Brought to you each month by the students, mentors, and presenters of The Genius Series…

The geniuses dived into marketing budgeting and planning just in time for year-end. What did they find? Templates galore, invaluable tips to getting a seat at the budgeting and planning table, and more. Five (at least!) valuable hacks were pulled from the conversation:

  1. Tara Grant with Jet Reports has been involved with budgeting and planning for years and one challenge has been the surprise events that pop up during the year, pulling from other areas of the budget. To combat this unpredictable trend, they break out the logistics of events by department (marketing and sales), allocating money from those separate areas.
  2. Presenter, Megan Buntain with Buntain+Partners shared that the most profitable partners spend 8-10% of their gross annual revenue on marketing. Are you close to that number??
  3. Mentor, Amy Spencer with AKA Enterprise Solutions shared Mac McIntosh’s budgeting template and also mentioned SiriusDecisions, which is like Gartner Forrester. She has learned a ton of what she knows about sales and marketing alignment from them.
  4. The Genius Series group was very interested to hear how AKA Enterprise Solutions was set up as a company. Amy defined the business development manager (BDM) as a pivotal role to bridging the gap between sales and marketing, acting as almost a pre-sales resource. Something to think about when aligning sales and marketing resources!
  5. Megan Buntain also suggested not to create more than 5 marketing KPIs that you will report on monthly. Having that laid out in the plan before the year begins is a good rule of thumb.

The Genius Series will dive into Social Selling in December.

Until then, happy marketing!

The Genius Series is a learning and networking opportunity for Microsoft Dynamics Partner Marketers. This nine-month program is currently on its third year, but if you're interested in becoming a student next year, please reach out to me at