Create a Marketing Calendar That Works

Getting a marketing calendar up and running is mission critical to all marketing teams. If you’re a digital campaign manager, for example, you need to know what other campaigns are out in market, what else is planned, and what else might be running concurrently with the campaigns you have planned.

Marketing operations team members need calendars to ensure that content, campaigns, and experiences are getting out to market fast enough. And if you’re a marketing leader or executive, marketing calendars are critical to help you report out and share what every marketing team is working on and if any plans need to be quickly adjusted to meet current market or customer conditions.

But despite this, most marketers still think of a marketing calendar like a Google Calendar: a single place where you set dates—and (probably) forget about them. For a marketing calendar to really work, marketing teams should consider a calendar that is unified, collaborative, and actionable.

A Single Marketing Calendar

Marketing calendars are typically fragmented. Many teams manage their own calendars separately. Other organizations have somewhat unified calendars, but they only show in-market activities, not what campaigns are planned or in-flight.

To get real value out of a marketing calendar though, the calendar needs to have everything in one place. That means a unified marketing calendar that brings together every team, every type of marketing activity (content, campaign, experiences), and all planned and in-market activities.

A single marketing calendar moves teams from siloed chaos to unified views. And using the calendar doesn’t have to be complicated—drill into the details you need to see by having powerful search filters so you can always see the right level of detail you need at the right moment.

Collaborative Marketing Calendars

Marketing calendars aren’t just a place to set it and forget it. Next-generation marketing calendars should promote collaboration and dialogue between groups. For example, if the commerce group has a big product launch on June 1st, but the marketing and creative elements aren’t planned to be done by July, the two groups clearly need to reassess and regroup.

A collaborative marketing calendar allows groups to do this, with real-time collaboration features, and a quick ability to share different calendar views amongst groups. This will allow teams to cut down on needless email back and forth and begin to have real-time collaboration within visual timelines and calendar views.

Actionable Marketing Calendars

The secret sauce to an effective marketing calendar isn’t just that it has a single view or that it is collaborative—to be effective, you must be able to do something from the calendar.

See dates that are off? Dates that don’t align? Tasks that are outstanding and going to lead to missed dates? Market changes that mean everything needs to shift up or back?

Don’t just take note of those issues, but actually have the ability to take action and correct them! A truly usable, modern marketing calendar should let you make project or campaign changes right within the calendar. From the calendar itself, marketers should be able to raise a red flag, change dates, or reassign tasks to resources that do have the time and bandwidth to get things done.

Go with a Marketing Calendar That Fuels Agility

It’s time to get a marketing calendar that helps take the boring, mundane work out of marketing’s everyday tasks. Powerful, capable marketing calendar allow marketers to take action and get campaigns back on track, view key milestones, and allow marketers the ability to collaborate across the organization.

Watch our Calendar demo video to learn more about marketing calendars, and how you can use them to accelerate your marketing organization: See Calendar in action.

About the Author

Anjali is a product marketing director at Aprimo, and looks after the strategy, go to market, positioning, and messaging for the Marketing Productivity, Plan and Spend, and Digital Asset Management products. Prior to joining Aprimo, she spent 8 years at Forrester Research where she covered the marketing technology, eCommerce, and digital agency spaces.

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Anjali Yakkundi
 

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