Posts Tagged With: b2b marketing

B2b Marketers rekindle the flame of your CFO this Valentine’s Day #ShowMeTheROMI

ROMI:

It stands for return on marketing investment. Quite simply if you want to rekindle the flame with the finance people this Valentine’s you ought to be discussing financial metrics with them; their language. Your number of retweets may be great for spreading a message, creating brand awareness, getting traffic to your e-commerce site even, but Retweets is not a figure the  Chief Financial Officer (CFO) can add to the profit and loss sheet. Retweets, shares, click-through rates, open rates, impressions,  bounce rates are not metrics that will save the board of directors’ jobs at a share holder’s meetings.

Investment vs expense:

Rather than complaining about marketing budgets being cut again, or that CMOs are still the first to go in a “restructure”, how about working to reposition marketing from being a cost to an investment? That’s what marketing should be today, with all of the metrics available to us with the power of digital, marketers should be able to identify what’s driving sales, leads, high response rates, traffic and conversions.

ROMI

B2b sales/marketing cycle:

As B2b marketers we need to take buyers though the sales cycle, we need to target them with relevant content for each stage of the buying cycle. We do this with database marketing and looking at responses to previous campaigns.

Yes, it can take one or two quarters for sales to be closed, if not longer, however, that’s what we should be aiming to do with marketing eventually and we should be tracking this carefully. If deals are not closing, then perhaps we need to look at targeting our loyal segment  more often for further revenue, with highly targeted bespoke content. We need to take two different approaches when targeting loyal customers vs prospects with marketing campaigns.

Eventually we should be looking at B2b leads generated and opportunities closed, there are sophisticated tools, like Sales Force.com SFDC which can help to track this. Sales, leads, closed deals, revenue generated and profits are metrics that can help marketers to rekindle a flame with the finance people, we need to talk in terms of finance, revenue, to demonstrate return on marketing investment (ROMI) and to continue to receive investment in terms of budget.

The metrics which are represented in the higher end of the funnel above are informative to us as marketers and help us to generate the latter results, providing we are capturing contact data throughout the cycle with marketing communications we should be able to get the final end results of sales, leads and closed deals. I’m not saying that finance have no interest at all in these results, they can help to tell a story, however, their key performance indicators KPIs are based on financial metrics and they’re responsible for budget allocation.

Reporting:

You should place your metrics on the diagram above to determine their relevancy or value, you should also be capturing contact data for follow up at each stage or using your database to take contacts on the sales cycle journey. Learn to love metrics as a B2b marketer, but make sure they’re relevant, don’t swim in  a sea of metrics.

Marketing ans sales alignment 

In order to get some of these financial metrics we will rely on sales, there’s still a gulf between sales and marketing teams in many firms and marketing and sales teams need to work closer together to report ROMI.

It’s not easy

It’s not easy to demonstrate ROMI, it involves using campaign tools, regular reporting, campaign management tools.

There are several ways to align with sales:

  • keep sales well informed in advance before launching campaigns
  • Meet with sales after a campaign/event for a de-brief, feedback
  • Use incentives to encourage sales to report and follow-up on leads if all else fails
  • Regularly meet with sales teams and senior members
  • Communicate to sales and the organisation with regular e-newsletters

Challenges

It’s not always easy to report ROMI, it takes time, however, every marketer should aspire to report it, with digital marketing this has been made significantly easier. It also involves working closely with other teams such as marketing I.T., sales, data marketers in large organisations, however, off-the shelf campaign management tools can help smaller companies to do this well too. Using good call to actions can help to generate ROMI.

To learn more about reporting on ROMI for B2b digital campaigns in a global context you can read:

Emerging Business Online, Global Markets and the Power of B2b Internet Marketing an New York FT Press Publication.

Hard copy: http://www.amazon.com/Emerging-Business-Online-Internet-Marketing/dp/0137064411

Kindle Version: http://www.amazon.com/Emerging-Business-Online-Marketing-ebook/dp/B0045U9W96/ref=tmm_kin_title_0/279-9376293-6540405

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Categories: B2b, Budgeting, Global Marketing, Lead Generation, ROMI | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

5 Ways to grow your B2b #EmailList for #GlobalMarketing purposes

Email marketing

Email marketing alone is a powerful medium, combined with other communication channels, as part of an integrated campaign; it’s even more effective.

With all of the benefits of email, such as measurability, low costs, low risks, interactivity and being environmentally friendly, it’s also accepted and well received in various global markets as a marketing channel. If highly targeted, relevant and localised, it can generate high response rates and return on investment.

So even though your marketing budgets are being scrutinized and cut you can still grow your business. First, you’ll need to grow and store a high quality list of companies and contacts with email addresses for your new markets. This is pivotal to your email marketing strategy; there are two ways you can do this, organically or through acquisition.

