With an influx in digital media, social media and other channels, B2B marketers today have more choices than ever.
While this makes it easier to maximize your marketing budget and company awareness during the customer buy cycle, it also can increase the chances for error. Even the most seasoned marketing professionals sometimes fall prey to mistakes in tactics or implementations.
Here are 10 of the most common pitfalls and how you can easily avoid them.
1. Silo mentality. Are the results you are seeing from your marketing campaign in line with what your sales team is looking for? It's vital for marketing and sales to work together to ensure that your campaigns are delivering measurable results and driving sales. This also helps achieve internal buy-in for the project and builds bridges with your colleagues.
2. Ignoring frequency. "Fishing where the fish are" is only one component of a successful marketing campaign. Equally as important is how often you are reaching out to your target audience. Are you pushing your message to the market on a regular basis, or are your efforts sporadic at best? Are you attracting your target audience while they are looking and where they are looking for the solutions and services you have to offer?
3. Missing your audience. Virtually all customers now use the Internet throughout their work processes and even throughout the critical buy cycle when they are discovering solutions before moving to the point of purchase. Are you reaching this target audience where they can be found looking for solutions and services like yours? If not, find them as soon as possible and join the conversation.
4. Following the same path. Sometimes the only constant is change. Objectives shift to align with business goals. New marketing channels enter the mix and prospects begin using different resources to obtain relevant business information. So, unless you've proved your current program is optimized for today's marketing environment, your plan needs to evolve accordingly.
5. Monitoring marketing programs. The phrase "you can only manage what you measure" is true. Online marketing offers you the ability to measure your marketing programs in real time, allowing you to know what components of your program are working and what you should consider refining or eliminating.
6. Quality subordinate to quantity. Engagement that reaches the right audience and provides intelligence to begin a relationship and gain a customer is highly valuable. Be sure to capture relevant information.
7. Underleveraged media partnerships. While accountability is a necessary component of any marketing program, you shouldn't be expected to shoulder the burden on your own. Look to media channel-partners to provide you with detailed reports delivered in a timely manner.
8. Timing overlooked. Are your marketing initiatives in sync with company-wide events such as product or service launches or trade show appearances? Neglecting to keep timing in mind can result in missed opportunities.
9. Branding and exposure abandoned. An increased emphasis on engagement has resulted in some businesses shifting their focus away from branding and exposure. However, continuous exposure to your target audience ultimately will result in qualified contacts and inquiries. Are your media channels keeping you in front of your targeted audience?
10. Operating without a plan. Still haven't developed a road map for the future? It's a good idea to set aside time to brainstorm your goals and objectives, and plan your tactics, including marketing channels that align with your plans.
Chris Chariton is senior vice president, product management and supplier marketing for GlobalSpec.