What are you hoping to get back from your marketing investment? It sounds like a simple question, but in reality a lot of companies have marketing operations that started with some ad hoc activity several years back and have evolved into complex, multi-functional marketing departments. Whilst that evolution was in keeping with the business objectives at the time, it is a good idea to review your marketing spend from time to time to ensure that everything in the mix is contributing to the current business imperatives in some way.
This is certainly true in the digital space where the range of outputs or end results from marketing activities is vast, and where there is so much data that it is easy to get lost trying to understand which part of the marketing spend is working and which isn’t. Starting with the end result in mind and working marketing plans back from there is something we have seen work many times over, so if you haven’t checked what your marketing is delivering toward your business’ strategic goals for a while now might be a good time to reassess.
Sticking with the theme of digital, we have recently had success with a client who had a very good understanding of what each digital channel could deliver for them and used them in concert to create impressive results. We summarize this approach as the untouchable trio of demand generation as the halo effect that one campaign had on another was regarded as being a factor in the success and the positive ROI it created. The three elements of the trio are…
Creating the initial curiosity and interest required to prompt further action and facilitate interactions.
- Demand Capture
Capitalising on existing demand within the category and taking a share of it.
- Lead Generation
Using hyper-targeted campaigns to elicit a qualified response (a lead) from the target audience.
To put that into context, the client is a relative newcomer to their niche so doesn’t have the same brand recognition as some of the longer-standing players in their competitive set. This created the need for there to be some brand and awareness building activity in their marketing plan, which manifested itself in the form of banner ads across the Google Display Network and YouTube, along with awareness generating ads on the main social media channels.
That awareness activity in itself was unlikely to produce quantifiable enquires, so the client then layered on top some lead generating campaigns that used gated content (you had to fill in a form to get it) to be able to capture the details of any prospect that was interested enough in the content they were offering to submit their details.
In addition to that, the demand capture channels were also activated so that any prospect who was actively looking for a solution similar in nature to what the client offered could be served ads extolling the benefits of their solution. The client was simply recognising existing demand and claiming their presence in that space.
With these three types of activity working together the client was able to fulfil all three objectives of a. generating awareness of the brand, b. generating sales leads, and c. capitalising on existing demand. They then complemented this by introducing an email nurture programme to keep any resulting leads engaged until they were ready to move to the next stage of the buying process.
By taking a holistic view of their demand generation activities the client was able to justify the place of each channel in the marketing plan. Not only that, but they were able to blend the awareness generating activity (that is typically hard to prove an ROI from) with the lead generation and demand capture campaigns to create a 360 view of cost per lead and return on ad spend. That enabled them to make strategic decisions on how much to invest on those channels again in the future.