By Brenda McGowan – Client Development Director, Data Solutions

I recently attended a large, B2B conference and was delighted to find several educational tracks that focused on various facets of marketing. As digital marketing continues to escalate, I wanted to find some useful takeaways our clients may find helpful, or at least serve as a reminders while navigating the ever-evolving marketing landscape.  Thought Professor and industry veteran Jim McKinley with (un)Common Logic did an excellent job revealing invaluable insights he has learned over the years.  He used the analogy of “Don’t Sell Babe Ruth” in trying to find quick solutions to current problems, at the expense of long-term success. Here are some additional key takeaways provided throughout the thought-provoking presentation.

5 Ways to Avoid Sabotaging your Digital Marketing Efforts:

     1. Align Marketing Goals with Company Strategy

  • Clearly articulate overall company goals to your marketing team.
  • Make marketing goals specific and tied to company strategy (i.e. by product type).
  • Do a spot check on spend to ensure it’s aligned with strategy.

     2. Reduce or Eliminate Friction (Make it easy for customers to understand what you are offering)

  • Use the language our customers use (i.e. “Women’s Eyeglasses” vs. Female Designer Eyewear”).
  • Do ads link to the right pages? (If your CTA is “Call us” make sure the phone # present).
  • Are our messages consistent between ads, the corporate website, and sales team?
  • Is our lead generation form easy and intuitive, asking only for necessary information?

      3. Don’t Settle for “Good Enough”

  • Ask your team how they would meet a major goal (i.e. increase sales by 20%). How do they react? Excited or full of excuses?
  • Have an outsider review your digital marketing efforts (many companies offer for free).
  • Ask for a quarterly marketing test plan (continual testing is key).

      4. Don’t Measure the Wrong Things

  • Make sure you have end-to-end data, from clicks through sales (Valid can help here!).
  • How closely do your sales and marketing teams work together?
  • Get feedback on the quality of the leads generated, not just the number.
  • Measure the success of your marketing efforts based upon actual sales, not leads.

      5. Resist the Lure of the “Shiny Ball”

  • Test and try new things and channels (allocate approximately 10% of marketing budget for testing).
  • Ensure testing is an ongoing philosophy, not an end goal.
  • “Fail Fast” if something isn’t working due to poor performance or high complexity, shut it down.
  • Don’t stop improving and fine tuning what you already have in place (ABT –always be testing).

Success in marketing is often an accumulation of doing many little things the right way – which supports the old adage, “Delivering the right message, at the right time, using the right channel”.  If you are new to digital marketing, Jim and Valid’s suggested approach is to start small, select a single channel, perfect it…then grow and continue testing.

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