marketing plan developmentIf you’re a good CEO or CMO, you’ve invested money and time into your marketing plan. If you’re a great CEO/CMO, you’ve insured that everyone in your company is aware of the plan, has a copy of it and is committed to its success. Given the employee buy-in, is it okay to change the plan?

To steal a quote from Robert Burns – “The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.”  Note to the purist: True, Burns didn’t actually write that. What he wrote was “The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men, gang aft agley.” – seriously, who speaks like that these days?

Here are five situations when a change to your best laid marketing plan may be inevitable.

  • Underperforming ROI: Every plan should be monitored monthly to confirm that selected marketing channels are meeting expectations. Shift financial investments and tweak the plan as needed to obtain the desired results.
  • New Technology: New marketing tools are released almost daily. The successful ones ramp up quickly, and while you may not have considered them when your plan was written, they may have become must-haves in a few short months. In most cases, new tools will offer ways to save time, reduce costs or do something new. Sometimes they deliver all three of these benefits.
  • New Talent: If you’ve added a team member with expertise in a new area, review your marketing plan to determine if it’s worthwhile to shift some spending to explore new capabilities. Innovation is key to success.
  • Shift in Sales: When a product or service takes off unexpectedly, it could be time to shift marketing dollars in its direction. Increased sales is a sign that the marketplace needs this product or service, so the timing is right to get word out about its availability.
  • Disaster Recovery: No one welcomes a disaster (forces of nature, recession or public relations nightmare). But disasters happen to the best of companies. A major shift in the marketing plan may be needed to align with a new disaster recovery business plan.