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Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today's B2B Environment


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Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today's B2B Environment

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Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today's B2B Environment

  1. 1. Building the BestMarketing Budgetfor Today’sB2B Environment
  2. 2. Silverpop Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today’s B2B Environment BUILDING THE BEST MARKETING BUDGET FOR TODAY’S B2B ENVIRONMENT For most marketers, budgeting and planning much revenue can be attributed directly to for the next year is a substantial undertaking. marketing’s efforts. But budgeting season is also a time to step On the flip side of the same coin, marketing back, assess what’s working, make plans to has had to change the way it plays the game change or improve, and see what peers are because today’s consumers are much different doing in similar industries. It’s no easy task, but from their predecessors. With more resources taking a moment to reflect, review and refine at their disposal, the Internet at their fingertips before getting into detailed budget planning and an arsenal full of research options, this is mode is the best bet in today’s topsy-turvy one empowered group. In fact, a recent study environment where so much is at stake. by the Marketing Leadership Council found that During the last few years, business has changed on average, buyers are 57 percent of the way for marketing. In part, marketing is under the through the buying cycle before they’re even same strain as other departments as companies willing to engage a sales resource.1 This doesn’t strive to do more with less. But there’s more just turn the screw on sales, it means marketing to it. Now more than ever, marketing is held has to step up and provide more support and directly responsible for revenue creative new tactics to manage the care and and more deeply accountable for feeding of the self-service buyer. business metrics. Marketing is In its first-ever Global Chief Marketing Officer finding its staff and resources are Study, IBM found that CMOs and CEOs across all more involved farther into the industries see market and technology as the two so-called “funnel.” This means most influential forces affecting companies today.2 less demarcation of when and where it hands off to All of this mandates an approach to your sales and more overlap budget that’s judicious and strategic. If 2012’s with the sales team trends continue, it will likely mean a bump up in in nurturing leads dollars with a significant portion going toward to ultimate revenue. digital marketing, often with some form of Additionally, CEOs are improved marketing automation. But whatever pressing their marketing final shape those dollars take, here’s our advice execs to report where they for how to ensure the most effective marketing are in the pipeline and how budget possible. © 2012 Copyright Silverpop. All rights reserved. The Silverpop logo is a registered trademark of Silverpop Systems Inc. PAGE 2
  3. 3. Silverpop Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today’s B2B Environment GET BUY-IN First things first. Don’t assume your company’s why this is necessary and how it will help improve C-level execs understand every detail behind marketing’s effectiveness (and ultimately the the multiple facets contributing to today’s bottom line) is important. B2B marketing world. More importantly, don’t assume they immediately understand PLAN FOR TECHNOLOGY’S how marketing and sales roles have shifted INCREASED ROLE IN or how that shift affects your company. MARKETING That education is up to you. Get time on the Virtually every marketing department should appropriate calendars and ensure there is have a defined budget for technology in their a general understanding of today’s digital 2013 plan. In the past, those budgets may have marketing dynamics. existed in or been rolled up with the IT depart- Before you go eyeball to eyeball with the ment, but technology’s function within market- executive ranks, spend some time talking about ing has become so multifaceted, specific budgets the organization’s goals in general. Make sure within marketing are emerging. you’re current on the targets your company is Technology and its benefits affect every aspect working to hit and the key strategies behind of how marketers successfully do what they do. those objectives. This is a critical first step in The myriad technologies available to marketing establishing that marketing’s goals, which will today affect content, interaction with prospects, be reflected in your budget, are in line with the efficiency, benchmarking, accountability and ROI. company’s goals. This conversation should alsoTWEET THIS No wonder Gartner found that by 2017, the CMO produce some excellent functional knowledge will spend more on technology than the CIO.3“Don’t assume that can later be used when pitching yourC-level execs proposed budget. In presenting that report via the January 2012understand how Webinar, Laura McLellan, Gartner’s vice presidentmarketing and Finally, the technology that serves as thesales roles have of marketing strategies, said, “All of us who work foundation for your digital marketing platformshifted. That in marketing organizations and follow marketing isn’t going to come for free. Whether such aeducation is up see that today, digital is reinventing marketing. system is already in place and your team needs toto you.” Put another way, technology and transparency ramp up skills on how to use it more effectively, are changing marketing.” or you’re about to make a first-time purchase, getting buy-in from top management about Among other things, McLellan was referring to the marketing automation solutions that allow companies to increase the intimacy and engage- ment with clients by managing that interaction based on behavior and existing customer data. Furthermore, truly integrated marketing auto- mation software provides insight into how much influence various efforts are having on outcome, an invaluable metric for reference when the time comes to make the hard decisions about what stays in a budget versus what gets the axe. © 2012 Copyright Silverpop. All rights reserved. The Silverpop logo is a registered trademark of Silverpop Systems Inc. PAGE 3
