You have stretched your marketing dollars as far as they can go, but there is no avoiding requesting an increase to your budget. In our previous posts, we’ve provided which KPIs to present, which visuals will best illustrate your message, and how to deliver your narrative to your CEO. Now, you must apply them all to effectively request additional funds in a way that will persuade the C-suite to grant you an increased budget.
Preparing for Your Marketing Budget Presentation
The first step is being confident in what you know.
Simply presenting the laundry list of marketing expenses will likely lead your audience to shut down or become defensive. To avoid this, you need to create buy-in from your CEO before diving into demands. Present something they are familiar with and relate it back to your work. Remind them you are all on the same team by showing the overall business goals and objectives alongside the marketing objectives that support those business goals and the current budget in relation to industry standards. This will create agency.
As the marketing director, you know how to relate to both clients and executives. Acknowledging shared goals will remind them you are working in the best interest of the company.
With four key areas, you can present an effective case for a marketing budget increase.
1. Aligning Marketing Objectives & Strategies
- Business Goal: Generate $2M in revenue in 2022 (Up 25% from 2021)
- Business Objective: Provide safe, quality products that are cost-efficient for our clients
- Marketing Objectives: Build product awareness both locally and nationally
- Current Budget .5% of revenue in 2021
- Industry benchmark budget 2.7% of total revenue (Hubspot)
Next, present your marketing strategies. This should include the top 3 or 4 current strategies in place that demonstrate how the marketing objectives specifically meet the goals of the business and where the majority of the current budget is spent. Additionally, introduce two new strategies or highlight desired enhancements to current strategies and include the required budget increase to execute these enhancements.
NOTE: The new strategies are your proposal items requiring the budget increase.
2. Report On Marketing KPI
- Heading: Marketing Objectives: Build product awareness both locally and nationally
- Current Strategies:
- Build product awareness by fostering relationships with technical universities and local industry professionals through opt-in and engagement
- Connect Marketing Qualified Leads (MQL) from website and email inquiries to the Sale Team
- Build website visibility through professional content from the company’s subject matter experts
- New Strategies/ Enhancements
- Increase MQLs by 25%
- Increase opt-in and engagement by 25%
- Current Strategies:
For each strategy, there should be a corresponding KPI, such as cost per acquisition, to demonstrate the results of your current strategies and projections for the new initiatives. Be sure to choose the right visual representation tool for the story you wish to tell.
In this example, since the company’s goals rose by 25%, the budget increase of 25% seems intuitive, but can be illustrated by multiplying the cost per acquisition by the number of new clients needed to reach the company’s goals.
3. Justify Your Marketing Budget Increase
Give a detailed proposal overview of how those requested dollars will be spent to meet the goals such as
- better website automation services
- additional staff
- or investing more in social media ad spots.
Provide supporting information to show you have done your research about your plan such as
- industry benchmarks
- proof the proposed new strategy works
- and the ROI.
Your CEO wants to know your dollars will move the mark in a positive way. Remember to draw your requests back to the marketing objectives and how they support the company’s goals.
4. Ask for the Increase in Your Marketing Budget
Your final slide is your call to action. Put together a side-by-side comparison of your proposals and break them down by information including what it is, the additional budget required, the impact it will make (best if monetary, but demonstrating improved KPIs are great, too).
List them as Option A and Option B, which you’ve fully explained throughout the presentation. Also include Option C: the option to move forward with both proposals. Do NOT offer an option of denying the increase. Since your objective is to better meet business goals, an option to stay the course or decline all proposals should not be presented as a visual or in the narrative. By demonstrating a combined success, you are giving a potentially frugal CEO the opportunity to choose one or the other to avoid the risk of going all in.
Your confidence in your CEO, the company, and your ability to move the mark on your current KPIs will win you the budget you deserve.