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Marketing Audit Mastery: Preparing for Success in 2024

Have you achieved what you set out to achieve this year? The marketing audit is a tool designed to help you understand what worked and what didn't to chart a path forward.

As we approach the end of another year, businesses in the dynamic world of supply chain management have a fantastic opportunity ahead. On the cusp of the fourth quarter, it’s imperative to take a moment to reflect on our journey so far, assess where we stand today, and set a clear course for the future. This is where the marketing audit comes into play – a strategic process that delves into our marketing efforts, highlighting our successes and areas for improvement. It equips us with valuable insights to shape a robust marketing strategy for the upcoming year.

 

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll be your trusted navigator through the intricacies of a high-level marketing audit, specifically tailored to your unique goals, strategies, and tactics. By the time you’ve completed this journey, you’ll be well-prepared to make informed decisions, allocate resources wisely, and approach 2024 with a marketing strategy that truly stands out.

Reviewing Objectives and Strategies: Taking a High-Level Pulse Check

The marketing journey you embarked upon in 2023 is far from over. Still, this juncture offers a prime opportunity to conduct a pulse check that can propel you into budget season and 2024 planning. In this section, we’ll guide you through a high-level review of your existing objectives and strategies, evaluating their alignment with your business and their progress so far.

Objectives Under the Microscope

At the beginning of the year, you set clear objectives aligned with your business’s planned trajectory. Now, as you take a moment to revisit those objectives, it’s essential to think about whether they continue to align with your current business landscape. Have there been any noteworthy changes in your industry, shifts in customer preferences, or alterations in market dynamics that warrant a reevaluation of your objectives?

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Objective Insight

In 2023, companies most often reported increasing brand recognition, lead generation, and conversions as key objectives. Check out more insights from our 2023 Supply Chain Marketing Report here.

Questions to ask in this section: 

  • Are your 2023 objectives still relevant?
  • Have any unforeseen challenges or opportunities demanded a shift to your objectives?
  • Are there objectives already achieved, that should they be carried over or replaced?


Hopefully, you also measured success towards your objectives. At Virago, we use a simple spreadsheet that aligns with our goals and shows us how we’re trending. You can make a copy by
clicking this link. At this time of year, it’s worth asking: Are these the right measurements? And then, evaluate each metric to understand what’s performing and what areas need improvement, to help ensure your 2024 objectives and strategies reflect what’s happened so far.

Reflecting on Strategies Implemented

Think of strategies as your trusty map leading you toward your goals. Now is the perfect moment to take a step back and consider whether the strategy you put into action has been steering you in the right direction. Some may have unfolded smoothly, while others might have encountered unexpected challenges. This evaluation is your chance to determine whether it’s best to stay on your current course, make a strategic pivot, or embark on an exciting new approach. For each objective, take a look at the strategies underneath. Convene your team to understand: 

 

  • Which strategies have worked well and moved us closer to our goals?
  • Are there strategies that faced problems or didn’t perform as expected, needing a second look?
  • Which strategies should continue, be refined, or be replaced for the next year?
  • Has the customer journey evolved? If so, what needs to be adjusted?
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Actionable Tip

Don’t forget to assess the consistency of your messaging across diverse marketing channels. Tweak where necessary to maintain a unified brand identity and communicate your values effectively.

Assessing Your Marketing Arsenal: People, Processes, and Tools

Conduct a Team Assessment

If you completed step one, fantastic job! That’s no easy feat. Many companies stop here, but it’s also important to ensure you have the people, processes, and tools you need to succeed. 

Conducting a thorough team assessment is not just about recognizing strengths and weaknesses; it’s about ensuring that your team is well-equipped to drive success in the coming year. Consider:

 

  • Is the team adequately resourced to execute the strategies? 
  • Were there any skill gaps that needed to be addressed this year? 
  • Based on where we’re going, do we have the skills on our team necessary to succeed?
  • Have team members received adequate training and development opportunities to enhance their skills and stay updated with industry trends?
  • Are team members effectively collaborating and communicating? 
  • Is the workload distributed evenly among team members, or are there individuals who are consistently overwhelmed?
  • Are there any significant changes in team composition that impact team dynamics and performance?


By addressing skill gaps, fostering collaboration, and providing the necessary resources, you’re setting your team up for success and reinforcing the foundation for achieving your marketing objectives. A high-performing team is critical to your journey towards a prosperous 2024.


It’s also crucial to consider budget allocations. Ensuring that your team is adequately resourced may require adjustments in your budget planning. Striking the right balance between talent investment and budgetary constraints will be pivotal in executing your strategies effectively in the year ahead.

Analyze Your Tech Stack

Take a closer look at your tech stack, including tools, software, and technology platforms. Consider the following questions:

  • Are your tools and software still relevant to your marketing needs? Are they helping you work more efficiently, or are they becoming outdated?
  • Do your marketing tools and platforms seamlessly integrate with your overall business systems? 
  • Are you effectively tracking the performance of your marketing technology? 
  • Do you have the tools you need to execute any new business objectives?


By addressing these questions, you’ll ensure that your tech stack remains a competitive advantage in your marketing efforts, helping you achieve your objectives efficiently and effectively. Be sure to make adjustments in your budget planning to support necessary improvements and optimizations.

Assess Your Team's Internal Processes and Workflow

Efficiency in your internal processes and workflows is the backbone of successful marketing operations. Take the time to assess how your team operates and how work flows through your organization:

 

  • Are your marketing workflows streamlined, or are there bottlenecks that slow down processes? Identify areas where efficiency can be improved.
  • Evaluate the communication channels within your team. Is information flowing smoothly, or are there breakdowns?
  • Are there project management tools or methodologies that you’re employing effectively to keep projects on track?
  • Are there any new processes and workflows that need to be documented?

 

By optimizing your internal processes and workflows, you’ll create a more efficient and effective marketing team. This, in turn, will contribute significantly to achieving your marketing objectives in the year ahead.

Review Your Actuals

By now, you know what marketing investments worked and what didn’t. In preparation for creating the new year’s budget, you’ll also want to review how you performed against your 2023 budget:

 

  • Did your marketing expenditures stay within the confines of your budget, or did you exceed the allocated funds? 
  • Were there unexpected costs or overspending in specific categories?

 

Based on your review, consider whether your budget needs basic adjustment for the upcoming year. 

Making Informed Decisions for 2024

Now that you have taken the steps to:

  • Analyze the gap between your current progress and your intended objectives
  • Identify the reasons behind strategies that met or exceeded expectations
  • Assess your team, tech stack, and budget performance


You should feel so proud of yourself. Now it’s time to put pen to paper to sketch out your 2024 Marketing Strategy and prepare a draft of your budget. And if you need help, our agency is standing by to help you collect these insights and chart the path forward.

Let's Talk.

With a well-structured marketing audit and the guidance of a seasoned agency, you can confidently steer your marketing ship toward 2024, leveraging insights to optimize, adapt, and achieve your objectives. We’re here to support your journey.

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