Updated: Aug 28, 2021
Have you noticed traditional marketing tactics are not performing like they used to? Is sales starving for more and better leads? Are you tired of throwing money at digital ads that are producing little to no ROI?
If you are feeling this pain, you are not alone – a lot has changed in the marketing scape in last 24 months. You can get back into your stride with a few tweaks to your marketing mix, and with the addition of marketing automation to create workflows that ease workload and accelerate conversion.
Beginning nearly a decade ago, and accelerating due to world events between 2019 and through today, buyers have become more accustomed to searching for answers to their questions without coming directly to you. This has created a paradigm shift in the sales funnel. Prospects comfortability with searching the internet and cycling with their peer groups is their form of self-service as they seek solutions to their problems. They are more likely to come to you as perhaps a last resort or after one of their peers recommended you. People searching for what you are selling are also growing less tolerant of delayed responses.
Push tactics (i.e., mass email blasts, purchased lists, fishbowl business card drops, cold calls, etc.) no longer work. To further complicate matters, 80 percent of all adults have installed digital ad blockers, rendering digital advertising largely ineffective. Add to this issue, webinars as a means to showcase your expertise have flooded the market, creating a ‘tone-deaf to webinar’ audience.
In the 21st Century, marketing owns two-thirds of the sales funnel – this reality is forcing marketing to change how they operate. Ninety-two percent of buyers start the process to buy using an information search, which is less likely to start with your website, and more likely to end there - maybe.
Being successful with marketing today, and generating the level of leads your sales team needs requires different tactics and strategies than were in play two years ago. Meeting buyers where they are searching requires you to know your target market exceptionally well. Advanced digital marketing strategies and marketing automation is no longer ‘nice to have’, you need to have it to get the job done well.
Marketing automation is often employed for top of funnel activities, those designed to help prospects advance deeper into the sales funnel, automatically. This is used to keep prospects warm until they are ready to advance in the funnel. There may be behavior-based triggers and lead scoring, customized campaigns, and faster handoff of leads from marketing to sales.
Websites cannot be overlooked as being ‘good enough’ - your website needs to outperform your competitors in design, content, clarity, and visual appeal. Small details such as the chat widget can turn prospects off quickly. For example, staffing your chat area with a chat bot might be okay for very light up-front work, however, you will need to shift to a live person fairly quickly, or you’ll risk losing that lead to a more responsive competitor. Chat bots and/or delayed responses to chat-posted questions (i.e. we will reply within 24-hours), will quickly kill enthusiasm as prospects today expect and want speed, transparency, and expertise.
Finally, advanced digital marketing strategies are no longer optional, and it is far more complex than running digital ads, placing backlinks, or relying on logo placement as a gratuitous mention on a partner’s page. Advance digital marketing strategies are dependent on placing the right content, in the right location, at the right time, to catch the attention – to scratch the itch – of the prospect. Advance digital marketing strategies catch prospects when and where they are looking, with the right content.