Ta kontakt med oss

MARKNADSFÖRING

Lessons in Buying Group Marketing

Publicerad

Lessons in Buying Group Marketing


First, you walk. Then you run. What if, instead, you learned to dance?

While Account-Based Marketing (ABM) is a key strategy today, going forward, B2B marketers will take a more holistic view. More of a dance than a race, marketing is evolving to look at the entire lifecycle and how to care for the customer relationship at each phase. Driven by this holistic approach, Forrester proclaims in its New Tech: Account-Based Marketing Q1, 2022 report that “the term Account-Based Marketing will disappear by 2025 as B2B organizations focus on the entire customer lifecycle.”

As part of this evolution: Buying Group Marketing (BGM). While ABM blankets your key accounts with messaging, BGM targets the specific people involved in purchase decisions at your key accounts. It does this through carefully crafted buying group personas and delivering custom campaigns to buying team members. It’s a person-based marketing approach versus an account-based one. BGM is about relationship building – externally and internally.

While that sounds great, the devil is in the details.

One of the keys to implementing a successful BGM strategy requires a fundamental paradigm shift in how you market. As Forrester reinforces in the New Tech report, “sales and marketing must come together to identify and prioritize buying groups for effective ABM.”

A lead isn’t something to be tossed over the wall at the MQL stage for sales to run with. Employing a BGM strategy, requires marketing and sales to work together at every stage of the customer lifecycle from awareness to deal and beyond.

If your marketing and sales alignment has looked more like a tussle than a dance in the past, it’s time to streamline your moves into elegant choreography. Here’s how you and sales can ditch your two left feet and learn to dance well together.

How BGM sales-marketing alignment works

Let’s set the scene with an example from the movie Dirty Dancing.

In this 80s classic, there is a scene where Baby (the main character) is learning to dance the Mambo with Johnny (the dance instructor). His usual partner, Penny is on the sidelines and can see that Baby is struggling to learn the steps. So, Penny steps in and guides Baby from behind while Johnny leads. And the three of them move together in fluid unison to the music until Baby gets the moves down and learns the dance.

How does this relate to Buying Group Marketing?

In an effective BGM strategy, Johnny represents the sales team, Penny represents the marketing team, and Baby is the prospect. Marketing and sales work together to guide the prospect into finding the right steps and rhythm that will help them succeed.

This is a fundamental shift in how sales and marketing has traditionally worked together. With BGM, marketing is no longer stuck on one side (or in Dirty Dancing… the corner) of the MQL wall but involved in all the stages of the process. Because of this, each department needs to know the steps and be able to dance together first. Then they can bring the prospect in and teach them to dance, too.

5 Steps to improve your marketing and sales alignment

Below are five key areas to help you improve your marketing and sales alignment for an effective BGM strategy:

1. Align goals and operations

To ensure that your funnel is unified, sales and marketing must have common goals and a common bench of metrics that deliver insights for continuous improvement. One of the first steps in the process is coming together to develop this operational backbone and to create service-level agreements, defining the goals and the lead management process from the top of the funnel to the bottom.

2. Share your data

Sales and marketing teams need to have access to all the same data and insights around contacts and accounts at the same time. This will prevent missteps and ensure that everything that is created is of value to your prospects and enhances their journey.

3. Orchestrate your messaging

Because the messaging in BGM is more highly targeted to buying group members, it’s important to team up and work through your air-cover narratives and carefully orchestrate them. The focus should be consistent messaging that is on-target for every successive stage of the funnel with the end goal of generating value for the buying team member.

4. Align your platform structure

Synergy across sales and marketing starts with your systems. The platforms that you choose to use for BGM, whether a CRM, marketing automation or sales engagement tool, should be engineered to share data, processes, messaging, goals and metrics.

5. Communicate continually

To execute a BGM strategy well, you will need to design a feedback loop between the sales and marketing organizations for regular communications regarding pain points and successes and for developing mechanisms to test and learn. Content is king, but context is everything because your data is shared. There should be an open communication loop to adjust campaigns for the context of the prospect along the way.

