Marketing campaign management: 7 steps for success

Caeleigh MacNeil contributor headshotCaeleigh MacNeil
January 29th, 2024
8 min read
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Marketing campaign management: 7 steps for success
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Summary

Marketing campaign management is the process of coordinating all the moving pieces of a campaign, from planning to launch. Learn why effective campaign management is essential, and how to streamline your process into seven key steps.

Marketing campaigns can be big, unwieldy projects. With many stakeholders, teams, and deliverables to coordinate, launching a successful campaign can feel like a herculean task. 

But it doesn’t have to be so hard. With effective campaign management, you can launch your most successful initiative yet—minus the stress. All you need to do is follow these seven steps. 

What is marketing campaign management? 

Marketing campaign management is the process of coordinating all the moving pieces of a campaign, from planning to launch. Marketing initiatives involve many stakeholders and deliverables, so careful planning is essential to keep campaigns on track and on message—especially if the market environment changes and teams need to pivot quickly.  

Marketing campaign management involves seven key steps to make your initiative a success, including: 

  1. Setting goals

  2. Identifying your target audience

  3. Defining your budget

  4. Planning your timeline

  5. Selecting marketing channels to focus on

  6. Creating and launching content

  7. Measuring success

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What is a marketing campaign? 

A marketing campaign is a concerted push to get potential buyers (or existing customers) to think about a specific problem—and how it can be solved using your product or service. Campaigns usually involve multiple touchpoints with your audience, via a single channel (like a social media campaign) or multiple channels. Online ads, print advertisements, billboards, web content, email, social media, and more can all be part of a single marketing campaign.  

Most importantly, a campaign should have a clear goal, and every deliverable in your campaign should drive you closer to that goal. For example, a marketing campaign could aim to: 

  • Boost lead generation for sales

  • Increase purchases or signups

  • Improve buyer retention

  • Encourage existing customers to spend more

  • Drive awareness

  • Expand your product to a new audience

Why is marketing campaign management important? 

Marketing campaigns are complex. They often have many deliverables, tight budgets, and multiple teams working in tandem to get work done on time. With so many moving parts, someone needs to oversee the campaign at a high level and make sure the right tasks are getting done at the right time. This level of project management lets specialized stakeholders and teams focus on what they do best—like creating content and visual assets—rather than getting mired down with day-to-day planning. 

The benefits of marketing campaign management

Good campaign management can mean the difference between a failed initiative and a successful one. With it, you can: 

Keep teams accountable

It’s hard for teams like editorial, design, and PMM to work together if there’s no clear plan of action. Effective campaign management gives everyone a clear roadmap, so they know what they’re responsible for, when it’s due, and how their work will impact the success of the campaign.

By assigning concrete tasks, sharing a timeline, and scheduling a regular meeting cadence, campaign managers help cross-functional teams stay on track. 

Adjust to changing marketing conditions

Change is a given in marketing. Current events shift what your audience cares about, economic headwinds develop, and competitors make unexpected moves. That’s why adaptability is key, especially when launching marketing campaigns. 

A campaign manager can monitor marketing conditions, communicate with leadership, and pass information along to the campaign team. If it’s necessary to pivot, they can rearrange timelines and deliverables as needed. 

Ensure consistent messaging

Marketing campaigns don’t stand on their own. They’re a part of your company’s overarching brand identity and voice, and it’s critical to stay consistent so customers can clearly identify your brand’s personality. 

In addition to assigning and scheduling deliverables, campaign managers also share brand guidelines and coordinate reviews to make sure every asset is consistent with your company’s messaging. 

Hit marketing goals

For campaigns to work, they need to be tied back to a larger marketing strategy or goal. This ensures your campaign (and its budget) is contributing to the overall business strategy, so no resources are wasted. 

During the planning stages of an initiative, campaign managers set goals that ladder up into those larger objectives—like driving revenue or improving customer retention. 

The campaign management process, in 7 steps

Marketing campaign management can seem complex, but it doesn’t have to be. We’ve broken the process down into seven steps, so it’s clear how to get started. 

1. Set goals

Setting campaign goals (and linking them back to broader marketing goals) is an essential first step. This makes sure all your campaign activities contribute to the business as a whole. 

