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It's that time of year again—when some CMOs have realized that the marketing plan they finalized at the start of the year has gone sideways. Maybe there was too much in the plan to begin with, or maybe company and market changes happened, making the plan less relevant.

It's easy to feel stressed out by plans that don't work out. Often, the source of that stress is the fear of missing out (FOMO), a condition that affects us all, even professionally.

For CMOs like me, FOMO can be related to missing out on trends, technologies, and buzzwords (what even is a "micro-moment"?) that our competitors might have mastered before we realize how our perfectly laid plans have changed. And marketing FOMO can lead to marketing overkill: doing too many things at once with the belief that going to market with "more" is better.

It isn't. Because plans always change. Always.

Taking strategic inspiration from the master of tidying up, Marie Kondo, I now focus on looking over my marketing plans and efforts with a critical eye, asking "Will this marketing effort spark results? Does it spark joy?"

Whether you're decluttering your closet or updating your marketing plan, the key is to be thoughtful and critical. To hold in your hands—or in your mind—the initiatives and activities that spark joy.

That joy might come from knowledge that the initiative is likely to deliver leads. Or it might come from a sense of adventure at taking a new risk. It might just be the chance to tackle a creative concept your team hasn't yet dreamed of.

In this article, I've outlined a way to think about your marketing plan—the Kondo way.

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image of Sophie Vu

Sophie Vu leads worldwide marketing for Vibes, a mobile marketing platform leader that helps marketers engage one-to-one with mobile consumers at scale. As CMO, she works with 200+ global brands.

LinkedIn: Sophie Vu