When you hear the word marketing, which word jumps to mind – “expense” or “investment”?
If you’ve chosen the former, then I’m confident in saying you’ve been doing the wrong marketing up to now. But that can change…
Marketing is most certainly an investment for any business – a necessary investment.
Just as you invest in product development/manufacturing, sales, operations, HR, and all the other areas of your business, so too should you invest in marketing. At the end of the day, without sales and customers, your business will fail. And why would anyone buy from you if they don’t know you or believe someone else can deliver better value or do things better?
“But” – I hear you say, I have a logo, a website, and a Facebook page, isn’t that all I need?
The short answer is No!
Understanding how Marketing works
Here’s how I think of marketing…. When done correctly, marketing will tell the right people about who you are and what you do so that they are interested in knocking on your front door.
Then sales take over and brings folks across your threshold and into your kitchen. And then, marketing takes over again and invites folks from the kitchen table onto the nice, comfy chair by the warm fire where they stay happily.
This is my analogy for lead generation / sales conversion / retention strategy. Let’s go through each of those steps in more detail.
Knocking on Your Front Door – Lead Generation
Apart from when you were much younger playing nick-naks on your neighbours’ doors, when have you ever knocked on someone’s door without knowing them? Okay, maybe you did when you were lost… but it’s not normal to turn up and someone’s door and say, “Hi, I want to be your friend. Can I come in for a coffee?”
It’s the same for your buyers. They want to know more about you, what you’re all about, how you’re different from others in your space. They want to trust you. Once this engagement has been established, then they may be ready to discuss buying from you. But if you go asking them to purchase from you without them knowing anything about you, then chances are you’ll be sent packing.
For many companies lead generation is the initial stage of the sales process.
In marketing, leads are potential customers who share their contact information to learn more about your products or services. Generating leads allows B2B businesses to market to the right type of customers and take them closer to making a purchase.
Lead generation is crucial for any business growth. By focusing on generating high-quality leads, you provide sales teams with a contact base of consumers that match your ideal customer profile. This, in turn, increases revenue from conversions.
Lead generation is also important for building your brand’s visibility and trust in your target audience. Even though not all of them are ready to buy your product when they first learn about it, you can nurture them until they eventually become sales qualified leads.
It means they are less likely to give your sales team a cold shoulder when they reach out to close the deal.
- Leads are your potential customers who can be nurtured and guided through the sales pipeline.
- Lead generation means creating interest in your products and services by collecting customers’ contact information. This is useful for any type of business.
- You can for example, create lead generation websites, blogs, forms, online content, offer discounts and coupons. You can use online and offline channels depending on your business model and resources.
There are two main lead generation types: inbound (when you pull in leads via websites) and outbound (involving direct forms of marketing).
Discover which ones can make the biggest impact on your individual business – contact Dynamic Marketing today to discuss what is most suitable for your business.
Crossing the Threshold
Another important area that marketing can support your business is in building awareness.
This part of the e marketing process is focused on familiarising new customers or refamiliarizing former customers with your brand and products or services.
Sales then turns this viewership into a profit, by converting those potential customers into actual ones.
Sales strategies are based on connecting with potential customers, talking, and listening to them, then converting them into paying customers.
When combining the company sales & marketing strategies – the sales process can be supported and assisted using pitch packs messaging and competitive analysis.
Sales teams can also be supported and helped by other various marketing strategic approaches – depending on the type of campaign and customer they are targeting.
Common activities include:
- Internet marketing
- Print marketing such as brochures
- Blog marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Social media marketing
- Video marketing
When sales and marketing are aligned, the business is poised to attract and qualify more leads and generate more revenue.
Comfortable &Happy Customers – Retention Strategy
Retention marketing sometimes referred to as loyalty marketing is a term that essentially boils down to keeping existing customers engaged, happy and spending. By delivering relevant and engaging content to your customers, overall, you can increase revenue for your business.
Research shows it costs far more to attract new customers then it does to retain existing ones. Ignoring retention marketing and solely focusing on customer acquisition will ultimately lead to a loss in revenue and profit margins so it makes sense that smart businesses put more focus on retention marketing.
It takes a lot to earn a customer’s loyalty. And once you have earned a customer’s business, the last thing you want to do is lose it. That’s why customer retention is an important key performance indicator for all businesses to measure and improve.
Customer retention is the ability of a company to keep customers coming back over a period of time.
Retaining a customer’s business indicates that a company’s product, service, or brand is pleasing to the existing customer enough for them to stay with the company rather than switching over to a competitor.
The most important thing to remembers is you can’t stop marketing to someone just because they’re a customer. In today’s marketplace where competition is high and loyalty is low, you must stay top of mind.
You can do this via any number of techniques and strategies. Good options include weekly email newsletters, running contests on social media, rewards for loyal customers and producing high-value content (like videos, podcasts, or downloadable PDF resources).
Companies that take retention marketing seriously will find that they are rewarded for their efforts. The ability to keep customers who you have worked so hard to acquire will pay off to those who make the investment.
Viewing Marketing as an investment
When it comes to marketing, many business owners often grapple with the same challenges. They want to increase sales but in a cost-effective way. They don’t want to throw good money after bad. They often get caught up in questioning if the “expense” of marketing is worth investing in and sometimes lose sight of the bigger picture.
The truth is marketing is an investment for every business – as long as it brings a return. Every social media profile, brochure, radio ad, or tweet can impact your business’ bottom line. If these activities (or any marketing initiative) have the power to sell a product or service, and I know for a fact they do, then sure engaging in such activities is an investment?
Establish key performance indicators whereby you can see that the plan is on track and things are progressing the way you and your marketing consultant have planned. This will help you understand how your investment is paying off. Keep building the plan based on past performances and keep reviewing results and tweaking where necessary.
My experience encompasses more than 20 years working for both B2B and B2C brands. From Fortune 500 brands, such as JPMorgan, to high-growth international start-ups, like Digicel, I have a proven track record of helping companies achieve their goals through effective, customer-centric marketing strategies.
If you want help investing in your company’s future, please reach out and contact Dynamic Marketing today.