Your guide to building a marketing budget template

calculator, roll of money, and blank notepad

Looking to create a new marketing budget template for your business? Then you’ve come to the right place.

Although a marketing budget template can take some time and thought to build, it’s not as difficult as you may think it is. You simply need to know why, who, and for what purpose, do some math, and then build out from there.

Here are some tips on how to build a marketing budget template for your business.

What should you know before building your marketing budget?

Before you can determine where to allocate your marketing budget, it’s important to nail down a few items – your marketing goals, your target audience, and your competitors’ spend.

1. Know Your Goals

The first step in creating a marketing budget template is to know your goals. What are you trying to achieve with your marketing campaigns? Are you looking to increase brand awareness? Drive more traffic to your website? Generate more leads? Once you know your goals, you can start to allocate your budget accordingly.

Here’s what to keep in mind when choosing your goals:

  • Good at closing deals but having difficulty keeping the pipeline full? You’ll want to look at budgeting for direct lead generation strategies (think of platforms like Google Ads or LinkedIn Lead Gen ads).
  • Getting pushback because “no one has heard of you”? You may need to think about allocating more of your marketing budget towards brand awareness channels (such as social media, PR, etc). 
  • Getting lots of traffic but no leads? You need to invest in conversion rate optimization.
  • Getting marketing qualified leads but not turning those into sales qualified leads? Find new ways to improve nurture flow.
  • Not getting enough traffic to your website? Look into reallocating more of your marketing budget to things like organic SEO – which include backlinks, SEO blogging, and website optimization. 

Marketing budget template diagram2. Know Your Target audience

Another important factor to consider when creating your marketing budget template is your target audience. Who are you trying to reach with your marketing campaigns? Knowing your target audience will help you determine the best channels to allocate your budget to. For example, if you’re trying to reach millennial women for a consumer-based product, you’ll need to focus on digital channels like social media and Google Ads. If you’re trying to reach professionals for a software service, you’ll want to focus on direct outreach, trade shows, and LinkedIn.

Pro Tip: If you are trying out new tactics, consider reserving some of your budget for later. This way, you can double down on the strategies/tactics that prove to be the most fruitful.

3. Know Your Competitors’ Marketing Spend 

It’s also important to know how much your competitors are spending on marketing. This will give you a good benchmark to start from when crafting your own budget. Use tools like Crunchbase to get an idea of what others in your industry are spending on marketing efforts. Based on this information, you can start to formulate a budget that makes sense for your business. 

Pro Tip: Professional services firms may need to spend 7-8% of their revenue on marketing, while SaaS tech companies may need to spend 12-14%.

How to build a marketing budget template and strategy

Once you have your research and goals completed, it’s time to build your marketing budget. Here are a few simple steps to get you started.

1. Start with your overall business budget. 

The first step in creating a marketing budget is to understand your overall business budget. What are your revenue goals? How much can you realistically afford to spend on marketing? What is your desired cost per lead and cost per true conversion? This will give you a good starting point for putting together your marketing budget.

Keep Reading: Here’s how to create a social media marketing budget

2. Create separate columns for each marketing channel. 

Once you have an understanding of your overall business budget, you can start breaking down your marketing budget by channel. Create separate columns for each channel you plan on investing in, such as paid search, social media, email marketing, etc. 

Keep Reading: Learn how to build a B2B marketing funnel

3. Determine your objectives for each channel. 

Now that you have your channels laid out, it’s time to start thinking about what you want to achieve with each one. Do you want to increase brand awareness? Drive traffic to your website? Generate leads? Once you know what your objectives are, you can start determining how much you need to spend in each channel to reach those goals. 

4. Make sure to account for both fixed and variable costs. 

When putting together your marketing budget, it’s important to account for both fixed and variable costs. Fixed costs are things like salaries and rent, which stay the same month-to-month. Variable costs are things like advertising and content creation, which can fluctuate month-to-month depending on your needs. 

5. Track results and adjust accordingly. 

Finally, once you have your marketing budget template complete, it’s important to track your results and adjust accordingly. Did you overspend on one channel? Underspend in another? Use the data from your tracking to inform future decisions about where to allocate your marketing budget. 

Pro Tip: Review the marketing budget at least once per quarter, but remember not to make changes too quickly (especially for longer-term strategies like organic SEO).

A well-crafted marketing budget is essential for any business that wants to succeed online. By following the steps outlined in this blog post, you can create your own marketing budget template on a spreadsheet that will help ensure your success. Just remember to track your results and adjust accordingly!

Keep Learning: Your simple guide to B2B marketing analytics