The purpose of a Phased Campaign Timeline is to describe how a single campaign will change at different points throughout its lifecycle. This type of framework is most often used by marketers planning a new campaign rather than updating an existing one. The Phased Campaign Timeline is particularly helpful when a campaign is designed around a specific date, such as the release of a product or the start of an event. Dividing the timeline into phases before and after this date or event helps marketers plan and communicate how activities need to start, stop, or change. This ‘big picture’ timeline is a useful tool to help large integrated teams get on the same page.
How will this campaign be launched and evolve over time?
- Clearly define the scope of your campaign. When will it start and when will it end, if it ends? Make sure that you are focusing on a single campaign, as different campaigns require different timelines.
- Consider the phases of your campaign. These are marked by a specific date or event that triggers a change in your marketing activities. For example, when your new promotion starts and stops.
- Describe the marketing activities and tactics that are planned for each phase. For campaigns that will be sustained without a fixed end date, describe how your campaign will transition to an always-on program.
- Review your plan in the context of your timeline and identify where you may need to make an adjustment. For example, if your product sells out. Capture these potential scenarios including the corresponding actions.
- Review the first draft of the Phased Campaign Roadmap with your team. If validated, use this general timeline as your input for a more detailed project plan for execution of the campaign.
- Consider factors beyond time that may trigger the new phase, such as products selling out (or not selling at all).
- Ensure there is connectivity between messaging in different phases to build recognition and momentum.
- Creating a Phased Campaign Timeline does not replace the need for a detailed executional plan.
Julian Cole, Planning Dirty Academy