Financially Responsible Marketing

HELP! I need marketing but I don’t know where to start?

Posted by on May 7, 2019

Whether you’ve never marketed before or want to spend more time focusing on marketing, the question always comes up, where should we spend our marketing dollars? At Imaginis, we always start with a baseline marketing strategy to help build out the activities for our customer’s marketing plans.

 

Building the foundation for marketing strategy

First, start by outlining your marketing goals. Without defined goals, your marketing efforts won’t be targeted. For those starting their marketing journey, start with one or two quantifiable goals to keep your efforts simple. For those who’ve marketed before, look to refine your goals down to 2 or 3.  The key is to evaluate your efforts so you can keep on track and adjust as needed.

Next you want to define your target market.  Who are you marketing to? Listing out buyer and organization demographics will help hone your value proposition and messages for greater targeting accuracy.  Check out our buyer persona template to help build or refine your own target market audience.

In order to market effectively to your target audience, it’s important to outline your value proposition, the reason why they should choose you over someone else. This is especially important for B2B organizations as most prospects would have read your content, reviewed your website, and made an assumption about your business before even speaking to you. That means the value you project needs to align with their needs and their expectations of how your product/service can solve their pain point.

The last step in setting up your marketing strategy is defining the key messages you go-to-market with. These messages need to be aligned across all external communications but also internally within your organization.  Aligning your messages will ensure consistent communication with your prospects and customers across your entire organization.

 

Building your marketing tactics – taking it to the streets

Once your marketing strategy is in place, it’s time to build out your activities.  Review how your prospects go through the purchase of your product or service. You’ve heard all about the marketing funnel turning prospects into customers. In today’s fast paced marketplace, the tools of marketing are changing constantly as are the techniques, yet one thing has remained the same, the steps in which a prospect becomes interested, evaluates and chooses a product or service is fairly consistent.  The key for ensuring the success of your marketing strategy is to build a foundation of activities that address prospects throughout each phase of their buying journey.

Brand Awareness

For B2B organizations, social media platforms like LinkedIn still dominate how prospects find information about your organization and the people who work there. The first step is to ensure your company page and leadership team profiles are up to date with the most recent messaging of your marketing strategy. Don’t forget to also use your database of existing email contacts to grow interest in your business. Referral business is the corner stone for most businesses and can help kick start a marketing campaign or the development of your lead list.

 

Interest and Intent – Are you building trust with your audience?

Whether through Google search, referrals or sales team field activities, once someone is interested in knowing more about your business, they will find your company website. That’s why it’s imperative that your company website has had both design and content updates (so it doesn’t look like it was built on Windows 7 which was released 10 years ago!)  Throughout the process ask yourself, are we building trust and confidence with our audience?

You also need to have a way to capture contact information for visitors to your website. There are many different lead capture devices you can use.  This could include a gated piece of content on a landing page, newsletter sign up or a free assessment offer. Create content that will attract and educate your prospects on their pain points. With your great content, you can build trust with your prospects so they will provide you with their contact details.  Get only the essentials (name, email) at this stage into your CRM so you can start the process of nurturing.

 

Consideration

What do you do to nurture a prospect into a lead?  What are you doing to turn those leads in to marketing qualified leads for your sales team? Create simply lead nurture workflows using a mix of email and social activities.  These could include a welcome email campaign, regular newsletters with useful information and periodically sending high value content just for being a contact.  You want to build trust at this stage as they consider you over a competitor.  Using email analytics, look for leads who have high engagement rates so you can move them from a lead into a marketing qualified lead.  How? Send them valuable offers to entice voice or in person meetings like an on-site assessment or private workshop.

 

Decision

What tools do you have to help your sales teams convert when a prospect is ready to make a decision? Getting someone to connect with you by phone and in person is a challenge.  Once you do, what do offer them? We believe at minimum you should have a company overview or pitch deck that will help your marketing qualified lead get a quick handle on exactly who you are, backed up by the key messages they’ve received throughout each phase, and an explanation of what you can do for them.

 

Now what?

If you’ve managed to setup a marketing strategy and baseline marketing tactics, congratulations! You’re one step closer to landing a big fish!  But wait, what do you do now? At Imaginis, we’re all about measuring our actions, comparing them back to our goals and adjusting if we’re not on target.  We do this monthly (tactical review), quarterly (strategic review) and yearly (goal review).  Remember to keep trying new and different activities to engage your target market, nurture your prospects and close the deal!

 

If you need help setting up your marketing strategy and activities, contact us at melanie@imaginisbd.com. Happy marketing!!