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How to Get Started with Purpose-Driven Marketing

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How to Get Started with Purpose-Driven Marketing

The author’s views are entirely his or her own (excluding the unlikely event of hypnosis) and may not always reflect the views of Moz.

Sustainable marketing, purpose-driven marketing, and corporate social responsibility (CSR) are terms that are getting more and more popular. Brands are expected to already have strategies in place to become as sustainable as possible, as quickly as possible.

With that said, there’s no one-size-fits-all way of measuring just how sustainable an organization is. Businesses are being told to do it now but are being left with no idea how to start.

I wholeheartedly believe that digital marketers can help with this, and by taking a more purpose-driven approach, the entire organization, their customers, and the planet can benefit.

I’m going to provide a glossary of terminology, give a brief history of how businesses have lost their focus on CSR, and show how taking a more purpose-driven approach to company operations and digital marketing doesn’t have to be a big scary thing. It can actually be fun, fulfilling, and hugely rewarding.

You can use these links to jump to each section. 

Glossary

Before I dive into everything purpose-driven marketing related, here are some definitions for terms I’ll be referring to throughout this piece. If you want to skip this and head straight to the next section, feel free to use the jump links just above.

What is sustainability in digital marketing?

Sustainability can mean one of two things:

1) Ensuring that your marketing efforts don’t cause harm to people or the planet and, where it does, taking steps to reduce or equalize that harm. This could include:

  • Offsetting your carbon emissions (although please, please, please, don’t buy carbon credits — these aren’t a true representation of carbon offsetting),

  • Reducing the amount of energy your product and employees use, and/or

  • Making efforts to update any products or services so that they are more environmentally friendly.

2) It can also mean future-proofing your brand so that it continues to thrive.

Whichever definition you like best, the two are not mutually exclusive now that 64% of consumers consider themselves to be belief-driven, choosing to invest in brands that they know make charitable contributions or have a strong CSR system in place. Breaking this down further, 60% of Millennials, 53% of GenZers and 51% of GenXers “buy on belief”. When it comes to sustainability in purpose-driven marketing, it can mean a myriad of things such as:

  • Reducing the carbon emissions created by our websites and the equipment used by digital marketing departments,

  • Ensuring that everybody has access to our websites whether they have disabilities or are data-poor,

  • Incorporating our sustainability efforts into our online campaigns.

Belief-driven consumers are looking for information on sustainability issues using online search (35%), social media (31%), and non-digital print media (29%).

According to Sustainable Marketing: How to Drive Profits with Purpose, consumers are looking for environmental information on brands and products using social media (41%) and product and brand websites (34%).

Illustration of statistics listed above.

What is corporate social responsibility in digital marketing?

Corporate Social Responsibility refers to a brand’s effort to have a positive impact on people and the planet. I’ll go into this in a little more detail in the brief history lesson section, but essentially, CSR revolves around businesses understanding that they have responsibilities towards society. The role of a digital marketer here is to advise, plan and execute communication strategies that tell the brand’s loyal and potential customers how they are fulfilling that obligation.

What social marketing means

Not to be confused with social media marketing, which you probably know like the back of your hand. Social marketing “…has the primary goal of achieving ‘common good’. Traditional commercial marketing aims are primarily financial, though they can have positive social effects as well.”

It’s a term closely related to purpose-driven marketing.

What is greenwashing and why is it a problem?

I can’t really talk about corporate social responsibility and purpose-driven marketing without warning about greenwashing, which is essentially using your marketing powers for evil. Instead of putting in the effort to protect people and the planet as well as hitting financial KPIs, some brands are either pretending or making outright unsubstantiated claims, appearing to be a purpose-driven company with good people and environmental values, but when you scratch at the surface (and most of the time you don’t even have to scratch that far) you’ll find that they aren’t really bothered and aren’t doing much.