How a BGM approach helped a B2B industrial workforce platform close more deals

One B2B platform whose business is to digitize the industrial workforce took a Buying Group Marketing approach, using top-of-the-funnel advertising to close more deals.

This organization had a highly specialized audience that was particularly difficult to reach. While marketing did bring in some viable leads, the organization’s existing solution (that was based upon reverse IP look-up) was insufficient to produce high-quality leads. The result was nearly non-existent lead follow up by the sales team. The lack of follow up led to a strained relationship between sales and marketing.

There needed to be better alignment within the two teams and a more granular approach to marketing efforts. To do this, the marketing team used sales’ data to create highly customized advertising campaigns using Influ2.

Sales were delighted with the results, receiving immediate notifications about engagement on the ads from the contacts they had been trying to reach. They were also appreciative of the context-driven insights and lead prioritization that marketing was now able to deliver. And what started as a pilot was expanded globally.

Taking this approach helped the marketing and sales teams better collaborate. They defined the processes, determined the appropriate infrastructure, orchestrated their messaging, and openly communicated with each other to improve the pipe and close more deals.

A meaningful competitive advantage with BGM

According to Forrester, Many organizations have already evolved or are evolving processes and technologies to account for buying groups; those organizations have a meaningful competitive advantage over those who do not.”

Buying Group Marketing is here to stay. While there are many components involved in building an effective BGM strategy, marketing and sales alignment is among the most important. These five steps will help you get started with your BGM marketing-sales alignment.

Remember: not stepping on each other’s toes is great. But you can do much more. Learn to dance with your sales team and help your prospects achieve their lift!

This sponsored article was written by Nirosha Methananda, VP of marketing, Influ2.


About The Author

Influ2 is a Person-Based Advertising platform for B2B companies that is purpose-built for B2B marketers who want to amplify their enterprise reach and revenue. It serves ads to specific decision-markers via display and social networks and provides sales with person-based and buying group insights that drive engagement within their target accounts. Where attention is finite, Influ2 helps you get in front of and drive engagement with people that want to engage with you. For more information, visit www.influ2.com.



Källlänk

Klicka för att kommentera

Lämna ett svar

Din e-postadress kommer inte publiceras. Obligatoriska fält är märkta *

MARKNADSFÖRING

The Ultimate Guide to Product Marketing in 2023

Publicerad

The Ultimate Guide to Product Marketing in 2023

Product marketing is essential, even if you only sell one or two products at your organization.

(mer …)

Fortsätt läsa

MARKNADSFÖRING

3 email marketing shifts to make in 2023

Publicerad

3 email marketing shifts to make in 2023

Whew! We made it to 2023! As we closed in on the end of the year in December, the finish line seemed awfully far away. Many marketers told me they were busier than ever. 

I myself was fielding calls for strategy help, working on business deals and managing the chaos all the way to the eve of Christmas Eve, something that rarely happens in my 20-plus-year career. 

Look back and celebrate, then move on

The first business for 2023 will be to step back, clear your head and take stock of all the great things you accomplished in 2022 despite the odds (i.e., coming out of COVID, going into a rebound and COVID round 2, moving into supply-chain shortages and other hiccups, facing down a potential recession) and how they affected the work you did to succeed.

And now it’s 2023. I hope you got your budget request approved and you’re ready to move ahead with a clean slate and new KPIs to hit. You’re probably wondering, “What can I do now to grow my program?

3 directional changes to grow your email program

Naturally, every marketer’s goals will be unique. We have different audiences, challenges, resources and goals. But I’m focusing on three major directional changes with my clients this year. Which of these could help you succeed this year?

1. Stop sending so many emails

Yeah, I know. That sounds strange coming from somebody who believes wholeheartedly in email and its power to build your business. But even I have my limits!

Email during this last holiday shopping season was insane. In my 20+ years in the email industry, I cannot remember a time, even during the lockdown days of COVID-19, when my inbox was so full. 

