Pop quiz hotshot! Do you know where your revenue is sitting this financial year? Is it on target, under target or over target?

With the end of the financial year rapidly approaching, now is the time to get in the know – to take stock of what worked, what didn’t and what needs optimising so that this time next year you can say your revenue is over target. But how do you get in the know? By doing an EOFY strategic marketing review.

What is an EOFY strategic marketing review?

A strategic marketing review is an audit of your messaging, marketing and metrics over the last year and a plan of what you can optimise further, stop altogether or initiate this coming year to supercharge marketing results.

Step 1 – Determine where you are now

The first step before establishing a destination or plan is to know your starting point. Through the lens of your strategic marketing review, this involves understanding where your marketing is at right now and what needs to change or stay the same moving into the new financial year.

Here are some general marketing questions to get the discussion started:

  • Is our target audience still accurate?
  • How much revenue did we make per target audience?
  • What is our customer Life Time Value (LTV)?
  • What were our costs and gross profit?

Once these are answered, delve into a more specific review:

  • What was our revenue by channel (email, PR, Google Ads, social media, etc.)?
  • What were the revenue, costs and gross profit of each campaign for each channel?
  • What were the revenue, costs and gross profit of every component of each campaign?
  • What is our cost per acquisition/revenue (how much we pay to acquire one customer)?
  • What is our cost per lead (how much we pay to acquire one lead)?
  • What is our cost per click (how much we pay to acquire one click)?

If you’re struggling to find the answers to any of these questions, then congratulations, you’ve got your first marketing task to action out of this review!

Step 2 – Start, Stop, More

Start, stop, more is a great brainstorming exercise to do with your team. Once you know where you are, it’s time to look at what you need to start, stop and do more.

  • Start – What should we start doing that will add value to our target audience and business?
  • Stop – What do we need to stop doing that isn’t producing results or adding value to our customers?
  • More – What is working well and that we need to do more?

Once your team gets on a roll, you may find yourself inundated with ideas. To make it actionable (and not too overwhelming!), we recommend focusing on 1-3 initiatives per quarter.

Step 3 – Establish your marketing plan

You know the saying, right? “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. Was that an eye roll I heard just then? It’s perhaps one of the most said lines in business – but it’s true. That’s why the next step in your strategic marketing review is to make your marketing plan for this year.

Your plan should include:

  • Customers – Who are our target audiences? Are there any new or emerging audiences that we can/want to serve?
  • Messaging – What are we really selling (not features or benefits)? What is the emotional journey each audience goes through to make a purchase?
  • Customer Journey – What does our customer journey look like, and what touchpoints do we need to establish?
  • Analysis and Results – What has worked, hasn’t performed and needs to be optimised?
  • Targets and Goals – What targets, objectives, and financial models do we need in place? Remember to keep them SMART – specific, measurable, attainable, relevant and time-bound.
  • Action List – What is the tactical plan of how we will get from where we are now to where we want to be?

If you want serious marketing results (and I suspect you do), don’t just wait to do this at EOFY; schedule an update every quarter.

Step 4 – Define your metrics

While establishing your plan is essential, defining how you will measure your marketing performance is perhaps the most critical part of your strategic marketing review.

When it comes to what critical numbers to track, we recommend starting with the following:

  • Cost per acquisition/revenue
  • Cost per lead
  • Cost per click
  • Volume

One metric that isn’t worth measuring is ROI. ROI is incredibly misleading because it doesn’t consider the whole of business operations or tell you if a marketing campaign is profitable or not – it only compares the cost and revenue gained.

To make it easier for yourself, set up a dashboard or generate an automatic report so you can monitor your critical numbers on a daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly basis to know whether you are on track or not. You can’t manage what you don’t measure!

As you start to track your data, you’re likely to encounter gaps in your analytics framework. While there may be known unknowns (you know what you don’t know), you may also come across unknown unknowns (you don’t know what you don’t know) – thanks for the logic, Rumsfeld! This can happen because you’re not capturing the right data, the data isn’t integrated for quick access, or your sales reps aren’t doing the full job. This is an area to seek expert advice on.

Step 5 – The 90-Day Action Plan

Now it’s time to bring it all together with razor-sharp focus to look at what needs to be actioned within the next 90 days.

  • What are our targets for the next 90-days (keep them SMART)?
  • How are we going to meet our targets? What messages do we need to create, campaigns we need to develop, and channels do we need to use?
  • What critical numbers are we tracking to ensure our marketing is profitable?
  • What resources (people, systems, budget) do we need to achieve this?
  • What key actions do we need to take? Who is doing them and by when?
  • When is our next check-in point to make sure we’re on track?

There you have it, your step-by-step guide to an EOFY strategic marketing review that will see your results and revenue skyrocket for next year.