The sad thing is that this has resulted in pretty cynical consumers, so even if you have extremely positive purpose-driven branding and a great purpose-driven culture, you have to be so, so careful in how you communicate to ensure that you don’t get accused of greenwashing.

What is the triple bottom line?

The term “Triple Bottom Line” was coined 27 years ago, essentially trying to convince companies to become purpose-driven brands, where they not only measure their financial success but also track how their actions are impacting people (including their employees, consumers, and even those who have no association with them) and the planet.

The triple bottom line is really what purpose-driven marketing is all about, and a corporate social responsibility strategy is the way to get there.

A brief history lesson

I’m based in the UK, and one of our most famous chocolate manufacturers is Cadbury. When they outgrew their factory, George Cadbury and his brother decided that their next location wasn’t going to be as depressing or squalid. So, rather than invest in a factory premises, they bought 14.5 acres in a village in Bourneville (which is a lovely place to visit). This meant that factory workers didn’t have to live in crowded city slums, but instead had access to a good water supply, train line, and a canal (which was probably a lot nicer back then than they are now).

George Cadbury’s vision was to create a business in an area full of green spaces where his workers (and their families) wouldn’t be surrounded by city pollution. Way back in 1878, Cadbury nailed a corporate social responsibility strategy with the motto:

“No man ought to be condemned to live in a place where a rose cannot grow.”

This approach to business is actually how organizations historically believed companies should operate. Known as social enterprise, brands had a responsibility to provide support to:

Including contributing generally to the well-being, health, and wealth of society at large.

Sadly, in recent years, this could be seen as a scarce approach to running a business, with more and more brands focusing on hitting financial goals and generating more revenue and profit rather than the overall impact they are making.

The rise of purpose-driven marketing

Like I said earlier, the official Triple Bottom Line approach has been around for almost three decades and there is loads of data available showing that consumers want brands to be more intentional with how they operate, ensuring that everybody and everything benefits from their actions.

86% of millennials think that companies should be measured in terms of more than just financial performance, according to The Rise of the Social Enterprise. Since this generation currently makes up half of the global workforce, as well as being consumers, it’s something for every brand to consider.

Illustration saying 86 percent of millennials believe companies should be measured by more than their financial performance.

More companies are also transitioning into B Corps, a label only given to companies who meet “high standards of social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability”.

Since B Lab’s creation in 2006, more than 5,000 global brands have transitioned into B Corps across 82 countries and 156 global industries (at the time of writing). That’s massive. And it’s really well-known, leading brands that are now B Corps including Innocent Drinks, Ben & Jerry’s, and BrewDog. And the US and UK are leading the way, having the most certified B Corp businesses.

What’s more, these brands are talking about these efforts as part of their online strategies:

1) Innocent Drinks: Doing business in the right way

Screenshot of Innocent Drinks webpage with the header

2) Ben & Jerry’s: We have a dream

Screenshot of Ben & Jerry's webpage saying

3) BrewDog: Our responsibilities

Screenshot of BrewDog

It’s time for a rise in purpose-driven digital marketing

I’ve been devouring the Can Marketing Save the Planet podcast and reading as many books as I can get my hands on (annoyingly, books on this topic can be pretty expensive). What I’ve found is that, while there seems to be a huge shift towards more ethical and environmental values, the focus and efforts seem to lie in more traditional marketing campaigns rather than digital marketing.

But as you’ve seen here, the data shows that people are looking for how brands are implementing corporate social responsibility through different channels online, so there’s a real opportunity here for us as digital marketers to take the helm.

Whether you’re in-house or agency side, how often are you asked to advise on key decisions like corporate social responsibility and purpose-driven marketing campaigns? We have the audience. If we can start to close the gap between traditional and digital, and cross the line that’s drawn between brand decisions and marketing, we can achieve some exceptionally good things for everyone.

Tips for getting started with corporate social responsibility and purpose-driven marketing

First, you need to consider how you could approach putting together your own CSR strategy to become a more purpose-driven brand. If you work agency side, you can use this approach when helping your clients come up with their purpose-driven marketing campaigns.

