A lot goes into a successful marketing campaign…and a lot can go wrong. Over the years, I have developed a checklist for launching a successful campaign. Below are five of the top items on my list:
The WIFM check: Does your campaign have a clearly articulated “What is in it for me?” or WIFM that is focused on the audience you are targeting. In other words, if your campaign is not going to make them healthier, wealthier, or somehow wiser you should rethink it. Hence, Seth’s 5th Rule of Marketing: Value Your Customer’s Time
The Outsider Impression: Take your campaign and show it to a few people who has never seen it. Do they get it? Does it seem like something they would be interested in? If you have multiple versions of copy or layouts, even better. See which one they prefer. With digital advertising you can A/B test your ads, but if that is not an option you can go old school and see which one hits home better.
Socialize It: The team outside Marketing that implements your campaign can make it or break it. Get their buy in and listen to their concerns. Sometimes you won’t be able to remedy all of their concerns or make the changes they want, but you can talk it through and launch with a better mutual understanding.
Check Your Ego: “No battle plan survives first contact with the enemy.” I have always loved this quote, initially attributed to a Prussian military commander named Helmuth van Moltke in 1880. You may have a great campaign plan, but the world is a complicated and messy place and even the best plans can go awry. Be alert and be humble enough to make adjustments in your campaign if you see things going in the wrong direction. Honesty and adoptability are cornerstones of a good marketing person.
Success Measures and Post Campaign Assessment: Know what your success measure is prior to campaign launch. Some measures are easy to track such as leads and revenue. Others are more challenging like consumer sentiment, but know what it is you want out of the campaign and what you are going to spend to get it. All marketing campaigns are an investment – know what money you are putting in and what you expect out.
When the campaign is over, good or bad, sit down with the team and do a post-campaign assessment. What went well? What went poorly? What did we learn from this campaign that we should apply moving forward? Even the worst campaigns have learning lessons – don’t waste them.