“Who is your target audience?”, I’ve asked my prospect on the Skype call.
“Actually, every company which sells anything and can afford our services “, he replied.
Me: What channels did you use for lead generation?
Prospect: cold emails, Facebook ads, PPC. They all were ineffective.
That’s how actually most B2B companies start marketing.
The truth is there are dozens tools, channels and strategies you can
use and combine, but before you’ll сhose any of them, you MUST do the
1. Figure out market segments and prioritize them.
Imagine you’re running a wellness center and you’ve decided to
start using a CRM. You’ve read tons of information and stopped on 2
One of them offers you a CRM which gets your sales organized.
Another one offers a specialized done for wellness business owners
CRM which helps to organize your sales and increase your revenue.
Which one will you choose?
The answer is obvious!
That is the power of marketing segmentation.
When we focus on a specific market segment, we can create more
precise offer because we know the needs and the struggles of companies
from this segment.
This always leads to higher conversions, ROI, and revenue.
To figure out your segments, start with these 2 simple questions:
* Who can be a potential buyer of my products (your target auditory)?
* Why are they buying products or services like mine? What kind of problems or tasks do they want to solve?
2. Create an ICP (ideal customer profile) for every market segment.
The first step is to figure out market segments because an ICP always is “impersonation” of the segment.
This is one of the most traditional marketing mistakes.
I see so many companies taking the clients from different segments
and trying to figure out ICP. This approach leads to “fit for all”
marketing offers and ineffective campaigns.
Every segment is unique
You should use customer profile to figure out unique needs of the
target segment, create USP for this segment and figure out the channels
and tools you can use to reach your target auditory.
As well, ICP can help you to figure out important points for
marketing qualification (MQL) so you’ll be able to analyze the quality
of leads from every marketing campaign you’ll run.
Here is 3-step process to create an ICP.
At the first step you should answer these 4 questions:
- What problem does my product or service solve?
- Who is the buyer (job position) for this product or service?
- Where I can find them?
Knowing this information, it is much easier for us to plan
marketing campaigns and choose sites for targeted PR and advertising.
These include professional or thematic sites, specialized forums or
groups on social networks, professional organizations. These resources
we can use to place press releases, banners, advertisements,
promo-announcements, guest publications and so on.
- What problems/issues does he regularly face?
This information is necessary in order to emphasize the commercial proposal for the solution of these problems of the client.
The second step is gathering data from the existing segment.
You know already a segment and why this segment buys your products.
Now choose your top-10 customers (look at their LTV) from these segment
and fill such template:
You’ll need such information as:
- Job position
- Team size
- Yearly turnover
- Objections and doubts
- Current needs and tasks
- Factors which can influence on purchasing decision
- Why did they choose our company
This basic information will be enough to compile the primary marketing calendar.
When the information is collected, you can go to the third part.
The third step is creating an ICP from the collected data.
With such approach, you’ll be able to figure out whom exactly you
should target, as well, the ROI of your marketing campaigns will be much
3. Analyze your competitors and figure out their lead
generation channels, their positioning, their service, their strengths
You can use tools like Similarweb to
spy on your competitors’ traffic channels, display ads, keywords and
referral websites. Buzzsumo is great for figuring out the best content
from the competitors’ websites.
And, of course, you’d call your competitors to check how their sales team work:
- product knowledge,
- willingness to help
Analyze their offer, lead nurturing and service.
Ask their customers about how much they are satisfied working with your competitor and what are their strengths, and weaknesses.
As more data, you’ll be able to collect, as better would be your
USP (unique selling proposition) and your offer. Not to say, you’ll be
able better understand your market and channels you can use for lead
4. Work on unique selling proposition for every segment.
For most companies, USP is just a beautiful slogan which actually doesn’t respond the question: “Why anybody should buy this product?”
I should mention that the offer to each unique market segment should have separate USP.
Can a company do a business without clear USP?
Yes, of course!
There would be only the one problem: you’d compete with other 95%
noname companies from your market who can acquire the customers only by
giving them the lowest price.
Because your prospect won’t see any difference between your services and competitors.
Clear USP distinguishes your company from the competition and allows to sell higher than average market prices.
5. Work on customer journey and create a lead nurturing sequence.
You should know the exact process how the problem which your
product solves occurs and how your prospects become aware of it
What bothers them? What is the root cause of the problem? What are the solutions?
You must figure out how you can answer these questions and help
your prospects to identify the problem and start considering different
solutions (Consideration stage).
At this stage, you’d qualify and try to help your prospect to
choose the most appropriate solution. When the lead is qualified, he
must be nurtured to be aware of all benefits he’ll get if he’ll choose
your product (Decision stage).
Why is it so important?
According to Hubspot, at any given time, only 3% of your market is actively buying. 56% are not ready, 40% are poised to begin.
Another fact: 63% of people requesting information
on your company today will not purchase for at least three months – and
20% will take more than 12 months to buy.
All this means that if you didn’t figure out customer journey and
implemented a lead nurturing, the close deal ratio would be miserable
or, at list, less than it could be.
6. Create a marketing strategy and marketing plan.
Only after these 5 steps you’d be able to figure where to start
(channels and tools), whom to prospect (targeted market segments) and
how to make your leads sales-ready (lead nurturing).