Marketing Campaign Management: Everything You Need to Know
In a world of omnichannel marketing, it's hard to know where to start. You probably have tons of ideas for programs and initiatives – new social media platforms to try, new email campaigns and audiences to try, events, contests, webinars, podcasts…
Campaign management is a smart way to turn your endless list of ideas into focused, high-impact work. In this article, we'll walk you through everything you need to know about marketing campaign management, from terminology and best practices, to campaign management systems and processes, and much more.
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What is campaign management?
First, some basics: campaign management is the process of planning, executing, monitoring, and evaluating your marketing campaigns to ensure they perform at their best and are executed as efficiently as possible. This management spans the entire lifecycle of a marketing campaign and is critical to keeping efforts on (or below) budget.
And of course, as campaigns (and channels) have become more sophisticated, your management tools and techniques have also become more sophisticated. We've evolved from our instincts or see what happens mindset to robust data and analytics to optimize campaigns. (We'll go into more detail about these processes later.) This evolution has helped companies achieve the best possible return on investment and remain competitive in challenging markets.
Why is campaign management important?
Given the complexity of today's campaigns, it's difficult to run one successfully without strong campaign management processes. With solid campaign management, you and your team can:
Focus your messaging and marketing efforts:Rather than launching disjointed, one-off initiatives, you can focus your messages and efforts in a consistent, coordinated way.
Reduce stress for your team:Campaign management makes it easy for you to organize, communicate, and do your tasks as efficiently as possible. This gives your team more time to focus on what they do best: creative marketing.
With that in mind, if you need to improve the quality of your marketing in general, it may be time to invest in your campaign management processes and tools. Better campaigns let you:
Acquire new customers:Top-notch marketing campaigns can help attract new customers from existing audiences and enter new markets with force.
Increase the sales:Well-thought-out campaigns not only help you acquire new customers that bring in more sales. They also help you sell more to existing customers who just need a little nudge in the right direction. Plus, it shortens the sales lifecycle to help your sales team close deals on a regular basis.
Introduction of new products and functions:Smart management helps keep your launch on track and ensures your marketing efforts are on targetTo the rightpotential buyers and address their pain points, resulting in faster demand and sales.
Build or repair a brand image:With good control of your campaign, you can also align the message with the brand – or with the rebranding – to ensure consistency and build trust with your customers.
What does a campaign manager do?
To truly manage a marketing campaign in a way that works best for everyone and the campaign, a dedicated campaign manager is key. While this role may be defined differently from organization to organization, campaign managers are generally responsible for the entire campaign management process, including:
Collaborate with key stakeholders and marketing team to plan campaigns - including themes, timeline and goals
Organize and delegate tasks to the entire team - and hold them accountable for their tasks until the campaign is completed
Share campaign updates with relevant stakeholders during the campaign(Video) How To Use Google Ads 2023 | Google Ads Tutorial [FOR BEGINNERS]
Campaign tracking and evaluation using helpful templates and solutions to ensure campaign stays on scope, budget, time frame and brand
The campaign management process
Now that we know what campaign management is, why it's important, and who should take care of its many moving parts, let's dive into the actual steps of managing an effective marketing campaign.
Define the campaign objective and set goals
Launching a campaign without knowing your objectives is like shooting in the dark—it increases costs, wastes valuable time, and likely won't give you the results leadership is looking for. Before starting a campaign, your team needs a clear goal and game plan.
Once you've identified the business goals that drive your campaign, you can define key parameters such as: audience, message, channels, and expected results. Clear objectives allow you to monitor your campaign performance and facilitate proactive course correction.
To effectively plan marketing campaigns, the campaign manager must establish an overall goal with stakeholders and then set smaller, realistic, measurable goals, similar to a S.M.A.R.T. orOKR-Struktur.
Let's say you work for a media company and your C-suite wants to increase digital subscription sales. Sit down with leadership to find out what that goal looks like. Is your goal to increase gross subscriber volume (in which case you can offer a discounted subscription offer) or to increase revenue in a quarter? What range of increments would be acceptable? This level of detail is required before creating your campaign plan.
Decide which metrics to use
Once you have clear objectives, you need to decide which metrics to use to monitor campaign performance and keep the project on track. They should directly match the goals you set – and your stakeholders should align with the metrics. By aligning with the metrics, you might discover new things or correct assumptions about your underlying goals.
Let's say you're launching a campaign to increase awareness of a consumer brand. A good metric might be the average monthly web traffic coming from branded search terms like your business name. So, set a goal to increase traffic from those search terms month after month. But when you pitch this metric to your stakeholders, they might ask about an increase in conversions – meaning you need to drive clicks and eyes. Good thing you have clarity, right?
Define a target audience
In general, the better you understand your audience, the more successful your campaigns will be. In theory, there's endless data available to help you get to know your audience better - but in reality, turning that data into insights is easier said than done. Google Analytics, native social analytics tools like Facebook Insights and Youtube Analytics, customer surveys, customer feedback… these all provide the pieces of the puzzle.
Target people, which can range from simple descriptions to extremely detailed dossiers, are often used to create a fuller picture. In fact, 77% of the most successful B2B content marketers use personasto research your audience before marketing to them. Collecting information such as demographics, psychographics, pain points, needs, consumption patterns and behaviors, purchasing power and more gives you a good holistic view of the real people you want to connect with.
