Author: Graham Gallivan
As we move towards the end of the dog days of summer, your marketing strategy shouldn’t cool down with the weather.
While your prospects may have been out on vacation throughout the summer, they’ll be back at their desks in no time. Or maybe you took some vacation days of your own and need a pick-me-up to get back in the zone. With summer coming to an end, you need to be on your A-game.
Here are a few of the top B2B marketing reads you may have missed from our blog this year. Read on for some of the hottest topics and trends you should be aware of to keep your marketing tactics fresh and on the mark:
Are you leveraging SEO to its greatest potential? If not, you’re not alone. But the hesitation that some B2B marketers face when it comes to SEO is the very reason that the brands that do use it have a strategic advantage (vs. the consumer marketing space where SEO competition is at its height). To get ahead of the competition, learn why SEO is one of your greatest strengths and how it can yield low hanging fruit you may be overlooking: 61% of B2B decision-makers start the decision-making process with a web search.
Do you have what it takes to align with sales to close more deals? Businesses are 67% better at closing deals when sales and marketing are operating in lockstep, according to joint research by Marketo and Reachforce. One of the key strategies B2B marketers should leverage to increase productivity is lead scoring–ranking leads for their sales-readiness, sanctioned by service level agreements (SLAs) that are agreed upon by both sales and marketing. Read on for more on lead scoring and other tips to improve sales and marketing alignment.
While it’s not a new concept, one of the hottest trends in B2B marketing this year is account-based marketing (ABM). ABM is a strategic approach to lead generation in which your time and resources go into targeting a key group of specific accounts. Gone are the days of the broad-based marketing strategy as an end in and of itself.
While the traditional demand generation approach is great for generating and engaging a large number of qualified leads based on their attributes to move them further down the funnel and eventually close them, ABM is becomingly more critical for B2B marketers who want to win and retain certain key accounts. In fact, research shows that less than 1% of leads turn into revenue generating customers. Because of this, it’s time to evaluate the status quo and determine whether your time, budget, and resources should go into quality or quantity.
Another key strategy for B2B marketers is customer base marketing. This all comes down to the math and two key stats. The first, also known as Pareto’s 80/20 rule, is that 80% of your business wealth will come from 20% of your customer base. The second is that it costs at least 10 times more to acquire new customers than to sell to the ones you already have, according to eMarketer.
With these stats in mind, the key is to think beyond acquisition and focus on increasing the customer lifetime value by marketing additional cross-sell products or services to an existing customer, working to keep them happy and keep them as a customer, and developing current customers into loyal brand advocates.
With the array of tactics and new technologies in the marketplace, it can be challenging to identify what strategy will work best for you. They key? Get scrappy! Regardless of your organization’s size, most digital marketing teams feel that they could use more budget and resources. The key to succeeding in this digital age is to learn how to do more with less, using key tactics like putting brains before your budget, being efficient and effective, and seeing ideas everywhere.
Chances are you’re probably using content in your B2B marketing efforts, but are you leveraging all the available channels to get the most out of your content? The fact is that buyers today are more informed than ever, self-directing the majority of their journey before they ever interact with you, so hitting them with the right content at the right time is key. At the same time, technology advancements are driving our content marketing efforts further, allowing us to distribute on more channels and measure our results. Take advantage of what’s available so your content can rise to the top.
As a B2B marketer, you’re likely constantly looking for ways to arm your sales team to close more business. While your sales team may already be using LinkedIn to reach their prospects, there’s probably more they could be doing to take full advantage of the platform. In fact, LinkedIn even offers a Social Selling Index (SSI) to measure how effective your sales team is at tapping their network–factoring in the amount of content they share, their level of interaction, and the number of connections they have with your target audience.
Contrary to popular belief, you can attribute revenue dollars to your social media campaigns. But because they’re more likely to serve as a point of initial or incremental engagement than as a deal closer, your social campaigns require tangible metrics. Learn how to use (and integrate) the latest tools and tactics to calculate your social ROI.
In demand generation, it’s not always a numbers game. Your organization needs to have a defined revenue model and business rules in place to ensure the best possible outcome. While it can be alluring to pump as many names into your database as possible, it’s even more important to make sure they’re vetted, giving your sales team the best chance for success. And once those leads become closed-won deals, make sure you’re analyzing your customer base to retain your customers and identify opportunities for growth–cross-selling and upselling them.
If there’s one topic that’s always top-of-mind for B2B marketers, it’s metrics. While there are a number of possible metrics you could track, the key to success for your business (and sanity), is focusing on the right set of metrics that indicate performance. Read on for a few tips on honing in on the right metrics that will serve you and your business well in the long run.
There you have it–10 B2B blogs to wrap up the summer with that will help you get back in the zone. Check out our other blogs and let us know your favorite ones in the comments below!
Summer Reading for B2B Marketers: 10 Must-Read Blogs to Get Back in the Zone was posted at Marketo Marketing Blog - Best Practices and Thought Leadership. | http://blog.marketo.com
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