Your sales team can't sell to people who don't trust your company. That's where marketing comes in--to show people who haven't talked to you yet why you deserve their business.
Digital marketing makes it easy for any company to communicate with any audience, but that access comes with drawbacks. When junk and scam companies flood news feeds and ad spaces, customers quickly learn to tune out anything irrelevant or suspicious. Valuable messaging can stand out from the noise, but only when a business knows how to market itself properly.
Advertising is just one form of marketing, though. Research, email, content creation, list curation, social media, and even customer service all contribute to an effective marketing strategy. You don't have to become proficient in every tactic to be a successful marketer, but if you want to help your sales team operate at peak efficiency, you need to master the most critical areas.
These three--customer acquisition, customer experience, and content marketing--are perhaps the most important marketing strategy areas today. Use these tips to make the most of them for your company.
1. Acquire great customers for life.
Not all customers are created equal. Some only buy one item on sale and never engage with the brand again. To get (and keep) better customers, focus on acquiring customers with high lifetime value.
Drew Kossoff, CEO of Rainmaker Ad Ventures, heads one of the fastest-growing digital media buying agencies in the U.S. According to Kossoff, "The marketers who take the long view typically scale much faster and fly much higher."
Don't be afraid to spend a little more time and money to invest in better, more qualified leads and customers. This strategy might carry higher upfront costs, but once you get the ball rolling, great customers will keep you in the black for years to come. Calculate your cost of acquisition and compare it to lifetime value, then test different marketing tactics to see which ones correlate with a better ratio.
2. Create an exceptional customer experience.
Marketers who compete solely on price rarely stay in business for long. To design a sales-boosting marketing strategy with staying power, work to differentiate your customer experience in a way that makes all your ad spend worth it.
The best customer experiences, according to Convince & Convert, are easy, fast, and accurate. Customers want intuitive user interfaces and processes, fast websites and service response times, and accurate information about the problems they face. When they feel misled or when websites force them to jump through hoops, they give up and look elsewhere.
Create a leadership role to oversee the customer experience at your company. Brands like Marriott and Mastercard now have chief experience officers to improve their customer relationships. If adding a chair to the C-suite sounds like overkill, then formalize the responsibilities you would put on a customer experience executive and assign the essential duties to a person (or people) you trust. Using more personalized, interactive engagement tactics and improving the customer technology interface should be high on that list.
3. Infuse personality into content marketing.
Content marketing is about showing (not telling) customers why they should prefer your brand. Mattress startup Casper, for instance, publishes a magazine called Woolly dedicated to all things comfort and health. When people engage with Woolly, they see that Casper's brand is an authoritative and welcoming voice in its industry.
Great content marketing is more than feel-good stories and how-to tips. It's a legitimate, effective strategy that should be part of every modern brand's arsenal. Despite costing 62 percent less than outbound marketing, content marketing generates three times as many leads. That's not to mention its beneficial effects on conversion rates and SEO.
Growing companies need content to survive. Consumers are hungry for brands that provide value beyond their products, so get busy creating high-quality content if you want your audience's attention.
Growth marketing is a massive industry, and these tips are just a slice of the bigger picture. However, if your company seeks out customers with high lifetime value, provides them with a great experience, and pumps out valuable content, your sales team will have more than enough leads to stay busy.