In a perfect world, all of our marketing efforts work exactly to plan, don't they?
Unfortunately, our world isn't perfect, and as great as our plans may seem at the beginning, sometimes they're going to fail. Sometimes, they're going to fail miserably. But, much like a rising star in the boxing circuit, the victory comes not from how many times you get knocked down, but rather, how many times you can get back up. So in that regard, what do you do when your outbound marketing efforts fall flat?
First of all, evaluate the current plan. A pretty simple step, but sometimes one that gets overlooked because of the severity of a failed marketing plan. In a race to fix the problem (especially if it's a big one) we can neglect the evaluation process:
- Did you target the wrong audience with the "right" message?
- Did you target the right audience, period?
- Did you take the time to put your buyer personas together?
- Did the list you marketed to contain data that, at the outset, should have been cleansed?
- Was the content or offer valuable to the prospects?"
- Were the calls to action clear? Were there calls to action at all?
- Was the implementation team spread too thin?
- Was it the right team for the job?
Measure and Review KPIs
There really isn't time to overlook details. Hopefully, you'd determined the metrics that you'd hope to hit and have measured and evaluated them. No stone is to be left unturned. When you think you've asked all the questions, it's time to go back and ask some more.
Regroup, Replan and Share, Share Alike
The plan may not be worthy of a total re-write, but make adjustments. Realize that you cannot do everything yourself. Mike Volpe, VP of Inbound Marketing at HubSpot, shares that, "...all of [HubSpot's] implementation and support consultants also sit among sales and marketing, so we have sales, marketing and post-sales all together, helping to build even more cross-functional communication." HubSpot shares ideas and accepts input from others so that they can build a better all-around offering.
Augment with Experts
Don't be afraid to look outside of your own organization. If you have a new product launch or new sales reps being added to your team, you may need assistance. Use these opportunities to work with good outsourced vendors. They aren't specialists at lead gen and appointment setting just because they stumbled upon it -- they have a playbook that works and they are experts at what they do. Take advantage of it.
Lastly, it's time to execute the modified plan. Having spent time evaluating what went wrong with your original campaign, regrouping and replanning, now you're ready to try again. Be confident in your new plan. If you're not, how can you expect anyone else to be!?
What do you do to ensure success in your marketing efforts?
Photo Credit: Chris Devers via Flickr
During the opening of the Sales & Marketing 2.0 Conference this week, Gerhard "G-Ice" Gschwandtner promised that he would perform a RAP to close the event Tuesday night. He did just that with comic Jeff Applebaum during the Sales & Marketing 2.0 Awards Ceremony, of which Green Leads was a finalist in two categories--Sales & Marketing Alignment and Social Media.
The ultimate reward for those diehards that lasted till the end of the day was watching G-Ice bringing down the house!
If you're not here at the Sales & Marketing 2.0 Conference, you can follow it on the twitter stream #sm20.
The keynote speaker is Peter J. Stewart, Senior Vice President, Collaboration Technology Services of PGi, opened up with his overall theme of "Meetings". So I was inspired to share some tips focused on sales appointments.
"Meetings are Everywhere," he said, "All that work we do in B2B goes into getting a meeting."
There are several types of meetings:
- Trust is built
- Relationships are formed
- Deals are closed
- ideas take shape
- Products are created
- People are inspired
Couple tips for Sales and Marketing in a 2.0 world--as it pertains to meetings:
He closed with, "The best meetings are the meetings that are fun."
What anecdotes can you share about meetings?
I got a bit carried away recently with my niece and nephews' Wii Bowling game. Even when I thought I had done my best and had enough, I would take a breather and come back and SWING! I would put up better numbers. It was addicting.
- I wanted to beat my best score, and
- I wanted to beat their best scores
It was all so gratifying, and it was all about the numbers!
Outbound sales, lead generation and demand gen in general are all about the numbers, too: forecasting good numbers, hitting those numbers and then pushing those numbers to new levels. We're all compelled to come back to the Wii console multiple times in order to improve our all-time best, and we are also compelled to come back and beat our peer's best scores. It's addictive. It's energizing. Heck ... it's just plain fun.
We should all apply this same energy, interest and compelling drive to our jobs.
One thing our jobs have that the Wii doesn't is that our consistent performance and high scores get compensated with better revenue, pipeline and paychecks. What the Wii has that we might need in our jobs is great graphics, stats and instant reward. Do you know your stats by the week? day? hour? Do you have dashboards that track your lead generation and pipeline activity? Learn from the Wii and even if you just need to track your high scores on a piece of paper, track them, know them and always be trying to put up a better score.
And just like the Wii records the stats and records that let you know how you are progressing and are relevant, make sure that the things you measure are the right ones. Measuring the wrong stats can incent bad behaviors!
I venture to say that there may be thousands of fast-talking, smart teens out there in their basements with Wii high scores who might some day make fantastic inside sales professionals and fill our appointment setting jobs.
