Author : 360 Direct

2Apr
Norkol Case StudyCase Study: Norkol

Case Study: Norkol

Client Description

360 Direct began working with an independently-owned paper converting company in 2016. Norkol has been known for its family business model and problem-solving, waste-saving approach since they opened their doors in the 1960s. This family business has since grown into a major packaging provider for Fortune 500 companies all over the United States.

Originally, their primary marketing concerns included updating the company website, keeping sales collateral current, and having a consistent digital presence. From the beginning, this client understood the need to leverage marketing to reach into new markets in order to meet the company’s aggressive growth goals.

The client’s monthly program started with a new website build and later expanded to include marketing new product lines, partnerships, and other campaigns.

Strategy & Tactics

Website

360 Direct built Norkol a website that was responsive to all screen sizes and easy for users to navigate. Perhaps most importantly, it was built to be able to grow as fast as the organization was expanding. Since then, new pages have been added regularly as Norkol’s product and service offerings grow. This even includes a custom coded calculator page that their sales team requested.

Sales Collateral

Norkol began with a limited amount of sales collateral. 360 Direct’s first step was creating pieces for every major product line to establish consistency. Now pieces are updated as capabilities change and created for new partnerships and product lines. This ensures the sales team always has everything they need for a new prospect. In fact, some of the projects are requested straight from the sales team!

SEO

SEO is important for increasing web traffic without relying on paid advertising. Regular blog posts and new web pages have increased Norkol’s visibility organically. When they first became a client, they ranked for 20 terms among search engines; today they rank for 274. The result is a 30% increase in web traffic year over year.

Content Consistency

In addition to regular blog posts, social media is also active. With so many things happening at Norkol, there’s also a monthly email newsletter that goes out so their customers stay informed of everything Norkol has to offer.

Editorials and PR

While content is regularly pushed to their current lists and audience, Norkol is interested in expanding their reach with PR and editorials. Press releases are distributed when there’s noteworthy information to share.

In late 2018, Norkol began pursuing editorials. Norkol has had articles published in Total Food and Packaging Strategies, with three more editorials in two other publications planned for later in 2019. These articles expand Norkol’s reach and position them as thought leaders in their industry.

Special Campaigns and Projects

There are some opportunities that don’t happen often, and Norkol wants to able to take advantage of them when they come along. Part of having a scaleable, flexible marketing agency is being able to grab onto opportunities when they arise. Projects have included:

  • Logos for new divisions and their 50th anniversary
  • Banners and signs
  • Press releases for new developments
  • Customer Surveys
  • Thank you cards

Client Feedback

There’s always something wonderful happening at Norkol, and 360 Direct is honored to work with them towards their business goals. We love it when a member of their sales team makes a special request, because it means our content has value beyond SEO and branding. It’s providing the sales team with the tools they need and want.

On a recent meeting, Norkol said, ““I think you guys are doing a great job for us. I really do appreciate that.”

The client is thriving and successfully adapting in an ever-changing industry, utilizing marketing to convey those adaptations to their target market. Just as they are forward-thinking in their product lines, they are also forward-thinking in their marketing strategy, and we have exciting projects planned for 2019 and beyond.

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5Mar
Marketing through growing painsUsing Marketing to Manage Business Growing Pains

Using Marketing to Manage Business Growing Pains

Marketing is an investment in the long-term success of your business — but like any investment, how and when we engage in it heavily impacts ROI. One of the reasons continuous year-round marketing is worth the money, especially during busy or difficult times, is because it helps us transition more smoothly through business growing pains. With a consistent marketing strategy, companies can better manage lead flow, employee turnover, and expansion when it matters most.

Manage Lead Flow With Marketing Strategy

Continuous marketing, even during busy times, prevents “feast or famine” business cycles and the stress that comes with it. When lead flow is more predictable, it’s easier to make additional investments in new facilities, equipment, and talent with less risk and worry. For businesses contending with the challenges associated with new growth, this particular benefit is key to making that growth sustainable and retaining loyal customers through difficult transitions.

