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Create Your Annual Marketing Plan and Calendar Now

Planning now provides you with more success throughout the year and fewer surprises later on.




Create Your Annual Marketing Plan and Calendar Now

AS THE FINAL months of the year cool off and your social media posts are becoming more about food, friendship, and family, it’s time to start thinking about your marketing objectives for next year.

Why Create an Annual Plan?

Creating an annual marketing calendar and plan may seem like a lot of work, but you will set yourself up for success if you get a start on it now.

“Determining your growth objectives will help establish your plan,” says Marketing4ECPs president and founder Kevin Wilhelm. “Are you looking to grow your practice through generating new patient leads, or are you a more established practice that is looking to shift your patient base towards more of your ideal patients? Your marketing plan should be built to accomplish your objectives.”

Benefits of an Annual Plan

Having a comprehensive annual marketing plan allows you to allocate your budget ahead of time. If you start planning your boosted posts, paid advertising, and print materials now, you’re less likely to blow through your budget by the end of the year.

“In order to achieve your financial objectives, it’s imperative to know where you’re starting from,” Wilhelm explains. “Understanding your current financial numbers is critical to building a successful marketing plan to achieve your revenue and profitability targets.”


Benefits of an Annual Calendar

There are some aspects of your practice that repeat year after year. For example, you know when back to school is, when the holiday season is drawing near and when summer sunglass season hits. These are easy to plan in advance. If you can plan out your social media posts and sales campaigns now, you won’t have to think about them in the moment.

Here’s an example of something you could post in late spring:

“Summer is just around the corner! Protect your eyes from harmful UV rays all year long with a stylish pair of sunglasses that keep up with your busy lifestyle. Shop our wide selection of quality sunglasses and make your summer fashion statement today.”

Having these launches ready to go saves you from scrambling later on. This way, you can fill the gaps in your schedule with more spontaneous posts, giving you a robust library to pull from year-round.

Looking Further into the Future

Knowing what you’re up against in the coming year can help you plan even further into the future. If you know you’re spending $X on marketing this year, but your website is out of date, or you want to hire someone to do your social media, you can budget and save for those expenses the next year, or the year after that.

Here’s a great combination of digital marketing efforts that are sure to bolster your patient list:

  • Build a responsive, mobile-friendly website
  • Post regularly to social media
  • Keep your Google Business Profile up to date
  • Use paid advertising on Facebook and Instagram
  • Use Google Search and Display paid advertising

These five elements work together to get the word out about your practice in your area. And remember: Use consistent branding across all of your platforms so patients can recognize you — whether they saw your post on Instagram or your display ad on a website.

Start Now

When you plan ahead, you’re less likely to let your marketing efforts slide if you get busy. Setting out a clear guideline helps you maintain consistency year-round, so you don’t miss anything important.

Keri Sculland is a content writer and copy editor at Marketing4ECPs. As a content and communications specialist, Keri has been writing academic and professional articles for newspapers and magazines across North America for more than a decade. To contact her, visit


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