I’m not the only one who noticed. Your customers also perceived that their inboxes were getting blasted to the North Pole. And they complained about it, as the Washington Post reported (“Retailers fire off more emails than ever trying to get you to shop“).

I didn’t run any numbers to measure volume, isolate cadences or track frequency curves. But every time I turned around, I saw emails pouring into my inbox. 

My advice for everyone on frequency: If you throttled up during the holiday, now it’s time to throttle back.

This should be a regularly scheduled move. But it’s important to make sure your executives understand that higher email frequency, volume and cadence aren’t the new email norm. 

If you commit to this heavier schedule, you’ll drive yourself crazy and push your audience away, to other brands or social media.

If you did increase cadence, what did it do for you? You might have hit your numbers, but consider the long-term costs: 

  • More unsubscribes.
  • More spam complaints.
  • Deliverability problems.
  • Lower revenue per email. 

Take what you learned from your holiday cadence as an opportunity to discover whether it’s a workable strategy or only as a “break glass in case of emergency” move.

My advice? Slow down. Return to your regular volume, frequency and cadence. Think of your customers and their reactions to being inundated with emails over 60 days.

2. Stop spamming

In that Washington Post article I mentioned earlier, I was encouraged that it cited one of my email gripes — visiting websites and then getting emails without granting permission first. 

I could have given the Post a salty quote about my experiences with SafeOpt and predatory email experiences (“Business stress is no excuse to spam“) for visitors to its clients’ websites. 

Successful email marketers believe in the sanctity of permission. That permission-based practice is what you want to be involved in. Buying a list means you don’t hire a company to sell you one, whether it’s a data broker or a tech provider like SafeOpt. 

Spamming people doesn’t work in the long term. Sure, I’ve heard stories from people who say they use purchased lists or companies like SafeOpt and it makes them money. But that’s a singular view of the impact. 

Email is the only marketing channel where you can do it wrong but still make money. But does that make it right? 

The problem with the “it made us money” argument is that there’s nowhere to go after that. Are you measuring how many customers you lost because you spammed them or the hits your sender reputation took? 

You might hit a short-term goal but lose the long-term battle. When you become known as an unreliable sender, you risk losing access to your customers’ inboxes.

Aside from the permission violation, emailing visitors after they leave your site is a wasted effort for three reasons:

  • A visit is not the same as intent. You don’t know why they landed on your site. Maybe they typed your URL as a mistake or discovered immediately that your brand wasn’t what they wanted. Chasing them with emails won’t bring them back.
  • You aren’t measuring interest. Did they visit multiple pages or check out your “About” or FAQ pages? As with intent, just landing on a page doesn’t signal interest.
  • They didn’t give you their email address. If they had interest or intent, they would want to connect with your brand. No email address, no permission.

Good email practice holds that email performs best when it’s permission-based. Most ESPs and ISPs operate on that principle, as do many email laws and regulations.

But even in the U.S., where opt-out email is still legal, that doesn’t mean you should send an email without permission just because somebody landed on your website.

3. Do one new thing

Many email marketers will start the year with a list of 15 things they want to do over the next two months. I try to temper those exuberant visions by focusing on achievable goals with this question: 

“What one thing could you do this year that could make a great difference in your email program’s success?”

When I started a job as head of strategy for Acxiom, I wanted to come up with a long list of goals to impress my new boss. I showed it to my mentor, the great David Baker and he said, “Can you guarantee that you can do all of these things and not just do them but hit them out of the park?”

Hmmmm…

“That’s why you don’t put down that many goals,” he said. “Go in with just one. When that one is done, come up with the next one. Then do another. If you propose five projects, your boss will assume you will do five projects. If you don’t, it just means you didn’t get it done.”

That was some of the best advice I’ve ever received and I pass it on to you. 

Come up with one goal, project or change that will drive your program forward. Take it to your boss and say, “Here’s what I’m going to do this year.”

To find that one project, look at your martech and then review MarTech’s six most popular articles from 2022 for expert advice.