  4. 4. Silverpop Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today’s B2B Environment In its “Marketing Tactics of Top Tech Yet most B2B organizations are not using Performers” report, Forrester Research a marketing automation platform. Sirius concluded that a standout commonality of Decision also reported that only 18 percent leading tech companies is that they have all of B2B companies have implemented one. embraced marketing automation. Further, that same report found that of those who have purchased such a system, In its summary, Forrester communicated the 85 percent felt they were not utilizing it to benefits beyond the scope of just tech compa- the fullest potential.6 nies: “With deep insight into buyer behavior and engagement, and (increasingly) sophis- If you’ve not yet implemented a full-featured ticated analytics, it is becoming possible for marketing automation system, you’ll need to marketers to move beyond simple attribution budget for the purchase and implementation models and gain deeper and more complete of the system. And the more data you haveTWEET THIS insight into the marketing performance of vari- integrated into your installation, the richer,“Avoid making ous marketing tactics and campaigns.”4 more relevant and more successful yourthe mistake campaigns will be. So you may want toof so many Email is an excellent example of how smartorganizations consider getting outside assistance for your technology can improve results. Using theand ignoring data integration requirements. Don’t make latest in behavioral analytics, marketingthe price for the mistake of so many organizations and justdata integration automation solutions can help marketers look at the price tag for the software itselfand setup when set up actively evolving targets for precisely and ignore the price for data integration andbudgeting.” placed email campaigns. If triggered email setup, which should include a plan for training messages garner a click-through rate of 119 your staff over time to use it effectively. percent higher than normal messages5, adding personalization and dynamic offers have huge Speaking of your department’s self- potential pay-offs. Similarly, a recent report by sufficiency, even if you’ve already Sirius Decisions found that when augmented by implemented a system, remember to build a marketing automation program, social media in money for ongoing training in technology activity connects with contacts for aggregate- and best practices to ensure employees are level social media reporting on activity and up to speed on all the capabilities and actually behavior.6 ahead of the curve. In fact, technology alone In the era of the empowered consumer, the will not yield the results you’re hoping for and batch-and-blast method no longer works. may even be detrimental to the ROI. In the Instead, marketing is now obligated to look at Sirius report referenced above, researchers all the data points across the entire customer found that, “Technology alone — without existence and combine that information with proper skills, knowledge and processes — behavioral analytics to make its communica- will not show measurable returns.” Because tions personalized and relevant. Because companies aren’t using the fullest extent of marketing automation does that and so much their marketing automation tools, they’re more, it behooves every CMO and marketing losing dollars. Make sure your budget reflects manager to make the case for putting the right the expectation to continuously improve what technology for their organization in place. you’re already doing today. © 2012 Copyright Silverpop. All rights reserved. The Silverpop logo is a registered trademark of Silverpop Systems Inc. PAGE 4
  5. 5. Silverpop Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today’s B2B Environment PLAN FOR CONTENT AND KEEP YOUR FINGER ON VIDEO’S PULSE In the land of the empowered consumer, there of content, and it all must be smart and relevant. is the expectation that marketing’s efforts will Some may just want a blog post, while others at least be authentic if not all-out dazzling. may appreciate a series of white papers. Likewise, Therefore, a content marketing strategy isn’t many may not want to read anything at all and an option, it’s a necessity and most be bud- will only be interested in snappy video pieces. geted for accordingly. Budgeting for this multifaceted face of marketing will become increasingly important, and for most Because strong content is so pivotal in buyers’ marketing organizations the content line item, decision-making, your content strategy including video, will increase in 2013. should consider integration across the brand- management scope of the organization. In short, you want to make sure your company’s REVIEW LAST point of view and materials and solutions YEAR’S RESULTS — how you’re solving customers’ problems Hindsight is more than just 20/20; it’s a wonder- — is front and center on search engines and ful educator, and marketing managers must social networks when clients are interested in carefully analyze what happened last year. consuming that information. Review 2012 closely and look at where dollars were spent and what worked versus what didn’t Recently, more companies have assigned — and don’t be afraid to be honest. dedicated resources to content marketing, and this is not a trend that’s going away, because In an ideal world, there’s some level of review substantive content is crucial to marketing’s role that’s ongoing throughout the year, but if you’ve and its contribution to ROI. Some companies waited until budget time to take a hard look at are even creating senior management content last year’s budget and align it with the actuals, roles, because content covers such a large chunk do it with as keen an eye as possible, then have of the marketing value chain — from hardcopy the guts to realize that if something isn’t work- collateral to every inch of digital space, including ing, 2013 is the year to just stop doing it. social networking plan dialogue, blog posts and the ever-emerging video component. Review marketing’s 2012 contributions to the sales pipeline and assess what closed the Video is definitely a content trend most business, then prioritize those things. to consider incorporating into your This requires candid conversations and honest budget. Look for 2013 as the year relationships with the sales team. This should consumers search for more content be a business-focused conversation based on in video format. But remember, ROI, revenue and results (minus opinion and consumers are seeking out a variety emotion). What will emerge will be clarity on what items you keep and what you cut. If you already have a marketing automation platform or CRM system, use these products to give you fact-based answers. © 2012 Copyright Silverpop. All rights reserved. The Silverpop logo is a registered trademark of Silverpop Systems Inc. PAGE 5
