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6 Important Takeaways From B2B Marketing Bootcamp

In January, our goal was to help you kick your marketing into high gear with our B2B Marketing Bootcamp webinar series. We enlisted six in-house experts and four pros from other top companies to devise a (completely painless!) bootcamp to help you shape up everything from your content marketing to ROI reporting.

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Email marketing gold medalist Maureen Flaherty gets ready to dominate the B2B marketing game in 2016

We wrapped up the series last week, but we’ve got you covered if you didn’t have a chance to attend. Take a look at these six noteworthy takeaways from the webinar series — and then click through to watch each webinar for even more useful tips. On your marks… Get set… Go!

Crank Up Your Content Marketing

1. Understand what makes content valuable.

Guest speaker Seth Lieberman, CEO of Snap App, really emphasized the importance of valuable, resonant content. That may seem obvious enough — after all, why create content that doesn’t have value? — but it’s crucial to understand what specific factors make content truly useful. Seth explains in his blog post on the topic:

“The folks over at CMI define ‘valuable content’ as content that checks 5 boxes: Findable, Readable, Understandable, Actionable, and Shareable. The gut check here is if the content consumer comes away saying, ‘Wow, I am smarter and better off for the time I just spent.’”

 

But that’s not all. Every piece of content you create should resonate with your audience at a specific point in the buyer’s journey. You can’t confidently say what your content will accomplish if you don’t think about the who, the when, and the why.

2. Get your sales team excited about content marketing.

We get a lot of questions from marketers who struggle to get their sales counterparts to “buy in” to content marketing. Senior Content Strategist Jenna Hanington suggests two ways to get your sales team on board:

  • Create a content library. Your sales team is much more likely to use the content you create if it’s housed in one central hub that gives them all the information they need to put it to use. To learn how we created an effective content library here at Salesforce Pardot, check out this blog post.
  • Implement an automated lead qualification process. If you’re sending leads to your sales team after they downloaded a single piece of content, your sales reps are going to get frustrated. Jenna explains, “At Pardot, we use lead scoring and grading (as well as prospect activity) to demonstrate how lead quality is affected by interacting with our content. The more content that a lead interacts with, the higher their score becomes. This ensures that by the time an inbound lead is assigned to the sales team, they’re already educated and are ready to speak to a sales rep.”

Rev Up Your Reporting

3. Link your tactical data to your strategic goals.

Strategic analytics explain the “what” of your reporting, says Isaac Payne, Senior Marketing Analyst at Pardot. In other words, they’re essentially your KPIs. Tactical analytics, on the other hand, can get extremely channel-specific and nuanced, so it’s important that you know how to use them. Take a look at five examples of tactical metrics below.

Reporting-Tactical-Data

To excel at reporting, you can’t just gather a bunch of data and call it a day; you also need to understand how to apply it to your marketing strategy. The use cases in the table above are excellent examples of how tactical metrics can be turned into actionable insights for your marketing team.

For example, let’s say your SEM conversion rates are low and you’re not generating enough qualified leads through that channel to hit your quarterly goals. You can get more bang for your marketing buck by looking at each individual ad and reallocating some of the funds from the ineffective ads to the top-performing ones. Alternately, you can reallocate some paid search dollars to another channel entirely if you find it generates more qualified leads.

Amp Up Your Email Marketing

4. Leverage dynamic content to personalize your email communications.

Pardot’s Email Marketing & Campaign Specialist, Maureen Flaherty, emphasizes the importance of dynamic content that can be automatically personalized to fit your email recipients’ needs. For example, if you send a monthly email newsletter to your contacts, you might consider tailoring its content to each recipient based on their job title, their industry, or whether they’re a prospect or a current customer.

5. Use drip campaigns to train your employees.

Ever considered using email marketing strategies internally? Here at Pardot, we created a sales enablement campaign we call the Pardot Minute Clinic. Each week, our marketing team sends a new one-minute training video to all sales reps who’ve opted in to the campaign. We’ve seen impressive results, with open rates as high as 92% and click-through rates of 52%  — and the feedback from our sales team has been exceedingly positive.

Rather than mandating a potentially boring meeting or training session, consider condensing your message into several digestible chunks and emailing it to your employees on a fixed schedule. We love video for this purpose for two reasons:

  • It’s engaging. According to Brainshark, 65% of video viewers watch more than ¾ of a video. Compare that to employees’ engagement with, say, a training manual, and it’s easy to see why video takes the cake.
  • It’s measurable. With video tools like Wistia, you can take a deep dive into your analytics beyond just views. Take the time to understand which employees are watching the videos (for example, new hires versus company vets), which parts they’re watching (and re-watching!), and whether they take further action after viewing.

Step Up Your SEO & SEM

6. Link your search marketing to your marketing automation tool.

When leads come into your database through a paid search campaign, don’t just add them to a generic mailing list. Instead, nurture your SEM leads with relevant content based on the terms they searched. Linking your search marketing to your marketing automation tool is also extremely useful for your sales team because it can give them context around which to build a conversation. For example, knowing that a particular prospect searched for your product’s pricing can be extremely useful because it shows that they may be more interested than someone who stumbled upon your ad with a more generic search term.

Now that you’re warmed up, take a deep dive into these topics by watching the B2B Bootcamp webinar series in its entirety — and let us know your thoughts in the comments!