I’m using what I’ve learned not just regarding CSR, sustainability, and brand purpose but also in my experience working in digital marketing over the last seven years.

1) Check out the United Nations SDGs

The first thing I’d recommend doing is familiarizing yourself with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). There are 17 goals that can help you get started:

There’s more information on each of these here, and it’s a great starting point to see if you or your client is already doing things that fall under these goals.

For example, The Digital Maze recently implemented a new sick pay policy. Previously, the company gave full sick pay for five days. Now, employees get five days of full sick pay per “incident”. So, if I were sick for five days in January and then again for five days in March, I’d get all of those days fully paid.

There has also been another recent policy change regarding working hours and locations so that employees can get out during the day — whether that’s for a walk around a local park or hitting the gym when it’s less crowded.

Finally, the hours of operation are fantastic. A standard working day consists of billable working hours for clients, however, employees are encouraged to step away from the screen between tasks, take a breather, and also do regular professional development.

All of the above could easily fall under goal two of the SDGs: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages.

It’s worth saying that these policies weren’t implemented because of the SDGs. The SDGs are a great sounding board for figuring out what you or your clients are already doing that you may not have thought fell under a purpose-driven approach.

2) Involve the entire company

At a recent client meeting, the client asked if they should be talking about charitable efforts their employees are involved in independently of the brand.

I, for one, think this is a great idea, and an even better one is involving all of your employees in defining your brand’s shared values. A simple anonymous survey could be taken by your team if you’re a marketing agency looking to implement your own purpose-driven marketing campaign, or you can provide your clients with a survey template to give to their employees.

Ask what they stand for, what they want the business to stand for, and any ideas of how to get there. In a short space of time, you’ll be inundated with ideas that you can work through.

3) Don’t take on too much, too quickly

Slow and steady will win the race here. Rather than trying to do everything quickly, the result of which would be not achieving much at all, start with one, two, or three values at the most, and really explore what you can do to make a difference.

When it comes to sustainability, there’s always this concept of time looming over our heads. While time is indeed running out, it’s better to do a few things that make a substantial difference than trying to do a lot, getting overwhelmed, and achieving nothing.

4) Have fun

Yes, this is an incredibly important topic that needs to be taken seriously, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. Some might even argue that when it comes to a successful digital marketing campaign, “fun” is often the secret ingredient.

There will undoubtedly be things that you need to do as a purpose-driven brand operating in the digital space (like calculating carbon emissions) that you wouldn’t necessarily do as a hobby, but it can also be a passion project.

Once you confirm what’s already being done, you can start creating marketing strategies to get this information out into the world and in front of your target audience.

5) Don’t be scared to tell the truth

Screenshot of Costa Coffee's CSR page.

I’m so impressed with Costa Coffee’s CSR page (I have no affiliation with this brand whatsoever, but they are my go-to coffee shop of choice when it’s a jumbo coffee morning). If you scroll down you’ll see a rundown of how sustainable their coffee cups are. But the bit that really stands out is in their cold cup section, where they say that their lids are only made from 40% recycled plastic and that they have more work to do.

Remember the old days when companies were hesitant about using social media because they didn’t want to get caught up in complaints? Well, the same thing is kind of happening in purpose-driven marketing. Companies are so worried that they will get flack for not being 100% perfect that they choose to do nothing, or to not talk about it.

Costa is a great example of how to do this: communicating that they are aware of where they need to be, but are also proud of how far they’ve come. 

6) Choose your platforms

Just as you would with any marketing strategy, you need to have a plan of what platform each campaign will use. Every single company operating online should have a CSR page on their website so that consumers who are looking for this information online (remember, that’s 75% of people) can find it easily.

41% of those consumers are looking for this information on social media platforms, so if your analytics shows that this is where your audience is spending their time and interacting with you, it’s worth testing some strategies there, too.

