Want to increase your marketing budget? Try these tips.
Tips to increase your marketing budget.
Your Marketing department increases brand awareness, provides air cover for sales, and generates leads. Yet getting enough marketing budget to do those things is often difficult. That’s because Marketing is almost always seen as a cost center, and it can be tough to prove real return on investment (ROI).
Want to avoid a big battle over the marketing budget? Here are three tips that can help:
- Prove your competitors spend more on marketing
- Get other departments on your side
- Show marketing’s value to the business
How much do competitors spend on marketing?
If any of your competitors are public companies, you can usually find some indication of how much they spend on the marketing budget in their financial filings. Another good way to find out how much your competitors spend is to review studies from ITSMA, Deloitte, and other organizations.
Do your best to compare apples to apples, so it’s harder for Finance to pick at your numbers. Then, assuming your competition does spend more, create a clear chart that shows your spending versus theirs. This can really open the eyes of Finance and executives who control the marketing budget. It can also help explain why competitors that spend more on marketing are more well-known in the market.
Get other departments to speak up for you
Chances are you’ve had some marketing successes in the past year. Did you help Sales win an important deal? Did you get great media coverage for one or more of your executives? Plan and execute a successful product launch that pleased a business unit leader?
One way to get more marketing budget is to let the people on your side know how much more you could do for them with more budget. Then ask them to speak to the CEO and CFO in support of more marketing budget. If enough business leaders speak up for you, it’s more likely to sway the budget decision-makers.
Clearly show Marketing’s value to the business
Finally, showing real business results is one of the best ways to get more marketing budget. I’m not talking about website traffic, email opens, or social engagement.
While those metrics are important for Marketing to track and learn from, they often don’t mean anything to the folks in Finance. Instead, can you show the business that marketing-generated a certain percentage of leads? Can you prove an excellent MQL (marketing qualified lead) to SAL (sales accepted lead) ratio? Better yet, can you show that marketing actually generated a certain amount of revenue for the business?
These metrics can be harder to get and prove, and they often require close collaboration with Sales and Finance. But they’re worth it. Leads and revenue are important words for your executive leadership team. And they will mean a lot more to them than almost any other marketing metric.
Want to learn more about how to show marketing ROI? Read my business partner George Stenitzer’s blog.
Fighting to increase your marketing budget can be tiresome and difficult. Conducting a competitive comparison, getting other departments to support your request, and showing marketing ROI can go a long way in getting a marketing budget increase.
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