It’s been a strange start to 2019. Market conditions have not been conducive to a normal volume of sales, and marketers have been well and truly put under the pump to deliver more leads that will magically purchase within seven days. Don’t get me started on why the finger is pointed at the marketing team during a downturn….
Over the past six months, the Property Republic team have deliberately been mystery shopping around Melbourne. We’ve found big vision statements that don’t translate into a memorable customer experience, sales teams that respond like robots ticking a task off a list or who don’t respond at all, lead nurturing that stops at one ‘thank you for your enquiry email’, and so many messages on billboards that their purpose is lost.
Here’s how marketing professionals can play their part in FY20 sales success:
- Make sure your value proposition is crystal clear
The exercise of defining or tightening up your value proposition for each customer segment delivers clarity and can help you to establish content ideas.
The clarity comes from determining what resonates with your customer segment and what doesn’t, and what ideas can work on a limited budget.
Once you know the customer pains, you can create content to deliver a solution, or send an invitation to an event where they can find out the answers.
- Re-visit (or create) your content marketing strategy
According to the Content Marketing Institute, your content marketing strategy is, at its core, “your ‘why’. Why you are creating content, who you are helping, and how you will help them in a way no one else can”. Content marketing helps you build an audience and achieve increased sales, reduce cost per sale and attract the right customers.
Once you have your content marketing strategy, you can then spend time delving into the creation and publication of useful content.
- Tighten up your lead nurture program
In the old days, marketers were responsible for delivering the lead, then providing the settlement or move-in gift. How times have changed. Now, marketers need to be involved throughout the entire customer journey, not just at the very start and very end.
Lead nurturing, often via automation, provides a quick and easy way to seamlessly connect with customers throughout their entire journey with your brand – but only if you do it right.
In the awareness phase, consumers are looking for high quality content housed on your website that is focussed on building authority. Consistency and velocity are the key.
When prospects are interested, focus on conversational marketing, telephone calls with purpose, and sales office appointments.
If your content has built great presence and you offer a solid service, the prospect should be in a position to choose you over competitors. Offer customers an in-depth project presentation, experts to answer questions, and online access to documentation.
To achieve loyalty, and subsequently a referral, brands need to be focussed on upholding a consistently high level of service. This means delivering a great product on time, checking on client happiness levels and repairing any reason for dissatisfaction. This is where blogging, content, retargeting and a thank you gift come into play.
- Work with the sales team
Make your sales team’s job that little bit easier by taking a drive to your project to ensure you have a clear and concise customer journey. Does your signage do the job it’s supposed to, or are there too many messages? (I recently took a drive to a growth corridor in Melbourne’s north. One very large project had so many messages on its freeway billboard and once you got to the project it was a hot mess of hoarding, electronic signage, billboards and public art. What it did do well was directional signage to available land, until you got to the last sign and then there was a dead end with no land for sale information).
Refine your project’s key facts and ask the sales team to do a role play of their project presentation.
Take a look at email responses that are not automated. Do they reflect your brand? Provide the sales team with some email responses that they can use. (P.S. Please ask your sales team not to include a red, uppercase, “BUY, BUILD AND GET $35,000” in the email heading. It screams desperate.)
- Generate new leads
“Facebook leads are not interested.”
“REA leads are expensive.”
“They heard about you because of the signage.”
“We need a double page spread in the daily newspaper.”
I’ve heard them all.
Even if your CRM is integrated with your website, Facebook page and REA listings, you may not be able to calculate your cost per lead. This is because the lead source information that’s been manually inserted may not be totally trustworthy.
Here are some tips to help:
- Have a mix of lead generation activities, both digital and traditional.
- Have different expectations from each source and, if possible, put them in different lead nurture sequences.
- Work with the sales team to ensure ‘lead source’ data integrity.
- Don’t underestimate your builder or developer network. Work with their marketing team or join promotions.