Innocent Drinks does this very well via a Twitter strategy that supports The Big Rewild. Here are just a couple of their posts:

See how they’re having fun with this campaign?

As digital marketers, we’re in an excellent position to do this. We already know the ins and outs of these platforms and how to put together an incredibly strong strategy.

7) If you really don’t know what to do or where to start

Do the same thing you’d do for any other marketing campaign: competitor research.

This isn’t to steal ideas, it’s more for inspiration. What societal issues are they trying to tackle? Are they focusing on climate change, for example?

It’s a good sounding board but, remember: just because your competitors are doing something, that doesn’t mean that you should be doing the exact same thing. It all comes back to defining your company’s values. 

Take these steps to get started in CSR

I hope this has helped take some of the scariness away from such a big and important subject. Whether you’re working in-house or as part of an agency, taking a purpose-driven approach is only going to get more important and in-demand.

If you’ve already gone through the process of setting up purpose-driven campaigns and CSR strategies, I’d love to hear about your experiences on Twitter.



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Why We Are Always ‘Clicking to Buy’, According to Psychologists

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Why We Are Always 'Clicking to Buy', According to Psychologists

Amazon pillows.

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A deeper dive into data, personalization and Copilots

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A deeper dive into data, personalization and Copilots

Salesforce launched a collection of new, generative AI-related products at Connections in Chicago this week. They included new Einstein Copilots for marketers and merchants and Einstein Personalization.

To better understand, not only the potential impact of the new products, but the evolving Salesforce architecture, we sat down with Bobby Jania, CMO, Marketing Cloud.

Dig deeper: Salesforce piles on the Einstein Copilots

Salesforce’s evolving architecture

It’s hard to deny that Salesforce likes coming up with new names for platforms and products (what happened to Customer 360?) and this can sometimes make the observer wonder if something is brand new, or old but with a brand new name. In particular, what exactly is Einstein 1 and how is it related to Salesforce Data Cloud?

“Data Cloud is built on the Einstein 1 platform,” Jania explained. “The Einstein 1 platform is our entire Salesforce platform and that includes products like Sales Cloud, Service Cloud — that it includes the original idea of Salesforce not just being in the cloud, but being multi-tenancy.”

Data Cloud — not an acquisition, of course — was built natively on that platform. It was the first product built on Hyperforce, Salesforce’s new cloud infrastructure architecture. “Since Data Cloud was on what we now call the Einstein 1 platform from Day One, it has always natively connected to, and been able to read anything in Sales Cloud, Service Cloud [and so on]. On top of that, we can now bring in, not only structured but unstructured data.”

That’s a significant progression from the position, several years ago, when Salesforce had stitched together a platform around various acquisitions (ExactTarget, for example) that didn’t necessarily talk to each other.

“At times, what we would do is have a kind of behind-the-scenes flow where data from one product could be moved into another product,” said Jania, “but in many of those cases the data would then be in both, whereas now the data is in Data Cloud. Tableau will run natively off Data Cloud; Commerce Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud — they’re all going to the same operational customer profile.” They’re not copying the data from Data Cloud, Jania confirmed.

Another thing to know is tit’s possible for Salesforce customers to import their own datasets into Data Cloud. “We wanted to create a federated data model,” said Jania. “If you’re using Snowflake, for example, we more or less virtually sit on your data lake. The value we add is that we will look at all your data and help you form these operational customer profiles.”

Let’s learn more about Einstein Copilot

“Copilot means that I have an assistant with me in the tool where I need to be working that contextually knows what I am trying to do and helps me at every step of the process,” Jania said.

For marketers, this might begin with a campaign brief developed with Copilot’s assistance, the identification of an audience based on the brief, and then the development of email or other content. “What’s really cool is the idea of Einstein Studio where our customers will create actions [for Copilot] that we hadn’t even thought about.”