  6. 6. Silverpop Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today’s B2B Environment CAREFULLY CONSIDER TAKE A MOMENT TO PROCESSES, GOALS THINK OUTSIDE THE AND BENCHMARKS BUDGETING BOX Because you began this process with company There are a few “outside the box” items you execs, you should already have information should add to your checklist so that you don’t about the organization’s goals. Now is the time find yourself in the throes of budget delirium to define your inter- and intra-department pro- and miss something that could prove important cesses and identify where you might have some to your department and company. gaps. Ensure marketing’s goals line up with the The first is the rise of boutique agencies. This is company’s overall objectives and that market- in contrast to the days of old when organizations ing and sales are communicating well. often employed one “agency of record,” which This should be an ongoing exercise. It’s much provided a variety of services. Today, there are easier to fix problems when they first arise. groups and consultants to provide everything And good communication doesn’t happen from digital creative work to automated pro- overnight. If your processes are a problem, grams to social monitoring or strategy. ConsiderTWEET THIS that one or more of these agencies might be vow to do better in 2013 — throughout 2013.“Remember helpful and even cost-effective. If you run theto budget for The budget-drafting process is the time preliminary numbers and see that this is a routemarketing to clearly document what it is you want toeducation. to pursue, start interviewing these firms now. accomplish in the coming year. Next year’s keyVirtuallyeveryone forgets initiatives should include both the anticipated Next, remember to budget for marketingthis crucial ROI and what will be required in terms of education. This was alluded to earlier, but itcomponent.” budget and headcount. extends to every area of marketing’s value chain. Virtually everyone forgets this crucial Similarly, compare your budget details and component, and that is a huge problem. Too goals to industry benchmarks within your many departments are full of self-taught people segment. Use any associations or consult- who have cobbled together bits of informa- ing organizations you have connections with tion here and there to muddle through. Some to rely on their analysts to review and refine reports indicate that fewer than 20 percent of some industry benchmarks. Those aspects will organizations spend more than $1,000 annually prove helpful in putting your budget together on training their marketing staff, and as many and then defending it to management. as 36 percent spend nothing at all.7 Everything from workshops about emerging trends and creating better content to training for technology benefits your staff, your goals and ultimately your company’s bottom line. Finally, take a step back and take a multidimen- sional view of everything. Slice and dice and look at your budget in a number of different ways to ensure you’re meeting all the needs. © 2012 Copyright Silverpop. All rights reserved. The Silverpop logo is a registered trademark of Silverpop Systems Inc. PAGE 6
  7. 7. Silverpop Building the Best Marketing Budget for Today’s B2B Environment Consider the multiple ways your department communicated throughout the year with reaches its audiences, such as social, events, other departments and management. Adjust telemarketing, and branding in general. Look at the numbers accordingly and hold yourself your marketing segment — your industry along accountable to an improved system next with the business, corporate and strategic year. With the same best practices in place accounts that need nurturing. Evaluate by com- for budgeting that you have for marketing, a pany division, brand and product or service. All refined template will emerge that makes this of these are aspects that fall under your domain part of the job less challenging and maybe and require appropriate consideration. even enjoyable. FINAL THOUGHTS FOOTNOTES There are no shortcuts to make budgeting easy, 1 – Marketing Leadership Council research, “2011 MLC Customer Purchase Research but there are ways to make the most of your Survey,” 2011 time and resources. Thinking through as many 2 – IBM Chief Marketing Officer Study, “From aspects as possible, confirming your depart- Stretched to Strengthened: Survey of 1,700 ment’s role within the company, and then Global CMOs,” October 2011 putting specific numbers on what you’ll need 3 – Gartner Webinar, “By 2017 the CMO to contribute significantly toward the common will Spend More on IT than the CIO,” goal of profit, revenue growth and marketing January 2012. ROI puts you on the right path for a strong, 4 – Forrester Research, “Marketing Tactics of Top Tech Performers,” February 2012 defensible budget that sees results and earns 5 – Epsilon and Direct Marketing Association’s respect for your marketing department. Trend Report, “Q1 2012 North America Email Trends and Benchmarks,” June 2012 Finally, let 2012’s lessons result in valuable 6 – Sirius Decisions, “Maximizing the Impact insight into 2013 for the marketing budget, of Marketing Automation Investments,” your staff and your evaluation process going April 2012 forward. Look for misalignments in dollars 7 – Sirius Decisions, “Marketing Automation: versus actuals as well as how your department Mind the (Skills) Gap,” 2011 Like our content? You’ll love our product. Check out our demo. © 2012 Copyright Silverpop. All rights reserved. The Silverpop logo is a registered trademark of Silverpop Systems Inc. PAGE 7