Renee Higgins
Author Archives: Renee Higgins

Journey Map & Journey Map Calendar View Overview

What Is a Journey Map?

  • It is a visual way to show your Ideal Target's interactions with your brand throughout the journey. 
  • It identifies what your Ideal Target is thinking and what the person wants at each step.
  • It identifies what the brand wants and how we should interact with the Ideal Target. 
  • The stages are the same as the funnel from the Marketing Plan and Channel Strategy, just described from both the Ideal Target's point of view as well as the brand.
  • Complete a map for each Ideal Target or subgroups within your Ideal Target who have different journeys. 

Example Journey Map

What is a Journey Map Calendar View?

  • Add Seasonality with a Journey Map - Calendar view if it's relevant for your Ideal Target.

Example Journey Map Calendar View 

Key Messages Overview

What is it?

  • A visual way to organize your most important messages
  • It helps you prioritize what you want your audience to hear
  • It ensures consistency in how everyone speaks and writes about your brand
  • Only use a few - a primary and for initiatives, major news or a crisis

What does it include?

  • Key messages include bite-sized information
    • 1 Main Message
    • 3 Supporting Messages
    • 3-5 Proof Points per Supporting Message

Main Message

  • The main idea you want your audience to hear, understand, and remember
    • What's the ONE thing you want people to hear and remember?
    • It's like a thesis statement in an essay
    • If asked a question, what would you want a speaker to get across?
    • We often use the "Promise" from the Brand Strategy

Supporting Messages

  • Points that make the main message more clear
    • It's like the supporting messages for a thesis in an essay
    • Should summarize several detailed Proof Points
    • Limited to 3
    • We often use the "Secret Sauce" from the Brand Strategy

Proof Points

  • Specific reasons to believe each Supporting Message
    • What are the 3-5 reasons for a person to believe each Supporting Message?
    • Provide facts/proof with why the Supporting Message is true (often numbers-based)
    • Proof Points are a way to get to the Supporting Messages and ultimately the Main Message
    • When asked a question, sometimes a speaker starts with a Proof Point

Good Key Messages:

  • Aligned with overall business strategy
  • Unique, accurate and verifiable
  • Concise (you only have one page for a reason)
  • Easy to understand and easy to restate (no corporate jargon)
  • Relevant to specific audiences

Click here to watch the video!

How To Update Your LinkedIn Profile

Do you want to update your LinkedIn profile but don't know where to start or how to do it?. Updating your profile can be a quick and simple process. 

Our step by step tool will show you how to:

  1. Optimize Your Profile
  2. Add Profile Picture & Banner
  3. Create a Personalized URL
  4. Edit Header Information
  5. Add Header Section
  6. Edit Experience

Download The Tool Here To See How!

Hero’s Story Outline Overview

What is it?

  • It's the story of how you guide your ideal target through challenges to success
  • It focuses on the ideal target being the hero and you being the guide
  • You can use this outline in sales emails, your website, social media, etc. 

Hero's Story Outline

  • Your Ideal Target:
  • Has a Problem:
  • Meets a Guide (Promise): 
  • Has a Plan (Secret Sauce):
  • And Clear Steps:
  • End in Success:
  • Avoids Failure:
  • Transforms (from-to):

Hero's Story Outline Example

  • Ideal Client: CEO/Owner of a mid-market privately-held business
  • Has a Problem: Doesn't have a marketing leader and doesn't want one full-time, but needs the marketing expertise
  • Meets a Guide: CMO-OnLoan
  • Has a Plan: Build confidence that your organization's marketing will fuel growth
  • And Clear Steps: We build a customized strategic marketing playbook, begin implementing it and transition out once your team is ready
  • Avoids Failure: Waste time and money on marketing decisions; confidence in your marketing team, leading indicators show that marketing is growing your business
  • Transforms (from-to): From Unsure, Unfocused, Frustrated to Confident, Informed, Empowered

Hero's Story Example

CEOs of mid-market companies need the firepower of a senior marketing leader, but they aren’t ready for that level of expertise on a full-time basis. In the absence of a marketing leader, they get bombarded with sales calls and buzzwords, are concerned that their current marketing isn’t delivering results and are unsure about what would deliver results.

