If you’re responsible for direct marketing in B2B, you’ve got a hard job.
Between the freefalling CTRs of unsolicited email blasts, the shift of your prospects’ attentions to more targeted, inbound tactics, and the fact that no one likes a sales pitch, doing the work of a direct marketer can really start to feel like an uphill battle.
I mean, really, those B2C direct marketers, they have impulse buys, emotional purchases, attractive models selling inexpensive products, and we… we have fact sheets, white papers, and a price-tag that lives, at minimum, in the thousands.
Trying to get that messaging noticed by decision-makers–executives at other businesses–is a challenge, and one that needs attention immediately.
But don’t hang up your hat just yet. It’s totally doable, and, with the evidence suggesting that inbound B2B isn’t exactly the answer to everyone’s dreams, it’s absolutely worth your time.
How to Succeed in B2B Direct Marketing
- Deeply Align Your Marketing Department: Whether you’re a two-person or a fifty-person team, alignment is a must. We know there’s a real struggle with direct, but your inbound (and possibly a separate outbound) team is struggling too. You may think to yourself We’re already aligned! We’re both looking to generate sales-qualified leads for sales, but that isn’t good enough. I’m talking deep alignment here, designing a flow to push inbound engagement into an outbound / direct funnel. That way, the direct content you’re delivering is highly-targeted toward the needs of your prospective visitor.
- Keep Those Email Lists Updated: It may not show in unsolicited campaigns, but direct email is the breadwinner when it comes to B2B marketing. Because, according to a Entrepreneur survey of Fortune 500 executives, decision-makers spend about 2.5 hours a day checking email and only a few hours a week/month on social media or blogs, it’s a good bet that, to get seen and really considered, email is the way to go.
- Reduce Prospect Annoyance: I know you know this, but spam is never the answer. Even major B2B outlets seem to forget this from time to time, but dozens of calls / emails / random calendar invites to this or that… it’s not a good investment of your time or your resources. Work with your inbound team to create an opportunity for their engaged readers to self-segment, so that your direct efforts are seen as nurturing a relationship, not spamming or being aggressive.
If you create a direct marketing strategy that complements your department’s inbound strategy, you’ll change the game entirely. No longer will your communications seem like cold calls, catching only a few of those leads that you could. Instead, they’ll be welcome, transactional communications that nurture relationships, provide great, useful information, and, ultimately, qualify your leads in an efficient, coherent way.
How do you stay afloat in direct marketing?
Another important element in any direct marketing campaign is actually being able to reach your prospects. Use CircleBack for iOS or Android to keep your professional address book clean, complete, and updated automatically.