Jen Benko Oct 11, 2021 9:13:45 AM 10 min read

How to keep Finance from Hijacking your Marketing Budget

The relationship between finance and marketing departments can be like oil and water — or cats and dogs — but they should work together more seamlessly than they currently do. What other departments may not understand is that both finance and marketing teams have a significant impact on the company's success and growth. And while the two may seem completely unalike, they can complement each other very well.

Finance and marketing work together to support a business by securing profitable revenue streams, maintaining cash flow, and reducing the cost of operations. They have a lot in common — both teams work to improve the financial health of a company. 

But what makes them so similar? In fact, the relationship between marketing and finance comes with many similarities, more so than either department would choose to admit or recognize.

First, finance and marketing both strive for business growth -when appropriately communicated.

Although both finance and marketing have job descriptions that may seem different, they share the same mission: to make their company more profitable.

Of course, finance departments have a lot to say when marketing teams dip into their cash reserves — especially if the purchase is an unusual one. Budget holders want to ensure that Marketing is doing more than just throwing money around — and rightfully so. However, with a clear understanding of the marketing goals and the metrics used to track success (or failure), finance can be on board (even if reluctantly) with those upfront expenditures.

Secondly, both departments do focus on increasing revenue without overextending their budgets.

Getting your finance team on board with how you, as a marketer, would like to promote your brand could increase your marketing efforts and profitability by providing customers with an experience that dazzles them into producing a pitch-perfect ROI. This is where communication with the finance department remains paramount.

Budget holders quickly reject specific marketing projects due to a lack of data and facts supporting the ROI - but if marketing were to go that extra mile and meet finance halfway, the relationship between marketing and finance would not be as strained. Marketing needs to begin providing solid market research, historical data, and supportive evidence to finance should Marketing request an increase in budget spend. 

Understanding how to use both departments for your brand is essential to keep customers coming back for more.

These two departments would cultivate a relationship of understanding should executive teams understand that marketing doesn't exist in a vacuum — it must team up with finance to promote the company and drive the business forward. 

The problem is that many of the roadblocks that finance puts in front of Marketing are that there is no honest communication on the ROI that marketers know. By learning how to demonstrate your marketing strategy and communicating the investment to finance, you can improve your chances of profitability by giving both departments a professional, informative experience, with complete visibility of where the budget is being allocated.

Let's be honest; the Finance team can be a tough nut to crack. When budget holders begin to see significant marketing spend without knowing the objectives or how it contributes to business goals, they may want to refuse the spending. However, if you take the time to explain the return on marketing investment to them, they might give it a second thought.

The Marketing and Finance relationship can go a long way into building a profitable business. These departments will continue to play a massive role in a business's success, whether they want to work together or not. One thing will always be true - The more profit a company makes, the more successful it will be.