As the fall season picks up, most people are thinking about fall sports and the changing leaves while companies are firming up their holiday marketing plans as well as determining their 2013 marketing budgets and planning. Sometimes taking the yearly stab at the budget is based on internal agendas and past years’ data and assumptions — but that can paint only a portion of the picture for the upcoming year.

In a world that is more and more mobile and social everyday, we recommend for 2013 that your brand consider these four things within your marketing budget:

  1. Be nimble. Don’t overplan your marketing budget. There are going to be things that come over the course of the year — great opportunities that your company will want to take part in. You don’t want to be over-committed with pre-planned marketing where every ounce of your budget is accounted for. Leave a portion of the budget set aside for ‘new initiatives’ as they arrive.
  2. Be real-time responsive and invest in listening. Engage with your customers, listen and respond. Progressive brands are listening to their customers. Is your brand actively monitoring and listening to chatter, requests and issues as they arise on Facebook and Twitter? A recent public survey found that people expect a response to a Twitter mention or direct message within 0-4 hours and on Facebook within 12-24 hours.
  3. Study the numbers. Gather existing marketing data and review how it has aligned with your advertising objectives and consumer behavior. Based on this, review creative ways to increase your customer’s experience with your brand. For each media placement consideration, calculate the CPM calculation to analyze each one. A CPM calculation breaks down your media investment into the cost per 1,000 exposures.
  4. Study your target market. Can you clearly and concisely answer the question: “Who is your target market?”  Define what media in your targeted geographic region reaches your targeted demographic – Is it newspapers, publications, billboards, the web? Have their interests changed? How many are now mobile users? What publications do they subscribe to? What radio stations do they listen to?  What clubs or associations do they belong to?

These are some suggestions for planning your 2013 marketing budget. If you would like the expertise of Ocreative to help you with planning and executing your marketing and advertising for 2013, please give us a call at 262-567-1164 or email us to set up an appointment.