It can be overwhelming to figure out how to put a campaign together – especially one that will generate tangible business results that you can be proud to showcase after all is said and done. For this reason, we’ve put together a quick guideline to follow as you solidify your plans for 2018.
First up – Define your strategy. Sounds obvious but it’s the foundation to any successful campaign. What are you trying to generate with your campaign – awareness, net-new leads or are you upselling into your current client base? Will this campaign be the first time you’re reaching out to this group? Will you have a nurture campaign to continue engaging leads that get generated but not converted?
2. Next – Define your target audience. This goes beyond just outlining who your typical buyer persona is but factors in other key components, such as:Marketplace conditions. Have there been any recent announcements, mergers or acquisitions? Have there been any regulatory mandates or changes that would highly impact your target audience and how or when they’ll be making decisions?Time of year – Is it a particularly busy time of year (i.e. heavy conference season, local elections etc.)Finally, “the need behind the need”. Many people approach campaigns from a very functional perspective (i.e. you need X solution to resolve X pain point) but bear in mind that there are other factors influencing a person’s decision making. Do they have to convince their manager of your value? Can you provide information upfront that will help them do that? Are there other happenings at their company that are taking precedence and if so, what does that timeline look like?
3. Determine your theme and the supporting communication pillarsIt’s helpful to have a catchy theme that resonates with your target audience. Equally as important, though, are the communication pillars you define in order to align all of your content. For example, we ran a campaign recently that had the following communication pillars:EntrepreneurshipProfitabilityProof points (or success stories)These pillars provided the framework we needed to figure out what type of content would align best with each area.
4. Define what content aligns with each communication pillarOnce the communication pillars are defined, determine what type of marketing assets would be most effective in each phase. Going to back to the above example, because we were approaching net-new prospects, we deliberately did not talk about our company or solutions right out of the gate. We developed more thoughts leadership material with content that would appeal to our target audience using third party sources. We looked to present interesting stats and establish credibility first. After that, we began to show more of the practical ways our target group could benefit from the solution we were selling and presented it as a “see for yourself” tool vs. us continuing to talk about how great we were ☺. Finally, we presented peer companies, or proof points, that had already purchased from us and highlighted all the awesome benefits they were seeing as a result.
5. Develop a content scheduleOnce your content is outlined and you know how long each piece will take to develop (i.e. timelines vary by asset), lay it out on a calendar and make sure you don’t have any gaps in communication. Sometimes a particular asset takes longer than expected which can create a gap in communication which ultimately takes away from the momentum of the campaign. Bake in extra time and make sure you’re including tele-sales since a phone call can boost engagement by as much as 30% throughout your campaign!
6. Define your KPIs and what determines successWhile many people tell marketers to define their KPIs at the very beginning, we’ve found that it’s helpful to do this after the communication strategy, types of assets and overall calendar is outlined. Then, you will have more visibility to what kinds of tools you can leverage to measure the success of your campaign and you should leverage them throughout the campaign, not just at the end. For example, for the profitability pillar, we developed an online pricing tool so prospects could get an idea of ROI directly. The information they put into the tool was something we monitored and was a key determining factor of how effective that particular marketing asset was for us. It also provided key data that our Inside Sales team used at the time to determine who they would proactively call. Of course, you always have your standard tools (Google analytics, marketing platforms such as HubSpot or Marketo) that will give you data and insight to performance as well.
We hope these recommendations provide some useful tips and are happy to share any additional insights if you have questions! Feel free to reach us at firstname.lastname@example.org