A well thought-out marketing strategy also gives businesses the opportunity to plan ahead instead of trying to market from a place of panic, which is typically when you have the least amount of time and resources to allocate to marketing. Better planning results in better execution — making it possible to increase the return on your marketing investment simply by making it a part of regular business operations.

Another way that continuous marketing eases business growing pains is by streamlining the sales process and increasing the confidence of sales staff. Updated, well-targeted marketing materials can save your sales team time, and helps them take advantage of unique opportunities in the moment. It also enhances their communication with individuals who are more visual than auditory in the way they learn new information. By better accommodating the way potential prospects want to communicate with your sales staff, we can shorten sales cycles and improve the morale of your sales team.

Manage Recruitment With Marketing Strategy

Marketing for recruitment is very different from marketing for lead generation, and both are necessary to adequately manage business growing pains. This means that even if your business already has a handle on your lead generation marketing, it’s not time to get complacent. You will also need to put together a solid strategy for recruitment in order to manage the increase in workflow that will likely result from successful lead generation marketing.

Hammering out a marketing strategy for recruitment before crunch time hits is key to funneling qualified team members to your business as needed, without suffering through periods of being under or overstaffed. Just like lead generation marketing, giving yourself time to develop a recruitment strategy improves the ROI of your investment in talent acquisition, streamlines overhead, and avoids sinking resources into failed campaigns.

Continuous recruitment marketing during busy times also helps increase your capacity to take on new customers — but finding the right talent is often easier said than done. When competition in the labor market is high, businesses need to work that much harder to reach the talent they desperately need. The smarter and more calculated you are in creating and executing a recruitment marketing strategy, the more sustainably you can grow even when economic barriers and labor market conditions create roadblocks.

Business growing pains are a natural part of building a successful company, but that doesn’t mean we have to completely surrender to them. To learn more about using marketing to manage growth, connect with a 360 Direct team member via our Contact page.

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4Feb
meeting-1015313_640Successfully Engage the Audience You Want, One Event at a Time

Successfully Engage the Audience You Want, One Event at a Time

Whether you’re hosting an event, or simply participating in one, there are plenty of ways to engage your potential customers. Event marketing not only acts as another avenue for brand recognition, it gives prospective customers something to get excited about with your company. As a B2B company, the true success of an event is how many hot leads or actual sales you get from it and engaging your audience effectively is the key to pulling those leads further into your sales funnel.

If You Build It, They May Come

The first step of pursuing event marketing is deciding what type of event you want to do. It’s important that you focus on the wants of your target audience and where you can find them in order for your event to perform successfully. A popular event is only beneficial to you if it’s popular with your target audience. In some cases, a smaller event with a more narrow appeal will work better for you.

Once you figure out the type of event you want to pursue, how do you plan on getting the word out? Events are great opportunities to not only gain the interest of people you haven’t connected with yet, but also to engage with your existing contacts. Through the use of free and inexpensive tactics (examples listed below), there is potential for the marketing of your event to garner tremendous reach.

  • Press Releases – This is a free way to push the relevant information about your event to publications and on your website.
  • Website Landing Pages – Having an event-specific page on your website that has all the details and a contact form for more information is perfect for tracking how many potential leads are interested. Use this in your press releases, emails, and on social media to make sure it garners the attention it needs. Also, using Google Analytics, you can see precisely who your website page is attracting.
  • Digital Advertising – Google Ads and Facebook Advertising are both inexpensive yet highly effective options for pushing event promotion for your company. The reach can be extremely targeted and it is important to utilize channels that your audience is using for professional and personal use.
  • Email – If you utilize email marketing, another simple way to get your event information out to your audience is to include a section in your monthly or quarterly email newsletter on your event. This could simply be a graphic with a description and call to action to learn more on your website landing page.
  • Social Media – Creating an event page on Facebook. This is easy, free, and increases the visibility and reach of your event.

Using tactics like these, you can potentially reach thousands of prospects while re-engaging with your current customer base and keeping them informed of your progress. Targeted landing pages and digital advertising are especially helpful with events because of their trackability and reporting capabilities to analyze the success of the event.

