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Marketing budgets, am I right?
When you are planning out your marketing strategy, the first question you need to know the answer to is, “What’s my marketing budget?” 

And sometimes the answer just isn’t enough for what you’d like to accomplish. 

When your company sets an allocated amount of money to spend on marketing each year, it can be a challenge to ask for more when you need it. 

Marketing campaigns require a different amount of ad spend, resources and time depending on your companies goals and the value of a new lead to your organization. 

What considerations do you need to make when determining your budget to begin with?

  • Eliminate strategies that didn’t work in the past.
    If you know it didn’t work and the numbers aren’t there – cut these strategies loose! 
  • The value of earning a new customer. Depending on your business, this may mean a one-time average sale, or a lifetime value of a customer. We recommend using both.
  • Competitor research – what do you see working for direct competitors or similar businesses? Keeping in mind of course you don’t have access to their data. (or do you, you sneaky little monkey?!)
  • Find proven ROI using KPIs- getting really clear on your key performance indicators is the only way to truly measure your return on investment. 

OK, let’s say you’ve considered all of this. The budget has been set, but you need more. What can you do?
money please
That’s what we want to help with.

1. Have a plan

If you will allow me to illustrate with this 2012 meme:ask for more marketing budget

Just asking for more money without being able to back up why will most likely have you shut down quick, fast, and in a hurry.  Have a plan illustrating how you will use the additional funds and the potential ROI that you hope to achieve with a larger budget. Here is where getting really clear on those KPI’s matters. What determines success with your campaigns and what is the increase of success you plan to achieve with more budget?

2. Get the sales teams buy-in

Get the sales team on-board with your strategy. Especially if they work on commission! Having another department in your corner can not only help you make a stronger case but will also help ensure that your marketing plan is aligned with company goals and has the support to be successful if implemented.

3. Project results

If the old budget will yield you this % of results, then the new budget should yield you this % more. Provide specifics as best you can. Depending on the platform you are using for your campaigns, you should be able to roughly predict conversion rates and click-through rates by adjusting the ad spend. If you’re running a PPC campaign, Wordstream offers some great benchmarks for both Google Ads and Facebook

Or use an ROI formula like below: 

how to calculate your ROI

There is also this handy ROI calculator that exists! 

4. Understand the average spend for your industry

Knowing what the industry average is for ad spend will help set a baseline of spending for your business. Especially if your company hasn’t revisited what they are spending on marketing in several years, the average may surprise them! There are tons of research studies released each year, and a little Googleing will most likely lead you to some solid answers. This post from eMarketer breaks down US digital ad spend in 2016-2020 for several industries.
A word of warning, however. You may find that your spending requested is above the industry average. If that’s the case, just make sure you can back up why!

5. Make your case

Once you have numbers to back up your ask for a larger marketing budget, here are some bonus tips to really make your case even stronger:

  • Educate your company as to how marketing is a revenue-generating department and not an expense. 
  • If possible, bring in your accounting department to show sales over time and where they can be attributed to past marketing efforts. 
  • Make sure you make it clear that your goals are aligned with the companies goals and how your increase of budget will help them be achieved. 
  • Keep that ROI calculator handy so you can show the impact of a smaller budget vs a larger one and where the pitfalls may be. 

There are many ways to get creative with a smaller marketing budget, but hopefully, this post will give you some tools you can use when you really do need that extra budget to achieve your marketing goals.  

If you’ve tried all this, or are still feeling lost, give us a shout! We’d love to help your team truly leverage all of your marketing dollars and have a return to show for it.

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