It's the beginning of a new year, and all tech companies are feeling pressure to double their revenue year-over-year, as usual.
Then there's this:, "Can you deliver 10x more, for 10x less, by tomorrow?"
Behind every great revenue number or huge IPO is a great Marketer, that is enabling Sales to win.
I learned a lot from Howard Ting, Director of Marketing at Palo Alto Networks, when they had a huge IPO. He was generating thousands of new qualified leads every week. I asked him what he was doing and why every day.
I've used a lot of Ting's best campaigns to earn my bread and butter in the eleven years since, but I've also needed to create a couple of new educational offers everywhere I have gone, to address each company's unique marketing challenges. I've done a lot of training and learned from other Marketers along the way as well.
Now, my companies say the same thing about the qualified leads I generate for them, that I used to think about Ting, "The leads exceeded my wildest expectations."
Below, I tell you exactly how I do it, but I warn you, it's not just what you do, but how you do it that means the difference between success and huge success.
Email as a Channel for Content
Pretty much everyone now knows, content is king; You probably also know that it used to be super effective to email targeted content to prospects about eight years ago, but now, you need to be pretty clever to get people to open that email at all.
I'm lucky I have a winning ABM strategy for that, but I thought I would share a few other channels to enable marketers, so they can stop spamming people, including me, to death.
Just to be clear, when Marketers say "Email" is successful for them in the chart below, they mean they send targeted offers to:
- Targeted lists such as Rain King for Enterprise, other types of businesses, such as app companies in example, need a different list for iOS and Android developers, product managers, and Leadership
- Targeted prospects, which are target personas, meaning the right job titles, with the right needs for your product, at the right types and sizes of companies
- When these prospects receive your email, they will know by the title, that this email is something they want to open, because it solves their specific pain point
- That means you, as the Marketer, did your research first on the prospect's pain point, on their personas, their verticals, target CEOs even, and use the language that they do to describe their pain point, which you found via investigation on Linkedin groups and forums, for example
Anything less is a complete waste of time, and you are not only spamming, you are ruining the most effective marketing channel for everyone else.
When prospects are receiving 6 to 12 emails a day from companies they did not sign up for, they mark everything as spam for self-preservation, as you know.
Alternative Marketing Channels
Here are a few ideas for other marketing channels for the amateur spammer.
Out of 283 Marketers surveyed by a SnowFlake Partner, Uber Flip, in 2020, this is what Marketers said about the channels they use, and which ones they found to be effective.
I've been using every one of these channels except retargeting for at least ten years. I'm just now getting into retargeting via my friend Janet, who sells for KSL in Utah.
Many other channels, besides email, can be used to effectively drive traffic and new business. And if you really want to knock it out of the park in revenue, you should use quite a few.
Blogging as a Channel
Below is the data, from my personal blog for sources of traffic generated since my website went live on Hubspot in 2011. Just by blogging once a month, publishing to social media, and having CTAs inserted that lead to landing pages with follow-up-educational offers, I've been working steadily for the last ten years.
This is the right level of activity for my personal website, because I can only work for one company at a time, but for my employers who want bigger results, I do A LOT more activity, obviously.
Last two weeks on my Hubspot site analytics
Last ten years on my Hubspot site analytics
Drawbacks of Paid Search
I've seen companies literally spend a fortune on paid search, and get a lot of traffic, but never get anywhere in Sales, because they don't have enough information on their site to let prospects do their own investigations. With paid search you pay forever. I think a small investment in paid search is great, but I wouldn't rely on it too heavily, because it can't educate or build organic SEO or authority, like blogging with keywords can.
If you think your sales people will make up the difference, just realize, your competitors are often winning the deals via their online marketing before your sales people even get a chance to compete.
Hubspot gave me their CHI award in 2012 for #7 out of 4,000 partners for driving organic traffic, clicks, and downloads. I throw this in, for the sake of an outside endorsement to what I am saying.
Follow Up Offers
Seasoned Marketers know, once you have the right prospect on the line, investigating your solutions to their pain points, you want to keep answering their questions and objections in the middle-of-the-sales funnel until they are ready to engage with sales and buy.
Here's how to do it:
First Downloads and Their Costs
Top of the funnel offer, to raise awareness that you have a solution designed to solve prospect pain points, and get them to sign up to be in your sales funnel via their first download:
- eBooks--------------$30,000 for Wiley or Free, but must be done right
- Videos---------------$14,000 to $36,000
- Pitch Decks---------Free
- Trade Shows--------Depends on the show, size of space, booth avg $375-600k w travel
Middle-of-the-funnel offers are then made available to help Prospects and Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs), to further their investigation and answer objections in the sales funnel:
- ROI Justification---often free using existing research
- Proof that, if they spend $70k or $700K on your product annually, they will save or gain more $$$$ or time.
- Technical Feasibility in Baby Steps---free (excluding marketing salaries)
- Case Studies
- Jump Start Webinars
- Free Trial
- Competitive Landscape Positioning Offers---free to $45,000
- Gartner Magic Quadrant -----$45,000+$30K for recommendations
- Features Checkbox List with your competitors offerings side-by-side---free
Bottom-of-the Funnel Offers
- One-on-One demo with Salesperson-----------------------------------free (excluding salaries)
- One-on-One with another user of your product in their vertical------free
- Personalized Events with Sales------------------------------------------------costs vary
- Sales Engineering hours to enable in their environment-----------------free
By doing prospect's investigation for them, and feeding them honest answers to their questions and objections, you will both be better off, because they will buy the right solution for them, and you will have another happy testimonial.
To get a purchase order for your product, your prospects need answers to questions they will be asked by the financial buyer, and their boss, such as, "Why this product, and not that product, that I've heard about?"
Your positioning should be clear, and they should be able to say it, to anyone who asks.
They are busy with their own jobs, so doing their investigation for them on your solutions only makes sense.
Tactics to Encourage Content Consumption
Once a prospect has been driven to your site via organic SEO, by a compelling offer on social media, or any other channel, and downloaded their first top-of-the funnel offer, here is how marketers say they are getting them to move through the sales funnel towards closing in business.
Metrics for Tracking Effectiveness of Content
Bottom line, if you don't use the right channels in the right way, or your content isn't up to snuff, you won't win in sales. You should be able to track content performance with these metrics.
Custom Dashboards to track Analytics and KPIs
I can set up custom dashboards for each team member and Executive to track whatever analytics and KPIs they want in one day within Hubspot.
This isn't rocket science, but it is really important to do all of this right to make it work. For example, the branding should always state your position in the market on every offer.
The way you do the offers matters a lot, as well.
I often get hired, then look at the previous marketers analytics in their marketing automation platform and see that they tried jumpstart webinars, but didn't do it right, and therefore had almost no traction. Then I will build a jumpstart webinar series the way Palo Alto Networks did them, and we will have a lot of attendees every session that go on to buy our products.
It's not just what you do, but how you do it, to deliver 10x more, for 10x less, by tomorrow.
Happy New Year, and may the revenue numbers be ever in your favor!
Laurie is the Principal at Bay Area Inbound, a marketing agency that focuses on quickly increasing revenue for tech companies. Contact Laurie@BayAreaInbound.com