Is B2B marketing yielding good returns?
Is the marketing you are doing giving you the yield you seek?
I am asking this question a LOT at the moment. I ask it to myself, for my own businesses, I ask clients, I ask prospects.
One answer came from a professional services marketer. It serves as a good example for in-house marketers to challenge their thinking, to up-skill and to get insight from beyond the internal team in the business.
This is what she wrote to answer
Hmmm… It’s hard to tell. I cannot know if a speaking engagement got someone interested enough to ask their consultant to investigate our solutions and eventually get in touch with us and 2 years later… we have a deal signed. It is a complex process to sell our service.
Is a long sales cycle a B2B marketing problem?
Yes, it certainly is. Tracking and managing a diverse set of marketing tactics and campaigns over time takes discipline and forethought.
But where I felt this marketing manager was failing her business colleagues was around integrating the content creation, the speech-giving with marketing analytics and tracking data.
I challenge the assertion that you “cannot know” if a speaking engagement has any effect.
How to track conference speeches for marketing impact
Let me make some suggestions:
- Every conference – offer a free download of something valuable. Create a trackable URL. Cookie the browsers visiting that site.
- ALSO offer the visitor something even more valuable (not a sales pitch) if they sign up to your database
Both of these create trackable events which (even if 2 years passes) can enable you to demonstrate results.
Any pass-on of URLs to second parties like consultants or colleagues is tracked too.
I use Google Campaign URL builder and also short link services like Bit.ly for this.
Upskill your internal marketing team
When did you last go and get training and invest in your internal marketing team? I fear many in-house teams do not get the attention they deserve. Hiring an agency or consultant is not necessarily going to improve the team skills – it delegates marketing activity to outsiders.
What could you do to invest better, to improve your team’s ability to run the strategy as well as the execution, to better understand what the agency / consultant is doing for you, so that they can brief better, to guide the marketing plan better, to adapt and adjust the marketing budget for new tech, for new market conditions (recession?) and above all, to stay in front of the competition?
So challenge yourself, is the marketing you are doing giving you the yield you seek?
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