In an environment of tightening budgets and higher-than-ever expectations of marketing, marketing leaders feel pressure to perform and show results. A large part of the marketing organization’s budget is spent on campaigns each year, including generating demand, strengthening the brand, retaining customers, or enabling sales.
In a recent roundtable, Mavis Liew and I brought together leaders in B2B marketing to delve into innovative strategies and tactics to enhance organizations’ marketing campaign development and execution. We discussed methods to elevate B2B marketing and improve overall performance. It was a very energetic and engaged session, where the participants shared their experiences and challenges and offered suggestions to others.
Here are some common challenges and issues that were raised during the session:
- Unclear campaign goals are not aligned to the company’s business objectives. Campaigns that are a list of disconnected activities miss their purpose to address a business objective. This first point of failure is intensified by an overrotation of focus on the company’s products rather than the target buyers’ needs.
- Functional teams working in silos lack collaboration and have misaligned priorities. The nature of establishing and running campaigns involves many different teams at various stages. When each individual team focuses only on the results of their own activity, they lose the big picture of the output and impact of the entire campaign.
- Ineffective measurement, reporting, data, and insights inhibit decision-making. Connecting the dots between data and insights is challenging. This challenge is exacerbated when data sources, metrics, or target objectives are inconsistent across teams. Without confidence in the data, marketing leaders are unable to make data-driven decisions and rely on gut feel and instinct.
The members of the roundtable, along with Forrester, discussed the following as potential approaches to tackle the above issues:
- Construct the campaign with well-defined target audiences and goals. A well-structured campaign implementation process will guide marketing leaders in the design and development of campaigns that align with company objectives. Tailoring growth, brand elevation, or customer expansion goals is a critical component of campaign design. Forrester’s campaign fundamentals can assist in finding an optimal position to address these diverse objectives effectively.
- Use a best-practice campaign implementation process to manage the campaign logistics. Drawing from an analysis of how successful companies execute their campaigns, Forrester has developed a structured framework for campaign implementation. This model distills the process into six distinct phases, each with defined objectives, work scopes, and deliverables. It enables the effective coordination of their efforts across different teams, ensuring high-quality progress throughout the project’s life span.
- Adopt a sound measurement framework. Enabling a consistent measurement structure based on a campaign hierarchy is essential. It enables the marketers to extract the insights from activities and link them to the impact that the overarching campaign is having on the business, thereby driving better decision-making within and for future campaigns.
- Decide on future actions through tactic-effectiveness analysis. Analyzing how tactics are performing for a target audience under a common campaign message will not only give you a clearer picture of your campaign’s impact but will also help you determine where to invest future budgets.
- Build campaign dashboards that align goals to results. The Forrester Aligned Measurement Process Model will guide you through the process of defining your measurement initiative, aligning it to your organization’s objectives, visualizing it in a meaningful way for your stakeholders, and enabling campaign leaders to become insights-driven in their decision-making.
We concluded the session with an intriguing question: “With so much to do, where and how do we start?” The response is straightforward: “The situation may not be as daunting as you think, as long as you can pinpoint where the real issue lies.”
Reach out to me and Mavis Liew today or connect with us through an inquiry to discuss how we could help you.
What It Means
Implementing campaigns is a big task in marketing organizations. It requires strategic thinking to align the campaign goals to address business objectives effectively. Operationally, it is an exercise involving many functional teams that demands well-organized logistics to enable quality collaboration across organizations. In continuous optimization efforts, scientific and practical measurement frameworks and deliverables are essential to support the decision-making. Whether you lead the campaign function from planning to execution or are only participating in selected stages, this blog shares thoughts and directions on what to look for to design impactful campaigns and then measure and manage them effectively.