Even in the age of SEO, targeted ads and strategic lead capture, marketing still has its very own flat earthers. Yes, the B2B space is choc-a-block with marketing atheists who refuse to believe in its value. Their main qualm, it seems, is a well-trodden stereotype. That marketing is inherently unpredictable, untrustworthy and (God save me) fluffy.
Of course, this isn’t true. But this perception didn’t save marketers from receiving some of the most brutal budget cuts of the COVID crisis. So, like Ed Miliband post-bacon butty, it’s time to rehabilitate our image. Once and for all. That means making marketing more reliable, more profitable and more robust than ever before.
Identified your ideal customer profile (ICP) a few years back and forgot about it? Then it’s time to dust away the cobwebs. Your ICP should be a living, breathing entity that underpins your whole marketing strategy. Because if you don’t really know who your ICP is, then how can you create content that combats their pain points? How can you qualify leads? And how can you justify your ad spend?
The quick answer is, you can’t. So to make your marketing more predictable, conduct monthly reviews of your ICP. To do that, check your CRM for figures and get input from sales. By doing so, you’ll be fully prepared to pivot even when seismic shifts happen overnight.
Without a data addiction, marketing costs can spiral and sink businesses. That means every decision you make needs to be backed by facts. For example, let’s say someone in your marketing team has an idea for an ad campaign. They run it by you and other team members who all agree it’s knockout. Do you think you should:
Of course, the answer is test, test, test. The ad you think is your strongest may be your weakest or vice versa. So instead of throwing the kitchen sink at a campaign based on gut feeling, you should always start small. This either makes your success more predictable or your failure less costly. It’s a win-win.
Serious stuff is going down every day. That makes it tempting to become more reactive than proactive with your marketing. And content strategies often suffer most because of this. With writers inundated by blog ideas about current affairs and workplace culture, their SEO projects are pushed aside. This is a very, very bad idea.
Because visibility on search engines in every business’ ticket to … well … more business. So if you can get a quick win by producing some super timely content your audience is demanding, by all means go for it. Just make sure you’re still chipping away at your long-term content targets by writing about your niche. This is the content that will give you a reliable stream of business for the coming years, rather than the coming days.