In many companies, a sales team is the primary method for reaching out to the market. Salespeople call prospects and customers, but they can only do so much in a day.
Marketing campaigns can dramatically increase your reach and the number of potential customers.
A marketing campaign is a series of touches with your market to communicate a key message. The key word is “series” since it usually takes multiple touches for your audience to recognize your message and respond. On average it take 3 to 5 “touches” before you achieve the desired result. Marketing campaigns are executed by all businesses in nearly all markets…including those candidates seeking election to public offices.
Marketing Campaigns can include many different forms of media:
• Past Customer Marketing/ Data Mining
• Referral Programs/ Loyalty Programs
• Search Optimization, Banners, Pay-Per-Click, Ad-word
• Social Media/ Networking
• Gorilla Marketing
• Street Teams/ Canvass Programs/ Ad Distribution
• Home Shows/ Events/ Trade Show Promotions
• Publicity/ Awareness
• Direct Mail
• Telemarketing/ Happy Calls
• Select Sponsorships
• Print/ Radio/ TV/ Other “Traditional” Media
In B2B marketing, it’s always best to start with your company’s annual goals and develop campaigns to meet those numbers. For example, when you know how many new customers you need, you can calculate how many leads you’ll need, then design campaigns to generate those leads throughout the year.
•With solid planning, a jolt of creativity and focus on measurement, you’ll be in a strong position for success.
Best Case Scenario
You plan and execute your campaigns to hit specific goals. You don’t always hit them, but you test and improve different elements; the ROI on your overall budget is above your goal. You focus on an offer and call-to-action, and you “touch” your prospects several times and follow up when appropriate. You recognize the challenges in measuring results, but you do what you can; it helps you improve the next time around.
Neutral Case Scenario
Your campaigns aren’t the most creative or the flashiest, but you’ve hit many of your marketing goals. You don’t test, but your response rate is fine. You don’t know your ROI, but you generally know which campaigns work best. Yet when you’re faced with ambitious annual goals, you have problems gaining budget approval. Since you stick with the same campaigns year in and year out, it’s also difficult to figure out how to generate additional leads.
Worst Case Scenario
Your marketing programs tend to be reactive — suddenly you’re low on leads or falling short of your goals and you launch a campaign to fix the problem. Since your programs don’t seem to work, it’s difficult to gain budget approval for future campaigns that could be better planned and executed. It’s a vicious cycle and is very hard to break.
Is This You? Are You Ready To Make a Change?
Before you begin
Your brand and pricing strategies play a significant role in your marketing efforts, so nail down your strategies before launching any major campaigns. If you sell through multiple distribution channels, don’t forget to create campaigns for each. You’ll also refer to your sales process to estimate revenue and ROI for each campaign.
Quantify your goals
Plan your campaigns to meet your annual revenue and volume goals. For example, if you’re trying to generate 100 new customers, figure out how many leads you’ll need and when you’ll need them.
Think about how you’ll use different media. For example, your sales team may be able to generate 30% of your leads through prospecting; the rest may come from telemarketing, email, direct mail, search marketing, webinars, trade shows and more.
Generate campaign ideas and strategies
Identify all of the business goals that will need marketing support. You may need campaigns to generate and nurture prospects, sell direct or through a channel, or market to existing customers.
Evaluate ideas and options: traditional sales activities, Internet marketing, telemarketing, direct mail, email, publicity and more.
Target your audience
With more specific targeting, you can speak more directly to the prospect and raise your response rates in the process.
Deliver one or two key messages AND your call-to-action
If you include every detail about your product and company, it’s easy for prospects to become overwhelmed. Just inform a prospect one step at a time.
Be creative — your market is bombarded with messages daily, so grab their attention and engage them.
Plan to measure
When you measure your campaigns, it’s easier to gain budget approval the next time around. You’ll also know exactly which programs produce the highest return.
Establish how you’ll measure each campaign. If there are variables you can’t measure, decide how you will account for those results.
Identify how you’ll capture the data you’ll need – unique phone numbers, unique URLs, etc.
Plan your fulfillment
Your fulfillment processes can help or hurt your close rate, so make sure you outline your requirements. For example, if you’re running a campaign where prospects request a software demo and it doesn’t arrive for a week, your prospects may lose interest.
Continually test and improve
Even on a small campaign, you can evaluate your ad, copy, change or test factors before you spend your entire budget.
Choose a subset of your list or two versions of an ad; test them in small quantities and choose the best one for rollout. Then you can test a second variable against the winner in the first test.
Keep the testing cycle going and track your results over time. You’ll improve your response rates and the Return On Investment.