These business leaders shouldn’t have to compromise marketing results. With CMO-OnLoan, they don’t have to. CMO-OnLoan delivers CMO level expertise on a fractional basis.

Our consultants combine decades of marketing expertise with simple practices and a disciplined style that takes the burden off you. We work with your team to build a customized strategic marketing playbook that increases marketing effectiveness and builds confidence in making marketing decisions. We work side-by-side with you and your team, infusing marketing knowledge and useful frameworks at every opportunity. Once the fundamentals are set and your team is ready to lead, we transition out.

Stop feeling frustrated, and instead feel confident in your marketing, your marketing resources and your marketing team.

Call Amy Connor for a free discovery conversation to see if our approach meets your needs.

Click here to watch the video

How to Create an Employee Spotlight Post

Telling your employee's stories is easier than you think. Follow these 5 simple steps to create an employee spotlight. 


1. Pick an employee you want to highlight

2. Set up a 30 minute interview with them 

3. Interview employee with the questions below

4. Create a social media post by pulling a quote from the interview and posting their picture

5. If you have an email automation set up, you can share it there as well

Interview Questions:

  • What do you do in your role?
  • What's the best part of your job?
  • What is your favorite thing about working at [company]?
  • What has been your favorite project so far?
  • What has been one of your proudest moments working at [company]?
  • What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

LinkedIn Audit Tool

LinkedIn can be intimidating. But you don't need to have the best profile on the platform to be impactful. It is important to have a profile that is updated and professional looking, so when current customers and prospects, and even potential employees, find you on LinkedIn, they are seeing a great representation of yourself.

Here are a few categories that you can start with.

  1. Up-to-date location and industry
  2. Customized LinkedIn URL
  3. Current contact information
  4. 1st person summary description 
  5. Current company name with logo from LinkedIn's database
  6. Up-to-date education with your degree

Download the LinkedIn Audit Tool

Featured Client: PQ Systems

Market-Focused Plans Deliver Business Growth

For over 30 years, PQ Systems (PQ) has helped manufacturers implement quality improvement programs. Their solutions include statistical process control software, gage management software, measurement system analysis, training, and consulting services. Beth Savage, President & Owner since 2015, had a desire to further amplify PQ’s reputation for customer focus, building on their history of growth and delivering even bigger growth in the future.


To meet these aggressive goals, PQ aimed to shift from a product-focused organization to a more market-focused one, and they wanted insight on how to best drive the process. Savage identified their needs to develop a plan that would deliver higher growth, to develop a sustainable, cross-functional, integrated go-to-market approach, and to develop internal capabilities so the team could implement ongoing. It was also important to bring in a partner that would maintain PQ’s strong culture. Savage stated, “We weren’t looking for an external resource to do the work, but to collaborate with us so we could build our capability and capacity through the process.”


Savage met Amy Connor, CEO & Owner of CMO-OnLoan, based on the recommendation of a mutual contact. After discussing multiple options, Connor proposed a monthly engagement where Savage and Connor would meet to discuss the roadmap for implementing the strategic plan with Connor acting as a strategic sounding board. In a few months, Savage and the team had developed internal capability and evolved their focus to an integrated, cross-functional go-to-market approach.

The next step was developing an outcomes-focused marketing playbook that clearly linked to business goals. With a small marketing team, PQ needed external resources to help them develop their plan and to identify the resources needed to implement it.  Savage’s goals were to see marketing KPIs that indicated marketing was driving business results and that the marketing team would be resourced appropriately to implement the plan. One of CMO-OnLoan’s senior consultants, Kathy Drury, led the project with the PQ marketing team. Drury worked with PQ to develop an integrated sales and marketing plan with corresponding key performance indicators (KPIs) to track progress.

Solution, Continued

A key project that enabled PQ to better link marketing results and outcomes was the customer funnel analysis. The team identified lead sources, costs per lead, and close ratio. This analysis enabled the team to create a lead generation plan that clearly linked to business results. The team then used a CMO-OnLoan tool, the Marketing ROI Calculator, to make confident decisions among marketing tactics.

The team delivered weekly and monthly KPI dashboards which kept them focused on the most important business drivers. The dashboards also provided leadership visibility into how marketing KPIs were impacting business results.

