(Please note that Demand Generation University is separate and distinct from offerings of former employers.)
Here’s where will we link to every step of a world-class demand generation program, or a sales lead generation program. In addition, if your business wants to become a true results oriented marketer and turn marketing into a consistent revenue producer, Demand Generation University is just for you.
The topics discussed here come from our SCORE demand generation program (Simple Clear Optimal Revenue Enhancement). By taking each module, one can get a wonderful education on business to business demand generation by reviewing the content under each listing. Stay tuned as we will build this over time.
Module One – Foundation Building,
It’s important not to jump in too fast and start creating campaigns. Unless you’ve set a strong foundation first, you will not get the results you expect or hope to get.
- Goal Setting
There’s a reason goals come first. As I remember from college, one time in a car a young man said “We don’t know where we are going, but we’re making great time.” Unfortunately, that does not work in business. You need to develop clear objectives and goals before you start. Who are the customers you wish to target? What is the value you offer them? What kind of results can you expect? Before you begin the Demand Generation University, spend some time going through what you need to accomplish.
- Keyword Selection
Keywords are the words prospective buyers type into search engines when they are looking for a solution to a business problem that your products and/or services address. Keyword selection is important and should be done carefully. While one term might be very popular, it may also be very competitive and hard to dominate. That’s why you should look for so-called long term keywords. For instance, while “travel agent” might be highly competitive, “travel agent south america” may not be very competitive. It’s better to dominate a small group and to be a drop in an ocean.
- Buyer Personas
Buyer Personas are not only about the people you sell to – what they care about and whom they trust, but also why or why not would they buy your product or service. Buyer Personas are the key to becoming an expert on Buyers and clarifying all your marketing activities.Unfortunately, the process of planning, developing, collecting and documenting buyer personas are not for the inexperienced. We suggest you retain professionals with specialized training to craft your buyer personas. For more, read There’s Nothing New in BtoB Marketing Anymore: The Awesome Power of Buyer Personas
- Agreed Definition of a Lead
One of the biggest mistakes made in BtoB marketing today is giving unqualified “leads” to salespeople. This results in wasted time, frustration, and lost productivity. In fact, data shows that fewer, highly quality leads results in higher revenue. It might sound counter-productive, but more leads does NOT equal more sales. This is why smart marketers sit down with Sales and hammer out what is and what is not a good lead and they continually test and refine their approach. This agreed lead definition also feeds lead scoring downstream.
- Buying Process Identification|
Naming convention for buying processes is all over the map. Some call the first phase Awareness. In my white paper, How to Find New Customers, I call the initial phase Untroubled/Unaware. I like my term because it gets into the head of the prospective buyer. The full buying process in How to Find New Customers is:
Whom to Consider:
No matter which naming convention you use, be it ours, SiriusDecisions or some other firm, just pick one and stick to it.
- Content Mapping
Content mapping is the process of taking the various personas like Finance Director, Operations Director and Sales Director and puting them on one axis and the buying process on another axis. This gives you a series of boxes to fill in with content. For more information, please see “Creating Truly Useful Content Maps in BtoB Demand Generation.”
- Trigger Events
In the buyer persona step, we did unstructured interviews of won and lost deals. Each one of those interviews consists of going back to the beginning – when the search actually began. In almost all cases, it happens because something happened on the buyer side. A new executive was hired. They go a round of funding or something else happened. These are trigger events.
- Attraction Strategies
All the work you do does no good whatsoever if no one finds you. So uou need to continually share interesting content everywhere. In fact, Marketo calls it ‘seed nurturing” – spreading content everywhere, because you don’t know where prospective buyers will find it. However, if you need a good job on your Buyer Personas earlier, you have some good ideas on where the “watering holes” for your buyers lie.
Module Two – Program Execution
- Content Engine Creation
It’s going to take lots of content to feed your nurturing campaigns. You will find it a LOT easier to create compelling, relevant content if you did a good job on your buyer personas in the earlier step. Buyer personas give you insights into the mind of buyers, so it is critical to crafting compelling content. One important tip is to use the Rule of 5 in your content. Let’s say you get an expert and do a webinar with her. 1) Publish the recorded webinar; 2) Upload the slides to slideshare; 3) Write three blog posts about the lessons learned in the webinar; 4) Share the Slideshare on social media; 5) Record a brief video clip with the expert and publish it to YouTube. One event – five pieces of content. We also suggest you check our friends at Avitage.
- Lead Nurturing
Lead nurturing is the process of sharing valuable content (to them) over time, so that by the time they are ready to buy, they trust you most. Well nurtured leads are always glad to hear from you and are immensely valuable to your business. It helps a lot if you’ve done a good job with your buyer personas in an earlier step, as it helps you to create relevant content for your buyers here.
- Lead Scoring
How do you know when a person is ready to buy? That’s lead scoring. You can assign point values to buyer actions. Did she read the email, did she click the link, did she fill out a form, what page(s) did she visit. You can learn a lot from watching “digital body language.” It’s also handy to use negative scores. If someone visits your Careers page, he is likely not a good pyou rospect. I also suggest you sit down with your salespeople and agree on what is and what is not a lead
- Lead Hand-off, Routing and Claw-back
The last thing you want to do is to give a lead to sales and have nothing happen. So it is important you figure out a process for distributing leads, escalating problems and taking back (claw-back) on leads that were never acted upon.
- Marketing Automation
Now that the infrastructure is built, it’s time to shop for software. But which marketing automation system should you purchase. Frankly, we think it does not matter. All the leading software – Eloqua, Marketo, Act-On, Silverpop – all work well and will make a fine platform for marketing.
- Landing Page Development
Perhaps you are not familiar with a landing page and how it’s different from a regular page. A regular web page tends to cover a lot of group, while a landing page addresses a single issueLead Nurturing Deployment
- Lead Nurturing
Lead nurturing is the process of sharing valuable information (to them) over time in a story-telling format; The idea behind lead nurturing is that it takes time to earn trust, so that when they decide to buy, you are the preferred choice. A study by Marketo found that about 1 out of 5 leads is a hot lead that would buy anyway, but nurturing delivers 3X better results from the remaining 4 out of 5. Nurturing also delivered a very significant drop in the cost per lead.
- Sales Enablement
Let’s not forget Sales here. They need to become more effective too. And they need to answer buyer questions. What about this scenario? The prospect likes your company’s offering, but it is unsure about the skills he has in-house to implement your offering. What if the salesperson could pull out an iPad and play a video clip of a customer who has the same concern. This customer could tell what he learned in the process. The question is answered on the spot and the deal is won much faster.
Module 3 – Measurement and Improvement
- Testing and Refinement
Marketing is all about continual testing and refinement. Take a small part of your marketing budget, perhaps 10% and use it as house money for continual testing and experimentation.
- Metrics and Measures
Your car has a dashboard. Speedometer tells you how fast you are going. Your business needs a dashboard too. A dashboard filled with results-oriented metrics let’s you continually tweak your marketing spend for optimal results. You should also check out The Lenskold Group and VisionEdge Marketing, good friends of Find New Customers.
- Periodic Planning and Adjustment