Marketing strategy and your sales cycle

strategyWhen you plan your marketing strategy, do you consider how your marketing materials support your sales activities or sales cycle?  Do you know which materials provide the best results at each phase of your sales cycle?

Eccolo Media’s “B2B Technology Content Survey Report” shows the importance of the different types of materials throughout each stage of the technology sales cycle  – from blog articles in the pre-sale phase to case studies in the final purchase phase.

Although this survey report focuses on collateral materials used to “evaluate a technology purchase”, this report provides a beginning place to consider what works best for your organization.  According to the report participants, the top marketing materials were brochures (57%), emails (52%), white papers (52%) and case studies (42%).  Do you know what your customers say about your marketing materials and how effective they are in supporting your sales cycle?

So, when you develop your marketing strategy and select which collateral materials to develop, consider the following:

Product or Service:  How complex is your product or service?  How long does it take to sell your product or service?  The longer it takes to make a sale, the greater the need to create an extensive library of marketing materials that support your sale and appeal to different customer segments.

Customer Feedback:  Once you finalize your sales and marketing campaigns, ask your prospects and customers for their feedback.  Depending on the complexity of your sales cycle and product, you may consider hiring an outside marketing research company to conduct confidential interviews.  Other options include digital surveys, focus groups or informal conversations.

Value Proposition: Once you decide which marketing materials to develop, ensure that your messaging is aligned across all materials.  Your value proposition needs to be the cornerstone of all your messaging — from product brochure to e-newsletters and case studies.  If you don’t have a value proposition, develop one by asking yourself what does your company provide to your customer and what does the customer get (value).

Performance Metrics:  Ensure that you are able to measure the impact of your marketing strategy and collateral materials on your sales results.  Ask your prospects, customers and sales team about how these materials helped them throughout the sales process.  Take a look at your sales results.

Finally, enjoy the results – targeted marketing strategy and increased sales.




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