2021 has been unpredictable for advertisers, making it hard to stick to their annual marketing budgets. Nobody wants to waste valuable ad spend, but you also need to pivot your strategy when something isn't working. As we head into 2022, consistent marketing is necessary for driving sales and keeping your brand top of mind.
Zero in on 2022 Objectives
Over the past two years, many companies have experienced lower sales or slower growth overall. For example, with social distancing and lockdowns in effect, the need for event venues dropped off drastically. Although in-person dining and shopping are becoming mainstream again, many customers still prefer shopping and ordering food online.
It's time to decide to look at your marketing strategy and see what needs improving. In particular, pay close attention to the bounce rates and click-through rates on your website. If you have more bounce rates, your website doesn't have enough relevant content for your visitors. A program like Google Analytics can help you keep track of this traffic.
You should also analyze your social media posts to determine which ones are getting the most engagement. Social media is usually one of the best tools to boost your content, but not if you don't have a large audience. If most of your traffic comes from other channels, allocate more resources to those instead of social media.
If you can't determine why your content isn't performing well, try asking your customers directly. A customer survey should include questions concerning your website's ease of accessibility, the expertise of your staff, and ways to improve. It will give you valuable insight into your current marketing strategy while making customers feel valued at the same time.
Once you've determined your current campaign's strengths and weaknesses, you can plan out your most important objectives for 2022. According to Forbes, the fall of the previous year is the best time to prepare your budget. This is especially true for larger companies that need to consult with more business partners and develop the most cohesive strategy.
Focus on allocating your resources towards your most significant objectives for 2022, using the S.M.A.R.T. goals model for maximum ROI. For example, earning 15% more revenue is a worthy goal for any company. However, it may not be realistic during that timeframe, especially if the pandemic has heavily affected your industry.
Your goals for 2022 don't have to be bombastic or be attached to a monetary value. You may simply want to increase your organic traffic or successfully integrate another channel into your marketing mix. As long as you build your campaign around these goals, you'll get the most bang for your buck.
Allow for Some Leniency in Your Approach
It's important to set an attainable advertising budget based on your goals, customers, and the competition. A timeline can help you stay on track, but allowing for wiggle room is also important. We don't know how the pandemic will affect commerce in 2022, so being nimble is invaluable.
Have backup plans in place so that you can pivot your strategy as needed. For example, you might plan to allocate most of your ad spend towards a social media campaign. Once you've completed that, research projected costs for other forms of marketing in case you need to shift.
Beware of using too much leniency in your strategy, as this will just result in wasted advertising dollars. Give your strategy enough time to resonate with customers before determining its success. A business that advertises during its off-season will obviously receive less attention from even its most loyal customers. We're marketing in ever-changing times, so keep an eye on your analytics and customer behavior.
In any case, all campaigns should be a little flexible to prepare for market changes and new opportunities. Striking a balance between organization and fluidity will ensure the most success.
Think of Marketing as an Investment
Advertising is a relatively large expense, primarily if your strategies haven't performed well or you're working with fewer resources. Despite this, marketing should always be considered an investment. It might take several weeks or months, but you will eventually reap the rewards of a consistent marketing campaign.
Try not to become discouraged in the interim and forgo your marketing plans. Without continuous advertising, most customers will forget your offerings amidst the competition. Educate your marketing team on what to expect for both long-term and short-term growth. This takes some stress off your team and allows them to focus more on creating quality content within your advertising budget.
Planning Your 2022 Marketing Budget with a Media Partner
Even when you have reasonable goals in mind, you may have trouble with your marketing budget breakdown. A marketing agency can help you make the most of your resources while improving your overall ROI. You can save even more time and money by partnering before the new year begins.