What to Offer – The Importance of Incentivising

You now have a chance to be creative with your prospects so that they willingly give you their information and stick around to learn more about your company. When you are asking a prospect for their email or phone number, they’ll be much more likely to comply if they receive something of value in return. You can raffle a prize, or you can dig deeper and offer them something that relates directly to your company, like a trial of your product or a consultation. That has the added benefit of being typically lower cost to you, and moving them further into your sales pipeline.

SWAG items are often popular. While they aren’t often enticing enough to get a contact point in return, they are a useful tool in keeping your brand in front of your prospects. In order for it to be worth the cost, the SWAG item needs to be of interest or of use to your prospect. How many stress balls does an executive have on his desk?

Engaging your event audience is crucial to the success of your marketing efforts, especially  if it’s executed with trackability and consumer value in mind. Whether you’re unsure what event could be right for you, or have ideas but need help putting everything together, visit our Contact page and get in touch with one of our marketing experts today. Our team has the tools and expertise you need to help you engage the audience you want.

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4Jan
Call CampaignB2B Cold Calling Can Work, and Here’s How

B2B Cold Calling Can Work, and Here’s How

“Cold calling is expensive and doesn’t yield a great ROI.” Unfortunately, we’ve heard this claim from business owners more times than we can count. In reality, cold calling done right can raise the profile of a business, connect sales reps with qualified, interested prospects, and help convert cold leads into happy customers. However, there’s a reason why so many throw in the towel when it comes to cold calling: because it’s easy to make a very expensive mess of a calling campaign. On the other hand, when businesses follow the right formula, cold calling can be exactly the right kind of cost-effective tactic to warm up new prospects in their industry.

Why Traditional Cold Calling Campaigns Fail

It comes down to quality and getting what you pay for. Too many businesses throw together a calling campaign with no real strategy, a poorly vetted list, and an ineffective script because they’re worried about spending a lot of money on a tactic that might not work. To make things worse, a burned-out or overburdened sales team member is often placed at the helm to manage it all.

Everything from script writing to the cold calling itself takes a high level of skill, time, and energy in order to pull off. When you haven’t invested in the guidance of cold calling experts, it’s virtually inevitable that a business will spend a lot of money on a brand damaging venture with next to zero ROI. This is just one of many examples for why cutting corners in marketing is more expensive and less effective in the long run.

This doesn’t mean we’re suggesting that a business can simply outsource their calling campaigns to self-proclaimed experts and expect measurable rates of success from any service provider. Another common mistake business owners make is relying on underpriced telemarketing companies to run their cold calling campaigns. These agencies often use inexperienced calling talent who can’t connect well with prospects, and are more likely to do brand damage than serve as effective brand ambassadors.

As with any type of marketing, an ineffectively executed tactic will result in a waste of resources. With calling campaigns, enviable ROIs don’t just happen – you have to work for them.

Modern Cold Calling Campaigns Done Right

First things first: a successful cold calling campaign begins with a strategy and a high quality list, which should include direct mail addresses, company names, the names and titles of individuals at those companies. Narrow down your target market with appropriate demographic information like SIC codes and revenue stats. Using a more narrow, targeted list prevents you from spending resources on lists dominated by unqualified leads and helps your callers make the most of the time they spend reaching out to prospects.

Be cautious when attempting to utilize email in conjunction with a calling campaign. Most email automation services won’t even allow you to upload or email a purchased list. Work with an expert of using email ethically and responsibly.

The next step is writing a script that aligns with your overall strategy using tried and true script writing styles. A quality script provides answers for all likely contingencies and customer responses to prevent the conversation from actually feeling scripted. This requires writing scripts for leaving a message on an answering machine, for speaking with a skeptical customer, and working your way past skilled gatekeepers. The primary focus of an effective cold calling script should always be on the needs of the potential customer first, while providing just enough information at the right intervals to keep a lead engaged without overselling. With the aforementioned components finessed throughout a script by professional script writers, a cold caller can actually start to build relationships out of cold leads and prime them for later conversations with your sales talent.

