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Continuous Planning for Modern Marketers

Five Best Practices to Align Plans with Objectives

The Profitability Challenge

As competition increases and customer preferences shift with greater frequency, the pressure on marketing departments intensifies. In response, marketing itself must shift – it must modernize with the times, adjusting its efforts to changing markets, even as the pace of change in those markets is accelerating.

New marketing methods such as search engine optimization, pay-per-click across social media and inbound marketing have introduced new techniques to engage potential customers while also creating challenges as marketing professionals struggle to adapt their approaches to these shifts. In an increasingly online world where customers can shift from one company to another at any time of day from any location, marketing must develop new ways to catch and hold their attention. Doing this well requires systematic, flexible and continuous planning.

Planning to align the department’s activities with strategic goals thus is more than ever an essential activity for marketing. However, many marketers aren’t satisfied with their department’s ability to do effective planning. Fewer than half (48%) of organizations participating in our benchmark research on business planning said they are satisfied with their organization’s current process of creating marketing plans. More than 40 percent said the marketing planning process is too slow, has too few skilled resources and lacks readily available data; more than one in three (36%) said their technology is inadequate. Overall only 15 percent of organizations said they manage their marketing planning process very well.


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