4 ways to improve marketing momentum & performance at the start of the quarter
Does your end of quarter for marketing tend to feel like a chaotic rush to the finish line, with looming KPIs you're already predicting not being able to meet, and seemingly NO TIME to get ahead of the next quarter's goals and planning?
Your momentum at the start of the quarter may be to blame.
At the moment of this post, it's early September, and you SHOULD be starting your Q4 planning... SHOULD is such a heavy word, isn't it?
The best way to avoid that chaos, have more probability of hitting your quarterly goals, AND creating more predictable revenue growth is to...
start the quarter with solid momentum,
and maintain that week-over-week.
If you're needing to establish the right marketing momentum for the next quarter... or ANY quarter going forward... there are four key areas to kick off stronger:
Let's dive into some tips and ways to make this happen.
Nothing delays momentum more than everyone involved being on the same page, and more importantly, the same order of priorities! Prior to this next quarter...
Establish your top 1 to 5 marketing initiatives for the quarter.
No. You can't have 10. Focus is key here. Stretching too thin with the team is like trying to run in peanut butter. You're going to take forever to make progress across too many things.
And you can't have them obscure or scoped as something that may take 2 or more quarters to actually get done! Take a bigger project and break it down into milestones so that the milestone is the initiative for that quarter. Be a deadline driven team.
Make sure the projects are set to a priority order.
I preach that, "there is no such thing as two number 1's." You have to set a high-level priority order so that you and your team can collectively and autonomously be able to weigh weekly and daily priorities. This is especially helpful if any of the initiatives come to a clash in which takes precedence.
This also streamlines if something unexpectedly pops into the mix of initiatives. You can share with the team where it sits in priority and quickly adjust the game plan.
If the team doesn't know what success looks like, how do you know what to develop and execute to achieve it?
Aligning on key performance indicators (KPIs) means asking...
What are your most important KPIs for the business as a whole?
How do those then correlate and break down into your marketing KPIs?
And then how do those then align to each project's success for end of quarter?
All marketing KPIs should line up to bigger business KPIs. If that doesn't seem to line up for one of your projects, you may need to re-evaluate the goal, priority, and metrics of that initiative.
This is something I've grown to love as a way to keep team momentum on initiatives level across the quarter (rather than back loaded on the quarter making that undesirable state of chaos).
The idea is to break down your quarter into 2-week intervals, and them map each initiative's stages and milestones needed from start to end of the quarter.
There's a few major things I try to do with the client teams I lead:
Ensure every initiative AND every KPI has an owner.
Your marketing leader should have a clear and thorough process for how to appropriately delegate within the team, as well as how to run reoccurring, but short and highly efficient, sprint meetings to oversee the direction and updates of the quarter's projects.
Your quarter just got SMART
We all know the concept of SMART goals. Well, the methods above just made your your marketing plan and initiatives for the quarter are SMART too...
A strong marketing leader will ensure you set and keep the momentum by...
Making sure all of this is done before the start of the quarter.
Aligning and managing alongside other executive leadership and teams.
Establishing the scope of these initiatives for greater predictable revenue growth.
Constantly providing direction, removing roadblocks, and keeping the team on track across the quarter's progress towards outcomes.
As a Fractional Chief Marketing Officer, and as an Advisor, I do this for all of my clients prior to the start of the quarter to keep the teams super efficient and effective quarter-over-quarter.
If you're curious about how I might be able to help you do the same, let's hop on a quick call!