However, even with a professionally written script, an inexperienced caller is set up to fail at a cold calling campaign. Professional calling talent dedicate all of their time to working around rude, angry, or disinterested individuals on the phone and won’t get discouraged or timid after being turned down a few times. Using professional cold callers also allows your sales team to maintain their enthusiasm and put their skills and energies towards nurturing qualified leads and actually closing sales.

If all of that information seems like a lot to digest, there’s no need to worry. Our team of marketing experts, script writers, and calling campaign developers is here to provide additional guidance whenever you need it. To get in touch, visit our Contact page here.

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23Nov
Marketing Campaign DevelopmentHow To Make Your Next Marketing Campaign Succeed

How To Make Your Next Marketing Campaign Succeed

Launching a marketing campaign doesn’t have to be a nail-biter. Set yourself up for success by covering fundamental campaign bases using a little preliminary market research, tactical coordination, and strategy.

Employ Multiple Tactics To Achieve Your Goal

Every campaign needs to start with a focused goal. Not all of your marketing campaigns will necessarily have the goal of immediately resulting in new sales. Many are designed to help prospects a little further down the sales funnel, making them easier to convert. Motivate your prospects to move down that funnel by providing value to them at each touchpoint using a clear call to action. For instance, if your goal is growing your email newsletter, offer coupons or free downloads when they provide their email address.

Whatever your goal is, you aren’t likely to reach it without taking a multi-tactical approach to a marketing campaign. It can take up to seven touchpoints for a lead to convert, meaning a one-off radio ad or single sponsored social media post will not generate overwhelming results on their own. Instead, stay in front of your audience with a series of corresponding tactics for better total ROI.

Know The Audience Of Your Marketing Campaign

The success of a marketing campaign can be dictated by how well you know your target audience. Narrow down your demographic and craft language, imagery, and offers that speak to their needs and values. The preliminary research is worth the effort, because dollars spent on anything ineffective is still wasted resources, even if the marketing tactic is low cost.

In that same vein, choosing ad platforms and mediums that your audience frequents or will respond positively to is essential to the success of a marketing campaign. The tactics you choose depend entirely on how your target market wants to be approached, which may require mixing both traditional and digital marketing tactics in the same campaign.

Follow Through On Your Marketing Campaign Tactics

It isn’t enough to simply execute your tactics and expect your leads to convert. Following through with your marketing tactics requires coordinating each one in a timely way, tracking them, and touching base with new leads at the end of the campaign.

Following through also means staying the course. Don’t change tactics mid campaign, even if results are slow to trickle in. Remember that it takes several marketing touchpoints for a lead to convert, so don’t get discouraged by low response rates early on. Wrapping up before your marketing campaign has run its course only deprives you of useful data.

Whenever possible, measure the efficacy of your tactics by checking analytics, recording the number of inquiries received, or emails collected. This valuable insight can be used for a retargeting campaign, or an entirely new campaign down the line. The more data we have, the greater our chances for success.

For more information on how to craft a successful marketing campaign, connect with an expert here.

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24Oct
Evergreen content is shareableWhat Makes Content Shareable?

What Makes Content Shareable?

How can we be sure that the blogs, newsletters, videos, and case studies we produce will get any traffic? In marketing, ROI is everything, and time and talent spent on ineffective content creation is money down the drain. The good news is, valuable, shareable content doesn’t have to go viral, it just has to connect with the target audience, and be both immediately and continuously useful to them.

Shareable Content Is Evergreen Or Topical

What is “evergreen” content? It’s digital marketing in the form of blogs, case studies, white papers, ebooks, infographics, podcasts, videos, or Q&As that is perpetually relevant long past its publication date. Evergreen content is indefinitely reusable and recyclable, increasing its total ROI over time. Evergreen content can also be indefinitely linked to or referenced in new content, providing additional context and educational information for the audience.

Beyond its recyclability, shareable evergreen content with smart SEO strategy deployed throughout will continue to build your digital footprint with Google over time as more visitors accumulate.

Topical content, though not evergreen, is also powerful when deployed in a timely way. Marketers can take advantage of current events or new technology featured by mainstream media to increase their own visibility for a finite amount of time. As long as your contribution to the conversation is relevant to your business and your target market, providing your business’ take on a hot topic can pull in a wider audience for a finite amount of time.

