When it became difficult to force another piece of paper into my deskside file drawer I realized it was time to clean out some of the files it contained.
One, labeled B2B Marketing Ideas, was many inches thick, so I decided to start there. Sorting through the file, I discovered a number of pieces of B2B marketing content full of valuable advice. Here’s what I re-discovered:
Strategies for a Great Headline
In a 2010 issue of Target Market Magazine, Robert Lerose provided what he calls “Six timeless formulas for envelope and landing page teasers.” These strategies might stimulate ideas for some interesting email subject lines, too.
- Use a news element.
- Use a provocative question or outrageous statement
- Arouse emotions
- Present a problem/solution
- Leverage specifics
- Share a big idea
10 Critical Steps for Hooking Decision-Makers Online
Another item in the drawer was notes I took at a live presentation from a representative at QuinStreet. I don’t have all 10 Critical Steps listed in my notes, but here are the ones I put stars next to that I think are worth sharing:
- Test creative and messaging concepts using less expensive Internet channels such as email before using those ideas in more expensive channels such as direct mail marketing.
- Make sure that the verbiage in banners, pay-per-click ads and landing pages relates to where a prospect is now, or what the prospect may be using now, not to what is being sold.
- Never put anything in your messaging that will cause a reader/viewer/prospect to pause. (This is one reason I like to minimize the use of questions in copy.)
- Add an 800# on the response confirmation page to make it easy for hot leads to call immediately.
Five Keys to the Executive Suite
Notes from another live event I attended do not contain the name of the company or speaker. So, many apologies to whoever it was and thank you for these excellent B2B marketing ideas.
- In your B2B marketing messages to execs, never try to achieve more than one objective at a time. For every additional objective, performance drops to half. Therefore, use only one call to action in the marketing effort. (Actually, this is true of every B2B marketing target, not just executives.)
- When marketing to executives, make sure to use names. To middle managers and other targets, marketing to titles only often can work, but with top execs names are essential.
- Emotion works as long as the message is believable.
- Personal offers (that benefit the individual) work better than business-related offers.
- The value of the offer you make to an executive must match the commitment the B2B marketing is asking them to make. That is, if the marketing is trying to get appointments for sales, then the offer gift better be a big deal.
- Longer letters actually produce a better response, as they are perceived to have more value. Tested at IBM, a 4-page letter actually outperformed a 2-page letter.
The last point relates to something I learned very early in my B2B marketing career. It is that every prospect may respond because of a different “benefit” provided by the product or service being sold. Marketing messages that include ALL of the potential benefits will reach more of the target market and generate greater response.