Companies enthusiastically put together campaign or bring in Agencies to facilitate full service marketing. Lots of money is spent, research, planning, putting a team together if need be. Media’s purchased, events may be part of the plan and other marketing tactics as well including online components like email marketing and social media. If these pieces of the plan are well thought out and strategic it can be extremely beneficial for the advertised product or service. Introducing a new product line, building brand awareness, evoking emotion and action from the target demographic can all happen as the result of full service marketing. But often times the component that’s ignored is how and if a full service marketing plan is going to provide sale qualified leads (SQL) fo your sales team to follow up and close. There are a number of reasons this should be the case including but not limited to marketing and sales being different sides of the same coin. Sales conversions can be an indication of proper or improper buyer persona. Fully nurtured marketing qualified leads (MQL) will increase conversions for your sales team and prove to be an efficient way to maximize efforts.
A common mistakes that’s made from large companies to solopreneurs is looking at marketing and sales as two completely separate functions as opposed to assets that work hand in hand. A great marketing plan is pointless if it doesn't lead to SQL, and w/o SQL’s you’ll be out of business faster than you know it. As a matter of fact regardless of what other surface problems may be in play most businesses and brands fail because they neglect to do enough to produce SQL’s. A lot of companies try shortcuts for SQL’s like purchasing leads or cold calling list that they may have gotten for free or low cost. These tactics may bear some fruit, but the amount of effort and will needed to sustain will eventually run short. The fool proof way to keep the pipeline full your sales team happy and to make money is a fully integrated marriage between marketing and sales. Use creativity and be bold in your marketing but make sure your conversion paths are in place to produce the right SQL.
The conversions or lack thereof on on your SQL can be an indication that your marketing isn’t targeting the right persona. Buyer persona is your ideal customer , the one that most of your marketing efforts are geared towards and the person you want to convert into a customer. If marketing and sales are linked as pointed out in the previous paragraphs but you’re still not converting on sales it may be an indication that you’re targeting the wrong persona or the conversion path for the persona isn’t fully developed. Study your leads as they develop from prospect to MQL to SQL. Are the majority of them making it to the bottom of the funnell where the can be counted on to make a decision in the form of a purchase of your product or service? Or are most of those leads stuck in awareness or consideration stage of the journey and not making it to decision stage. Either way this can be an indication of an incorrect persona target or content that’s not optimized to convert throughout the entire journey.
The funnel is an important part of full service marketing, and something you must pay attention to. Your buyer persona enter the funnel as prospects the goal is to continuously nurture them from being a prospect to MQL to SQL and finally customer. If you’re not nurturing these properly they’ll never mature past the the top or middle portion, nothing kills momentum like a leaky funnel. You must be maniacal in reviewing that process and patching any holes and implementing fixes that may be causing you to lose leads in some phase of the buyer's journey. Ensuring that those prospects are fully nurtured will ensure that once they reach decision stage as an SQL your salespeople can convert and continuously build revenues for the company.
Increasing conversions on those MQL’s, reviewing your buyer persona(s) and making sure the right one is chosen for a given campaign, combined with a mindset that marketing and sales are intertwined and inseparable are great ways to make sure your full service marketing is producing sales qualified leads. Are there other approaches you’ve experienced or implemented that produce SQL’s? Please share with us in the comment section below, we welcome a dialogue with you.