Do you feel like marketing is an expense you can’t afford?
If scrimping and saving is your standard approach to your marketing budget, you could be selling your business short. Consumers have more choices than ever before. That increased competition means it’s vital to differentiate your business from the herd, and marketing is a critical way to do so.
Gartner’s CMO Spend 2015: Eye on the Buyer has plenty of insights that will help you assess whether your marketing plan and budget are working for you. Here’s what you need to know, and three questions to ask yourself:
1.It’s all about the customer experience.
Customer experience is increasingly a point of differentiation for companies of all sizes. Because today’s customers want to interact with your business in a way that’s most convenient for them, a multichannel marketing approach creates a more satisfactory customer experience at all stages of the buying journey, building customer advocacy, attracting more customers and generating customer loyalty.
Ask yourself: How does my marketing plan help create a better customer experience?
2.Integrated marketing matters more than ever.
Online marketing has become a key component of marketing plans, blurring the line that used to exist between traditional and digital marketing. Savvy companies are developing integrated marketing plans that incorporate both online and traditional marketing efforts. According to the Gartner report, companies surveyed report digital marketing averages 25% of their overall marketing budget. What’s more, 51% plan to boost digital marketing spend this year, by an average of 17%.
Ask yourself: How well integrated are my company’s marketing efforts?
3. Marketing budgets are on the rise, reflecting the increased importance of marketing.
Half of companies in Gartner’s survey plan to increase their already-healthy marketing budgets in 2015. How much are they spending right now? Forty-six percent spend less than 9% of revenues on marketing, 24% spend 9% to 13% of revenue, and 30% spend more than 13% of revenue.
Key point: The most successful companies spend more on marketing. The 50% of companies planning to spend more on marketing this year will spend an average of 10.4% more than last year, Gartner reports. However, those that outperform their competition say they plan to boost marketing spend by 13.6%.
Ask yourself: Am I investing enough in marketing?
Still not sure how much you should be investing in marketing? Use our simple Ad Spend Assessment tool to get industry-specific recommendations that will keep you ahead of the competition.
About the Author
Merrie Beth Salazar is a marketing professional experienced in leading teams and projects to measurable success. With a background in research and storytelling, she looks for the untold insights behind marketing campaigns and brings them to life.Follow on Twitter More Content by Merrie Beth Salazar