Convert This Year’s Audience Insights Into Next Year’s B2B Marketing Strategy ROI

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As the year continues to fly by, we somehow find ourselves midway through Q3 and heading into planning for next year. 

At a time when marketing dollars are expected to go further, audiences are overstimulated and budgets face a stringent lens, planning can feel burdensome and overwhelming. More than ever, focusing on data-driven, strategic audience targeting and strong reporting foundations will be the key to doing more with less.

To maximize the impact of your B2B marketing strategy in the year ahead, use the next few months to set yourself up for success by prioritizing the following: 

  1. Gather audience insights. Better understanding the role of audiences and their journey through the buying cycle is one of the best ways to optimize messaging and marketing activities. To use audience insights as effectively as possible next year, get a headstart on projects now to allow for application of those insights during the planning process.

    Helpful marketing audience insights can come in many different forms. First-party research is a great way to collect audience data that informs or validates the targeting of new or expanded audiences in your go-to-market strategy. It may also help uncover additional decision-makers or budgets for the products or services you sell.

    You may already have data on hand that can provide an important view of the customer. For example, sales win/loss data can shine a light on the types of deals your organization is most adept at closing and which stakeholders actually played a role in the process. It can also give you insight on where you can directly address audience pain points for improved marketing impact. By leveraging this data, you can learn from successful sales processes and better understand the types of audiences that are more likely to invest in what you have to offer.

    Finally, talking to existing customers and even lost sales prospects can be a great way to learn more about how decisions are actually made, uncovering valuable information about searches and purchases in your product category. For additional considerations on how audience marketing insights can be applied to your B2B marketing strategy, see, “Applying B2B Buyer Journey Insights to Drive Higher Marketing ROI.”

  2. Optimize your lead funnel. Sales data can also provide a closer look at leads as they move through each stage of the funnel. This can help you identify gaps, areas of friction and opportunities to maximize sales enablement through marketing activities. 

    While marketing and sales may be stronger than ever, a missed opportunity to address a prospect’s pain point at a later stage in the funnel, misaligned lead flow or improperly set up systems can lead to a lower conversion rate. Review in-depth sales data by stage to uncover challenges in your sales funnel or lead flow set up that may prevent you from driving leads to closed won — ultimately creating stronger marketing and sales alignment.

    Lead funnel optimization can also support more accurate reporting that can strengthen your ability to tie meaningful results to your marketing activities and provide insights on successes for additional optimization. Taking a closer look at foundational elements of your funnel, like website conversion points and marketing automation systems to ensure they’re set up properly to track, score, nurture and report on leads, will increase the likelihood that you are bringing in and converting the right leads through the funnel.

  3. Align your strategy to business goals. By applying audience insights and sales data to your B2B marketing tactics, you can more effectively target and market through the funnel. Layering in this strategic marketing prioritization will ensure your spend is aligned with the right goals and results, and that your marketing dollars can go even further.

    Marketing and business strategy alignment should be the first step to drive agreed-upon outcomes between sales and marketing. As H2 of this year evolves and next year comes into focus, it’s important to continuously revisit marketing strategies and their ties to business goals and organizational growth. It’s also essential to consider which channels and activities best align with audiences and position your organization to accomplish those goals.

    Strategic marketing prioritization also involves setting the right foundations for growth in the year ahead, including website, channel and reporting optimization. Strong foundations will ensure marketing dollars can go further, drive greater results and ultimately lead to more conversions and sales.

Successful and strategic B2B marketing planning will always involve careful consideration. But taking a data-driven approach to planning and starting to collect insights now will make it a more exciting and informed process. 

Don’t have the time or resources to get started now? Consider redirecting leftover project budgets toward a partnership with a marketing strategy agency to get ahead of planning. Connect with Walker Sands’ marketing strategy team today. 


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