You’ve managed your marketing and sales budgets carefully throughout the year. Still, you’ve ended up with a surplus. Unless you use it before the year ends, you’re going to lose it. What’s worse, you might also get the same amount cut from next year’s budget, and for many years to come.
Another issue: Spending the surplus in less-than-sensible ways might raise red flags in your organization, which could lead to even bigger issues.
Check out these eight smart ways to use your excess dollars. Double-check with your procurement and accounting partners to make sure you handle the expenditures correctly. Ask them how to submit invoices, get them approved and ensure they get paid on time so they’re charged against this year’s budget.
1. Audit your content.
Is your marketing and sales content working? Are you sure?
It’s likely that, outside of personnel, content is your biggest budget expenditure. You’ve probably created a LOT of it, including emails, blog articles, white papers, videos, social posts, presentations and more.
Year-end is an ideal time to clean house. A content audit will help you understand what pieces you have, what’s getting used and which materials resonate with consumers. It will allow you to identify gaps, what should be eliminated, pieces that need to be updated and materials that merit expanded distribution.
Hiring an external expert to conduct the audit will ensure it’s impartial and that it provides a fresh perspective on your content library.
Tip: Once you’ve completed a content audit, distribute your materials through a sales enablement system like the one offered by Mobile Locker. It’s a good way to continue to monitor the effectiveness of your content in real-time. It could eliminate the need for a full audit ever again.
2. Learn about your competitors.
If you’re like most professionals, you’re probably too busy to pay attention to what your competitors are up to. In today’s rapidly changing world of marketing and sales, it could leave your business vulnerable.
Invest some of your year-end dollars in a competitive review. It will help you plan for the future and better position your business for the year ahead.
3. Try out new types of content.
Consumer expectations are constantly changing. If you haven’t experimented with new content formats, you could be missing out on opportunities to connect with buyers.
Review your marketing and sales process and see if any of these types of content could be incorporated into it:
- Virtual demonstrations
- Interactive experiences.
Distribute your new materials using a content management system like Mobile Locker’s. It will help you quickly understand which pieces are working and which are not.
4. Invest in unique images and videos.
With all the content you’re distributing through blogs, emails, social posts, websites, ads and more, it’s likely that your still and moving images could be getting a little stale. Also, buyers may not just be seeing them on your materials, but those of your competitors, as well.
Use some of your year-end budget dollars to consult with a top-tier image service to come up with new and better ways to illustrate your content and burnish your brand. With all the photographers and videographers getting into business today, you could gain exclusive access to quality images and videos for less than you think.
5. Increase your promotional spend.
It’s likely that your consumers could be facing the same issue you are: Extra money that must be used before year-end. It could be worth spending some of your remaining budget to find them and encourage them to make last-minute purchases from you.
Investing in Google Ads or highly targeted digital advertising could help you identify people with money to spend and get them to contact your reps. It’s a good investment in improving your year-end results, which could earn you even more budget dollars to spend in the new year.
6. Invest in new technology.
One of the surest ways to make doing your job easier while improving results is by taking advantage of the latest tools and technology.
One example: A sales enablement system will make it easier for you to:
- Develop and manage materials
- Distribute content to sales reps
- Train them on how to use content
- Monitor usage
- Determine its effectiveness.
An investment in Mobile Locker’s cutting-edge sales enablement technology will drive value now, in the year ahead and beyond.
7. Conduct original research.
Think about the kind of information that the people in your target market would find valuable. What kind of insights will help them see the future of their industry or help them do their jobs better?
Commission an expert to develop some new research that can be leveraged in the new year across different marketing platforms, including podcasts, webinars, blog posts, white papers, video interviews and more.
An investment in some fresh ideas could go a long way toward helping your business stand out with your customer base.
8. Plan for next year’s trade shows.
Were your trade show marketing and sales efforts successful this year? Would you like to do better in 2020?
The time to start preparing is NOW. Mobile Locker’s trade show package will help you take your efforts to the ultimate level. You’ll be able to simply and easily develop interactive experiences that will make your business stand out with attendees and that could go viral outside events. It also makes capturing contact information simple and easy. Plus, it gives your sales reps the power to qualify leads on the spot.
A small investment in conference marketing and sales support could pay off big time in 2020 and beyond. Schedule your demo today.