A second key project was developing a customer segmentation of current customers. The output included a contact strategy that prioritized the highest growth opportunities with clear roles for both sales and marketing. During this time, CMO-OnLoan analyzed resource needs and provided a short-term resource recommendation. It included Drury facilitating the request for proposal (RFP) process to find and onboard a digital agency to help PQ make significant progress in their digital presence.

Once the plans were aligned, Savage’s desired outcomes were:

a) clear indicators showed that marketing was driving business goals

b) successful implementation and enhancements based on results

c) increased confidence in marketing decisions

Drury collaborated with the marketing team, met with leadership weekly, reviewed and provided feedback on projects and analysis, reports, market analysis, etc. Within a few months, marketing KPIs continued to show how marketing was impacting business goals and the internal team was prepared to implement on their own.


In less than a year, PQ accelerated its shift from a product-focused to a market-focused organization with a strategic marketing playbook the team was confidently implementing. Savage concluded, “I appreciate how the CMO-OnLoan team both helped us meet our goals and were flexible throughout the process.”

Connor stated, “Beth and the PQ Systems team have great products and a strong culture. They just needed some guidance so they could build upon their marketing foundation and enhance their market focus.  I can’t wait to see what they will do next.”

Download the PDF

One Liner vs Competition

Your One Liner vs Competitions is a way of analyzing your brand message

  • Helps you review your messaging versus competition
  • Shows themes and gaps

Steps to Create the One Liner vs Competition Comparison

  • Insert your logo in the center of a blank slide
  • Add the most prominent message on your homepage under the logo
  • Add your competitors' logos around your logo
  • Add your competitors' most prominent message below their logos

What our video here!

Tone-of-Voice Guide

What is Tone-of-Voice?

  • It’s one of the “markers” of Brand Personality - How a brand communicates including the choice of words, communication style and emotional tone
  • Includes all the words used (written or spoken), including websites, emails, brochures, packaging, scripts, and presentations, etc. 
  • It influences how the listener will feel about the brand’s message you want to get across

Steps to Creating a Tone-of-Voice Guide

  • Review the Brand Personality
  • Decide where the brand’s tone-of-voice fits on 4 dimensions:
    • Funny to Serious
    • Casual to Formal
    • Irreverent to Respectful
    • Enthusiastic to Matter-of-Fact
  • Add descriptors to clarify what you mean for each dimension
  • Create a do’s and don’ts list – including specific situations
  • Write a sentence that summarizes the main points of the tone-of-voice

Tone-of-Voice Dimensions

  • Created by Nielsen Norman Group
  • Use it to define where the brand’s tone-of-voice fits on 4 dimensions
  • Can be at an extreme or somewhere in the middle

4 Dimensions:

  •  Funny or Serious
  • Causal or Formal
  • Irreverent or Respectful
  • Enthusiastic or Matter-of-Fact

Add Descriptors

  • Help Clarify what you mean for each dimension


Example Descriptors


Slapstick, deadpan, satire, self-deprecating, witty, humorous, quirky, sarcastic


Dry, weighty, pressing, urgency, grave


Conversational, friendly, fun, nostalgic, informal, everyday


Authoritative, conservative, smart, elegant, conventional, official


Edgy, provocative, sarcastic, snarky, unapologetic


Caring, nostalgic, sympathetic, polite, reverent, gracious


Upbeat, cheerful, fun, happy, romantic, trendy, upbeat, engaging


Coarse, frank, informative, literal, plain, simple, practical

Add Do’s and Don’ts

  • Provide specific examples of what people should and should not do
  • What types of words to use
  • Specific situations and how you respond to them
  • Who you are talking to
  • What exceptions there are to those situations
  • The goal of the communication (news piece or how-to article)

Finalize the Tone-of-Voice Guide

  • Add the visual of where the brand fits along each dimension
  • Add the Do’s and Don’ts
  • Write a sentence that summarizes the main points of the tone-of-voice

Watch our video here!

Get Better Response To Your Sales Emails

The approach is to focus on a specific group of people and address one relevant problem that they deal with enough that they might be motivated to do something about it. 

Why not include multiple points? It's been proven that trying to say many things dilutes your message and reduces the chance that your email will even be noticed.

