Updated: Apr 14, 2020
If you look to raise brand awareness, generate leads, or are working in, for or with inbound marketing, or have a new business and/or marketing in your remit, then no doubt you will be wading into a marketing campaign.
These can go one of two ways:
The Hard Way // A Marketing Campaign carried out in the absence of one or more of the following:
A Marketing campaign that is missing any of these elements suggests a blind tactics-only solution marketing effort.
This type of campaign or approach has a significantly higher probability of falling down, and when they do, it reinforces the idea that marketing doesn’t work.
The Easy Way // Marketing Campaigns that deliver the best possible results anchored in all of the elements listed above.
So before getting started, you’ll want to have clarity on these few things:
Your Marketing Strategy anchored in commercial objectives
A well-researched and clearly understood Target Market
Your database of perfect-for-you prospects, the number of people in the database directly correlates with your commercial goals.
Marketing Campaigns begin with a plan for 3 to 6 meaningful touchpoints specific to your Target Market, executed over the course of 12 weeks.
That Marketing campaign is leveraged to do a few things such as:
Execute an idea observed in real-time and, where required, course-corrected to ensure the best possible results. This assumes this is the first or second marketing campaign your organisation is pushing out.
Set up the campaign that comes after it, which will build your efforts to date. It is insane to run one-off campaigns and expect a solid ROI. Campaigns that interlock, leverage and carry on the momentum of their predecessors are a more effective investment, both results and budget-wise. Consider designing campaigns in ways that leave room for the next one to live on its efforts.
Generate Marketing Leads. In our experience working with tech firms selling to larger organizations with a 3 to the 6-month sales cycle, 16-weeks delivers jackpot results.
Collect data, Intel, insights, and all that great stuff that allows us to benchmark and make informed decisions.
If you’re curious as to what a Marketing Campaign looks and sounds like, where it originates from and how it systematically unfolds to support the commercials of a business, here’s what you need to know about a Marketing Campaign below.
Marketing Campaigns: what are they?
A Marketing Campaign is a 12-week hybrid of operational and execution plans for what specific pieces of content go to which specific online and offline places on a daily, weekly, fortnightly and monthly basis, targeting a particular type of market segment.
This Marketing Campaign exists to fill the middle of your funnel. It is the activity that attracts your prospects with a series of 3 touchpoints (the top third of the funnel) and converts them to marketing qualified leads through touchpoints 4-6 (the middle third of the funnel). This sets them up to move on to sales qualified leads.
We estimate up to 6 touchpoints because human nature is inert. Procrastination is in our genes.
Rarely will you get a favourable response on touchpoint 1 of your marketing campaign.
A handful will respond on touchpoint 2.
Touchpoint 3 of your marketing campaign generates the 5% or higher response rate from your target market, in a way that sees the middle of your funnel expand.
Imagine that what we’re doing in the inbound marketing or lead generation world is priming a pump— an old school analogy, but it works.
Back in the day, we had to prime a pump up to 100 times to get the water to start to flow.
If you stopped pumping at 97 or 98, the water that had risen to the top would simply fall back down. Once you reach pump number 100, the water free flows.
Finally, the marketing campaign plan is designed to be dynamic. We bend and flex in real-time during the execution stages in order to take advantage of opportunities as soon as they appear, and course-correct based on a combination of data-driven insights and experience.
A Marketing Campaign defines the following:
This looks like a flyover view of the overall plan. It can be a paragraph in length. It explains:
The objective your business is seeking to resolve, the supporting objective(s) that marketing is addressing (that tie directly back to commercials), the strategy used to resolve the objective, and the strategy that would then break down into a tactical plan over a 12-week period.
PART 2: TARGET MARKET THAT TIES THE IDEAL CLIENT PROFILE TO THE ACTIVITY AS A PERFECT FIT
We always start with full clarity on your respective Target Market Segment that best supports the commercial goals for the project. This is the target market with the highest probability of realising the overall objectives.
If you are interested in learning more about Marketing Strategies – check this out.
Insights you have on your target market are the anchor in The Marketing Content Strategy. Note that a Target Market is a clearly defined segment. It contains specifics on things like:
Job title: both the function and the level of seniority. For example, you might target people with the title Chief Learning Officer.
The Business profile: whether the business is small, medium, large, based on the employee count. We suggest focusing on the type that has the highest probability of becoming your client to achieve the set revenue targets.
Tip: We typically base this assessment on employee size. A 0 to 10 employee firm has its team working in a vastly different way than a firm with 1000 employees. A Marketing Manager in one and a Marketing Manager in the other have immensely different worlds, views, priorities, challenges, and interests.
Geography: culture and location of your target market take part in this.
PART 3: CAMPAIGN COMMUNICATIONS
A Campaign Communications plan contains:
Sequence / Format / Production (if required) / If this, then that scenario
Sequence: The timeline/order for when a communication is pushed out to the target market. TABTF uses the NATO alphabet— Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, etc— to distinguish between first, second, third communications that are pushed out to the same target market segment.
Alpha lands Monday
Bravo lands week 2 Monday
Charlie lands week 4 Tuesday
Delta lands in week 5 or 6
Echo lands in week 9 or 10
Format: How each communication will be disseminated to the target market.
We run marketing campaigns that are hyper-specific to our target market. If our target market hates email, we don’t use it at all (this is the kind of insight that will have appeared in the Market Research phase). As a matter of fact, we have seen jackpot campaign results from direct mail – snail mail activity over any other format over the last 4 years.
Alpha – direct mail
Bravo – LinkedIn message
Charlie – email
Delta – direct mail
Echo – a phone call
Production: What’s needed to produce each communication.
This is when we need to articulate the physical mechanics involved with either of the communications. Alpha in this example would involve production as follows:
Outer C5 envelope
Stickered seal on the back of an envelope
Mail Merged 220gsm letter – colour print single-sided folded to A5
Handwritten signature on a letter
If this, then that scenarios:
This accounts for responses to any of the 6 communications. Alpha scenarios in this example would be as follows:
If a prospect responds to Alpha, then they receive Alpha 1 follow-up
If they do not respond to Alpha, then send Bravo This may result with questions from the prospects, if so, then escalate to the brand manager to validate response/handling.
PART 4: PROJECT PLAN
Determine a tool or tracking software to organise, track, plan, update on any and all marketing campaigns. At TABTF, we use Asana.
PART 5: REPORTING
For each communication that is pushed out during the campaign, it will be key to report on:
How many were sent
How many responded
Any queries that came back
How many didn’t respond and will receive the next communication
Clear reporting helps us see how the campaign is working, gives us insights, and allows us to adjust in real-time.
PART 6: DATABASE TRACKING
This is literally as it sounds. It is a way of accounting for progress and ensuring things run smoothly. If we have 500 prospects in our database, then we need to account for the progress made by each one by which level of communication.
It also helps the campaign remain organized and avoid any mistakes. For example, you track a prospect who responded to a Charlie communication so they don’t receive the same Delta communication as somebody who hasn’t yet responded.
Marketing campaigns deliver when it is rooted in strategy, content planning, a defined target market and business commercials. Planning of 3-6 touchpoints over the course of 12 weeks in your marketing campaign.
Your Marketing Plan contains: A focused summary A defined target market A communication plan Framework for reporting results Track communication with the prospects