Here’s a key insight (back to nomenclature). We reported on Copilot for markets, Copilot for merchants, Copilot for shoppers. It turns out, however, that there is just one Copilot, Einstein Copilot, and these are use cases. “There’s just one Copilot, we just add these for a little clarity; we’re going to talk about marketing use cases, about shoppers’ use cases. These are actions for the marketing use cases we built out of the box; you can build your own.”

It’s surely going to take a little time for marketers to learn to work easily with Copilot. “There’s always time for adoption,” Jania agreed. “What is directly connected with this is, this is my ninth Connections and this one has the most hands-on training that I’ve seen since 2014 — and a lot of that is getting people using Data Cloud, using these tools rather than just being given a demo.”

What’s new about Einstein Personalization

Salesforce Einstein has been around since 2016 and many of the use cases seem to have involved personalization in various forms. What’s new?

“Einstein Personalization is a real-time decision engine and it’s going to choose next-best-action, next-best-offer. What is new is that it’s a service now that runs natively on top of Data Cloud.” A lot of real-time decision engines need their own set of data that might actually be a subset of data. “Einstein Personalization is going to look holistically at a customer and recommend a next-best-action that could be natively surfaced in Service Cloud, Sales Cloud or Marketing Cloud.”

Finally, trust

One feature of the presentations at Connections was the reassurance that, although public LLMs like ChatGPT could be selected for application to customer data, none of that data would be retained by the LLMs. Is this just a matter of written agreements? No, not just that, said Jania.

“In the Einstein Trust Layer, all of the data, when it connects to an LLM, runs through our gateway. If there was a prompt that had personally identifiable information — a credit card number, an email address — at a mimum, all that is stripped out. The LLMs do not store the output; we store the output for auditing back in Salesforce. Any output that comes back through our gateway is logged in our system; it runs through a toxicity model; and only at the end do we put PII data back into the answer. There are real pieces beyond a handshake that this data is safe.”

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Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads (And How To Fix It)

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Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads (And How To Fix It)

Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To

You ask the head of marketing how the team is doing and get a giant thumbs up. 👍

“Our MQLs are up!”

“Website conversion rates are at an all-time high!”

“Email click rates have never been this good!”

But when you ask the head of sales the same question, you get the response that echoes across sales desks worldwide — the leads from marketing suck. 

If you’re in this boat, you’re not alone. The issue of “leads from marketing suck” is a common situation in most organizations. In a HubSpot survey, only 9.1% of salespeople said leads they received from marketing were of very high quality.

Why do sales teams hate marketing-generated leads? And how can marketers help their sales peers fall in love with their leads? 

Let’s dive into the answers to these questions. Then, I’ll give you my secret lead gen kung-fu to ensure your sales team loves their marketing leads. 

Marketers Must Take Ownership

“I’ve hit the lead goal. If sales can’t close them, it’s their problem.”

How many times have you heard one of your marketers say something like this? When your teams are heavily siloed, it’s not hard to see how they get to this mindset — after all, if your marketing metrics look strong, they’ve done their part, right?

Not necessarily. 

The job of a marketer is not to drive traffic or even leads. The job of the marketer is to create messaging and offers that lead to revenue. Marketing is not a 100-meter sprint — it’s a relay race. The marketing team runs the first leg and hands the baton to sales to sprint to the finish.

​​

via GIPHY

To make leads valuable beyond the vanity metric of watching your MQLs tick up, you need to segment and nurture them. Screen the leads to see if they meet the parameters of your ideal customer profile. If yes, nurture them to find out how close their intent is to a sale. Only then should you pass the leads to sales. 

Lead Quality Control is a Bitter Pill that Works

Tighter quality control might reduce your overall MQLs. Still, it will ensure only the relevant leads go to sales, which is a win for your team and your organization.

This shift will require a mindset shift for your marketing team: instead of living and dying by the sheer number of MQLs, you need to create a collaborative culture between sales and marketing. Reinforce that “strong” marketing metrics that result in poor leads going to sales aren’t really strong at all.  