We loosely use the "hero's journey" format, a common template for stories. Follow the steps below to craft a single-minded email using this approach:

1.  Identify one ideal target group that you want to reach (title, role, industry, type of issue, etc)

2. Brainstorm all of his/her problems as it relates to your category. Keep asking "what causes the problem" until you get to the real problem the person is facing

3. Choose one problem that you believe is the most relevant and irritating 

4. Create an outline by answering the questions below:

  • Character: Brief description of your ideal target's title, role and/or situation
  • Has a problem: The one problem you chose in step 3
  • Meets a guide:  The benefit you offer that will help the problem
  • Has a plan: Your offerings + an example of how you've overcome these challenges before
  • Avoids Failure: What the person is most afraid of happening
  • Ends in success: What makes the person successful? What does he/she really want to happen?
  • Transforms (from-to): Two word combination. One that describes how the person felt before and then after he/she experienced success or avoided failure. You can brainstorm multiple word combinations
  • Call to action (CTA): Link to a case study, landing page, call now, set meeting, etc. 

5. Use this outline as a starting point to craft the email. Don't overthink it. Write an email that helps the person understand that you "get" the problem and genuinely can help. 

6. Write the subject line - pose a question or provide a statement that is about the problem, the potential failure or the success 

7. Ask someone who has insight about the ideal target and problem to read it for you

p.s. Even if the person doesn't open it, you can still call and follow-up to see if there are any questions about it. 

Want to check out other tips and tools? Click here

Featured Client: go2-pros

Bringing to Life a New Brand

After working as A-Abel Family of Companies for over 30 years, Jay Moran and his family bought the outright ownership of A-Abel Exterminating and TubMasters Renovation in late 2020. In 2021, they began providing the same unmatched professional services, but through a different brand name. Now known as go2-pros, the company minimizes property-owner hassles by providing pest control and renovation services to families throughout Southwest Oh


Once the Moran family bought ownership of the service lines and decided to create a new brand, they knew they needed a trusted marketing expert to guide them through the branding and new brand launch process. To be successful, they needed a new brand name and logo that were distinctive, easy to remember, and that demonstrated their expertise. They also needed a launch plan that included everything from new invoices to a new website and advertising. They already worked with a design agency, digital agency and advertising partners who could implement the plan with excellence, but needed a branding expert and “marketing quarterback” who could lead the effort.


Moran asked his advisors for names of marketing firms who could help. One advisor suggested talking to Amy Connor of CMO-OnLoan. Connor shared templates and examples of how they could help and what was needed for a successful rebranding. After meeting with Connor, Moran believed that the CMO-Onloan team’s branding and marketing expertise, along with their collaborative style would fit well with them and their current agency partners.



The CMO-OnLoan team started by conducting a thorough discovery process to understand the current brand and markets. They reviewed messaging, analyzed prior activities and results, conducted a competitive review and interviewed stakeholders.

The CMO-OnLoan team then led the full team, including internal team members and the agencies through a collaborative process to develop a new brand name, brand architecture, naming architecture and tagline. The designers created logo options and service line treatments that the full team discussed, reviewed and finalized together.

CMO-OnLoan developed ideal customer target profiles for each service line, gaining insight by conducting customer interviews. They developed the brand “why we exist” statement, promise and secret sauce and key messages that would be used across all communications.

Once the brand name, logo, tagline and messages were finalized, CMO-OnLoan developed and implemented the launch. This included developing the launch strategy and writing briefs for agencies and media companies to create assets within the message strategy. CMO-OnLoan also developed an implementation action plan to help the team keep track of everything that needed to change for the rebranding. Finally, CMO-OnLoan managed the action plan and provided guidance to ensure the deadlines were met and the brand was strong and consistent. Connor remarked, “It was a wonderful, collaborative experience where everyone provided their expertise and worked together to make the launch happen quickly. It was a real joy to be a part of!”


The new brand, go2-pros, launched successfully in April, 2021, in just five months. The go2-pros team also gained increased confidence in how to make smart marketing decisions and how to spend their marketing budget. Jay Moran, President at go2-pros stated “The CMO-OnLoan team turned something scary into something we enjoyed. We could not have launched our new brand without their expertise and guidance. It really was a team effort!”

