The proceeding blog post was originally written during my time as Marketing Coordinator for the Intelechy Group and their company blog, 'The Revenue Engine.' See the original post by clicking here.
Over the past decade, new technology and tools have helped marketers from all industries become more empowered in creating their campaigns. Walk up to any marketer and ask how many Twitter followers they have, or how many viewers their company’s last webinar locked in, and you’re sure to get a quick answer. However, ask them how much revenue each of those marketing activities brought in, and you might receive a blank stare.
In today’s world of online reputation and Klout scores, it’s easy to get bogged down in making your company popular online, but I guarantee you, your CEO cares about one thing: the bottom line. Don’t get me wrong I’m a huge proponent of social media, video webinars, and guerilla marketing, but if you can’t accurately show how much money those activities are making for your company, you’ll never know if your campaigns are worth your time.
Here’s how you can change your activities to more efficiently measure revenue growth:
Learn to Love Today’s Buyer
No matter what a person is bringing out their money for, there has never been a time when buyers were more educated about their purchases than they are today. We no longer walk into the nearest store and speak with a salesman. Instead, we open up our web browsers and go to resources like review sites, social media, white papers, and online news articles to learn about the products we’re interested in. When my wife and I purchased our 2012 Toyota Prius, we researched our car of choice for a solid two weeks before we even set foot in a dealership. This allowed us to focus on getting the best deal, and not on the technology, safety, or bells and whistles of the car.
Companies need to embrace today’s buyers. They can do this by engaging with customers across digital channels:
- Publish content to educate your prospective consumers.
- Utilize social media to answer customer questions directly, instead of making them read generalities on another site. This type of engagement will win you brand followers, and buyers.
Make Sales and Marketing Greater than the Sum of its Parts
In most companies there are sales teams and there are marketing teams. The marketing team creates strategies to generate leads, which then enter your funnel for the sales team to close on. This dichotomy can work in some environments, but in others it can lead to infighting. If revenue falls the marketing team is sure to say the sales team isn’t closing, while the sales team is sure to reply that their leads aren’t warm. It’s time to integrate the two teams, and hold them equally accountable for sales revenue. Did your marketing team create a topical, engaging webinar with over 5,000 viewers? That’s great, but don’t stop there. How many of those thousands actually converted into sales? What made them buy? And if they didn’t buy, why not?
Get your marketing and sales teams together to decide on universal terms. Using words like “leads” or “prospects” may mean completely different things to your copywriter than it does to your sales manager. Once everyone is on the same page, decide on mutually beneficial metrics to report on. Try not to be distracted by metrics that make you feel good, like webinar viewers, or Facebook likes. Focus more on the metrics that will get you in good standing when you present them to your CEO.
Get your sales and marketing teams together on a weekly basis to communicate any issues that need to be resolved. Is there a piece of collateral that needs to be tweaked? Does a sales script need to be amended to reflect a new value proposition? These short and to-the-point meetings should liven up communication and reduce the chance of an “us vs. them” mentality.
Find the Right Toolkit
The past few years have seen an explosion in tools for marketers to strategize, launch, and measure their campaigns. In most cases these tools are as diverse as the general public. Do some research and find the right tool for your business. Can your current system help to efficiently communicate with your audience and track your efforts throughout the sales cycle? If it can’t, keep looking.
Doing these will help your marketing team reinvent itself into a revenue driving machine.