Making Your Plan Work for You.

Chris Bretschger

January 31, 2017

If you’re like a number of our clients, the plans for the year have been mapped out, production/media schedules are set, execution is underway, and you’re building on the momentum from last year. Attached to your plans are goals, baselines, and forecasts that help predict the return on your efforts.

Now it’s time to deliver.

As marketers, the information we have at our fingertips is astounding and allows us to create more predictable programs than ever before. For our E-commerce clients, predictive measurement provides more accurate growth projections, increased confidence in our plans to push action when most needed, and actionable insight to drive aggressive marketing budgets. For our B2B Clients, it means a better understanding of how to support and execute against a healthy lead pipeline.
With the predictability we build into our programs, we can focus directly on incremental optimizations.

Optimizations: If You’re Going to Fail, Fail Fast.

The reality of marketing plans today is that if a few initiatives don’t fail through the course of the year, you’re probably not pushing hard enough.

With the ever-changing landscape, if you want to stay on pace with the competition, you need to have a steady base, but we advise our clients that somewhere around 15-20% of your marketing should be dedicated to testing – technology, messaging, creative or otherwise. These advancements then get carried over into the regular plan and a new round is set up and the cycle repeats.

How to Make it Work:

  1. Decide on the parameters of your test
  2. Determine a baseline
  3. Set up strict parameters for success and failure (bonus: what is a home run?)
  4. Ensure the proper tracking is in place
  5. Execute
  6. Analyze
  7. Implement into mainstream

Then, of course, most importantly: Repeat!


The incrementality that is brought through optimization planning is what sets aside the mediocre from the great marketing plans.

With each win, you can learn a bit more about your audience and what drives them. Taking these learnings, and building off of them throughout the year, leads to greater yields, and builds continuing demand. By the end of the year, you have a trove of new findings to build into your strategy moving forward, and a clean slate to structure more improvements to continue the cycle.

It takes time to develop a proper testing plan — but once done, and done well, the opportunities are endless.