by Jaynell Hogan
I find it interesting that so many business owners are reluctant to invest in an annual marketing plan. They’ll agree it has value and possibly even have one drafted, but at the end of the day they don’t want to be boxed in. I think the idea of a defined plan feels too confining for the entrepreneurial spirit. They want the freedom to maneuver, to respond to the market in real time. It appeals to their sense of adventure.
The problem is that too many owners get to the end of the year only to discover they’ve spent more money than they intended without any measurable results. In retrospect, their marketing activity appears random at best.
As a fellow business owner, I’d like to suggest a different way to think about your annual plan. If I asked you where you wanted your business to be one year from today, you wouldn’t shrug your shoulders. You would have an answer. And it would be specific. That’s your target. And your annual plan is how you take aim and hit it.
Business is about progress and growth. It’s about moving toward something. As the saying goes, if you don’t know where you’re going, that’s exactly where you’ll end up. At the end of the year, your marketing budget can either be an impulsive expense or a calculated, strategic investment that helps your company meet it’s goals. You decide.