Annual Marketing Planning: 4 Steps to Creating a Strategic Plan
Annual or strategic planning, the process in which marketing teams determine strategies, priorities, and an overall roadmap, is more than good business. The strategic plans that come as a result of annual planning will help your business realize, execute, and strategize the short- and long-term goals your business should target.
In other words, strategic plans as a result of annual planning lay the groundwork for guidelines on all things budget, effort, and human capital. In assessing and configuring your businesses’ approach to rapidly changing markets, your strategic plan will become crucial in ensuring that your employees and stakeholders are all working towards the same goal.
While there are tried-and-true best practices to annual planning that help us structure each company’s strategic plan, at Broad Street we approach each project uniquely.
Here are the four steps we take when annual planning to create personalized strategic plans for our partners:
1. Host a Stakeholder Planning Meeting
I know no one likes meetings but when facilitated properly, they can go a long way in setting you up for success. Our first approach in outlining a strategic plan is to bring the stakeholders together for a planning meeting. Here, we can share goals, talk logistics, and build alignment on the likelihood of achieving each goal. As part of this stage, we’ll take a hard look at your business and define your marketing function.
In doing so, we’ll begin to see how the business goals and marketing goals will begin to align. How does marketing support sales? How can a digital media buy or PR support the revenue targets? These are just 2 of many questions we can answer in developing your plan.
This planning meeting is part brainstorm and part alignment on goals and objectives.
2. Develop and Prioritize Each Goal
Once we’ve gone over the details of your offerings and overall market assessment, we’ll map out goals based on priority. As part of this, we’ll determine how feasible each goal is, as well as determine how fleshed out each goal should be.
At this stage we will also identify target audiences specific to your business, define channel strategy, and create channel content pillars.
3. Activate Opportunities
Once each goal is strategically identified, we’ll explore and exhaust available channels, opportunities, and partners for your business. From here, we’ll create a go-to market strategy that we’ll build a content calendar around and base and execute ongoing campaigns upon.
In identifying strategic management activities such as channel content pillars and channel strategies, we’ll create a blueprint on how your business can systemize and implement your overall strategy, while allowing for additional growth and pivots.
The most constructive, detailed strategic plans will detail key performance indicators or metrics on how we can measure the success of your company’s plan—and that’s exactly what we’ll outline in this stage.
4. Execute and Measure
The realized success of each strategic plan lies in execution. In the fourth and final stage, we’ll put each strategy into motion and begin capitalizing on the opportunities we ideated, strategized, and prioritized.
We continually report back on ongoing results to analyze what’s working well and where we could tighten up your strategic plan.
Essentially, as part of measuring success, we’ll take a hard look at the efficacy of your action plan to quantify progress and identify where and when we should stay on course or deploy a new game plan.
It's never too late to get started on 2022 planning. Send us a note if you want to learn more.