In this episode of the Sure Oak podcast, Tom speaks with founder and president of Heinz Marketing, Matt Heinz, about how marketing and sales are really the same things. They discuss why marketers need to focus on revenue generation when measuring outcomes and how ultimately, business to business marketing is just like business to consumer marketing.
MARKETING AS A PROFIT CENTER
According to Matt, sometimes the marketing department can be seen as a glorified arts and crafts center. They create branding and put logos on pens, but Matt says that marketers need to start seeing themselves as a profit center.
Matt says, “It is important to invest in foundational things like brand and awareness and not just focus on what email you are sending out next Tuesday.”
Your marketing team should create content that drives people back to you again and again. Those are the building blocks of creating sustainable, repeatable business.
MEASURING YOUR B2B MARKETING STRATEGIES
“The faster you measure, the less important it is.”
If you send out an email, you can track the email open rates. Whether that drives prospects to better understand your goals is not something you will see right away. Often there is short-term thinking going on in marketing, like clicks, reads, and tweets.
However, sometimes being too caught up in the instant data can keep you from seeing the long-term effects of your B2B marketing campaigns.
Instead, it is important to look at the long-term results on those clicks, reads, emails, tweets, and other content created by your marketing team.
How is that being translated into sales?
Ultimately, your marketing should have the same goal as the sales division. You should put more emphasis on the outcome of leads instead of just gaining leads.
Watch what you are measuring. You need to start thinking about who you are trying to sell to, what do you want to measure, and what really matters.
Even if you are going after fewer prospects, focus on the RIGHT prospects.
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SALES AND MARKETING?
There is a combined, integrated effort between sales and marketing today, especially when working with large, complex businesses and customers.
Matt says that if he has an excellent, highly qualified sales team, then he wants them to be speaking with customers who are engaged and motivated.
And you will only get those top-notch, ready-to-buy customers if you have a marketing team that is getting those consumers informed and excited about your product.
FOCUSING ON BUYING IN THE B2B MARKET
To simplify B2B marketing, Matt gives us three words: focus on THEM.
If you are focusing on building your sales process, you are looking at it wrong. Your sales process doesn’t matter. The BUYING process is what matters.
No one cares about your story until you can prove that you care about theirs. Matt recommends reading the book How to Win Friends and Influence People if you haven’t already. It shares the basis for insight-based relationship selling that works today.
Don’t ask your customers what keeps them up at night. You need to know them well enough to tell them what SHOULD keep them up at night. Then have solutions to help them solve their problems. It should become a very natural conversation.
It’s all about empathy. If you are willing to be generous, patient, and empathetic enough to have honest conversations with your clients, that is what is going to work.
If you can understand what your customer’s needs are, better than they can, and translate that into your message and content, the more successful you will be.
- Measure your marketing team on their long-term success and their ability to bring informed and engaged clients to the sales team.
- Your marketing team should be viewed as a profit center.
- You should put more emphasis on the outcome of leads instead of just gaining leads.
- B2B marketing is all about empathy: focus on them.
- Know your customer better than they know themselves. Tell them what should be keeping them up at night, and then be there to offer advice and solutions to their problems.
- Your sales process doesn’t matter. The BUYING process is what matters.