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Quick Recovery Guide to B2B Marketing 2015b


The head of marketing is many times the ultimate punching bag for organic growth not hitting the target. The sales teams are always screaming, “We want the good leads!”…right? God forbid there is a restructure, marketing is far from safe as well…right? DON’T PANIC…I am going to outline 3 short-term impact steps that will increase lead generation significantly to bring quick results. While that is happening, in the next article, “Getting the Long Game Right,” we will talk about long-term steps that will change the profile of your commercial organization, so you can put an end to being the Rocky Balboa meat sack hanging in the locker during training. We are going to build the plane while flying it. OK, ready?

Step one is an Evaluation Step of current state…Take a step back and understand, listen and get a sense of what is important for your organization and how you can drive impact now. You want to get a high sense of urgency from your team and at some point you are going to go “all in” with resources at some point. But first you need to understand where to focus, and not be haphazard. Break out your needs-based segmentation analysis, and with your team look at three things:

1. Where is the market segment growing the most;
2. Where are you most competitive and differentiated; and
3. Which segment will drive the most top line (including sales cycle in the analysis)?

If you have overlap, you are lucky and that’s where to go all in…if not start by looking at the segment that can drive the most profitable top line.

Step two is a refresh of your Value Proposition for your chosen market segment (and I hope you have a needs-based segment not a product or high level market or industry). I know this sounds basic, but you need to find out why the market leader is winning and how to pump up attractiveness. What are the real pain points of your customer and how do you key hole into them with your solution. A few things worth mentioning here…if you went right to price, you more than likely made a mistake. It’s better to add/remove features than reduce price. If you made this assessment sitting at your desk you are going to get the same (wrong) answer Visit 5-10 customers and go to GEMBA! Watch them using your product for a day or an hour and watch them do their job. Then put yourself in their shoes, and you will get your quick hit value proposition the customer is seeking and can relate to.

Step three: ALL IN. Get your team together to divide and conquer. Where does your customer find information about your product, where are your competitors and how does your customer like to buy? These are the three simple questions that your team needs to answer. When you have the answers, reduce your spend for the next quarter in the other markets and go all in for the target market. You now have a new value proposition, you know where customers are and now you need to overpower that space with the messaging and awareness. If you don’t have a prospecting plan and lead qualification plan, and it makes sense to put it in the blitz, you’ll want to put that in place.

If you don’t have a CRM system or measurement system that can track leads to the stage when they become wins, you must do it manually. We will talk about ROI in the next article “Getting the Long Game Right”. You need a Band-Aid here and you must assign a person to own the tracking of each lead and follow up on each of them until finality.

These new leads coming in should be treated like gold nuggets; you want to know where each one is at all times… You can rinse and repeat this approach again and again for other markets and segments as you see fit, or follow up with more all in resources as your team gets addicted to the wins.

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