I hate marketing budgets, marketing plans and anything that limits my ability to move forward, and move quickly.

This doesn’t mean that I don’t have a budget or a plan, it only means that I want my plans to be fluid enough to allow me to change course and act quickly when necessary.

In October 2007, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average was hovering around 11,000 points and going up, and when most of us were planning our 2008 budgets, how many of us were forecasting the collapse of the worldwide financial markets, government bailouts, the collapse of Lehman Bros., law firm layoffs and dissolutions?

How many of us projected the rise of Twitter, and what might be the beginning of the collapse of print journalism, as we have known it?

Seth Godin had a great post today, Do ads work?, where he asks why have a budget for ads, if the ads work?

So, why, precisely, do you have an ad budget?

If your ads work, if you can measure them and they return more profit than they cost, why not keep buying them until they stop working?

And if they don’t work, why are you running them?

Can we not extrapolate this for most marketing activities? If it works, if we can measure the return on investment (ROI), or return on objective (ROO), should we not continue to do more?

How often do you hear the marketing person say, “that’s a neat idea, but we
don’t have the budget this year”?

Shouldn’t she say, “We have an unlimited budget for ads that work”…

In no way am I advocating the spending of money with wild abandon, but I am also not advocating the closing of the purse strings. I have a 2009 EMP (Evil Master Plan). It is driven by four key components:

  1. “Face Time” w/ clients, prospects & referral sources
  2. External communications driven by social media
  3. Internal communications
  4. Prepare to rebrand firm for 2010 anniversary

The details … well, that’s what they pay me to do.