How to Use Your Marketing Budget More Effectively

It’s no surprise that effective marketing is crucial for your business success. But, you only have so much money in your marketing budget to spread around. While it may feel tempting to put money into every single ad channel possible, that probably isn’t the wisest decision (especially if you’re budget conscious).

Just marketing for marketing’s sake won’t cut it. By creating a plan to align your marketing budget with your business goals, you’ll learn how to allocate your marketing budget much more effectively.

Nail down your marketing goals

Before you decide how to spend your hard-earned dollars, it’s important to understand why they’re being spent in the first place.

That’s why a crucial first step is to determine what your business priorities are. Establishing priorities will help you create marketing goals that are more likely to move the needle forward.

Start off by establishing some broad marketing goals. Do you want to increase your brand awareness? Or, is it more important that you convert site visitors into customers?

Once your goals are defined, try to get even more specific. How will you measure whether your brand awareness increased? How many new sales do you want to see in your ecommerce store?

Once you have those goals set, prioritize them to get a clearer picture into where money should be spent.

Do your research

The next step is to research where you’re most likely to get your target audience’s attention, as well as what channels your competitors are advertising on.

Think about social media channels, websites your audience members visit, and other forms of media like podcasts. You’ll want to monitor the types of engagement that your audience is most interested in to determine how to best focus your marketing efforts.

For example, you may realize that the audience for your gardening supply store enjoys watching tutorials about how to start an organic garden. Most of your competitors are also on YouTube and Facebook posting similar videos, so it makes sense for you to do the same. You may even want to place ads at the beginning or end of these videos that ask viewers to download a guide from your website, increasing the chances that they’ll become leads, or potential future customers.

By putting your time and money into making these videos instead of purchasing ad space somewhere else, you can be confident that your marketing budget is being spent wisely.

Establish your marketing budget

Now it’s time to decide where to actually spend your dollars.

Take a look at your goals from the first step and pick the highest priority one. Now, take a look at what you currently spend. Does it reflect your top goal?

For example, if your goal is to turn site visitors into customers, you’ll want to focus on directing your supporters to the pages where they can complete purchases.

However, you notice that you’re currently spending your marketing dollars on Facebook ads that drive traffic to your homepage. To realign your budget to meet your goals, pivot your advertising strategy. You can still purchase ads to increase your site traffic, but you’ll probably want to allocate fewer dollars to them. At the same time, you might want to invest in campaigns that highlight your products by creating new ads that link directly to your product pages.

When you align your marketing goals with your overall business ones, you’ll know that your marketing budget is working hard for you.

As your business grows and evolves, you’ll want to revisit your goals and tweak your marketing efforts from time-to-time. For now, you have the knowledge that you need pick the channels that will help your business thrive.

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Sarah Li Cain

A B2B and personal finance writer who has appeared in publications such as Credit Karma, Magnify Money and Lending Tree.

More by Sarah Li Cain