June 6, 2017

The Real Question to Ask Marketing

The question I hear most often from new clients is: “How can you get us sales leads”?

I understand the need. Sales = growth. It justifies spending. The problem? In the mapointingrketing-PR funnel, lead generation is just one of many options available to achieve goals. Additionally, for most organizations, marketing-PR trade-offs will be necessary. Before putting such a strict emphasis on lead generation, I recommend companies ask: 

What marketing-PR can we skip and still achieve our goals?” Although there is no pat answer, making the right marketing trade off decisions for your business requires strategy–and a smart PR-marketing strategy is the fast track to achieving business goals.

Your strategic thinking needs to identify:

  • Where to market? Base this on the customer journey—map out your 20-25 brand exposure points with buyers.
  •  Who to influence? Segment and prioritize your market based on business objectives like ROI, upselling, cross-selling, expanding buyer sets or geographies, finding investors or buyers…
  • How to influence? Understand what your buyer’s think and feel; when you get in their head, they get in your bed.
  • What to offer? Your offering is great, but really—who cares? Make your offering desirable with a “can’t say no” wrapper, that addresses known buyer hurdles.
  • When to influence? Choreograph a symphony of outreach strategies based on an integrated view of client needs, market opportunities, and company insights and news.
  • Available marketing-PR budget? Understanding how much your company is willing to invest in marketing-PR will help you assess your plan and filter out the best options, based on the available budget.
  • The why behind your trade off decisions? Since you won’t be able to do everything you know you could do to influence your buyer along the journey, base your strategic trade offs on what your company needs to achieve, but influence this with the cost of not doing something, and what you know you can be great at.

When you make smart marketing-PR trade off decisions you will have a strategy that achieves what your company needs—be it leads or anything else. But don’t stop there. Build on your efforts with a multi-phased approach to marketing-PR that adds and removes tactics along the way. Your measurement plan will reveal where to pivot, as situations and results fluctuate. If you get stuck, give us a call.