Most B2B marketers manage channels not campaigns. They’re focused on the email going out next Tuesday, for example, or the trade show next month. These are managed as isolated events, and unfortunately are often measured as isolated events.
Did the email generate enough response? How much pipeline did the lunch and learn generate?
Research has shown definitively that a siloed approach to marketing has a direct correlation to a negative perception of marketing performance and impact.
A campaign mentality is better but still limited. Let’s say you think through a series of emails, for example. Or a series of events that make up a roadshow. This could be characterized as a campaign.
But the same limited measurements often apply. We look at email vs roadshows to evaluate which worked better, which generated more leads and/or opportunities.
Most B2B selling environments aren’t quite that simple. Your prospects aren’t solely impacted by a random email any more than they are impacted by email alone as a channel.
The more complex the purchase decision, and the longer the buying journey, the more important it is to manage and measure the full body of work from sales and marketing together. This is of course vastly more complicated to organize and measure, but it’s the reality of any complex selling environment.
Take a well-executed trade show, for example. It likely includes numerous touchpoints across a variety of channels across sales, marketing, perhaps even customer success teams. A sequence of emails before, during and after said trade show might be just one of several channels managed and executed in concert with each other.
So do you attribute success to the trade show? Or the string of emails? Or the sales rep who diligently followed up afterward?
The answer may be yes to all. Still important to try and isolate the variables that worked best, which software or even a good marketing analyst with some regression analysis can do.
B2B marketers need to manage journeys, not campaigns. Our job is to increase velocity of prospects through stages of discovery, commitment and conversion – not just isolated events and channels.