As a demand generation or sales leader, turning business and growth strategy into tactical assignments for your team is a central component of your role. You’re used to building stakeholder alignment, setting clear project management parameters and pulling together all the platforms and playbooks at your disposal.
In the case of longer-term demand generation programs and strategic partnerships, starting with a 30/60/90 day plan helps to align your efforts with overall company objectives — on a concrete timeline — so that you can ensure the work is contributing to the business’s bottom line. However, it is important for the plan to balance both short and long-term goals along with technical, creative, and sales functions to align resources and drive revenue performance. The following guide provides an overview of best practices for striking this critical balance and aligning your marketing, sales, and other revenue-generating teams.
What is a 30/60/90-Day Plan?
A 30/60/90-day plan is typically driven by marketing, and outlines the objective your overall marketing and sales teams are working toward over a three-month period; it also defines the tactics and strategies that need to be accomplished during that time frame in order to achieve your goals.
“[A 30/60/90-day plan] is the prescriptive roadmap for how your marketing team is going to support your organization’s revenue goals,” says Principal Inbound Strategist Alyssa Lowry.
A strategic 30/60/90-day plan will include:
- The organizational goal you’re working toward
- Analysis of your current trajectory toward the goal
- Key marketing objectives
- Strategic plans that will help you achieve those objectives
- Individual tasks and tactics that make up those strategies
- Accountability across internal and partner stakeholders
- Key and leading performance indicators
How to Build a 30/60/90-Day Marketing Plan1. Define the goal you’re working toward
The first step of building a successful 30/60/90-day marketing plan is defining the goal you’re working toward. It may include leaving some aspirations on the cutting-room floor.
“Depending on your size and sophistication, you’re not going to be able to encapsulate all the activities that you might need in just a 30/60/90-day plan,” Alyssa says. “When your plan doesn’t have that primary focus, it tends to not be as executable because you’re trying to do everything and anything.”
To set your goal, start by gaining an understanding of what your responsibilities are in relation to your organization’s growth. An important distinction at this point is whether your fundamental objective is one of maintenance vs. introduction.
Particularly for corporate and enterprise-scale businesses, you'll want your plan to distinguish the ongoing demand generation activities that you need to maintain (what you'd consider the "table stakes" to keep your inbound engine running) from newly introduced strategic plays (such as a product/offering launch, expansion into a new vertical or a pivot from acquisition to existing business revenue).
For smaller businesses — particularly startups — the challenge is creating the beginning foundations of a demand generation program and all of its platforms and growth playbooks. This juncture can be particularly difficult for businesses of this size, as it demands a great degree of internal alignment on priorities and realism around what you can accomplish with a leaner team and limited resources.
Other goal-setting considerations connect to KPI ownership: Are you responsible for driving a percentage of your company’s overall revenue? Are your efforts only targeted at a specific geographical region or product line?
After defining that goal, analyze your current progression toward that goal and identify what’s stopping you from reaching it. We recommend conducting a funnel gap analysis to decide what areas of the net-new buyer’s journey you need to focus your efforts around.
“A funnel gap analysis helps identify where the immediate needs are. If you’re getting a lot of website sessions but you’re not seeing those visitors convert into leads, that indicates that you should focus efforts on the top of the funnel — it dictates where you should put your focus,” Alyssa says. “Whereas, if you see you’re converting large numbers of visitors into leads and they’re becoming MQLs, you may be frustrated when you see a drop-off in your MQL-to-SQL conversion rate. That indicates you need a greater focus on generating quality leads and understanding your personas rather than on traffic generation.”
Outside of funnel gap analysis, the goals in your 30/60/90 day plan should also account for sales and company revenue targets over the same period. Key inputs include:
- Feedback from your sales team, particularly on where they feel they're losing prospects
- FAQs that arise during the sales process that could be addressed at scale with content
- Input from your customer success team on the types of customers your business is most likely to retain, renew or upsell, and how that informs your go-to-market strategy
After identifying what areas of your business need the greatest level of demand generation attention over these 90 days, identify which strategies you want to employ that map up to your goals.
For example, if the top of the funnel is your primary focus for new customer acquisition, your strategies could include content creation, paid advertising, SEO, affiliate marketing, social media and PR. If converting leads from MQLs to SQLs at the bottom of the funnel is your focus, strategies like sales enablement and email nurturing would be more applicable.
For a full-lifecycle example that’s outside of your new business pipeline, perhaps a determined strategy is to expand product usage, adoption and account penetration among existing customers. Your tactics here might include heightened engagement with your customer success team and better talk tracks designed to hit these customer-centric KPIs.
In addition to identifying what strategies you’ll be focusing on to progress you toward your goal, you should also identify what evergreen strategies you’ll be continuing to employ. At New Breed, we often find that businesses could do more to layer two important focus areas into their 30/60/90 day plans: automation and reporting.
When it comes to automation, how can you tech-enable your team so they can do their jobs more efficiently, or scale an engagement touchpoint with your prospects or customers? For reporting, is there data you’re missing that would help you create more impactful digital experiences to attract, convert and delight your community of customers and prospects?
Both of these strategic areas should almost always be a component of your 30/60/90-day plan.
3. Balance technical, strategic, and production resources to form your tactical plan
Once you’ve chosen what strategies you’ll employ, you need to determine the specific tactics you’ll use to implement those strategies — this includes the work that will be done in each month of your plan.
Effective revenue performance depends on high quality creative, efficient production, error-free implementation, sales enablement and clear-cut reporting, so it is wise to account for all of these in considering your tactics.
For example, if SEO is central to your strategy, what specific keywords are you going to target? To rank for those keywords, will you start with optimizing existing content, or create new content? If RevOps optimizations are important to complete in the early phases of your plan, do you have the right internal resources or strategic partners in place, and do they have a detailed brief on the work to be done?
“To make sure your plan is executable, define upfront what your tactics, timeline and teamwork, including cross-collaboration team points, will look like. It makes it easier to follow through on that plan,” Alyssa says.
The origins of tactical excellence throughout your plan are consistency and transparency. Comprehensive demand generation programs contain multiple strategic components, all with a long list of tasks and scopes. This will take serious coordination, project management talent and internal alignment between accountable parties. Look to build a 30/60/90-day plan in which project coordination and administration don’t draw resources away from the campaign activities where you’re seeking ROI.
Within your 30/60/90-day plan, it’s likely you’ll be running multiple strategies simultaneously. If your plan is built out correctly, it will serve as a strategic ‘tentpole’ for months worth of high-impact activities, and enable you to easily manage all of the moving parts so that your organization can stay on track to achieve its goals.
The 30/60/90-day planning structure works exceptionally well for companies running on a quarterly basis, especially since business objectives are typically reviewed at the company-wide level each quarter. So, as you wrap up one 30/60/90-day plan, it’s important to move right into a new three-month plan in order to consistently maintain alignment between your marketing strategy and your organizational needs.
“Remember — you may not see the results of 30/60/90-day plans until you hit that 60- to 90-day mark,” Alyssa says. “You need to understand that there’s that ramp up as you’re building out projections, et cetera. Often, month one focuses on creating the goals, strategy, and assets that will support the campaigns you’re launching. Month two is focused on asset production to be able to launch the project. Month three is when you can see that run time and start to see those results. In all cases, the more marketing and sales leaders can align on monthly targets and expectations, the more effective the plan will be in guiding the organization.”
Al is the Director of Marketing for New Breed. He has spent the last 15+ years as a B2B and SaaS marketer, and he is passionate about helping companies leverage the digital space to reach and engage their audiences effectively and efficiently.
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