With the change in how potential buyers consume content and information, marketing strategies need to get in front of buyers on multiple digital venues. But how can you do that? Implementing a fully integrated marketing strategy combines all tactics to promote a brand, product or solution and boasts consistent themes and messaging throughout different digital venues. During our annual State of Partner Marketing research, we found that only 12% of partners are implementing a fully integrated, consistent marketing strategy. With the hopes of increasing those numbers for next year, let’s review some of the most common marketing tactics, the benefits of using them and ways that you can incorporate them into your overall strategy.
There is a time and a place for everything and this includes social media. It’s not all about selfies and making your friends jealous with pictures of your most recent vacation or that perfect cappuccino you got from the coffee shop. In business, social media can play a key role in a marketing strategy. It allows partners to build thought leadership with their followers and can help tell your brand’s story. One key tip is to not be too salesy in your posts. While consumers are looking to your social media to learn more about your brand and offerings, they want to know you are a subject matter expert. Focus on educating your followers and showing them that you know about your niche, industry needs or target market.
Oh, the dreaded email. From our 2019 State of Partner Marketing research, we learned that 60% of partners do not regularly schedule emails. Emails are a great outbound marketing tactic and a way to send to specific, targeted individuals. Messaging that resonates with your target market is crucial to success and it is always a best practice to send emails with slightly different wording to different stakeholders within a target organization. For example, CEOs may care about the money that your solution can save them while engineers may care about the reduction of redundancies and the streamlining of processes that your solution can provide. When sending your emails, make sure to include a clear Call to Action (CTA) that will entice the recipient to view and engage with your email.
Blogs are a great way to bolster up your internal content while also increasing your SEO ranking. A strong blog will give customers a reason to visit and stay on your website, consuming the information you are providing. The additional keywords will help your ranking on search engines when their crawlers find them on your site. Just like social media, blogs should be aimed at educating readers on a topic of interest. In an integrated campaign, multiple posts that build off each other to tell a story can be incorporated in the strategy. Need help starting a blog? Check out our post on Creating a Killer IT Blog.
So you want to host an event? In the IT world, it has been our experience here at AFV that there is no getting away from events. We agree, but with some stipulations. I always like to tell the partners that I’m working with, “If someone invites you to a party, are you just going to show up with no background on who they are and why they are inviting you?” Oftentimes the answer to that question is a resounding no, but that doesn’t mean we should abandon event marketing altogether. Events play an important part in helping move leads down the sales funnel and can be very handy in closing deals. That being said, in order to have the most successful event, make sure you are generating interest and demand prior to spending the time and energy on an event. Then, invite the best prospects for your sales team, those further down the buyer’s journey.
The least used tactic by partners was digital advertising, with a whopping 17% of partners executing this tactic. Digital advertising is great for top of funnel brand awareness, as well as retargeting those who have visited your site but maybe did not convert the first time around. Crafting the right keyword strategy for Google searches can help to target your ads directly at people who are searching for your solutions. With retargeting, you can continually put your brand in front of them, reminding the prospect of what they saw on your site and the solutions your company is able to provide. When they are ready to buy, they will recall your brand more quickly, which ups the chances of them returning to purchase from you over your competitors.
When these core tactics are used together they bring your message and brand to new leads and your prospects and create an integrated marketing strategy. Are there any additional tactics that are a must in your marketing campaigns?
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