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Successful marketing entail so many components, decisions and interactions that it’s often overwhelming for the people responsible for delivering results. There’s a potential deal-buster at every turn, and a campaign is often only as good as the proverbial “weakest link.”

That’s one reason we challenge ourselves (and our clients) to identify just the handful of critical success factors that really matter – the high-priority ones that can make or break the program. Then we make sure we monitor those on a frequent and regular basis. We know that something somewhere is going to slip through the cracks. We just don’t want it to be one of the critical items on the short list.

This sounds easier than it is. Nobody wants to miss a deadline or deliver sub-optimal results, so the tendency is to do everything all the time. And that’s what leads to a failure sooner or later.

Our approach is to nip the problem in the bud. We identify the critical success factors up-front and continually ask ourselves if any effort or activity on projects elsewhere should have higher priority than those few projects on the list.

We even have a management tool for this called “Plans for Improving the Business” – or P4ITB. It’s a simple one-sheet list of the things we’re going to accomplish in the next 30 days (or whatever) that will really make a difference. And we keep the sheet on our desktops so we are reminded of the priorities every day. Then at the end of the month, we review and report results: Did we stick to the list? Did we accomplish what we set out to accomplish? Did our priority list survive intact? What does that suggest for next month?

The P4ITB document has other important information and uses too, but the big idea is to focus attention on the projects that will have the greatest impact. And after a few months of using the tool, you’ll be amazed at how effective it really is.

Want to give it a try? Let us know. We’ll develop a P4ITB just for you.

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Dialogue Marketing Group