Aligning Marketing With Sales and Yearly Goals

Aligning marketing with sales, revenue, and overarching goals is important for creative businesses.

We’ve been talking about goals a lot lately. It’s one of our favorite things! At the beginning of each year, we dream and think about which of our 1,001 ideas we want to make happen this year.

In creating your plan, you probably noticed that you created some marketing needs as well. You set your goals, which included revenue and sales, but now you have to figure out how to get people to buy, which is where marketing comes in. And you should be focused on aligning your marketing with your overarching goals. 

Marketing experts have 2 habits when it comes to aligning marketing activity to yearly sales, revenue goals.

Aligning-Marketing-With Sales-Yearly-Goals-creative-founders-habits-expert-marketers-have
Aligning-Marketing-With Sales-Yearly-Goals-creative-founders-habits-expert-marketers-have

#1 Marketing experts align marketing activities with the overarching organization revenue and strategic goals.

Marketing should be included and connected in your goals from the beginning. Whether you’re including a brand awareness campaign, advertising, or content marketing, your marketing is what will drive people to buy from you.

You’ll have specific metrics within your marketing to track in order to understand if your promotional activity is working. These metrics will support the internal feedback loops you’ve created to make sure you know if you’re on track to meet your goals.

I’ll get back to this in a minute, but to help us understand what marketing activities we should be doing, and what we should measure, we need to understand sales funnels first.

The general idea is to fill your funnel as much as possible with potential clients. As the funnel narrows, your group narrows and narrows until point of purchase.

Let’s say you know you want to sell 100 widgets. If your 100 widgets are at the bottom of the funnel, how many do you need to fill it with to reach your goal?

Let’s look at Sally the Widget Seller’s marketing activity. These are all the marketing activities she’s using to get people to buy from her and the number of people she can potentially reach:

  • Social Media/Instagram - 10,000 followers
  • Email List - 5,000 subscribers
  • Affiliates - 3 bloggers with 30k, 10k, and 15k pageviews
  • Events - a pop-up shop with 1,000 shoppers

I want to stop here and mention that this doesn’t mean that Sally is filling her funnel with 71,000 people. These people are brand aware - they aren’t necessarily in the funnel yet.

Aligning-Marketing-With Sales-Yearly-Goals-creative-founders-sales-funnels-revenue-projections
Aligning-Marketing-With Sales-Yearly-Goals-creative-founders-sales-funnels-revenue-projections

Let’s look at her numbers a bit closer to see what percent of this 71,000 might visit her shop site page with her widget for sale.

Instagram - 10,000 followers; 8% engagement = 800 potential customers

Something to keep in mind with social media is that it’s a pay-to-play environment. So not all 10k of her followers will see her posts. Using a statistic tool via Instagram Analytics or elsewhere, you can see how many people are seeing your post. Or, you could guess-timate that if you, on average, have 80 followers engaging on your posts, you have 8% engagement and about 800 people that could potentially visit your widget page. Let’s drop 800 in the funnel.

Email List - 5,000 subscribers; 30% open rate = 1500 potential customers

You probably already know that your email management tool gives you open rates and you should have a pretty good idea of what that percent is. Sally has a 30% email open rate and we can assume she has about 1500 potential customers who will visit her widget page. Let’s drop 1500 in the funnel.

Affiliates - 3 bloggers with 30k, 10k, and 15k pageviews

Affiliates are professionals who are paid to promote your product. Sally uses affiliate links and each time a blogger posts about her widget and someone clicks on it, they receive a commission. She knows her bloggers each have 30k, 10k, and 15k page views and their click through rate to her shop site is 1 or 2%. Blogger 1 and 3 have a 1% click through rate and blogger 2 has a 2% click through rate. So these bloggers send 650 people to her widget page. Let’s drop 650 in the funnel.

Events - a pop-up shop with 1,000 shoppers

Sally decides she wants to participate in a pop-up shop that has about 1,000 shoppers. Since there is such great face-to-face interaction, she thinks she’ll have a 20% purchase rate. She has a great track record for selling in person! Let’s drop 200 in the funnel.

So now Sally has 3,150 potential customers in the top of her funnel.

Now, this doesn’t mean that 3,150 people will purchase. Sally the Widget Seller needs a bit more information.

don't judge - this was the easiest way to illustrate this sales funnel example!
don't judge - this was the easiest way to illustrate this sales funnel example!

Sally has looked at her shop stats and knows that usually 3% of people who visit the widget page make a purchase, which is her “close rate”. Three percent of 3,150 is 94 widgets sold - soooo close to her goal.

Ok, so now that I sound like a math teacher (with is far from the truth), think about how this applies to yourself.

If you’re looking at your goals for the year, I would bet that one of them is an overall revenue goal. Knowing this, I assume you’ve planned out how many of each of your products or services you want to sell.

Marketing experts take it a step furtherto make sure they are aligning marketing with every action.

To grow increase your sales, your first instinct is to fill it with more potential customers at the top. And, yes, that is certainly a strategy. But with such a crowded marketplace it’s hard to been seen.

Focus on increasing engagement and nurturing your potential customers that are already in the funnel so your close rates increase.

Make sure your marketing activity is laser focused. If you’re shooting from the hit and sending people all over the place, the top of your funnel suffers.

I’m assuming you’re in business for lots of great reasons, but one of the is to make a living - plain and simple. Your marketing activity - all of it - should support your goals 100%.

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Aligning-Marketing-With Sales-Yearly-Goals-creative-founders-activity-instagram

#2 Marketing experts always send people directly to the point of purchase.

If each of your different marketing activities don’t support your overall strategies and goals, you should be doing them at all.

Every single activity - whether direct or indirectly selling - should send people to the point of purchase. Always. Because I assume part of your goals are to sell.

Social media, emails, affiliates, and other activity outside of where the purchase takes place should act as amplifiers! Now it’s time to reassess your marketing activity and make sure it’s funneling to the right place, nurture those potential customers, and create a system to track your metrics. With this information, you can juuuust about predict the future.