Picture this: You’re going about your day, ticking off tasks and getting through the to-do list like nobody’s business. A message drops in your inbox from the director: “Don’t suppose you could get the board up to speed on how the marketing strategy’s going?”
Before you break into a cold sweat, don’t fret. Though presenting your marketing strategy to the board might seem daunting at first, try looking at it from a different perspective.
Filling in the higher-ups on how things are going is an ace opportunity. You’ll be able to show off what you do, gain their confidence, and make it clear that your work and the company’s goals are syncing up.
So aside from taking a deep breath, what else can you do when your boss asks to see your marketing plans? Below, we’ll walk you through some key pointers that’ll help you smash that upcoming marketing pitch presentation to the big wigs with ease. Let’s go!
Why you need marketing buy-in from key stakeholders
Put simply, stakeholder buy-in stands any projects you’re working on in good stead. And more success = better business. When everyone within your company is on the same page, it creates several benefits, including:
- More learning opportunities
- Better risk management
- A greater understanding of everyone’s needs across teams and at all levels
- More informed decision making
- More open, transparent communication
- A shared vision between employees and stakeholders
- An increase in collaboration and engagement
How to present your marketing plan to the board
Clearly, presenting that marketing strategy you’ve worked so hard on is well worth doing. But how can you make sure it goes off without a hitch? During your prep time, keep the following tips in mind:
1. Create a board pack
There’s a reason why board members have asked for your insights. They want to get the lay of the land when it comes to the business’ marketing. That means summing up the key details, successes, and the not-quite successes in an easy-to-digest way. That’s where a board pack comes in.
A board pack report is one or more reports that are specifically tailored for board members. They detail progress, problems, and headline metrics in a clear and straightforward way, free from fluff. And we’ll show you how to create them here.
2. Show them the right metrics
Strong results are going to be music to the board’s ears. But you need to make sure you’re focusing on the right ones.
Big numbers might look great at first glance – and allow for plenty of horn tooting in front of the directors – but if these numbers and stats aren’t offering any real value, then you shouldn’t be highlighting them. These are vanity metrics and don’t offer much beyond their shiny surface.
Instead, you’ll want to draw attention to actionable digital marketing metrics. These are packed full of insightful goodness that you can use to make data-driven decisions to help the business in the long term. And ultimately, that’s what’s going to impress the board.
3. Spare them the details
Whatever results you choose, one of the most important parts of presenting to the board is keeping the message clear.
Less is more when it comes to key stakeholders. You don’t want to bombard your audience with complex, granular details and information. More often than not, it’s bound to go over their heads, especially if certain stakeholders aren’t well-versed in what you’re talking about.
There’s far more value in presenting them with low-detail, high-quality information. It’s clear, straightforward, and easy to digest, summarising the top-level results and allowing you to relate them back to the business’ wider goals and bottom line.
Something simple and brief is key here. Don’t be afraid to trim the fat and spare them the details.
4. Relate your results to the ROI
Following on from the above, the board won’t want to hear about the marketing activities you’ll use to carry out the strategy. Instead, they’ll be keeping an ear out for the reasons behind the overall strategy and the success it will bring. One way of doing this is by linking your marketing plan directly back to the ROI.
By doing this, you’ll be able to promote long-term effectiveness and ensure any proposed activity has a clear purpose – two heavyweight methods that are going to encourage better buy-in from the board.
5. Make the key takeaways clear
You always want to finish on a high. That’s why keeping the details to a minimum and emphasising the top-level facts comes in handy.
Instead of clouding the presentation with too much information, highlighting the strong points – and summarising them at the end – means your audience will come away understanding the essence of your marketing plan’s success.
Plus, it gives your presentation a positive, rally-the-troops-style ending that makes for a memorable outcome.
The impact of good presentation skills
Of course, it’s not just what you say but how you say it that matters too. Use the following strategies and approaches to score extra points with the board.
6. Avoid jargon
Closely linked to the point we’ve made about keeping details to a minimum, you’ll want to present your results in a way that everyone can understand. It can be tempting to stuff all sorts of terminology and jargon into your presentation. After all, you want to make the board think you’re a real boffin who knows what they’re talking.
But by leaning too heavily on technical terms, you run the risk of confusing and alienating the top brass. Be prepared to explain complicated processes and approaches in a concise, easily understandable way so that everyone stays on the same page.
7. Keep your body language in check
Non-verbal elements like eye contact, facial expressions, and the way you stand have a role to play too. If you’re quiet and reserved, it gives the impression that you’re detached from the information you’re trying to convey. And that makes it easy for key stakeholders to draw their own conclusions.
Try building a rapport by smiling, looking up from your notes and picking out friendly faces for you to maintain eye contact with over the course of your presentation.
8. Plan your slides
Chances are you’ll be using, at the least, presentation slides. If so, keep them short and to the point; you want your audience to listen to what you have to say. If you overload your slides with too much text, it’ll take the attention off you.
You may decide you want to use visuals to add extra punch to your presentation; things like videos, illustrations, and other imagery can emphasise certain points. Whatever you decide to use, make sure you’re comfortable with using them ahead of time. Doing a dry run by yourself or in front of a colleague on your team ensures you aren’t left fumbling around getting things to work when the presentation comes around.
We hope you find this guide useful. But if you are struggling with your digital marketing, the team at Banc can come up with a strategy that creates leads, boosts traffic, and generates revenue for your business. Head to our homepage or give us a call on 0345 459 0558 and let’s get talking!