Shareable Content Is Practical

In a study by the NYT Insight Group, 94% of of content consumers assessed the usefulness of the content before sharing it. Shareable content is such because it provides the target audience with immediate value, prompting the audience to spread it around to others who might also find it helpful. So what makes content useful or practical? Shareable content provides action items, tips, or tools that require little additional research and exploration. Product demos, video tutorials, reports, or step-by-step guides are great examples of this.

Additionally, shareable content needs to be industry-relevant in order for it to draw in an audience with the potential to convert. Instead of producing content you think will go viral amongst general internet users, create content that your specific target audience is most likely to appreciate.

Shareable Content is Easily Digested

If a given article or web page doesn’t immediately provide internet users with information relevant to their search query, they are likely to exit that content without having read or viewed the majority of it, which doesn’t bode well for your marketing ROI or conversion rate.

To create well-organized content, use bullet points, lists, explanatory headings, and bold or otherwise visually isolate important takeaways. Concise, organized content helps your audience to quickly glean more of the information you want them to know about your product, company, or industry.

For larger pieces of content like in-depth blogs, articles, white papers, or case studies, highlight and organize the most valuable nuggets of information with descriptive headings, chapters, or content pages. For the right target audience conducting technical research into a product or service, they will expect to spend more time with your content and appreciate content organization that makes their research less tedious.

Bottom line: the more time a digital content consumer invests in your content, the likelier they are to find it useful, leading to a higher number of shares and exposure for your business.

Creating shareable content doesn’t have to be rocket science, but it should always have a strategy behind it. For more information on maximizing the efficacy and ROI of your digital content, connect with one of our content marketing experts.

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26Sep
SEO StrategySEO: What It Is & How To Build It

SEO: What It Is & How To Build It

We’ll start with the bad news first: there is no silver bullet tactic for getting found on Google. No one can become searchable overnight with a single widget, tool, or paid service. The good news? Leveraging Search Engine Optimization (SEO), the organic process by which a business can increase the number of unique visitors to their website using keywords, can absolutely help the right people find your business over time. Many companies specialize in SEO, for example, someone like Victorious covers SEO for different business types.

What is SEO Strategy And Why Do We Need Keywords?

SEO strategy is how marketers make Google your friend. For example, when a web user searches for “Milwaukee pet grooming,” all web pages with a keyword strategy for that search term will pop up in their results. Google’s bots use keywords to find and index your digital content, raising the SEO, or search rankings, of the highest quality, keyword-relevant content. What keywords a marketer chooses depends entirely on the business and their target market.

Unfortunately, legitimate SEO building does not provide instant gratification. With a multi-faceted SEO strategy, it can take several weeks to months to see a substantial impact on your web traffic. This is because Google’s bots (known as crawlers) need time to find new web content and index it. SEO building should be a process that marketers engage in continuously, adding new relevant content over time using keywords the target market is most likely to search for. This is why, if this is something that you are unsure about, then it might be a good idea for you to check out something like this seo audit guide.

Tactics For Building Your Website’s SEO Using Keywords

Choose Keywords Wisely. Simply going with the most popular search terms for your industry may or may not be the best strategy for you. Your chosen keywords should depend on the kinds of content your target wants and the words they use to describe it, whether that’s layman’s terms or technical seo vocabulary.

Write Useful Content. Fill your web pages with informative, helpful content, and intersperse your keyword naturally throughout. Google’s algorithms are designed to punish websites that try to game the system, or awkwardly stuff keywords into irrelevant surrounding content.

Strategically Insert Keywords. We can place keywords in more places than just the plain text featured on a web page. When used in web page headings and URLs, those strategically placed keywords help flag Google’s crawlers in finding the keyword-relevant content featured on the page itself.

Label Your Images. Marketers can make images function like SEO building tools by labeling them using alt tags. Search engines won’t otherwise register images as relevant content if we don’t tell them what they depict using alt tags.

Submit A Sitemap. We can tell the search engine which pages you want it to crawl by submitting a sitemap. This ensures that Google is able to find your newly written content more effectively, and properly index everything else on your site.

