clear path toward your goals.
If you’ve never created a quarterly marketing plan, you might be wondering about its importance. Why waste the time creating one if you know what you want to do?
It’s simple – without a plan, you’re more likely to get sidetracked, prioritize the wrong opportunities, and ultimately never move the needle forward.
Ready to create a B2B content marketing strategy but are unsure of where to start? These 5 steps can help!
5 Essential Steps For Creating a Quarterly Marketing Plan
When you set out to create a marketing plan, it may seem intimidating. Creating a roadmap for success takes careful consideration and planning.
To take some of the heavy lifting out of planning a quarter’s worth of interconnected yet independent activities, follow these steps:
- Review your yearly goals
- Analyze data
- Highlight new focal points
- Identify roadblocks or impediments encountered last quarter
- Plan your quarter’s activities
1. Review Your Yearly Goals
Before strategizing activities, you need to first figure out what success looks like for you and your marketing efforts. Just like planning a trip, the first thing you need to do is identify where you want to go.
That’s why quarterly planning is the perfect time to revisit your yearly content marketing goals. When thinking through strategies and tactics for the quarter, you should be able to relate them back to the original goal set for the year.
By doing this you’re able to hold your team accountable and know your planned activities are moving the needle toward your overall goals.
2. Analyze Data
Data speaks louder than words! This sounds corny but it’s true. We’ve all been there. You have an amazing idea to drive traffic to your site, lead to a 10% increase in leads, and inspire 10 new clients… all until it doesn’t.
Was it all for nothing? Of course not, as long as you take the time to evaluate your data. By reviewing the data, you:
- Learn from your efforts
- Identify potential reasons something underperformed
- Make adjustments for improved performance
Data also allows you to identify opportunities. Maybe last quarter you focused heavily on website updates, and to do so, you cut back a bit on blogging. At the end of the quarter, the data shows a dip in traffic and a loss of crucial keyword positions. Now, you have the facts to justify a quick pivot or adjustment.
Reviewing the data and analytics allows you to stay agile, learn from your efforts, and keep improving.
3. Highlight New Focal Points
Sometimes it’s hard to find the perfect balance between remaining agile and sticking to your B2B marketing strategy. And sometimes opportunities come up after you have already laid out a great quarterly plan.
To combat this, you and your team should meet to identify any new opportunities you’d like to explore before solidifying your plan.
Understand no matter how well you plan, opportunities will likely arise throughout the quarter. If an opportunity is time-sensitive, you might need to shift your plan to accommodate -- and that’s OK! Just be sure not to do it too often or you run the risk of not accomplishing what you set out to do. Deferrable opportunities should be recorded and further discussed when planning the next quarter.
4. Identify Roadblocks or Impediments Encountered Last Quarter
As mentioned before, a new quarter is a great time for a fresh start. However, it’s also a great time to reflect on what part of your process needs improvement and address any roadblocks.
Perhaps your team needs approval from a subject matter expert before publishing content? If in Q2, slow review times from them delayed or prevented the production of this content, this is the time to address that.
Have honest and open conversations about any issues your team experienced last quarter. Discussing options for what might be done to improve it is essential to making sure your new quarterly marketing strategy performs to the best of its ability.
5. Plan Your Quarter’s Activities
Up until this point, you have been identifying worthwhile activities to pursue in this quarter. Now for the exciting part! Determining what you are going to do and when.
This may require narrowing down the opportunities. You won’t need to toss out any of the ideas as the ones you don’t pursue might be some of the best places to start in 3 months when you start planning for the next quarter.
To properly lay out the activities for the quarter, we recommend a month-by-month breakdown that:
- Lists out the type of activity
- Estimates the time it takes to accomplish it
- Assigns responsibility for it
In each month there should be a defined number of hours or a metric, like points, to indicate the amount of effort and value of each activity. This number should be achievable for those responsible for the activities and remain consistent throughout the quarter.
Wondering what that looks like? Check out these roadmap marketing plan templates!
Create A Quarterly Marketing Strategy With Our Quarterly Marketing Plan Template
Ready to make the most of the fresh start Q3 brings? This framework will allow you to make the most of your quarterly planning and take actionable steps to achieve your long-term goals!
Now it’s time to try it for yourself! But before you do, we have an awesome example for you to use as a guide. Download it here:
Ready to finish out 2022 with a marketing plan you can trust and an expert team to accomplish it?
Contact us today!
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