Many CEOs often ask us while planning for 2020, “what’s the secret marketing sauce? What’s worked for your other clients when it comes to the marketing mix? What isn’t working?” And as most CMOs can agree, there’s no such thing as a one size fits all approach when it comes to having the “perfect” marketing mix. Every solution that companies are solving for are different. Every product line is different. Even every persona within the same buying decision team is unique.
As 2020 marketing campaign strategies start kicking off in the new year, marketing leaders should focus their efforts on getting ahead of the “what’s working” and “what isn’t working in the marketing mix” questions by shying away from big, long static campaigns. Marketers should shift towards agile, data-based campaigns to iterate and personalize to their respective prospects. You can download our Marketing Campaign Strategy Planning Checklist to kickstart your planning.
Launching data-based campaigns start with, you guessed it, existing data. Start by understanding what data is available, reliable, and recent that would be fit for analysis and aligned with your campaign goal(s). When diving into data for campaign insights, there are three key things to keep in mind:
- Compare and contrast behaviors of different personas and product-buyers
- Think bigger and look beyond first-party quantitative data
- Collaborate cross-functionally with sales and customer experience in your organization
Know the “Who” to Talk to Before Knowing the “What” to Talk About
In your data analysis, it is important to understand all members of the buying decision team of your products/services. This is captured by documented personas that are built by a joint effort of sales and marketing. You can use this guide to help you get started or refresh your existing personas. What are their common titles? What roles do they play? Are they a champion, economic buyer/deal blocker, influencer, or an end-user?
After understanding the who, you should then analyze the how and what by reviewing previous touchpoint paths. Personas, more often than not, have preferences for types and forms of content that they interact with and how they interact with it. Before executing on a touchpoint analysis, start with understanding what questions you want to be answered:
- What type of content is engaged with most at the top of the funnel? Educational? Brand awareness?
- Which channels are the most popular? Does it differ by persona?
- Do different personas interact with more or fewer touchpoints compared to others?
- Do customers who purchase different types of products/services interact with touchpoints differently?
- What is the average number of touchpoints across personas before they make a purchasing decision?
- Are there key predictors when a decision-maker will be more likely to sign a contract?
Document personas and/or the type of buyer in the contact file of your CRM. This will shed insights for the sales team of which personas have been spoken to and which hasn’t. This will also eventually allow sales to provide feedback to the marketing team on which personas need to be educated and exposed to certain educational content before.
Think Within and Beyond the Box With Go-To-Market Data
The best place to start is using first-party data, which includes email opens and clicks, web form submissions, webinar attendance, blog visits, phone conversations and in-person meetings with sales, social media engagement, and any other CRM data.
But don’t be afraid to think outside the box with trusted second and third-party data as well. It could be trusted data from your agency, third-party interviews, industry reports, etc. Regardless of first, second, or third-party data, ensure your data adheres with the new California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) that went into effect January 1, 2020.
Marketers should also be continuously informed on the industry, let alone macroeconomic trends as well to see if any data and/or insights could inform a campaign. If a recent customer or industry survey gleaned insights on specific topics, ensure you have bandwidth on your team to adapt your campaign/content strategy towards it.
Collaborate Cross-Functionally With Sales and Customer Experience for Their Data
Don’t just stick to quantitative data to advise your campaigns. Qualitative data, like buyer behaviors and customer trends, can also inform marketing campaigns. For example, a client recently was noticing more traction in one of their sales channels. After conducting won-loss interviews specific to the channel and understanding the particular motivations for choosing its product(s), the client adapted their content strategy to further guide prospects down its funnel.
Keep in mind, buyer behavior changes as the economy and market demands change, and it is essential to continually revisit insights pulled from data and data availability that can help inform your campaigns and overall content strategy. Though data-based campaigns call for agility, be sure to have clearly defined campaign goals (or SMART goals) and work backwards.
It’s not too late to shift your marketing campaigns to agile, data-based campaigns if you haven’t already. Click here for our Marketing Campaign Strategy Planning Checklist to help inform your planning and schedule a workshop for your team at our Executive Briefing Center, The Studio.
The Studio was designed exclusively for executive teams like yours. Teams with aggressive revenue growth goals who do not have a lot of time to waste and have a lot on the line. As a guest of The Studio, you will get unlimited access to SBI’s CEO, partners, and a handpicked team of experts. Together we’ll focus on making your number by getting a month of work done in just eight hours. It’s an amplified experience that you can only get in one place.