When you foster this culture of collaboration and accountability, it will be easier for the marketing team to receive feedback from sales about lead quality without getting defensive. 

Remember, the sales team is only holding marketing accountable so the entire organization can achieve the right results. It’s not sales vs marketing — it’s sales and marketing working together to get a great result. Nothing more, nothing less. 

We’ve identified the problem and where we need to go. So, how you do you get there?

Fix #1: Focus On High ROI Marketing Activities First

What is more valuable to you:

  • One more blog post for a few more views? 
  • One great review that prospective buyers strongly relate to?

Hopefully, you’ll choose the latter. After all, talking to customers and getting a solid testimonial can help your sales team close leads today.  Current customers talking about their previous issues, the other solutions they tried, why they chose you, and the results you helped them achieve is marketing gold.

On the other hand, even the best blog content will take months to gain enough traction to impact your revenue.

Still, many marketers who say they want to prioritize customer reviews focus all their efforts on blog content and other “top of the funnel” (Awareness, Acquisition, and Activation) efforts. 

The bottom half of the growth marketing funnel (Retention, Reputation, and Revenue) often gets ignored, even though it’s where you’ll find some of the highest ROI activities.

1716755163 123 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To1716755163 123 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To

Most marketers know retaining a customer is easier than acquiring a new one. But knowing this and working with sales on retention and account expansion are two different things. 

When you start focusing on retention, upselling, and expansion, your entire organization will feel it, from sales to customer success. These happier customers will increase your average account value and drive awareness through strong word of mouth, giving you one heck of a win/win.

Winning the Retention, Reputation, and Referral game also helps feed your Awareness, Acquisition, and Activation activities:

  • Increasing customer retention means more dollars stay within your organization to help achieve revenue goals and fund lead gen initiatives.
  • A fully functioning referral system lowers your customer acquisition cost (CAC) because these leads are already warm coming in the door.
  • Case studies and reviews are powerful marketing assets for lead gen and nurture activities as they demonstrate how you’ve solved identical issues for other companies.

Remember that the bottom half of your marketing and sales funnel is just as important as the top half. After all, there’s no point pouring leads into a leaky funnel. Instead, you want to build a frictionless, powerful growth engine that brings in the right leads, nurtures them into customers, and then delights those customers to the point that they can’t help but rave about you.

So, build a strong foundation and start from the bottom up. You’ll find a better return on your investment. 

Fix #2: Join Sales Calls to Better Understand Your Target Audience

You can’t market well what you don’t know how to sell.

Your sales team speaks directly to customers, understands their pain points, and knows the language they use to talk about those pains. Your marketing team needs this information to craft the perfect marketing messaging your target audience will identify with.

When marketers join sales calls or speak to existing customers, they get firsthand introductions to these pain points. Often, marketers realize that customers’ pain points and reservations are very different from those they address in their messaging. 

Once you understand your ideal customers’ objections, anxieties, and pressing questions, you can create content and messaging to remove some of these reservations before the sales call. This effort removes a barrier for your sales team, resulting in more SQLs.

Fix #3: Create Collateral That Closes Deals

One-pagers, landing pages, PDFs, decks — sales collateral could be anything that helps increase the chance of closing a deal. Let me share an example from Lean Labs. 

Our webinar page has a CTA form that allows visitors to talk to our team. Instead of a simple “get in touch” form, we created a drop-down segmentation based on the user’s challenge and need. This step helps the reader feel seen, gives them hope that they’ll receive real value from the interaction, and provides unique content to users based on their selection.

1716755163 298 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To1716755163 298 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To

So, if they select I need help with crushing it on HubSpot, they’ll get a landing page with HubSpot-specific content (including a video) and a meeting scheduler. 

Speaking directly to your audience’s needs and pain points through these steps dramatically increases the chances of them booking a call. Why? Because instead of trusting that a generic “expert” will be able to help them with their highly specific problem, they can see through our content and our form design that Lean Labs can solve their most pressing pain point. 

