Make the Most of Your Leftovers

We hope you had a great holiday feast.

Chances are, you will be enjoying leftovers as well. Of course, there are some rules regarding how you should eat them (i.e., don’t eat too much at a single sitting). Of course there are also some rules about another kind of leftover you may have right now. These are the leftover marketing dollars you have that you lose if you don’t spend them by year-end. Here are some rules about how to best use these “leftovers.”

1. Don’t do anything until you know you have authority to spend those dollars, even if you have budget. Organizational profitability requirements 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. Here are just a few things you can do:

a. Get all your online efforts for next year in line. Finalize your Website. Optimize it. Get your social media programs going. Get any videos done.

b. 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.

c. Have any miscellaneous writing projects initiated in December.

d. Begin the process of initiating a market research project in December, and see how much of it you can pay for up front.

e. Prepay planned 2011 advertising expenditures. You might even be able to get a discount.

f. Talk to other providers about paying them in December with 2010 money, even if your schedule doesn’t permit them to start working on a project until after the first of the year.

4. 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.

Leveraging Your Speaking Engagement

Creating an effective presentation is hard work. You have to structure the presentation, acquire compelling information, and develop meaningful recommendations. Then somebody else must make sure the presentation is graphically attractive. And, if you’re like most people, there is the constant worry that there will be somebody there to make sure the technology is OK.

But all too often, once the presentation is made, it sits in a manila folder until it is thrown out when you clean your office. Or the PowerPoint file is purged from your hard drive.

But these presentations have a variety of other useful applications. Here are just five of many ways you can leverage the presentation after you make it.

1. Present it to your coworkers, allowing them to learn the same things you taught people attending your session.

2. Put in on your corporate Intranet.

3. Train your salespeople and account managers to give the presentation to prospects and clients.

4. Include parts of the presentation in your standard sales presentation. (If you’re smart, you will have used part of your standard sales presentation in the presentation you gave at the conference.)

5. Put the presentation on your Website (in a format such as Adobe Acrobat so that it can’t be modified).