Every couple of years, a hot, new trend bursts its way into the collective lexicon of the B2B marketer. In recent years, predictive marketing and ABM took center stage as marketers looked to hone in on the data that underpins just about everything th
Want to do better at demand generation? You need to set clear goals. According to Convince and Convert, setting clear goals gives you a staggering 429% greater chance of reporting success on your marketing campaigns.
Setting goals that are realistic with your resources and time isn’t easy, and you’ll get a better sense over time of what you and your team can achieve. The important thing is to be clear and specific with what you’re trying to accomplish, then break the goal down into pieces. What needs to be done to make the goal a reality? How long will that take? Think about obstacles and what you’ll do in the event that your plan goes off the rails.
Goals are different from one organization to another, so your priorities will have to be your own. With that in mind, we’ve laid out five goals that almost all growth-focused B2B marketers will want to pursue this year.
Make The Most Of Marketing-Influenced Leads
The biggest goal of any demand generation campaign is also the most obvious: to increase the leads that come in from your various marketing initiatives. Inbound marketing is starting to play a bigger and bigger role in the marketing landscape, and its popular initiatives — content syndication, advertising, blogging, social media, email, and paid search — are all bringing in leads.
But demand generation isn’t just about creating leads — it’s about high-quality leads that you can quickly convert to revenue. There needs to be clear communication between your sales and marketing teams about what a good lead looks like, how leads are followed up, and what the proper procedure is for nurturing and converting a lead. There should also be clarity about how the top, middle, and bottom of the funnel are defined.
Without clear-cut goals and definitions for what good marketing-generated leads look like, you’ll just be spinning your wheels.
Onboard New Technology Effectively
The right technology can be a crucial tool for making your operations more efficient or a quagmire that slows everyone down, depending on how effectively it’s integrated into your operations. When you adopt new technology, your top priority should be making sure that your team is onboarding the tools quickly and efficiently.
Failing to transfer data, insights, or other information from one platform to the next will create confusion, slowdowns, and even loss of crucial info if not executed correctly. That’s why everyone needs to be on the same page — if you switch from one CRM to another, there can’t be any stragglers. Everyone needs to be working in the same systems to adequately share information and do their jobs effectively.
Build The Right Team
To execute highly polished inbound marketing campaigns that will drive leads into your sales department, you’ll need a diverse set of talents. Different companies, products, and customers will need different kinds of marketing teams to best sort out their priorities, but the core set of skills you’ll need is the same.
First, you’ll need a leader who can manage the team, keep broader goals in mind, and coach the team to stay on track. You’ll need an SEO expert who can keep abreast of best practices and position you as an expert in your industry. You’ll need a talented writer for both long- and short-form content who can speak in the voice and tone of your company.
You’ll need product marketers and sales enablement specialists — people who provide customer-facing content, sales best practices, and other tools to the sales team in order to help them sell more effectively. Demand Generation experts are important too, building and nurturing prospects and customer relationships in the long term.
If you’re a startup with a small team, your team members will almost certainly have to wear multiple hats, so you’ll want to look for people with combination skills — content creators or digital marketers who also know SEO or demand specialists with WordPress and automation experience.
Once your team grows enough, you’ll need a developer. In a big company, this might be a separate department entirely, but on medium-sized marketing teams, developers are in the thick of marketing efforts. Websites are no longer optional, and the speed and quality of a site and its pages can make or break a company. A strong developer is crucial to driving meaningful demand generation through your site.
Eventually, you’ll need an analytics expert. No campaign is conceived perfectly, and an analytics expert can parse through data, recognize trends, and make recommendations based on their insights so the campaign can be improved. Until your company has grown enough to sustain this as a separate role, analytics will be one of the many duties that the rest of your marketers has to fulfill.
Ramp Up Conversion And Efficiency
Your goal after capturing a lead is to turn that lead into a paying customer, but there are often roadblocks in the way. Are there choke points in your funnel? Are there particular landing pages or points of contact that seem to be speed bumps for leads moving through their buyer’s journey?
Look at your process for places where nurturing can be improved throughout the customer lifecycle — resources that might help, points of contact being overlooked — and you’ll be able to increase lead velocity and generate more meaningful conversions.
Take a look at efficiency as well — the amount of time your teams need to spend to generate a certain pipeline value. If some kinds of leads are simply taking so long that they’re not worth your time, kick them to the curb or look at ways of speeding up your conversion process.
Clean Up Your Data
Your marketing and sales teams are nothing without data backing them up — quality marketing data is the best way to maximize business value, increase conversion rates, and create happy customers. Data-driven marketers use the information they gather to target ads, customize lead curation tactics, and track customer satisfaction over time.
Duplicate data, missing fields, invalid formatting, or invalid email and physical addresses can throw a wrench in the works, resulting in leads being contacted incorrectly or not contacted at all. Committing to practices of clean, organized data will boost revenue and lead nurturing.
In the end, every company’s demand generation tactics are going to look different. The important thing is that goals are clearly defined — define what your demand generation campaign should accomplish first, then figure out how to get there.
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