Growing your email list organically

Localised sites

Email addresses and data can be organically acquired and captured via online channels such as localised websites, landing pages, banner advertisements on localised third party sites and popular local social media sites. Your sites or landing pages should request email addresses and opt-in permission on forms.

You can run campaigns on all of the above sites offering incentives for people to follow your call to actions, which should lead visitors to completing data captures forms. As a starting point forms should be brief, so as not to lose the contact, capturing the most basic information like: company name, contact name, email address, email marketing opt in permission and mobile number. Incentives such as localised free whitepapers or cool gadgets, like iPads, can be used to persuade contacts to provide their data for follow-up. Emerging markets have huge young populations and so cool gadgets, as incentives, work well; however, you want to ensure you’re capturing relevant, quality data too for further B2B marketing, not just contacts who want to win a prize.

You can test different offers by measuring the number and quality of responses captured in comparison to others used for different campaigns. Quality can be measured by tracking the number of leads generated from responses with call centre follow up, by reviewing the companies captured, and measuring responses to follow up campaigns.

As the data captured is self reported you’ll want to ensure the validity of data, you can do this by asking contacts to enter their emails twice, using automated format checks, or by sending confirmation links to the emails entered, checking to see if emails are valid.

Local tradeshows, sponsorships and conferences

Although online marketing works well in many global markets, traditional marketing is still very popular and together they complement each other and helping to create ROMI.

Whether you’re hosting, exhibiting or sponsoring a local event, they offer excellent opportunities, which shouldn’t be missed, for you to grow your database in global markets. With physical, live events, you’re already interacting with an audience who are interested in what you have to say; perhaps they’ve liaised with your sales team. Data captured at events therefore, is of high quality relative to other forms of data capture.

You can also accept business cards. Pre-event data can be captured by using localised registration sites when marketing your events. Alternatively, if you’re sponsoring the event, the organiser may be able to provide you with the data.

Virtual events also work well, you can capture data via registration pages for webcasts, which are great for offering contacts in global markets a chance to attend your events virtually; they’re also lower risk for you in comparison to physical events.

Above the line and print media

Advertising in localised magazines, brochures or on billboards are also a tool, you should ensure that call to actions drive contacts to online localised landing pages with data capture forms requesting email and opt in permissions, or to call centres, short phone codes can work well depending on the market, again use incentives to drive this behaviour.

Sales teams

Sales teams working with local markets will capture data for accounts perhaps via popular account management tools like Sales Force.com (SFDC), provided their contacts have given their email opt in permissions; they can be targeted with marketing messages.

Acquiring lists

Data brokers

Just 10 years ago it was difficult if not impossible to buy business marketing lists for emerging markets with email addresses; email lists are more common today for emerging markets and can be purchased through international data brokers or brokers based in local markets.

Quality

Quality sometimes needs to be validated for purchased lists. If you’ve purchased a list which has delivered a high bounce rate, you should probably not purchase from the same data broker in the future or request a refund. You may be able to request sample data and test it before purchasing an entire list for emerging markets.

Cleaning lists

Acquired lists for global markets can be “cleaned” by call centres in local markets, or by using call centres who hire agents, that can speak local languages, to improve and ensure accuracy.

Call centre agents can call contacts:

  • Checking for inaccurate, undeliverable email addresses and duplicate records
  • Checking for typos or spelling errors
  • Checking for obsolete records or data
  • Removing/flagging competitor contacts

All of the above depends on the brief to the call centre; the primary objective with this exercise is to increase reliability, relevancy and quality of the database. This will save you costs of wasted marketing efforts and time by reducing inaccurate data.
Emailing a contact in a new market on a newly acquired list, perhaps as an unrecognised company, may seem out of the blue for them, even if they’ve subscribed for “third-party email,” so you need to bear this in mind with your initial messages. If you’ve grown your database organically, contacts are likely to be more receptive to your messaging and familiar with your company.

You might get a quicker return on investment if you purchase a permission-based contact list for a new market instead of creating an integrated campaign to acquire home-grown or organic data which is typically built over a longer time-frame. If you have the budget you can do both.

Storing data for global markets

You’ll need to develop and maintain a database for new markets. In some markets you’ll collect data for contacts and companies in local languages, with local language characters i.e. non-Latin; your data warehouse should be capable of storing local language characters if that’s the case.

This consideration needs to be made at the planning stage of your business strategy; you’ll also need to involve IT to support this request or work with an outsourced international data management vendor to do this for you.

To find out more about B2b marketing in global markets, you can read Emerging Business Online, Global Markets and the Power of B2b Internet Marketing an New York FT Press Publication.

Hard copy: http://www.amazon.com/Emerging-Business-Online-Internet-Marketing/dp/0137064411

Kindle Version: http://www.amazon.com/Emerging-Business-Online-Marketing-ebook/dp/B0045U9W96/ref=tmm_kin_title_0/279-9376293-6540405

Categories: B2b, Email Marketing, Global Marketing, Localisation | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

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