Establish resources and budget
Another important step in the marketing campaign process is to clearly identify the features that support your campaign. In an ideal world, every marketer would have infinite resources to carry out their projects. In reality, 78% of marketers say they have a small teamand must work within these constraints. Therefore, it's imperative to have a realistic understanding of how your existing resources – budget, your team's bandwidth, appropriate tools and software, and the like – reflect your campaign's purpose and objectives.
If you don't start with a set budget, work with your leadership to set one. Since you've already defined your goals, you have an advantage when allocating a budget: you know the impact you expect, making it easier to predict your ROI. Likewise, you need to understand your team's ability to contribute, which depends on your campaign's prioritization.
If you have any, lean on your project managers (or at leastProject Management Practices) to ensure you're following a realistic schedule and not overextending your resources, which can result in a shoddy campaign that negatively impacts your brand.
Brainstorm and plan campaign content
Once you've aligned goals, asked the tough questions, and secured the right resources, it's time to unleash your team's creativity. Many marketing teams start their campaign planning with a team-wide brainstorm - it's a smart way to get initial support and get contributors excited and come up with ideas that are ready to go.
This is not the time to limit yourself - explore as many potential channels and media as possible. Here is a non-exhaustive list to get you started:
Press: Generally best suited for events, conferences or other physical environments; It gives you a tangible canvas to make your message stand out.
podcasts: an excellent medium that can help establish your brand as a trusted industry leader; They are an efficient way for people to process information while multitasking.
E-books: usually closed, therefore they are an effective way to capture and nurture leads. Note: You need marketing automation software to capture content and manage leads at scale.
webinars: Great for delivering content in video form and can include an interactive aspect that allows viewers to ask questions and get answers in real time.
social media: allows you to publish a variety of contents (video, audio, text) and reach specific audiences.
blog posts:Versatile lead generation tools to attract and nurture leads, allowing people to consume information at their own pace.
Microsites: Smaller groups of web pages that reside outside of a company's home page and are useful for publishing closely related content that deals with similar topics or concepts of high interest.
competitions: A solid tool for getting your brand out there and exposing your product to new and potentially harder-to-reach audiences.
Marketing de email: Another versatile channel that can reach and sell new customers and maintain connections with existing customers.
Once you've generated more ideas than you can use, you need to sort them based on your goals and features above. This is a good time to revisit your key stakeholders – does your final list align with their vision?
create your content
Then comes content creation - easier said than done. That's because smart content creation isn't just about creating work that aligns with strategic goals and generates leads; also meansmanage processesEworkflowsso you don't fall behind or end up with subpar content.
Fortunately, you've prioritized work like determining features, knowing your audience, and carefully planning content types and placements. All that's left is a solid workflow.
Work with your team to clearly define things like expiration dates, review windows, and ownership. This is where you should use a campaign tracker - check out ourmarketing campaign template, ourproduct launch template, or ourContent calendar templateto start.
Track performance and analyze data
Once your campaign has launched, it's time to start crunching the numbers and measuring your ongoing progress. Use regular reports to track your key metrics and share them frequently with stakeholders. You should plan ahead for regular progress updates and a holistic post mortem review after the launch is complete.
The importance of campaign management tools
Scrap campaign managers can do a lot with little, but a robust marketing campaign management tool will streamline your work, keep your partners on the same page, simplify reporting, and rid you of the inevitable fire drills.
Here are some of the key features to look out for whenchoosing the best campaign management tool:
Easy to use:A campaign management tool should make your life easier, not more complicated. When dealing with multiple levels of contributors and reviewers, you'll find that the easier it is to set up, interact with your team, and use, the better.
Flexible and customizable views:Look for a tool that gives you the information you need, when you need it, in a way that best fits the way you work. For example, a good campaign management tool will allow you to switch between different types of views (such as calendar, kanban, grid views and more) and hide or show different information for different stakeholders.
Avoid data silos and redundancies:The tool of your choice should avoid data silos and redundancies by centralizing information. Rather than creating duplicate records that quickly lead to chaos, your entire team should be able to work from the same source of truth.
Provides reports:Manually looking up the data and calculating the numbers yourself hardly makes for a streamlined process. The software you use should help you gain insights easily. You should also be able to customize reports with relevant information for different purposes or audiences - all with just a few clicks.
Automates tasks:Robust campaign management tools should allow you to automate repetitive tasks, saving time and reducing the potential for human error. Look for features like the ability to create custom trigger and action sequences with little to no coding.
Find the right marketing campaign management tool
Of course, managing marketing campaigns is a complicated and time-consuming process, even when everything goes smoothly. But hiring the right people, following best practices, and using the right campaign management tool can make marketing campaigns viable and, dare we say, fun.
Airtable offers marketing campaign managers a lightweight, cloud-based platform that is powerfulEEasy to use. Stay on top of all your marketing processes and operations, from setting strategic goals and planning resources to tracking content assets and generating valuable reports. Visualize your workflow the way that works best for you with customizable views. to useautomationsfor integration with popular chat tools like Slack; Generate custom, shareable reports with robust dashboard capabilities; and more.
Learn how Airtable can helpTake your marketing campaign management to the next level orregister todayfor free!
8 best practices for campaign planning
Download the ebook