One of the most exciting aspects of my role as an Inbound Marketing and Sales Consultant at LeadG2 is working with new clients to develop inbound marketing strategies and then help to implement them. As part of this process, we work with clients to learn what they are currently doing to market their companies... and we don't just limit this to inbound.
To Reach Your Goals, You Have to Have a Plan
Having the opportunity to look inside a company's marketing strategy can give you some great insight into how they think, what they are focused on, and how they are allocating their marketing dollars. What surprises me during this time when we “peek under the kimono” is how often I hear from senior marketing executives that they don't have a marketing calendar that outlines the campaigns they are working on or even a written, annual marketing strategy they could share. As a former Senior Financial Analyst that has put together marketing budgets for Fortune 500 companies, it makes me cringe when I hear that a company doesn't have a written marketing strategy or budget. I can't understand how they can function without a written plan that details what they are focused on and breaks it down into specific campaigns or activities.
Implementing a Campaign-driven Marketing Strategy
When HubSpot first rolled out the ability to track related marketing campaigns together, I can remember popping a bottle of champagne and tweeting for a few days about how awesome this new functionality was. How can companies learn from this campaign-type marketing approach, and why does this campaign feature in HubSpot rule? Great questions… glad you asked.
A marketing campaign can be defined simply as a collection of activities (email, TV commercials, print, digital, etc.) that are aimed at a specific target audience and center around a specific message. Effective marketing campaigns target certain niches by creating premium content and blog posts discussing issues relevant to the audience. When a company’s marketing activities don’t have a direction, the messages become less focused and less effective. By utilizing a campaign approach whereby you select specific industry niches, target specific personas, or focus on specific products/services you offer, you can focus your attention more narrowly and track your results more precisely.
A great example of how to use marketing campaigns is to think about the launch of a new product or service. If your company has something new to market, you will want to raise awareness, increase sales, and ultimately get a return on your investment. By creating a campaign (actually sitting down and writing out what you will be doing), you can be assured that your efforts will be more cohesive and successful than if you didn’t create a plan or track your results.
HubSpot’s Inbound Campaign Capability Makes It Easy
A few months ago, HubSpot gave users the ability to attribute different modules within HubSpot to a specific campaign in order to better track results. Users who develop a campaign for a specific product launch or niche, including several landing pages, blog posts, and emails, can attribute each of these elements to the same campaign. After the campaign runs, users can now conduct a thorough analysis of which parts of the campaign drove the most leads and revenue.
Now that HubSpot users have the ability to see how their collective marketing efforts are working in a campaign format, it’s become even more beneficial to think about your marketing as individual campaigns with their own goals and results. If you are still operating without a written marketing strategy, it’s going to be tough in the years to come as marketing becomes more integrated and campaigns begin to have more complex components than just one or two pieces.