Keep in mind that SEO building is a marathon, not a sprint. Results won’t happen overnight, but measurable improvement is possible with the right keywords and the right strategy in place. For more info on SEO and how to build yours, contact us.

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29Aug
Hit Your Target AudienceHow To Connect With Your Target Audience

How To Connect With Your Target Audience

You know your business and your industry better than anyone, but to really maximize your marketing, it’s not enough to know your products and services inside and out. You have to know your customers inside and out. Effective marketing goes deep and gets inside the heads of your target audience, and speaks to their likes, dislikes, values, priorities, and lifestyles.

Learn How To Talk To Your Audience

Marketers figure out how to speak to a target audience by constructing Buyer Personas — a general description of what characteristics define your target audience. Though Buyer Personas won’t describe absolutely everyone in a target market, they’re useful for narrowing down the tone, content, and tactics used in the marketing campaigns we employ to reach the majority of those ideal customers.

We start building a Buyer Persona by asking basic questions about the demographics of a businesses’ target audience, like age, industry, geographical region, education and income level. If you could describe your customer, what types of clothing do they wear? What kind of car do they drive? A customer who goes to work in a fuel-efficient Prius and yoga attire will likely have different preferences, needs, and motivations than one who drives an extended cab pick-up truck and carries a Leatherman. Small details form a complete picture of your target and can help you understand how best to communicate with them. (Don’t forget, this should be based on actual customers you are attracting, not who you believe you should attract. For example, incorrect assumptions are often made about genders so make sure you educate yourself with articles such as this she-conomy.com which explains some common pitfalls and how to avoid them. Many marketing campaigns have fallen flat because advertisers missed the mark on who they appealed to.)

How To Start Connecting

When it comes to choosing between these marketing modalities, the purchasing behaviors of your target audience should dictate the tactic. A full analysis of your target audience provides the necessary insight into the shopping and buying behaviors of your ideal customers, and helps businesses make informed decisions when choosing between digital and traditional methods. Some examples include:

Social Media: Choose social media platforms your target audience is most likely to frequent. While younger age groups are particularly active on SnapChat and Instagram, a target audience of professionals in the prime of their career would more likely be found on Facebook or LinkedIn.

Traditional Media: Instead of focusing on platforms with the largest reach, focus on where your audience is. For example, a top 40 radio station may have the largest reach, but if your audience is listening to talk radio, that may be best platform. Likewise, newspapers with the largest reach may not be the same publications your audience reads cover to cover.

Content (White Papers, Case Studies, Blogs): Where long technical papers may be too detailed to catch the interest of a CEO, they could be perfect for an engineer who needs to know that your product meets his specific requirements. Some consumers may appreciate humor, memes, and hyperbole, where other demographics prefer you to get to the point.

No matter what method you choose, all language, imagery, and offerings should reflect the needs and desires of your target market. The better you know your ideal customer, the more effective your marketing will be.

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31Jul
Tracking ROI MarketingTracking ROI With Digital Marketing Tools

Tracking ROI With Digital Marketing Tools

It’s easy to know whether or not you’re hitting your revenue goals. Equally important, however, is understanding which marketing tactics or strategies are helping you hit those goals, and which ones aren’t. Luckily, there are several ways to measure the ROI of your marketing campaigns.

Using Landing Pages

When you create a website, you don’t know who will find it or by what means. With a landing page, you can dictate both of those variables. Instead of visibly anchoring it to a navigation menu, include the landing page link on marketing pieces connected to a campaign targeting a specific audience, allowing you to determine how well individual campaigns are working. Since you control who has access, it’s also the perfect opportunity to tailor messaging just for that audience. An added benefit of using a landing page is the ability to use Google Analytics to track the behavior flow of that specific audience as they navigate your site.

Of course, web traffic alone isn’t a strong indicator of ROI. Hopefully your landing page has a call to action leading to a contact form, RSVP portal, or a white paper download. In addition to generating a new warm lead, you may be able to track a future sale to that specific marketing campaign.

