Whether a business is still in the start-up stage, has reached enterprise size, or is anywhere in between, the end goal is always to generate revenue and profit, and enable the business to grow. Given that Really B2B has just been named the 9th Fastest Growing B2B Agency in the UK, we thought we’d provide our top 5 tips to helping your business grow…
Tip 1: Do your persona research
Are you wasting budget marketing your business on channels such as Facebook even though your prospects aren’t active there? You’d be surprised how many businesses find themselves in this exact scenario. The days of vague guestimations are long gone. In order to succeed nowadays and generate the greatest ROI from your marketing activity, it’s necessary to gather as much information as possible on your prospects. Questions like job role and responsibilities are a given, but it’s possible to go much deeper to find out what their biggest business challenges are and what hurdles they have had to overcome. This can then be taken further to include what solutions they are currently using and what would be their main objections to changing supplier. A combination of emails, telephone calls and a survey (possibly hosted by a third-party) to your database and existing customers would be enough to gather all the information you’ll need.
Tip 2: Align the sales and marketing teams
By involving the sales team during the persona creation stage, it’s possible for them to clearly and concisely tell the marketers what they consider to be a sales-ready lead. The criteria they lay out will mean that marketers now have a clearer goal – to generate leads that meet the sales team’s criteria. By aligning these two teams, marketers are able to provide the salespeople with comprehensive information regarding the lead’s journey through the sales funnel e.g. what content they have read, what websites they visited, what social media posts they engaged with. The outcome is that the sales team is now more empowered than ever and can attend a sales meeting fully armed with information that will increase their chances of a sale. In addition to this, the sales team can now report back their findings to the marketing team, who can use this to amend and develop their marketing strategy.
Tip 3: Plan in-depth or prepare to fail
Start by identifying the key metrics that will shape almost every aspect of the marketing campaign – cost per lead and cost per sale. If you are unable to carry out your activity in line with these metrics, then you’ll have to amend your plans. It’s also a prime time to review your previous results and data. Only by reviewing the past can you prepare for the future, and this information is going to be invaluable in the planning stage. Close rates, sales performances, lead times – the more information you can gather from your previous activity, the more accurate your planning can be. Now, review the marketing channels you’ve used before and the individual metrics for each one. For example, open and click through rates of emails; engagement levels at events; and number of impressions from Pay-Per-Click ads. By identifying patterns and trends you’ll begin to see what channels typically work and also what kind of results they are able to generate. This information means you can now begin to plan your marketing campaigns with clear metrics, realistic expectations of results, and definitive guides to cost per lead and cost per sale.
Tip 4: Spread the message via multiple channels
Having completed the persona research and carried out the planning stage of the marketing campaign, it’ll now be clear which channels the prospects prefer to use, and what channels generate the best results. This is now the marketing sweet spot. For example, you know that your target audience engage mostly on social media; however you have previous results that show that Facebook typically doesn’t generate a great response. You do however know that LinkedIn InMails generate an above average response when the leads have been warmed. So, you can now send an email to the prospect to increase awareness of your brand, you can then InMail them to ask if they got your email (and start a conversation), and once they’ve responded you can have telemarketing call them for pre-qualification. This combination of multiple channels is how businesses generate the best results.
Tip 5: Report and develop the strategy
The key rule for multi-channel marketing is ROI. When you review your activities and results, be sure to focus on the ROI of each channel. The reason for this is because you can begin to remove the under-performing channels and reallocate the budget to the channels that have proved to generate ROI – therefore maximising your returns as you proceed. This laser-focus on ROI is so important because marketers can become lost in the more trivial metrics such as social media Likes. These metrics are always worth measuring and can help determine the popularity of the brand etc. However, you can’t pay bills with Likes.
Business growth is about revenue generation, ROI and profit margins. When profits are invested back into the business, budgets are increased and more activities can happen and more revenue can be generated. This is certainly not the case if the key metrics you measure are number of Retweets or blog post shares.
To find out more about B2B lead generation and growing your business with increased leads, sales and revenue…
Information sourced from Kirsty Dawe’s post on LinkedIn