1. “Customer point of view. Always. Filter everything you’re doing, saying, and pitching through that and you’ll improve just about every metric you care about today.” – Matt Heinz, President at Heinz Marketing
With the growing emphasis on stage-based marketing, which involves catering your content and marketing messages to your prospects’ stage in the sales cycle, keeping your customers’ preferences in mind is going to become even more important in 2014.
2. “Garbage data in, garbage results out. Whether you do inbound or outbound marketing, the quality of your database and lists has a huge impact on your results. Obtaining better information about prospects and where they are in the buying process is one way to improve the quality of sales-ready leads.” – Brian Carroll, Executive Director at MECLABS
At Pardot, we recommend sorting through your data on a regular basis to make sure you’re not clogging your database with outdated or bad information. Not only does this impact marketing communications, it also impacts your sales team when bad leads get passed from marketing to sales. Take a look at this helpful list to see a few recommended data-cleansing tools.
3. “Today’s buyers do a tremendous amount of their purchasing research long before they ever speak to a salesperson. Ultimately, this age of the hyper-educated, constantly connected consumer requires that marketing and sales work more closely together than ever before.” – Mick Hollison, CMO at InsideSales.com
According to SiriusDecisions, 70% of the buying process is now complete by the time a prospect is ready to engage with sales. In 2014, make sure your sales and marketing teams are working together to provide your buyers with the information they want, when they need it.
4. “Build advocates and mobilize them.” – Mark Organ, CEO at Influitive
Customer advocates, or brand evangelists, are some of your most effective (and cheapest!) marketing assets. If you can build up a following of brand advocates through great customer support, active outreach, and an overall positive client experience, these customers can start selling your product for you. Remember: never underestimate the power of a positive customer testimonial.
5. “Webinars, as a form of content marketing, are a great vehicle to educate and inform potential buyers, and the real goal should be to make sure they are engaged in the webinar so they are inspired to want to have a conversation with you after the event.” – Mike Agron, Author of WebinarReady
There are several benefits to having a webinar program at your company. Not only are webinars helpful for thought leadership and client retention, they’re also a great platform for lead generation, making them an important marketing and sales tool (take a look at thisMarketing Webinars Handbook for more information on webinar planning, preparation, and follow-up).