Just like the holiday shopping season, most other things are occurring earlier every year.  So in that spirit, I am sending my Leftovers blog out BEFORE Thanksgiving.


Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s, there are a few things we can count on.  Holiday shopping.  Lots of parties and food.  Hopefully, looking forward to holiday travel…especially for those of us in colder climates.

And of course, if you have a marketing gig and managed your budget wisely, you have leftover marketing dollars.  Spending those marketing leftovers, like eating your Thanksgiving leftovers, takes planning and strategy.  Here are a few ideas to bake in your marketing oven (apologies for the lousy analogy).

  1. If you have excess funds, don’t do anything until you know you have authority to spend them, even if you have budget. Organizational profitability requirements (and those darned shareholders if you work for a public company) may prevent you from spending those dollars
  2. Don’t spend just for the sake of spending. Figure out strategically how your money can be best spent. If you can’t think of anything, don’t spend the money.
  3. If you can spend your “leftover” money, here are just a few things you can do:
  • If you have not made your Website “responsive” (mobile friendly), do it now.  Doing this is even more important than ever, as Google now penalizes sites that are not mobile friendly.  Besides, a recent study by eMarketer reports that mobile devices (phone and tablet) are the tools of choice for more than half the time people spend online.
  • Get your other online efforts for next year in line. Finalize your Website. Optimize it. Make it mobile friendly.  Get your social media programs going. Get any videos done.  Yes, videos are searchable.
  • Instead of mailing your direct mail campaign just after Jan. 1, mail it just before Jan. 1 to expense the postage. But don’t mail it too soon - you’ll want it to hit after the first of the year.  And yes, direct mail still works with the right offer, list and creative.
  • Have any miscellaneous writing projects initiated in December.
  • Begin the process of initiating a market research project in December, and see how much of it you can pay for up front.
  • Prepay planned 2015 advertising expenditures. You might even be able to get a discount.  Those advertisers like cash up front.
  • Talk to other providers about paying them in December with 2014 money, even if your schedule doesn’t permit them to start working on a project until after the first of the year.
  • If you are a B2B company, try using this strategy with your clients. Have them commit to spend IT money, buy office supplies, whatever. It works.

Finally, since this is going out before Thanksgiving, have a great holiday.