That year-end marketing budget is worth more than you think.

money2‘Use it or lose it’ is the mantra of many organizations when it comes to year-end budgets. If you’re in charge of the budget, it should be more than just a mantra, it should be your battle cry.

For starters, not spending allocated funds this year could mean you won’t receive those dollars next year. It’s no secret that budget planning is rooted in what departments spent the previous year to achieve their goals. To avoid being shortchanged in 2017, come up with a plan to do something your marketing team may not have tried before – a new tactic that could generate leads, drive revenue or build greater brand awareness.

You may be thinking, “Okay, cool. So, what should we do?” When considering what to spend those clams on, think in terms of the objectives you didn’t get to do this year. Some examples to kick start the ideas include the following:

  1. End-of-Year email campaign – Creating an end-of-year email campaign can drum up business fast for the New Year. Consider a 3 email “drip campaign” with a landing page featuring content that addresses common consumer problems. To gain access to the content, the recipient will need to provide a name and email – giving you the contact information of a potential lead. As far as content, provide some thought leadership in your market by offering a whitepaper, video or E-book that provides value about the solving the issues your customers face. As an additional option, use the email campaign to generate buzz around a New Year special offer if your business has a product or service that could benefit customers as they start the year with fresh new purchasing or technology budgets.
  2. Blog Posts – Speaking of content, investing in some fresh content for your website is an affordable and smart thing to do with year-end dollars. Hire a writer or agency that specializes in targeted content that can position your company as an industry thought leader. This is a fast, low cost option that can happen BEFORE the ball drops on 2016.
  3. SEO Audit – Are the keywords on your website hitting the mark? Work with a strategic agency partner that can help your business identify keywords that are relevant to your product or service. An SEO-focused writer can make sure those SEO keyword opportunities are woven through your website in a logical, cohesive way.
  4. Social Media Advertising Campaign – There’s an art to doing a social media campaign the right way. Social media advertising has grown to the point that sponsoring ads is having a powerful effect on driving awareness and conversions. Post one of your best performing offer ads and then sponsor the ad on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter depending on where your customers engage the most. Follow this up by considering an ad re-targeting strategy. Have an experienced firm set up a targeted ad campaign for people who have visited your website. Your ad will show up in their social media feeds, ensuring your product or service is always top of mind. Statistics are showing that retargeting is the most successful form of social advertising right now and social media engagement continues to grow at a voracious rate.
  5. Get your info out there – Everyone’s talking about infographics. Easy to share through social media channels, on your website or in a presentation, infographics are a powerful “at-a-glance” tool for describing how your business can solve customer challenges. Find a partner or designer who is not only skilled at creating a visually appealing campaign but also developing a concept or theme for the graphic. Your customers love infographics. Trust me!

When it comes to year-end budgets, the bottom line is don’t lose it! Find new, affordable and creative ways to raise awareness, generate leads and ultimately, close deals. If you’d like to learn more about the tactics listed above or discover other ways to get the most out of your marketing budget, reach out.

We love talking about this stuff.