Page 4 - Engage -- Fall 2018 -- no.14
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 Fall 2018
The Necessity of
 Debbie Andrews has worked on more than 100 marketing plans over 20+ years of marketing and business development. She is founder and president of Marketri, a full-service strategic marketing consulting and fractional CMO company, and her specialties include working with accounting, engineering, investment banking, technology, and law firms.
Recently, Andrews and George Jacob, a strategic marketing consultant at Marketri, shared the following advice with us on the necessity of marketing plans.
In mid-2017, Marketri conducted a survey to gain insight into whether companies have and use marketing plans. Of the respondents, 32 percent reported that their companies do not have formal marketing plans. Though it might seem like a low number, it’s actually a little shocking. It means nearly one-third of companies are essentially winging it with their marketing efforts. Respondents pointed to some difficult truths within their organizations with responses such as the following:
 There is no marketing expertise.
 Executives don’t believe in marketing
and/or marketing plans.
 There is a limited budget.
 No one will be accountable for it.
 Our company does not place a high
value on marketing.
 We are working on it but don’t have a
clear road map to implement it. “These answers shine a spotlight
on leadership and culture. If an organization’s culture isn’t supportive of marketing efforts, marketing cannot
thrive,” explains Andrews. She goes on to say that even a great B2B marketing plan or a large marketing budget can easily go to waste without leadership support. And in situations like that, the issue isn’t as much about marketing planning as it is about aligning the organization with its goals.
Marketri then looked at the 68 percent of companies who reported that they do have a marketing plan. They asked these respondents two questions: Does your company update the plan annually to align with strategic goals? Is the plan a living document that gets reviewed and updated throughout the year?
Respondents answered these two questions in the exact same way: 91 percent said yes and 9 percent said no. That was a promising sign, according to Jacob. “If you are going to create any kind of a marketing plan, it needs to be looked at frequently,” he says. “Annual updates are great for bigger strategic changes or to accommodate refined company goals, while more frequent adjustments and reviews
can assure traction.”

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