B2B Marketing Actions You Can Take Now to Have a Better 2013
For most people, the end of the year means enjoying holiday celebrations, taking time off work, and making sure tax items are in order before Dec. 31. For B2B marketers, the last weeks and months of the year can also mean opportunity.
Ending the year successfully—and gaining solid footing for 2013—starts with asking the right questions. Instead of waiting until late December, ask yourself these six essential questions to optimize your action plan:
1. How does the holiday season affect your product or service? Generating leads is a priority all year long, but depending upon your product or service, will you be ramping up or slowing down your efforts in November and December?
2. Where are your decision makers at this time of year? Is it business as usual or are they out of the office or focused on other things? The end of the year is often a time for holiday travel, but this time of year can be a great opportunity to reach some decision makers in the office.
3. What relationship building activities can you create? Holiday greeting cards can keep you connected to customers in winter, but what are you doing the rest of the year? Are you responsive to clients and prospects? Are you hearing their real needs?
4. What went wrong—and right—in 2012? Assess your traditional and social media efforts in the past year. Evaluate your push and pull marketing campaigns as well as your social media statistics, posts and rankings. Are there new social media tools you can use (e.g. Google+ or Pinterest) or can you better leverage your existing tools?
5. How are you planning for success in 2013? What are your objectives for each of your products or services next year in terms of generating awareness, leads and revenue? Review your goals and budget. Reevaluate your strategies and tweak your marketing mix for greater effectiveness. Create a plan now and refine it prior to January 1.
6. Is your marketing and sales model fully optimized? First ask the big question: Is the sales model your company is using the most effective at generating the most revenue at the least cost, or are you simply following the established path? It may be time to look at a new sales model, perhaps incorporating channel, phone sales or the web. And even if you are convinced that you have the best sales model, it can probably be streamlined. Better to address the sales model now, instead of waiting until you are under pressure to produce results in Q1.
I hope you find these six tips helpful. By reviewing your marketing results and planning ahead to optimize your strategies, you can be well on your way to success while your competitors are still recovering from too much eggnog.