Tracking Marketing Proposal Elements: Schedules & Systems

Instructor: Endya Perry

Endya has taught corporate training courses and led seminars in various business topics. She has a master’s degree in business administration.

Uncover the importance of the components within marketing proposals. Discover options for creating tracking systems. Learn this and more in this lesson about tracking marketing proposal elements.

The Need for Tracking Marketing Proposals

A marketing budget defines the amount of money allocated to accomplish an organization's marketing goals. As such, leaders must carefully consider all proposed initiatives to ensure that the marketing budget is committed to the most effective and promising proposals. For the submitter, this requires a system to track each proposal element to ensure the proposal is completed in a timely manner. For the reviewer, this requires a process and system for tracking and reviewing submitted proposals. Once the most optimal proposal is accepted, it is important to conduct or attend a post-award debriefing to ensure continuous improvement in the quality of proposals that will be submitted in the future.

Meet John. John would like to submit a proposal for a new marketing program that would accomplish the company's goal to increase revenue of its new product line. He considered purchasing a tracking software system to track the proposal elements. But due to budget constraints, he wasn't able to. He therefore decided to use Microsoft Excel. John reviewed the proposal requirements and created a checklist of each element.

Marketing Proposal Elements

The required elements of the marketing proposal are as follows:

Marketing Goal: The proposal must clearly articulate the goal it is aimed to achieve.

Segmentation: The proposal must specify the targeted audiences for the marketing tactics described within the proposed plan.

Focus by Segment: For each segment that is targeted, the proposal must contain a focused message.

Competitive Analysis: The proposal must convey the results of the analysis of competitive offerings.

Differentiated Value Proposition: The proposal must distinctly describe the value that will be established if the proposal is implemented. The way in which this value will set the organization a part from its competitors must also be stated.

Tactical Plan and Schedule: The specific actions and associated timeline must be detailed in the proposal.

Budget: The proposal must indicate the necessary funding to carry out the tactical plan within the defined timeline.

Tracking Through Microsoft Excel

John opened a Microsoft Excel file and listed each required element in the first column down the left side of the spreadsheet. John then reviewed the submission deadline and determined the necessary time it would take to accomplish each proposal element. He established corresponding deadlines for each element and listed the deadline in the next column. The next column in the spreadsheet was used to record the completion date of each proposal element. John added a formula to conditionally display the deadlines in colors to indicate if they are on time or late. If John had delegated certain elements of the proposal to others for completion, he would have needed to include a communication plan to ensure all key stakeholders were reminded of their required tasks and the associated deadlines. Due to John's consistent monitoring and tracking, he was able to complete the proposal prior to the deadline. John then took sufficient time to review the completed proposal prior to routing it to the appropriate people for approval. Once approved, John submitted the proposal.

John added a formula to conditionally display the deadlines in colors to indicate if they are on time or late.
Conditional Formatting

Tracking Proposal Submissions

When John's proposal was received by the selection committee, it was entered into a tracking system for the proposal reviews. The selection committee had a system to track and assess proposals based on the prescribed criteria. This system was created by determining which proposal statuses were important to those submitting proposals and to the committee. The tracking system makes note of the following three stages within the proposal selection process: Proposal Received, In Review, and Decision Reached. John was able to access the proposal tracking system to view the progress of the selection process.

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