You’ll find plenty of ideas and tips to help you nail down your one big idea to drive growth and bring success. But be realistic. You don’t know what events could affect your operations. 

Drive your email program forward in 2023

The new year has barely begun, but I had a little trouble getting motivated to take on what’s shaping up to be a beast of a year. You, too?

I enjoyed my time off over the holidays. Got in some golf with my dad and his buddies, ate great food and took time to step back and appreciate the phenomenal people I work with and our amazing industry. 

What gets me going at last? Reaching out to my team, friends and you. Much of my motivation comes from fellow marketers — what you need, what you worry about and what I can do to help you succeed. 

If you’re on the struggle bus with me, borrow some motivation from your coworkers and teammates, so we can gather together 12 months from now and toast each other for making it through another year. 

It’s time to strap on your marketer helmet and hit the starter. Here’s to another great year together. Let’s get the job done!


Get MarTech! Daily. Free. In your inbox.



Opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily MarTech. Staff authors are listed here.


Om författaren

Ryan Phelan

As the co-founder of RPEOrigin.com, Ryan Phelan’s two decades of global marketing leadership has resulted in innovative strategies for high-growth SaaS and Fortune 250 companies. His experience and history in digital marketing have shaped his perspective on creating innovative orchestrations of data, technology and customer activation for Adestra, Acxiom, Responsys, Sears & Kmart, BlueHornet and infoUSA. Working with peers to advance digital marketing and mentoring young marketers and entrepreneurs are two of Ryan’s passions. Ryan is the Chairman Emeritus of the Email Experience Council Advisory Board and a member of numerous business community groups. He is also an in-demand keynote speaker and thought leader on digital marketing.

Källlänk

Fortsätt läsa

MARKNADSFÖRING

Promote | DigitalMarketer

Publicerad

Promote | DigitalMarketer

Up until now, any “promotion” your customers have done has been passive. But in the promotion stage, your customers actively spread the word about your brands, products, and services. They tell stories, make recommendations, and share your offers because they truly believe in them.

Active promotion may be an affiliate or commission relationship—or just a free offer for sending some new customers your way. The point is, it’s a win-win for both of you.

One thing worth mentioning before we dive in; Happy customers don’t promote, SUCCESSFUL customers do. 

Our biggest question in the Promote stage is: How are you going to turn your BEST customers into your marketing partners? 

If you don’t have a referral program, an affiliate program, or a valued reseller program … who is willing to drive your message to the organization you need to build out these programs? This is word of mouth marketing, and it is very important so start thinking about how you want to build this. 

Look to your most successful customers, they’re going to be the people who actively promote for you. But then, let’s think about our customers who already have our prospects but are offering a different product or service. 

At DigitalMarketer we are a training and certification company, we are not a services based company. What that means is we don’t compete with agencies or consultants. This also means that there is an opportunity for us to work with agencies and consultants. 

When we realized this we decided to launch our Certified Partner Program, which you can learn more about at DigitalMarketer.Com/Partner. This program lets us work with the largest segments of our customer base, who have customers that we want but they’re providing a solution that we’re not providing. 

When we train our customers, they are able to use our company frameworks to work with their clients. If their clients want to learn to do their marketing themselves? We’re the first education company they see.

So who is that for you? Remember, it’s not the happy clients that refer, it’s the successful clients. If you want to create more promoters, make sure that you’re doing everything that you can as a marketer to ensure that you’re marketing great products so you can see great results. 

How can our example companies accomplish this?

For Hazel & Hems, they can add an ambassador program to grow their instagram following and increase credibility with viral posts. 

Ambassadors can earn affiliate commissions, additional boutique reward points, and get the chance to build a greater following by leveraging the Hazel & Hems brand.

For Cyrus & Clark, they can offer discounted rates to their existing clients if those clients are willing to refer them to their strategic partners. 

For construction companies, this could be a home builder recommending Cyrus & Clark services to the landscapers, real estate developers, and interior designers that they work with to serve their customers.



Källlänk

Fortsätt läsa

Trendigt

sv_SESvenska