Click here to learn more about go2-pros

Download the PDF

Marketing Leadership

The fourth building block in The Strategic Marketing Playbook is Marketing Leadership. It ensures you have the right resources, team culture, and action plan to get results. Learn more below!

Marketing Leadership Deliverables

  1. Marketing "Quarterback" 
    • The person who ensures that marketing outcomes are met, responsibilities are done well and the team is high performing
  2. Resource Plan & Structure 
    • A system that outlines how certain activities are directed in order to achieve the goals of an organization
  3. Development Plans 
    • Identify skill needs for the organization and the individuals and develop a plan to enhance the skills
  4. Skill Development 
    • Skill training for the team to enhance performance and deliver business objectives
  5. Coaching 
    • Helping leaders at all levels build on their abilities to do exceptional work
  6. Hiring & Resourcing 
    • Finding, selecting and hiring new employees and/or external resources
  7. Onboarding 
    • Integrating a new person with a company and its culture, providing the information and tools needed to become a productive team member

Click Here for The Strategic Marketing Playbook Overview

Marketing Plan

The third building block in The Strategic Marketing Playbook is the Marketing Plan. It's a roadmap for delivering results, including tools to track and analyze marketing effectiveness. Learn more below!

Marketing Plan Deliverables

  1. Business Inputs 
    • Business priorities, initiatives, assumptions, source of business analysis, desired outcomes and metrics
  2. Priorities & KPIs  
    • How marketing will deliver the business goals by moving people through the funnel and key metrics that help measure effectiveness of the priority activities
  3. Annual Calendar 
    • Visual representation of what you will communicate across all channels over time
  4. Budget 
    • Estimated costs to deliver the marketing plan, broken out by month and type of expense
  5. KPI Tracker & Dashboard 
    • Tracks & displays marketing KPIs in a visual way to give a new real-time view into how your marketing efforts are performing
  6. Marketing Research & Insights Plan 
    • Plan to gain the required information and insight about the market, upcoming trends, customers, stakeholders, employees, etc.

Click Here For The Strategic Marketing Playbook Overview

Communication Strategy

The second building block of The Strategic Marketing Playbook is the Communication Strategy. This is a roadmap for delivering messages to your audiences.  Learn more below!

Communication Strategy Deliverables

  1. Experience Principles 
    • Set of statements that act as guiding principles for how you live out your values in your interactions between a customer and an organization
  2. Journey Map 
    • A visual way to show people's interactions with your brand throughout the journey
  3. Audiences 
    • The specific people you are communicating with throughout the journey
  4. Message Strategy 
    • The promise and secret sauce translated to a set of key points or messages that act as a blueprint for all materials and people communicating
  5. Channel Strategy 
    • What you communicate, to whom and in which channel
  6. Style Guide 
    • A document that defines, describes and presents examples of what your brand will look like so that it is always consistent

Click here for The Strategic Marketing Playbook Overview

Brand Strategy

The first step in building your Strategic Marketing Playbook is your brand strategy. It defines what you want to stand for in the minds of others. There are seven deliverables that make up a brand strategy.  Learn more about them below!

Brand Strategy Deliverables

1. Why Your Brand Exists

  • Besides making things or providing services, what difference is your brand trying to make in the world?

2. Ideal Target

  • People who have similar needs and are likely to be interested in buying from you and you really want to serve

3. Brand & Naming Architecture

  • A way you organize and structure the brands and names of products and services so that customers can easily understand what is being offered

4. Promise & Secret Sauce

  • What you "promise" to do that will make your ideal target's life better and the ways and proof that you are better/different vs competition (4-5)

5. Brand Story

  • The story of how you guide your customer through challenges to success

6. Competitive Position

  • Simple graph known as a competitive position map that plots your offerings against the competition for any two parameters that customers value

7. Personality

  • Your brand looks, sounds and feels like this in every communication, as if the brand was a person

Click Here For The Strategic Marketing Playbook Overview

The Strategic Marketing Playbook

The Strategic Marketing Playbook consists of 4 integrated building blocks that your team implements to help you win in the market.  They consist of Brand Strategy, Communication Strategy, Marketing Plan, and Marketing Leadership. Each building block includes specific deliverables. 

