Increasing Marketing ROI: The Top 5 Tips from our B2B Thought Leaders

Increasing marketing ROI is on every marketer's mind in today's business climate. As such, a common question I asked in the B2B Marketing Thought Leader Interview Series is "What is your advice for Marketers striving to increase marketing ROI?".

Here are the Top Five Tips to increase marketing ROI, courtesy of our B2B marketing thought leaders:

1. Be Found — "According to a recent study by MarketingSherpa, 80% of B2B purchasing decision makers say that they found the vendor when they were ready to buy, rather than responding to a vendor finding them," answered WebMarket Central's Tom Pick.

This is coming to be known as inbound marketing. It boils down to ensuring that you have content spread across the web wherever your prospect may be looking, and that your website is optimized so that prospects can easily find you regardless of where they are in the buying cycle.

2. Implement Lead Nurturing — "Lead nurturing is having consistent and meaningful communication with viable customers regardless of their time to purchase. One of the speakers at a conference recently said, 'someone is a lead for life'. I would agree with that sentiment," said Brian Carroll, author of the popular book, "Lead Generation for the Complex Sale".

Combined with lead scoring, lead nurturing programs enable you to profile the behavior of those most interested in your company's goods or services, keep in touch with prospects until they are ready to buy, build preference for your brand, and in some cases accelerate your customers' buying cycles

3. Create Content That Compels Your Prospects To Buy — A compelling video from your CEO may be just what it takes to convince your prospect to buy from you. From whitepapers and email to blogs and podcasts, there are several ways to share your message in an engaging way, as detailed in our interview with Craig Rosenberg, Vice President of Products and Services at Tippit, Inc. If your goal is to increase the ROI of your marketing efforts, the key is to create and promote content targeted to be relevant to buyers at each stage of your funnel.

4. Integrate Everything — Your prospects don't just visit websites. They go to events, enter social media discussions, read blogs, and so on. Amy Hawthorne, Director of Marketing at B2B lead generation company ReachForce, said that your prospects don't exist in silos, and your marketing efforts shouldn't either.

When you determine the types of content that will compel your prospects to engage and eventually purchase, promote it on your website, on your blog, in social discussions, or anywhere else your prospects are spending their time.

5. It All Comes Down To Testing — Nearly every thought leader I spoke with insists on testing. There are potentially hundreds of channels for you to push your marketing message and thousands of combinations of elements for your website. The best testing programs are ongoing and can include everything from "offer tests", which experiment with varying pieces of fulfillment, to testing various elements of a website including images and navigation. The goal of testing is to predict what combination of channels, offers and elements will be most profitable.

Marketing automation can help immensely with the effort it will take to implement the tips above, particularly as they relate to lead nurturing and lead management. By properly implementing the advice offered by our B2B Marketing Thought Leaders, you will soon be heading up a detailed and profitable marketing program.

Related Resources

  • Deb Orton

    Such timely advice. My colleagues and I had just left a content development strategy meeting where we summarized current thinking on the need for the right content to fit the buying cycle…were you in attendance?

  • Stephanie Tilton

    Thanks for the insightful post. To points 1, 2, and 4: I’m sure many marketers feel overwhelmed by the number of channels to address these days. One way to alleviate the stress – and to increase ROI – is by re-purposing content. For example, once they produce a white paper, marketers can use it as an offer at trade shows and webinars, and for direct/email campaigns. They can even pare it down into an article for posting on a third-party site. Case studies can be pitched to publications, highlighted in a newsletter or press release, and distilled into testimonial statements that get inserted into presentations, white papers, web pages, etc. An executive interview can be produced as both a podcast and a thought leadership article. The list goes on.

  • Authority Networker

    Today, internet users want personal interactions with those they do business with before they make a buying decision. Social media marketing, which taps into a familiar concept called attraction marketing, lets you build that relationship and attract prospects who are interested in your offer. Joining social media sites, such as FaceBook, MySpace, Twitter, and Digg is one of the most effective Internet network marketing strategies and can help establish your presence in a number of different places on the Web and generate free MLM leads and free guaranteed MLM signups. The more people you invite to view your profile and become your friends, the bigger and faster you can build your million dollar downline and social media profits. Traditional marketing will never be able to target as precisely as social media marketing.

  • John Sonnhalter

    Great thoughts especially in today’s environment.Social is such an easy way to engage and nurture a prospect along.

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Jon (@jonmiller) is a VP and co-founder at Marketo. He is the author of multiple Definitive Guides including Marketing Automation, Engaging Email Marketing, and Marketing Metrics & Analytics. In 2010, The CMO Institute named Jon a Top 10 CMO for companies under $250 million revenue. Jon holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Harvard College and has an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

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Increasing Marketing ROI: The Top 5 Tips from our B2B Thought Leaders

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