But campaign managers can’t set goals in a vacuum. They need to factor in past performance data, input from stakeholders, and current business priorities to create realistic targets that will drive real impact. This process requires some coordination, but it can be streamlined into these five steps: 

  1. Start with marketing priorities. Consider what the marketing team needs to accomplish this year, and how your campaign can contribute to that objective.

  2. Create a rough objective. Don’t include numbers yet. Come up with an initial idea, like “boost brand awareness via social media,” “create content for existing customers to improve retention,” or “promote our new product launch.” 

  3. Use data to create realistic targets. Look at your competitors, past campaigns, and performance data to determine what a realistic key performance indicator (KPI) is for your campaign. For example, “improve customer retention by 10%.” 

  4. Get approval from leadership. Ask a senior leader to review your campaign goal and provide feedback. The larger your campaign (and the more budget it requires), the more senior the reviewer should be. 

  5. Communicate the goal to your campaign team. Share your goal and make sure it’s front-and-center throughout the campaign, so teams know exactly what they’re aiming for. 

Read: your company's goal-setting approach needs to change. Here's why

2. Identify your target audience

In order to run a successful campaign, you need to clearly understand your target audience. This helps you create content and messaging that appeals to the right people and therefore has the most impact. Depending on the goal of your campaign, here are some questions to consider when pinpointing your audience: 

  • Who is experiencing the problem that your product solves? 

  • What are the specific frustrations your product can alleviate for them? 

  • How much is your audience willing to pay for a solution? 

If your marketing team already has audience research, like an ideal customer profile (ICP) or buyer personas, that’s a great place to start. 

3. Define your budget

Once you set goals for your campaign, the next step is to create a budget and secure approval for the funds and resources you’ll need. The more detailed your budget, the more likely you are to get the go-ahead, so it pays to be meticulous here. 

Start by listing all the deliverables for your campaign, like creative assets, social media posts, content pieces, and more. Then estimate the resources required for each deliverable, whether that’s dedicated team members, contractors, funds for media placements, or something else. Every deliverable—and its required resources—should be a line item in your budget. 

Once you’ve created a detailed budget plan, send it to key stakeholders and ask for sign-off. 

Read: How to create (and stick with) a project budget 

4. Plan your timeline

Once you’ve defined your budget and outlined deliverables, it’s time to map out the timeline of your marketing campaign. This is an essential part of marketing campaign management because it allows you to assign tasks and set due dates—ensuring work gets completed on time, and in the right order. 

To create your timeline, start with your list of deliverables and estimate how long each task will take. Then map out dependencies—any tasks that can’t be started until another one is completed. Finally, schedule out each deliverable and meet with stakeholders to confirm they have bandwidth, and that each due date is reasonable. 

Pro tip

Using campaign management software simplifies planning by allowing you to visualize your project timeline, spot dependencies, and adjust due dates. Most tools also include marketing automation features that allow you to instantly assign, update, and hand off work to the right people at the right time. 

5. Select marketing channels

Marketing channels are the different types of content you use to create demand for your product and move potential customers down the marketing funnel. For example, social media, paid search ads, blogs, SEO content, and emails are different marketing channels. Identifying these channels shapes the type of content you create for your marketing campaign, so it’s an important part of campaign planning. 

The marketing channels you choose depend on two things: your target audience, and where your potential buyers are along their customer journey. Here’s how to pick the right ones: 

  • Align marketing channels to your ideal audience. Make sure your marketing channels align with the way your target audience consumes content. For example, if your ideal customer uses TikTok but not LinkedIn or Facebook, you may want to focus on TikTok ads. 

  • Use different channels for different phases of the buyer’s journey. Depending on where customers are along the buyer’s journey, different types of marketing content can help move them to the next phase. For example, search engine optimization (SEO) content can direct top-of-funnel customers to your website who haven’t heard of your product before. Case studies and webinars may be most applicable for customers as they consider your product. And at the end of the customer lifecycle, strategies like free trial options can help convince potential customers to commit. 

6. Create content

Now that you’ve finished planning, it’s time to get down to business and actually create content for your marketing campaign. This is one of the most important steps of campaign management because it’s when your initiative comes to life through written and visual assets.