This strategy works for nearly any campaign. When using targeted marketing, you want to direct website visitors to specific content that’s relevant to them. Landing pages are particularly useful for targeted direct mail, radio, and PPC campaigns with a narrow marketing message.

Using Promo Codes

Businesses often use promotions to add urgency to their marketing campaigns. With a little extra planning, promo codes can teach you a lot about your audience! Rather than provide one code across many different tactics, use different codes so that you can measure which tactics or what types of messaging worked.

One thing to remember: make sure that you don’t mix your promo codes. Try to ensure that no single lead ends up with several different promo codes. This requires precise management of your direct mail and email lists, as well as careful consideration if you plan mass marketing tactics like radio or billboards. If you choose to use both mass marketing channels and your existing customer base, ensure that your current customers receive the better deal for being loyal!

You can use this strategy when employing several tactics within a campaign – like some people getting postcards and others getting emails. This would help determine which tactic had the better ROI. You can also divide up your lists and test out different messaging, and use the different promo codes to track which marketing messages connected more with your target market.

Using landing pages and promo codes are just two effective components of an overall marketing strategy geared towards measurable, calculated growth. In pursuing this end goal of calculated growth, businesses make both their marketing and their dreams sustainable. Want to chat more? Visit our Contact Us page and get in touch with one of our experts today!

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9Jul
target-with-people-620x350-539x350Grow Smart With Targeted “A” List Marketing

Grow Smart With Targeted “A” List Marketing

At some point in their growth cycle, most companies learn through trial and error that not every paying customer will generate a positive impact on their business. Growth in the wrong direction can cause any business to stall or even regress. Smart, sustainable business development requires targeted marketing aimed at your most profitable customers in order to attract more of them. This is called finding and marketing to your “A List”, which involves strategically crafting services and messaging around the specific needs of your most ideal clients.

How to Identify Your A List 

Start by mining your existing customer list for the types of businesses that make the most profitable purchases or have the potential to make them. For a manufacturer, that could be a repeat customer that puts in the most lucrative product orders with the most reasonable turnaround demands. For a B2B service-oriented business, that would likely be the type of customer that signs up for a continuous program or contract. While we hope your most profitable clients are the ones spending the most with you, that may not always be the case. There are instances where your biggest customer may strain your resources, leaving you with a razor thin profit margin, in which case you don’t actually want more customers with similar orders. Even if you you consider yourself a “one-stop-shop” for a variety of industries and applications, identify customers who purchase the products and services with the highest profit margins.

Those customers are your A List. The rest of your customer list may still provide some business, and there’s nothing wrong with continuing to serve their needs when those less ideal customers find you, but your marketing resources should be primarily devoted to campaigns aimed at the top tier. The idea of targeted marketing isn’t to shrink business, it’s to grow in the most profitable areas with the most cost-effective strategy.

Use Targeted Marketing to Grow Your A List

When we retool messaging, recalibrate your Adwords strategy, or venture into new digital spaces in ways designed to reach your most profitable customers, not only do you keep those existing high-value customers engaged, more of the same tier will start to find you. By contrast, a business that directs resources towards less desirable customers will become swamped by their least-profitable customers and stunted in their ability to provide exceptional services to the customers they want the most of. That strategy not only drains business resources, it can damage your brand in the eyes of your A List.

A successful A List marketing strategy focuses on connecting and reconnecting with those specific businesses. Potential tactics could be as simple as sending your A List a targeted email campaign pertaining to the specific products or services they want, or offering them a referral discount. This is the easiest, least exclusionary way to market to your A List. Other tactics may involve retooling the aesthetics of your website and social media presence to reach your ideal customer. If your A List is a bulk-buying budget conscious customer, a minimalist, no-nonsense website makeover could be more appealing to them. When your A List is comprised of individuals with advanced degrees, taking an elevated tone to your messaging will likely give you more credibility in their eyes. These types of tweaks may not be appealing to D and C List customers, but it’s ok to allow your targeted marketing to filter out those who won’t benefit the long-term growth and viability of your business. As a matter of fact, that’s the point.

For more information on how to reach your A List and letting go of the customers you don’t need, connect with our team of marketing experts via the Contact page.

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