Lastly, the Wii session inspired a contest at Green Leads this month. We decided to have our appointment setting teams compete to win some electronic goodness, and beat each other's scores. Being that we are a company that focuses on Quality and Quantity, the contest assigned 2 points for every meeting completed and accepted by our clients, and 1 point for every meeting set. The winning team was The Flatlanders with a 20% lead over the rest.
Flatlander Winners (picking gifts in a yankee swap fashion): Levi, JT, Anna Marie, Gareth, Chris, Lisa, Gill and Sarah (with the highest score). Congrats to all! Check out the booty below. Missing is the xBox Kinect, which just got released last night at midnight. It's on the way.
Clockwise from top: Wii, Slingbox, Sirius Radio, Nikon Camera, iPod, iHome, missing (xBox and remote Car Starter) ...and yes, that is a poker table the gifts are on. Green Leads has fun too.
The Sales Lead Management Association has opened up voting for the 50 Most Influential People in Sales Lead Management. I'm on the list, so if I've earned your respect in the world of demand gen and lead generation, I'd love your vote.
The list is vast and full of some fantastic peers of mine, and you can only choose 3. So choose wisely. Members of SLMA and non-members are allowed to vote.
Here is the list. If you find someone you want to vote for, click through and place your vote.
Trish Bertuzzi - The Bridge Group
Karla Blalock - PointClear
Bob Bly - Bly.com
April Brown - Rubicon Marketing Group
Michael Brown - Purple Pig Consulting
Michael A. Brown - Business to Business by Phone Troy Burk - Right On Interactive
Brian Carroll - InTouch
Jep Castelein - LeadSloth
Elisa Ciarametaro - Exceed Sales
John Coe - The Sales and Marketing Institute
Greg Coleman - LeadQual
Lisa Cramer - LeadLife Solutions
Richard Cunningham - Right On Interactive
Mike Damphousse - Green Leads
Debra DeCosta - Direct Marketing Partners
Mary Dedrick - Performark Inc
John Doerr - Wellesley Hills Group
Mike Falkson - eti Sales Support
Bob Felsenthal - BtoB Magazine
Phil Fernandez - Marketo
Susan Friedmann - The Trade Show Coach
Andrew Gaffney - DemandGen Report
Sanjay Gala - SMARTe Inc.
Bill Goldsmith - BP Productions
Pete Gracey - AG Salesworks
Bernice Grossman - DMRS Group Inc.
Gerhard Gschwandtner - Selling Power
Ann Handley - Marketingprofs
John Hasbrouck - NewLeads C
arlos Hidalgo - The Annuitas Group
Jay Hidalgo - Annuitas Group
Christopher Hosford - BtoB
Tom Judge - Direct Marketing Partners
Russell Kern - The Kern Organization
Russ King - LeadMaster
Victor Kippes - Validar
Jill Konrath - Selling to Big Companies
Hilarie Koplow-McAdams - salesforce.com
Jim LaBelle - LeadTrack
Cliff Langston - Leads To Sales
Joe Lethert - Performark
Dan McDade - PointClear
JT McDonald - MarketNet Services Inc
Laura McGuire - Saligent dba SmartTracks
Mac McIntosh - Mac McIntosh Inc.
Mark McIntosh - Interlink1
Robert B Miller- Miller Heiman Inc.
Dan Morefield - Leads360
Ken Murray - VanillaSoft Inc
Bill Nussey - Silverpop
Kirtan Patel - LeadOrganizer
Joe Payne - Eloqua
Jeff Pedowitz - The Pedowitz Group
James Pennington - Anderson Direct Marketing
Maria Pergolino - Marketo Barbara Pfeiffer - Nurture Institute Debbie Pierce - NitroMojo
Eric Rabinowitz - Nurture Institute
Sam Reese - Miller Heiman Inc.
Bill Rice - Kaleidico
Jose Raul Rodriguez - Aon
Dan Rogers - SmartLead by The AdTrack Corporation
Anneke Seley - Phone Works LLC
Tibor Shanto - Renbor Sales Solutions Inc.
Karen Sheehey - interlinkONE
Gary Skidmore - Harte Hanks
Jeff Solomon - Leads360
Paul Staelin - Birst
Jim Steele - salesforce.com
Drew Stevens – Drew Stevens
Ruth P. Stevens - eMarketing Strategy
Chris Tremblay - Event Technologies
Tann Tueller - Harte Hanks
Frank van Veenendaal - salesforce.com
Jenny Vance - LeadGen
Mari Anne Vanella - The Vanella Group
Chris Williams - Compusystems
Keith Wolf - Virtual Appoint
Steve Woods - Eloqua
Fred Yee - ActiveConversion
Scott Zimmerman - The Cyrano Group
If you don't see the name of your favorite Lead Gen Experts, drop us a comment...