Many non-marketing executives’ first glimpse of marketing plans, particularly promotional plans, is when the budget is being prepared for approval. CFOs and financial managers, in particular, often have limited involvement in the planning process. Yet, they are asked to evaluate whether the marketing department or executive team’s proposal is a good financial investment for the company. At the same time, when marketing efforts fail, the CFO and the financial management team is most likely to see and feel the fallout as the company scrambles to address missed revenue targets and unanticipated expenses.
Regardless of your level of involvement in developing plans for the marketing function, there are four tests you can run to help you determine whether the proposed marketing investments are solid investments for your company: the Alignment Test, the Assignment Test, the Risk Assessment Test and the Anticipated Returns Test.
This chapter reviews each of these tests and illustrates their use with very simplified case studies.
The Alignment Test provides a means of evaluating how well the plan is aligned with business and financial objectives. Plans that satisfactorily pass this test are more likely to succeed for two reasons. First, if the executive and marketing teams can both walk through the plan and explain the connection between the marketing tactics they have selected, the marketing strategies they are pursuing, the impact ...