4 Building Blocks of The Strategic Marketing Playbook

  1. Brand Strategy 
    • Why Your Brand Exists
    • Ideal Target
    • Brand & Naming Architecture
    • Promise & Secret Sauce
    • Brand Story
    • Competitive Position
    • Personality
  2. Communication Strategy 
    • Experience Principles
    • Journey Map
    • Audiences
    • Message Strategy
    • Channel Strategy
    • Content Calendar
    • Style Guide
  3. Marketing Plan 
    • Business Inputs
    • Priorities & KPI's 
    • Calendar
    • Budget
    • KPI Tracker & Dashboard 
    • Market Research and Insights Plan
  4. Marketing Leadership 
    •  Marketing "Quarterback"
    • Organizational Structure
    • Individual Development Plans
    • Skill Development
    • Hiring and Resourcing
    • Coaching

New Google My Business Updates

Google My Business (GMB) is an online tool for businesses to manage their presence on Google and a great way for companies to keep their customers informed. Your GMB page helps customers stay up-to-date about your company location, hours, reviews, etc.

Google has recently released new GMB features to help your local search presence, specifically during COVID-19.

Is your company utilizing these 4 new GMB features?

1. Health & Safety Features

  • Appointment required
  • Mask required
  • Staff wear masks
  • Staff get temperature checks
  • Temperature check required

2.  Pickup and Delivery Options

  • Curbside pickup
  • No-contact delivery
  • Dine-in

3. Online Services 

  • Online Care
  • Online Appointment
  • Online Estimates
  • Online Classes

4. Messaging

  • You can now message customers via GMB on your desktop
  • Opt in to the service by clicking Messages and select Settings
  • Make sure to respond to messages before 24 hours or Google might revoke your messaging right

Need a GMB Overview? Click here!

Want to learn how to get GMB reviews? Click here!

How to Build Relationships

Build Relationships:


At this point in the customer journey, customers are actively using your products or services and they want things to work smoothly. They may become irritated or disengaged if things don’t go well or they could become advocates if they are delighted. The role is to build lasting relationships and keep interactions and relationships going. Handle any issues that arise quickly and always look for ways to delight. It is important to encourage loyalty and advocacy at this stage.


1. Demonstrate the appreciation by communicating, listening and providing tangible value.

2. Get feedback – frequently,  but without annoying.

3. Take care of any problems quickly, competently and completely.

Marketing Channels:

Email, Sales Calls/Meetings, Website, Social Posts & Communications, Customer Forums, Events, Sponsorships, Gifting, Webinars, Feedback Surveys, Appreciation Events

Primary Metrics:

# Contacts, Open Rate %, # Listens, # Views, # Transactions, # Visitors, # High Ratings, % Satisfied, High NPS

How to Gain Commitment

Gain Commitment:


At this point in the customer journey, people are actively in the process of buying and trying to get through the process as easily and confidently as possible. The role is to grow the customer base and make it easy to “buy”. Create an easy and memorable buying experience that makes people feel confident throughout the process.


1. Identify and eliminate any points of friction in the buying process.

2. While spurring buyers to action, don’t annoy.

3. Provide useful, relevant and timely information to make the experience positive.

4. Show appreciation

Marketing Channels:

Website, In-office, In-store, Customer Set up Process, Customer Service, Implementation Teams, Social Posts, Social Ads, Online Ratings & Reviews, Centers of Influence, Sales Outreach

Primary Metrics:

# Qualified Leads, # Referrals, # COI’s Contacting

How to Increase Brand Interest

Increase Brand Interest:


The customer is interested in your category at this point in the journey and they are considering their options between you and your competitors. This is usually a time of research and information gathering. The role is to convey "why you" and give clear information that compels them to choose you over your competition. 


1. Be present in those places where your customers are doing their research.

2. Focus on messaging that helps people understand why they should choose your brand.

3. Focus on getting them to take an active step towards you (free trial, request a demo, call for details)

Marketing Channels:

Website, SEO, Targeted PPC, Social Posts, Social Ads, Webinars, E-mail, Online Ratings & Reviews, Centers of Influence, Sales Outreach, Referrals

Primary Metrics:

# Followers, # Visitors, CTR %

How To Build Brand Awareness

Build Brand Awareness:


The customer is "unengaged" at this point in the journey. People are thinking about other things and aren't paying attention to your category or to your brand. The role is to stay top of mind and build preference so that when people enter the category they are more likely to consider your brand.


