Successful companies view the budgeting process as an integral part of their operations. Accounting for projected costs of items from promotional pens to planned advertising are critical to both expense planning and control. Generally, there are 3 different approaches to budgeting.
First, companies may budget their expenses as simply a percentage of sales revenues. In this situation, organizations may allocate a portion of their total revenues to various functions, for example 35% to marketing, 30% to cost of goods sold, and 35% to overhead.
Second, organizations may prefer to target a certain percentage increase or decrease over the prior year's spend based on various factors such as projected sales growth, changes in the industry, and planned expense changes in other areas such as research and development and overhead.
Finally, some firms budget their marketing expenses on an item by item basis. When using this process, it's important to ensure that your marketing budget is inclusive of all marketing related expenses such as marketing salaries, advertising expenses, promotional products, printing and mailing costs, online marketing and public relations expenses.
One area that is sometimes overlooked is expenses related to the importance of branding. Even though measuring your direct return on investment may be more difficult with branding type expenses, branding needs to be a key element of your marketing strategy. Studies have conclusively shown that stronger brands foster greater customer awareness, retention and loyalty.
There are many ways to promote your brand. One particularly effective low-cost method is through the distribution of advertising specialty items featuring your logo or tag line, such as promotional pens, logo mugs, and personalized mousepads. Popular examples of how companies leverage the power of this type of branding are logo golf pencils and promotional pens given out free to customers and clients.Tips to Putting Together an Effective Promotional Budget