Thinking You Need More Tactics? You Are Wrong
Admittedly, B2B enterprise marketers are in a tight spot. There are constant pressures to drive more revenue from marketing and that tends to leave no stone unturned when it comes to using marketing tactics. As the demand generation pressures mount, there seems to be a drive to try every tactic, just in case one more lead may come from it.
According to the ANNUITAS 2014 B2B Enterprise Demand Generation Survey, more than half of marketers measure their demand generation programs and campaigns according to metrics like revenue, pipeline and opportunities. However, less than three percent call themselves effective in reaching those goals. Their approach to tactics may explain this disconnect between expectations and results.
It’s not what many marketers think that is causing the disconnect…it’s not choosing the wrong tactics. A majority (over 60%) run more than 15 programs or campaigns on an annual basis. It’s probably easier to list tactics that aren’t being tried at this point, than those that are.
Too many marketers are engaging in a flurry of tactics without a true Demand Generation Strategy. Only 38% of survey respondents say their campaigns are perpetual, with 27% indicating the timing is “when required,” putting more than a quarter of marketers in a purely reactive mode for demand generation. It’s a difficult position for most marketers to be in and certainly, not optimal from the buyers perspective either.
Creating a perpetual Demand Generation Strategy takes time and considerable effort with inputs from across the business and the market, including customers and prospects to obtain meaningful Buyer Insights. A strong foundation of critical Buyer Insights will tell you what your buyers care about and how they want to learn about solutions to those issues. This in turn, helps in building the content marketing strategy that aligns to the buyer’s journey.
For marketers who have developed a true strategy, not a tactical-driven marketing plan, the payoff is huge. A holistic, buyer-centric Demand Generation Strategy allows enterprise marketers to not only meet revenue goals today, but also create a predictable, ongoing revenue stream for the future and an ability to see what is driving results (which channels are performing, what content is being consumed and when true buyer Engagement occurs).
With a strategic foundation, tactics are and should only be about choosing the right channels to share your information, not about putting more information in front of your buyers at random times to drive more leads. Enterprise B2B marketers have the opportunity to create sustainable value for the business by creating effective demand generation programs supported by a solid strategy. Marketers that only think about the tactics won’t be able to drive real results and certainly cannot drive perpetual revenue or a positive buying experience.
Author: Lee Anne Wimberly @lwimberly is Director, Strategy for ANNUITAS