This is an uncertain time for marketers. Things change every day: the stock market slump, school closings, city and border closures and much more. It’s very difficult to be a marketer at a time like this.
We have to be fast and slow at the same time: to communicate quickly; However, wait patiently for executives to communicate (and communicate again) new lines of business. Everything seems to be a moving target.
I understand how difficult and stressful it is to do marketing now. Ryan Lewis, President of Campfire marketingand I had a preparatory call for our May ABM Event in Portland last week. During this meeting, we quickly opted for a 30-minute webinar to share our thoughts on what marketers can do proactively to keep things moving.
You can watch the on-demand video below in this blog post.
Here are the three takeaways if you’d rather read.
Customize content and news based on new business directions
In the webinar I talked about business lines that have changed dramatically in this bad time. Many companies evaluate their price packages and make sensible adjustments in order to increase the user base or maintain sales.
An example that I used during my webinar is loom. In his email to all subscribers (see below):
– –The freemium offer has been expanded from 25 videos to unlimited
– –Reduce existing pro pricing from $ 10 / month to $ 5 / month
– – W.Teach teachers and students to use Loom for free
As you can see, the business strategy, pricing, and feature changes were included in this email.
And the changes have a big impact on messaging, positioning, and content. Think about it: Prices and offers need to be updated on the website and new content created for the sales team and customer service team. The FAQ and support pages also need to be updated. There is a chain reaction effect when the business direction or product range changes.
In addition, Loom marketers need to change existing content or create new content to make it easier for teachers and students to use Loom. The use of Loom remains the same, but how you explain it to teachers and students is different from the explanation for business users. The content must be relevant for teachers and students.
– –The challenge is that management may take a long time to make strategic decisions and assess the pros and cons. This is where “Hurry up and wait” comes into play. You have to be agile enough to act quickly, but patient enough to wait for the leadership from above. I know it’s difficult.
– –Another important point for us is the ability to connect the points with the different team members. In a company, you may have a web team that manages the website, the customer support team that manages customer calls, professionals who update the products, product marketing teams that revise their messages, and the sales enablement team that updates the sales content. If there is an all-inclusive war room huddle in such a situation, everyone can move in the same direction and react quickly to important decisions.
– –Change and create new content based on new business decisions.
Work with your sales team and stay close
I wrote a blog post about thatMain reason for misalignment between sales and marketing and the need to build a relationship with them. As I said in the webinar, NOW is the perfect time to get closer to your sales team. In B2B, sales should be your best friend.
When customizing or creating new content, you also need to consider sales requirements. Some marketing content can certainly either be used directly by the sales team or passed on to end users through sales reps. This is particularly important when sales reps cannot visit their potential customers or existing customers in person and need to communicate via phone, video conference, SMS, or email.
Let’s put things in context for sale
To put the sale in context, we have to try to recommend the ideal content formats for different types of communication and assign the content to the sales phases. Some of my previous blogs are there a basic structure for that exactly.
We not only have to understand the content requirements of the sale, but also the sales schedule. At the beginning of the year, sales may have ambitious goals to attract “new net customers”. In the current situation, the sales mix and the ratio of net new and existing customers may have changed for this and the coming quarters.
Although the annual sales target may remain the same, quarterly sales are likely to be adjusted. In this case, the goals of marketing generation to generate demand should not remain static, and you must proactively seek approval from management to adjust them accordingly. Don’t wait for your management to come to you. Go to your management with a plan.
Another way to support sales is to restore the balance between the top of the funnel and the bottom of the reach of funnel marketing. One way to support the bottom of the funnel with Account Based Marketing (ABM). Account-based marketing provides air protection to accelerate sales. I understand somethingABM is and my approach.
– –It’s time to watch and understand how sales communicate with customers using online conference tools
– –As you change and create new content, you must either create sales-oriented content or work with your peers who create sales-oriented content. Another element to consider is ensuring that content can be shared or easily integrated into the online conference tools used by the sales team.
– – Assign content to the sales phases and put it in a context that sales will understand
– –Scale Air Cover Account-based Marketing (ABM) for strategic and key accounts
The use of marketing technologies (Martech) is a must
In our webinar, Ryan Lewis, President of Bonfire Marketing, spoke about the importance of using various online communication tools to further drive marketing. Webinars, conferences and tools for virtual events such as Zoom, Webex, or On24 are a good substitute for AGV communication. He also discussed using different platforms like ION, Tiled, and Turtl Create interactive content to complement typical PDF long-form content. Another thing he suggested is to use Vidyard, PathFactory, and Instapage deliver personalized content and experiences.
When it comes to marketing tactics, he and I are on the same page: involve direct and indirect (sales partners and resellers) sales people, understand their needs and strive to support them. One of his other suggestions was to use direct mail: send thoughtful gifts to your customers or prospects, even lunch, to keep you up to date. People still crave a nice, personal touch. Direct mail is not dead.
– –Present a list of online communication tools that marketers and sales can use
– –Delight and surprise your customers with thoughtful touches and make them feel like they are not alone
– –Create content with the mindset of WIIFM (what’s in it for me?)
Let’s be proactive and let’s move on
One last thing I mentioned was the budget. The marketing budget is likely to be reviewed during the downturn. In the corporate world, the travel budget is usually cut first, then the marketing budget. One way to save or minimize your budget cut is to align your budget with sales goals and initiatives. You have to be able to show that selling whatever you do benefits directly from it.
Difficult times are ahead. When my friend Lissa Blackaby Forsterer, said: “Although the B2B marketing budget tends to be cut first, it will also be the first to be brought back when the situation normalizes.” Sales need marketing support! “
Remember brainstorming is free. In any case, I would like to hear from you. 🙂
Watch the on-demand webinar:
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