Developing Your Marketing Plan, Part IV
Evaluating Your Marketing Plan and Budget
The results of your marketing plan and budget, as noted in Part 3, are based on the method selected to determine the effectiveness of your efforts. That is, did you achieve the results you wanted? In Part 3, the marketing plan was finalized with the budget and tasks plan. The methods selected to evaluate how successful your marketing plan will meet your objectives and assist you in anticipating potential changes in your marketing effort is the focus of this article.
The Purpose of the Evaluation
Evaluating each aspect of your marketing plan throughout the year will benefit your business in a number of ways. The primary purpose of your marketing plan and its budget is to control costs and measure the anticipated income of each marketing effort. Second, your evaluation will help you to coordinate tasks activities and staffing. Third, your plan provides an opportunity to measure the standards of performance and expectations of each task; further, it provides a means by which you can communicate the results of the standards and expectations to those responsible for implementing the marketing tasks. Finally, by constantly following the progress of the plan’s outcomes (and possible shortcomings) you have the means to identify and target needed changes in your marketing plan.
Measurement Elements of an Evaluation
Your evaluation should measure those elements of the marketing and budget that are most important to the success of your business. This might include:
How closely your actual expenditures met the budget amounts estimated
How closely your actual revenues met the budgeted amounts estimated
How closely your sales volume met your budgeted volume estimates
How closely your staff’s estimated time to complete or achieve task objectives were met
How closely your marketing objectives met or exceeded your intended expectations in reaching potential customers, informing the community about your products or services, or clarify your company’s brand
How often you had to modify objectives or tasks to achieve your goals?
This list is simply an example of the kinds of measurement criteria you might use in evaluating your marketing plan. As indicated throughout this four part series, each marketing plan is unique to your business’s needs. The evaluation reflects the priorities and needs of your business.
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