Controlling your marketing budget is tough. Overspending on marketing programs can cause real problems for the company. Not spending enough may lead to fewer opportunities and lost revenue from sales. You need to get it right so you stay late at the office analyzing reports, pouring through spreadsheets, sifting through emails, sorting documents to find the information you need. You take work home with you to get it done.
Typically, these are the biggest challenges you face in the control of the marketing budget:
Gathering data from disconnected systems - Some information comes from your accounting software, your CRM, and your ERP, even your inbox, and you may get it in PDF reports, or Excel Spread Sheets, even printed documents on your desk. Then you need to put it all back into a system to create your report.
Complex co-pay or spend accounts - In an effort to boost marketing activities you set up co-op investments sharing costs with partners and together enjoying increased business. However, managing these relationships often involves controlling complicated rules, analyzing sales figures and authorizing discounts or reimbursements.
Lack of real time spend information - Most information gets to you after the fact - costs have already been incurred, orders fulfilled and payments issued. Without real time data it is difficult to make strategic changes based on feedback.
Vendor and supplier information - Each vendor has their preferred communication method, and often collecting quotes, invoices and order information is a completely different procedure with each supplier. Emails, spreadsheets, PDF files and even paper documents all need to be compiled.
Expense approval processes - You can delegate cost approvals and risk losing control or keep all the approval on your desk and risk becoming a bottleneck to your team.
You want to make sure you are investing the right programs and focusing your efforts on the most effective strategies.
Do you identify with these issues? A print and marketing portal for your team can help.