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How To Avoid FrankenMarketing!


My wife is constantly planning. By Sunday night at 6pm she has our whole week planned out from meals to gym schedules to dog walk duties right down to weekend plans. When we’re together we get a ton done. She makes tweaks to our plans and things just seem to run smoothly.  When she’s gone….well, not so much. She has been in Chicago all week and my life expectancy has deteriorated significantly.  Last night I ate 2 lbs of chicken, a bowl of chili, a cup of ice cream and 3 beers for dinner. I wake up late, my clothes don’t match, I have severe indigestion and I think I took the wrong dog home from the park this morning. I am adding some great things to my plan (additional beer and television) while taking away the things I don’t really need (exercise, vegetables), but my life seems to be much less effective than it could be.

A lot of marketing teams unfortunately are running their H2 operations much like I am running my life right now. Rather than having a well thought out strategy and execution plan for Q3-4, they are slapping different things together and just trying to make it to the end of the year. I call this Franken-marketing. It is when marketing teams take whatever parts they can get and jam them into place to make their 2nd half more effective. “Ok let’s put a direct mail piece here, and throw that nurture email campaign here, now let’s automate this and go to this trade show and viola! It’s a marketing monster! It’s harder to track and less effective than a real marketing plan, but way more expensive!”

Now of course throughout the year things come up that force you to make adjustments to your plan. Budgets are cut, needs change, the funnel fluctuates, etc… As these changes take place, you are forced to react and add/drop different initiatives. When that happens it is imperative that you take into account 1) how the altering of your plan is going effect the other moving pieces and 2) how/if the introduction/deduction will change the end result . Adding an automated marketing tool will not increase your revenue if there is no one to fully follow up on the leads it produces. Running a direct mail piece won’t land on the right desks if the list you have is a year old and was poorly validated even back then. Hiring an outsourced lead generation firm is a waste if there is no process to pass the leads to sales and track their rate of forecast. Conversely, cutting your inside sales team and expecting sales to cold call (when they have never successfully been able to do it before) is a recipe for disaster and making your teleprospectors dial off of old lists because you cut your list resources is going to kill their call numbers.

Simply adding or subtracting tools will not give you the desired result if you do not factor in how they fit in with your other marketing initiatives, your current level of staffing and your interaction with sales. I’m not saying you should write your plan in black ink and ride it out no matter what. Write in pencil so that you can erase and make changes and check the math regularly to make sure your numbers add up.


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