Fix #4: Focus On Reviews and Create an Impact Loop

A lot of people think good marketing is expensive. You know what’s even more expensive? Bad marketing

To get the best ROI on your marketing efforts, you need to create a marketing machine that pays for itself. When you create this machine, you need to think about two loops: the growth loop and the impact loop.

1716755163 789 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To1716755163 789 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To
  • Growth loop — Awareness ➡ Acquisition ➡ Activation ➡ Revenue ➡ Awareness: This is where most marketers start. 
  • Impact loop — Results ➡ Reviews ➡ Retention ➡ Referrals ➡ Results: This is where great marketers start. 

Most marketers start with their growth loop and then hope that traction feeds into their impact loop. However, the reality is that starting with your impact loop is going to be far more likely to set your marketing engine up for success

Let me share a client story to show you what this looks like in real life.

Client Story: 4X Website Leads In A Single Quarter

We partnered with a health tech startup looking to grow their website leads. One way to grow website leads is to boost organic traffic, of course, but any organic play is going to take time. If you’re playing the SEO game alone, quadrupling conversions can take up to a year or longer.

But we did it in a single quarter. Here’s how.

We realized that the startup’s demos were converting lower than industry standards. A little more digging showed us why: our client was new enough to the market that the average person didn’t trust them enough yet to want to invest in checking out a demo. So, what did we do?

We prioritized the last part of the funnel: reputation.

We ran a 5-star reputation campaign to collect reviews. Once we had the reviews we needed, we showcased them at critical parts of the website and then made sure those same reviews were posted and shown on other third-party review platforms. 

Remember that reputation plays are vital, and they’re one of the plays startups often neglect at best and ignore at worst. What others say about your business is ten times more important than what you say about yourself

By providing customer validation at critical points in the buyer journey, we were able to 4X the website leads in a single quarter!

1716755164 910 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To1716755164 910 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To

So, when you talk to customers, always look for opportunities to drive review/referral conversations and use them in marketing collateral throughout the buyer journey. 

Fix #5: Launch Phantom Offers for Higher Quality Leads 

You may be reading this post thinking, okay, my lead magnets and offers might be way off the mark, but how will I get the budget to create a new one that might not even work?

It’s an age-old issue: marketing teams invest way too much time and resources into creating lead magnets that fail to generate quality leads

One way to improve your chances of success, remain nimble, and stay aligned with your audience without breaking the bank is to create phantom offers, i.e., gauge the audience interest in your lead magnet before you create them.

For example, if you want to create a “World Security Report” for Chief Security Officers, don’t do all the research and complete the report as Step One. Instead, tease the offer to your audience before you spend time making it. Put an offer on your site asking visitors to join the waitlist for this report. Then wait and see how that phantom offer converts. 

This is precisely what we did for a report by Allied Universal that ended up generating 80 conversions before its release.

1716755164 348 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To1716755164 348 Why The Sales Team Hates Your Leads And How To

The best thing about a phantom offer is that it’s a win/win scenario: 

  • Best case: You get conversions even before you create your lead magnet.
  • Worst case: You save resources by not creating a lead magnet no one wants.  

Remember, You’re On The Same Team 

We’ve talked a lot about the reasons your marketing leads might suck. However, remember that it’s not all on marketers, either. At the end of the day, marketing and sales professionals are on the same team. They are not in competition with each other. They are allies working together toward a common goal. 

Smaller companies — or anyone under $10M in net new revenue — shouldn’t even separate sales and marketing into different departments. These teams need to be so in sync with one another that your best bet is to align them into a single growth team, one cohesive front with a single goal: profitable customer acquisition.

Interested in learning more about the growth marketing mindset? Check out the Lean Labs Growth Playbook that’s helped 25+ B2B SaaS marketing teams plan, budget, and accelerate growth.


Disruptive Design Raising the Bar of Content Marketing with Graphic

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