For marketers, proving how marketing influences sales can get a little tricky. So how can marketers become increasingly effective at generating leads and sales prospects?
In a recent study conducted by Ascend2, where 190 marketing professionals were surveyed, the number one strategic priority for 2019 was to increase sales prospects and leads. Several marketing professionals are being held to standards beyond brand awareness initiatives. Sure, brand awareness and deepening the brand imprint is important in business, but corporate decision makers are increasingly expecting marketing efforts to generate sales prospects and leads.
For marketers, proving how marketing influences sales can get a little tricky. In fact, it was reported as the #1 challenge and barrier to marketing success. So how can marketers become increasingly effective at generating leads and sales prospects? There are three crucial steps to making these efforts successful:
This seems to be an obvious one, but it needs to be stated. Weekly meetings to discuss how sales are going are crucial to understanding what’s happening in both the industry market and for the company in general. After all, who better understands your clients and customers better than the sales and project management departments?
It’s good to start with a conversation about the climate of business, understanding how the company gets new business, what’s important to the customer, and the sales-points the business development team uses can be useful in creating effective sales marketing.
Together, create the sales funnel for your company’s average customer. How can they hear about the company? (Content marketing, advertisements, referral, etc.are all top of the funnel) How can you continue to keep your brand top of mind for them? (This is the middle of the funnel.) How and when are they usually ready to convert? (Bottom of the funnel). Understanding the customer process will ultimately help guide the sales marketing efforts and content creation.
Map out your business goals for the quarter and create specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely marketing objectives. Otherwise known in the marketing world as SMART objectives.
Here’s an example of a company who wishes to increase revenues, and has an average sales close rate of 2%:
We’ve always talked about maintaining a ratio of 80:20 when it comes to content marketing. 80% of all content you push out needs to be customer-centric and branded. The remaining 20% goes toward promotional and sales-driven content. Lead generation content falls under this 20%.
Based on your conversations with your sales team, it’s important to create content that resonates with customers. What do they care about most? What makes them buy from your company above other competitors? How can you turn those thoughts into content and lead generating content?
You can also align your website with your sales funnel, too! Check out “How to Align Your Website & Sales Funnel to Convert Leads”