1. Consistently communicate so people will see/hear your brand message multiple times and in a variety of channels over time.
2. Focus on brand-building messaging vs. activation (promotion). Use messages that help people emotionally connect with your brand.

Marketing Channels:

TV, Video, Print, PR/Media interviews, Social, Radio, Podcasts, E-mail, Webinars, Out of Home, Events, Speaking, Digital PPC (Adwords & Display), Storefront, Office Front, Sponsorships, Blogs, Affiliates, Review sites.

Primary Metrics:

# Impressions, # Post Impressions, # Tweet Impressions, # Attendees

Sales & Marketing Funnel

Do you question what marketing is trying to accomplish? Are you unclear how to delineate marketing vs sales? Do you wonder what percent of the marketing budget is being wasted?  Most business owners struggle with the same issues.  This is because marketing’s role is often mis-understood, marketing and sales are usually artificially separated and marketing and sales activities, expenses and outcomes are not tracked and measured.

Marketers and business owners alike care about the impact of marketing activities.  To fully understand and maximize impact, it is crucial to think about marketing as a system.  This includes inputs and outputs – and what happens in between. A well-designed marketing system produces outcomes it is designed to deliver. 


Ensure your Inputs and Desired Outcomes are Clear and Specific

What are your revenue & profit targets?

What do you want MORE of?

  • New customers?
  • Retain more current customers?
  • Higher $ per purchase?
  • More purchases?

Are your goals SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound)?

Integrate Marketing & Sales Within the System 

“Sales” is a Channel Within the Marketing System and should be integrated within each conversion step of the funnel. 

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Only Agree to KPIs that Deliver Business Goals

Why spend time measuring things that don’t lead to you achieving your business goals? When choosing Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), note that actionable and accurate KPIs:

  • Tell you if you are likely to achieve the goal
  • Track the critical activities that drive, or lead to the business goal

Example of marketing system KPI's include: Impressions, engagement rate, web visitors, referral numbers and qualified leads. 

Track Activities, Expenses & Outcomes to Continually Enhance the System

Successful business owners should know the ROI of everything they do.  While it is possible to produce a marketing ROI number using the equation below, understanding the IMPACT of marketing activities is far more telling of indicated success.

Measuring the impact by looking at the "System" level effectiveness and tracking activities:

  • Create a Marketing Dashboard using consistent data format and time periods (use quarterly, 6-Month or annual time periods)
  • Choose Key KPI’s for each Conversion Step
  • Look at trends over time instead of points of time
  • Look for correlations between activities and results

Continually Enhance the system by:

  • Reviewing dashboard together
  • Discussing what is driving the results
  • Identify what could be tried to enhance results
  • Try it, track it and learn from results
  • “Rinse & Repeat”

Deloitte 2021 Global Marketing Trends

Deloitte published a report about the Global Marketing Trends in 2021. In the report, they discuss how customers are rewarding companies that authentically- and holistically- meet their needs. This year's global marketing trends help executives break through the wall of uncertainty and strengthen the human connection we all crave. These trends can enable leaders to respond to customer needs as they unfold, pivot business models to better align to evolving needs, and foster human connection. Click the link to learn how you can leverage the seven trends: purpose, agility, human experience, trust, participation, fusion, and talent. 

Read The Full Report Here

Marketing Budgets for 2021

The CMO Survey collects and disseminates the opinions of top marketers in order to predict the future of markets, track marketing excellence, and improve the value of marketing in firms and in society. Founded in 2008, it is the longest running non-commercial survey for and about the field of marketing.

This Special Edition of The CMO Survey provides the marketing profession with an understanding of how marketing activities, spending jobs, and performance have been influenced by the upheavals of the past three months. Reflecting marketing’s special position at the boundary between business and the marketplace, this Special Edition Offers forward-looking insights regarding customer behavior, economic forecasts, and managing growth during these uncertain times. Drawing on the power of The CMO Survey’s longitudinal view of marketing, they develop leadership lessons applicable across periods of crisis and into the future.


Download The CMO Survey Summary Here