Exceptional marketers and a competent marketing calendar are the bread and butter of any successful marketing strategy.
A visible global marketing calendar is essential for every marketing team. It gives you the visibility of your teams, while ensuring there is alignment and accountability within individual departments.
And, when it comes to complex campaigns delivered across multiple channels and hundreds of geographical locations, business divisions or even territories, the need for visibility is even more acute.
An effective marketing calendar goes far beyond a place to plot key dates, seasonal periods and upcoming campaigns. It is the central starting point and single source of truth for any of your organisation’s go-to market / marketing activities.
Not only does it ensure efficiency, but being able to schedule and plan well-timed promotions and campaigns can guarantee maximum sales during peak periods. Complete visibility of every planned and upcoming campaign ensures your organisation can optimise all of its available marketing spaces and potential. It can help you get a better return on investment from stores and prevent over saturation of promotional materials.
Your marketing team’s calendar can also provide a valuable source of data for campaigns. From launch dates and campaign durations to themes, it can all be utilised when tracking marketing performance. If accurate, it can provide a detailed record of all previous work or initiatives.
But, there is even more a marketing calendar is capable of…
A brilliant marketing calendar should be just one element in a unified campaign delivery process. It should allow your marketing team to plan individual campaigns while constantly being reminded of the larger strategy at play. It should allow you to see bigger picture, while also being able understand regional variances and timings.
Most retailers and other multi-location businesses plan their marketing campaigns across a combination of online calendars, spreadsheets and shared documents. Sound familiar? Some organisations use specific marketing calendar software, but even then, the tools to actually create the in-store campaigns are often entirely separate.
With spreadsheets, it’s hard to see which campaigns are running and where. And when planning numerous campaigns, they’re usually extremely complex and mistakes are easy to make, and almost impossible to spot.
Meanwhile, online calendars can hold key dates, but they are not integrated into your current martech. Most marketing calendar software is focussed on digital and online campaigns, so planning for in-store (or other physical locations) is often neglected.
When calendar tools that are separate to campaign planning are used, there is a real disconnect as the data is static and what’s displayed is frequently not the reality of what is happening. Plus…
Colateral’s campaign marketing calendar is fully integrated with planning, production and even distribution of campaigns. It gives a complete, visual overview of all your live, upcoming and previous campaigns. Your marketing team can easily plot new campaigns against what’s currently planned or live in stores. And, it provides complete visibility of all marketing activities in a central online space.
From the starting point of setting the start date and duration of a campaign, your marketing team can jump straight into that campaign and begin to build it out. From briefing creatives and selecting materials, to segmenting the stores (or digital locations) the campaign will be running in, the calendar links seamlessly to the complexities of creating every campaign.
Your teams can set key dates and deadlines, for example when the artwork is due, or when materials need to be distributed, so everyone is always completely aligned. Meanwhile, calendar notifications can guarantee each step in the planning process is always on track by alerting the relevant teams to specific tasks.
It gives you complete visibility from start to finish. When you’re running multiple campaigns, possibly globally, you can use filters to focus in on the campaigns you want to see. Ideal if you want to view activity by country, store type or campaign status.
You can also look back on previous campaigns and drill down with the same level of detail to see exactly what happened before, and where. This is perfect for when you’re assessing campaign performance. And, nothing gets lost or forgotten if your marketing department has staffing changes.
Meanwhile, a ‘quick view’ of the campaign can include key information such as its current status, impending deadlines or the included regions or brands. Great for understanding key information at a glance.
And it’s not just for Head Office, a succinct version of the marketing calendar can also be viewed at a store or regional level. This allows remote teams to only see the campaigns in the stores they are responsible for. Instantly saving them time understanding instructions and enabling them to plan more effectively.
Want to learn more? Get in touch to book a demo with one of our retail marketing experts.