If you've ever found yourself wanting to do more with your website and digital marketing strategy but held up by budget limitations, you’re not alone. Budgets serve a good and necessary purpose, but sometimes they leave us feeling trapped.
Rather than seeing a road-closed sign, we recommend looking at this scenario as a detour. Just like in real traffic situations, sometimes you turn around and wait for the road to reopen, but other times an alternate route gets you quickly back on track to your destination. Either way, our goal is to help you reach yours while also being both aware and good stewards of your budget.
Here are 7 questions to ask and discuss with your marketing partner if you’re experiencing a slowdown due to budget concerns:
1. Are there alternative ways to achieve the same or similar outcome and reach my goals?
If we focus on the goal rather than a prescribed solution, we can approach it from a different angle and still achieve positive results.
Example: A museum is not able to move forward with the custom landing page they envisioned for an upcoming event. Using existing page parts and a little TLC from a front-end developer, we can still create a great page that appeals to users and compels users to attend. The original vision is not forgotten, and they plan to include it in the budget for the following year. The result is major cost savings while still successfully promoting the event, and they have a plan for the “wow factor” ready for the next year.
2. What budget is feasible?
Maybe the time is not right for a multi-year content retainer, but if you can identify what does feel like a better fit, there are plenty of valuable applications for what you do have that will bring positive results. Our team can help identify those “low hanging fruit” opportunities.
Example: A non-profit wants to improve their rankings on Google, but is not able to invest in a full content retainer. They do have an intern who is a great writer, though, so they enlist our team to consult with them on topics to focus on and optimize content that is written in-house to still gain SEO value.
3. What result would make the investment worth it?
In some cases, we’re able to help identify that while the investment feels big on the front end, the results will quickly make it worthwhile and possibly even pay for the investment altogether.
Example: A small business would prefer their YTD revenue be a bit higher before committing to a retainer for SEO and lead generation. However, we see that four new contracts this year would completely pay for the work. The work will also improve the quality of leads, increasing the likelihood of leads converting. This is a great sign to move forward with continued investment.
4. What digital marketing efforts are my team taking on internally that could use a boost?
Our team loves to educate and share expertise. If you’re not in a place to completely outsource a task, a little time spent to gain some input from our team of experts could expand your vision and increase your results on the work you’re already doing. We’d love the opportunity to consult with you.
Example: A church staff has the capacity to manage social media campaigns, but isn’t seeing the results they expected. Moving forward, we meet quarterly, review data with them, and act as a compass for their team’s efforts. The result is that they are fully equipped to execute their plan with the guidance of experts along the way.
5. When will the changes be feasible for your budget?
Understanding the big picture is helpful to determine if it’s worth simply waiting for a fiscal year to roll over or if we should explore alternative solutions. Another consideration is that the longer you wait, the more items will likely accumulate on your wishlist which will increase the total cost.
Example: A membership association is looking to overhaul the look and feel of their conference content on their website. Since their budget doesn’t roll over for five more months, we put the look and feel updates on hold, but share recommendations to start updating content now so that it will be ready when the new look and feel is updated. The result is that when the development of the new design is ready, there is no delay in launching the site because the content is ready to go.
6. What’s feasible in the meantime?
Take a look at your whole digital landscape. While your big project is on deck for when funds become available, it might be worth identifying some other key areas where smaller contributions can move the needle in the meantime.
Example: A small business has $25,000 set aside in their next budget cycle for their redesign, but the new fiscal year is still 7 months away. They do have $3,000 remaining in the current fiscal year. We see that the cost-per-click on relevant keywords is relatively low and see that a PPC campaign would be a great way to improve lead generation and boost revenue starting now. The result: the development team is pleasantly surprised at the ROI for their campaign and is able to start their redesign ahead of schedule.
7. Are there incremental investments we can make over time to achieve the results we’re looking for?
In many cases, this approach breaks down a large scope of work into smaller milestones that allow you to spread out your spending and reap benefits as you go. This approach is best applied as an ongoing investment as technology and design trends are always evolving. Incremental investments year-to-year position you well to make strategic updates that will appeal to your users and continually drive value.
Example: A zoo has completed major renovations on 3 of its animal habitats. The end goal is to overhaul animal landing pages to reflect the look and feel of the onsite habitats. It’s not feasible to do all 3 immediately, so we start with the one, selecting the giraffe page because we know that there’s an opportunity for additional revenue generation in the giraffe exhibit. The result: Within a month of completing the new giraffe page, the zoo sees a noticeable increase in ticket sales for the feeding experience, making it possible to move forward with the next section on the website.
Through these examples, we see that there are plenty of opportunities to impact your digital performance and growth at all levels.
Do you have a wishlist building or find yourself settling for less than you know you need due to budget limitations? We’d love to talk to you. It never hurts to simply ask the question. You may be surprised by some of our creative and effective recommendations.
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