Content creation looks different depending on the medium. But at its most basic, you can divide the process into four steps: a first draft, an initial review, a second draft, and a final review. You may include more or fewer reviews depending on the importance of the asset. Before kicking off content creation, it’s also important to define who needs to review each asset, at each stage. For example, your marketing director may only need to review the final version of a new billboard, not any initial drafts.  

7. Measure success

After your campaign has launched, there’s one important step left: Track your progress to determine how well your campaign performed relative to your goals. Measurement is essential to demonstrate impact and gather lessons learned for future initiatives.  

The way you measure depends on the goals of your marketing campaign. For example, you may need specialized reporting or CRM software to measure leads, customer retention rates, and customer spend. For something like general awareness, you may need large-scale surveys of your target audience.

3 ways to launch marketing campaigns faster with Asana

Join Gympass and Asana to learn how to align stakeholders, monitor performance in real time, automate manual processes, and more.

3 ways to launch marketing campaigns faster with Asana

Marketing campaign management template

If you don’t want to start your workflow from scratch, a campaign management template can help kickstart your next initiative. Look for one you can use with a work management tool, so you have a central hub to manage deadlines, creative assets, stakeholder feedback, and other marketing activities. An effective marketing campaign management tool has functionality to increase team and cross-team visibility, so everyone understands what they’re responsible for and how it contributes to campaign success. 

Free campaign management template

Types of marketing campaigns

The basics of marketing campaign management are the same regardless of the type of campaign you’re running. However, different campaign types require different types of content, measurement, and approaches. Here’s how to tackle the most common variations: 

Content marketing

True to its name, content marketing involves creating and publishing content—like ebooks or articles—to encourage potential customers to interact with your brand. Content marketing usually targets buyers who aren’t aware of your product yet, or are aware and are considering your product against other options. The goal is usually to get new customers to visit your website or share some information, like an email address, so you can continue marketing to them in different ways. 

Types of content: 

  • Ebooks

  • Webinars

  • Articles

  • Print or online magazines

  • Podcasts

  • Videos

  • Whitepapers

  • Case studies

Common metrics to measure campaign performance:

  • Page views

  • Clicks

  • Conversion rates

  • New leads (via email signups)

Search engine marketing

Search engine marketing is a type of digital marketing. It focuses on search engines like Google, with the goal of surfacing content or advertisements to people searching on those platforms. This type of marketing can include paid advertisements (like pay-per-click ads), or organic SEO strategies, like creating optimized content to rank highly in Google search results. 

Types of content:

  • SEO articles and landing pages

  • Paid ads

Common metrics to measure campaign performance:

  • Google rankings

  • Page views

  • Clicks on ads

  • Conversion rates

  • New leads (via email signups)

Social media marketing

A social media marketing campaign involves posting on social media platforms that your target audience frequently uses. For example, if your marketing strategy is targeted toward business professionals, LinkedIn would be an effective platform. Social media marketing can include paid ads or “boosted” posts, organic non-paid posts, or user-generated content. 

Types of content: 

  • Social media posts on any platform (Instagram, LinkedIn, etc.) 

  • Paid ads

  • Videos

  • Gifs

  • Infographics

  • Photographs

Common metrics to measure campaign performance:

  • Engagement

  • Reach

  • Link clicks

Read: Your 6 step guide to creating and managing a social media calendar

Email marketing

Email marketing involves sending potential customers marketing messaging through email. It's used in both B2B and B2C marketing strategies and is one of the most effective ways to ensure you're hitting your target market. One of the major benefits of email marketing campaigns is that it's easy to implement some sort of audience segmentation in your marketing messaging. If you're looking to use A/B testing to measure which audiences respond to certain messages, this is a good marketing strategy to use. 

Types of content:

  • Email 

Common metrics to measure campaign performance:

  • Open rates

  • Unsubscribe rates

  • Click-through rates

Make every campaign count

Great campaigns are core to an effective marketing strategy. See how Asana can help you rally your marketing team to deliver impactful content and drive more revenue from your marketing efforts this year. 

3 ways to launch marketing campaigns faster with Asana

Join Gympass and Asana to learn how to align stakeholders, monitor performance in real time, automate manual processes, and more.

3 ways to launch marketing campaigns faster with Asana