You’re staring at a stack of print collateral. You’re clicking through an email marketing program, picking the right email to follow-up your recent demo. If you’re lucky enough to have an assistant, they’re helping you cobble together a design to promote your upcoming meet and greet. Not to mention all of the time you spend on Twitter, LinkedIN and Facebook following up with prospects and talking to new (and old) customers.
It’s almost like you’re a marketer – but you aren’t. You’re doing outside sales and you’re out of time, out of resources, and out of patience. You aren’t alone, but that isn’t going to help you right now. These tips for how to market when you aren’t a marketer will.
Personalize Your Marketing
Personalized marketing works and it should be easy to do. Experian’s Email Marketing Study shows a 29% lift in open rates for emails that are personalized and a 41% higher click through rate for those same emails. That means you can help more prospects get comfortable enough to close, help existing customers implement or re-order, and generally make your hectic life easier.
So what is personalization? It goes further than just inserting someone’s name and title into an email. Emails should be crafted by your marketing department for different types of customers (called personas), using language that resonates with those customers. It means using images that work based on demographic information, such as age, lifestyle and location. It means making the prospect, lead or customer feeling like they’re the only person you’ve contacted.
The tools you’re already using to send emails and printed materials should include easy options for adding this sort of personalization.
Keep Your Marketing On Brand
When you’re marketing in the field, you’ve got a lot of power over the brand, voice, and position of your solution. So keep it on brand! This means you keep messaging, style, design and artwork adhering tightly to brand guidelines given to you by your marketing department.
This is important because you’re helping produce a consistent experience for every customer while executing on all of the work your marketing team did on figuring out who the best leads are.
Get a styleguide for visual designs and copywriting, or better yet, just don’t do any of this. Use a solution that puts all of your marketing in one place and just choose what you need.
Don’t Overlook the Importance of Nurturing
When you’re cramming your days full of meetings, calls and demos it can be hard to remember the importance of nurturing your prospects and just go right for the close. You’re selling and you’ve got killer instincts that you’re getting paid to trust, but you should also remember the importance of properly nurturing your prospects.
Use varying content from your marketing department to guide prospects along a buyer’s path that makes sense for them – not you. You already know how to gauge where a prospect is in the pipeline, but remember to give them content that will move them further along. Too often sales teams forget to do this, feeding the same stale types of content to their prospects and wondering why they aren’t moving through the path.
Pay Attention to Cadence
How often are you communicating with your prospects? Maybe it is way too much. That’s a common problem, especially when marketing and sales aren’t on the same page. It may be too little, that’s common when marketing is leaving too much in your hands.
Knowing when to send a message is critical for eliciting action. There should be a purpose – a strategy – to your emails and direct mails. Marketing teams should have the data showing when people were the most responsive. There will be patterns that appear in the data – such as finding most respondents from a certain vertical responded well to emails after they had a demo.
Find this data, and capitalize on the power of using proper cadence to deliver marketing messages that work.
Use Every Channel to Reach Your Prospects
Don’t hammer a prospect on just one channel, such as email, instead market to them in different ways. Use direct mail, host events within your market, and don’t ignore social media. You likely won’t have access to the same tools that your marketing counterparts will, so the channels you can use will be more limited yet often more effective.
Sending a tangible direct mail to a customer about to close is a great way to get them to move forward. Reaching out on social media is an effective way to start a conversation and vet prospects. The more channels you’re using, the more complicated it gets to coordinate and manage all of these marketing outreaches, but communicating on different channels gets your message through.
If you’re expected to do your own marketing, keep these tips in mind to keep yourself above water, but if you want to outpace the competition, you’re going to need a more robust sales empowerment solution, better alignment with the marketing team and tools or resources to prioritize your field marketing.