Marketers talk in code. It’s like any other job that people train for and practice over years. Marketing has its own jargon, strategies and shorthand ideas.
In fact, marketing probably is worse than some other fields.
Marketers create and talk about new and shiny things, right? Generating demand by spotlighting something new and shiny is what marketing is about at its heart.
But there is a whole industry of marketers creating new and shiny things for marketing itself. They invent new marketing strategies, new technologies and new jargon all the time.
So that love of things new and shiny gets multiplied by itself again and again. It’s exponential.
Maybe you are a CEO, manager of a line of business, or otherwise working with marketers. It can be frustrating trying to decipher marketing strategies that will be here and gone before you know it.
You might think this applies mainly to consumer marketing. But in fact, business-to-business (B2B) marketing goes through just as much self-inflicted innovation.
Let’s explore some of the latest “shiny things” marketing strategies you might have heard about.
This is an old marketing idea brought back around recently. The concept is that you create marketing campaigns that are specific to an individual customer.
Say you want to land some marquee accounts. Your marketers would work with the sales team to create account-specific web sites or micro-sites, landing pages, email pitches, webinars, collateral pieces and other items. The marketing would target different stages of the sales cycle as well.
This is best for a market that is very crowded, with lots of competition and noise. It’s also good when you have a new product and need to land your early adopter customers.
The customer journey is the path a customer follows from no engagement to becoming your customer. It’s also sometimes called the customer lifecycle or “cradle to grave” marketing.
This strategy is especially important for B2B companies because the buying process can be complex and lengthy. Good Customer Journey Marketing provides tools for the sales team for each stage of the customer buying cycle. So the tools might promote basic awareness, clarify a need, build a business case, fend off competition and close the deal.
Sometimes called e-marketing, this is using digital tools to engage with customers and create demand. Digital Marketing programs involve web sites, social media, content marketing, search engine marketing and optimization, e-mail marketing, on-line videos and infographics. The strategy is to “surround” your prospect with your message and brand when the customer is learning about problems and solutions.
It might seem trivial in a B2B context, but one of the main objectives in Digital Marketing is to raise your company’s rank in Google searches. Then you will be included in the all-important research phase that customers go through as they learn about available solutions.
Of course, none of these strategies is a magic silver bullet that will juice your pipeline in every situation. It takes planning, experience with finding the right mix, and a commitment to execution.