As a VP of marketing, Director of marketing, or sales executive you are well aware that even the best-planned marketing efforts can fail, and thorny economic times have only compounded the aggravation. You’ve been strained to cut your marketing expenditures significantly at the same time you’re expected to accomplish more.
This white paper introduces the fundamentals of running marketing programs efficiently and with the highest possible ROI, using not only a creative, but also an analytical approach to direct response marketing that is impossible without marketing automation – a primary support system for any successful marketing campaign. The technology-driven process, in conjunction with a preferred-by-marketers intuitive process, will enable you to tightly interweave your marketing and sales programs and, as a result, realize a positive return from your limited marketing resources.
Nurturing customer loyalty
Your current customers can be your best future customers, as well as your best sales reps. Satisfied customers will bring you many referrals, and as you might well know, a lead that comes from a customer referral is the one that your sales team will close faster and with higher a rate of probability, because your customer already made a great deal of effort to pre-sell the referred prospects.
Growing through referrals
If you have not developed a well-managed referral program for your customers – and any other partners that want do get into business with you and become a free agent that is paid commissions for referrals – you are losing a great opportunity for organic growth.
Consider this example:
Company ABC is a B2B service company with about 500 current customers, and the average annual sales per customer is $20,000, which generates $10,000,000 in annual sales.
Your annual advertising budget is 1% of the revenue ($100,000). As we all know, the majority of it is usually spent on campaigns that bring modest results, in the hope of discovering winning advertising venues – which become even harder with competition trying to get over the hump in this economical downturn.
Your company has been growing at a 10% rate annually, slowly but surely, but now the growth starts declining, and it is forecasted to be down 5% this year, with the same marketing expenditure (and even more hassling that your marketing and sales team has to get through).
Now imagine that you decided to monetize the connections of your customers. You can ask for a favor and a few will return. But you don’t want random single referrals – you want to get bombarded with pre-sold prospects who will take less than average time to close. Wouldn’t that be a marketing and sales paradise?
Welcome to paradise
Let’s imagine that you designed a customer referral program and offered a 10% commission to be paid as a result of each referral that converted into a paid customer.
Let’s assume that 50% of your customers signed up for your referral program, but only 50% of those customers actually refer paying prospects on a regular basis – that brings you 125 new sales a month.
Now do the math:
500 customers x 50% x50% = 125 customer referrals per month
125 referrals/month x 12 months x $20,000 per sale = $30,000,000/yr
$30M – 10% commission = $27M in new business
As you can see, your next year’s revenue will be $37,000,000 instead of $10,000,000, and your company growth rate now is 370% versus the forecasted -5%.
Developing the strategy and the process management system
You liked the math, and now you are ready to jump in and get it done, right?
Do you have a system to manage hundreds of referral partners? You probably don’t have the tools in place for a successful execution of the program. Are you planning to do it intuitively and manually?
Unless you have a proper structure, along with the necessary processes and technology to measure your success, you cannot execute your partnership programs properly.
That’s why you need to automate your marketing processes, and ideally you need to hire a marketing company that will design, automate, and market the program for you – and charge affordable rates.
Costs of marketing automation and campaign execution
How much do you think it would cost you to invest in a program that brings you millions of dollars of additional sales? Would $100,000 be the right number? Maybe, but it drastically exceeds the limits of
your existing marketing budget.
But the good news is that right now a direct response marketing company with established processes, a proven framework, and the right automation tools can get it all done for you in few weeks – for $10,000, or less.
Integrated marketing versus task-based marketing
Prior to using our solutions, for many of our clients, “marketing” was a series of isolated tasks – but from a sales point of view, selling is a coherent process. Task-based marketing can often fail because, at its core, it doesn’t help to commence a dialogue that a salesperson can bring to closure.
Test before investing
With the proper tools in place, now you can conduct formal tests of each marketing idea, collateral piece, and message to get the best performing tactics. No tests should be done manually because the necessary sampling size is prohibitively large.
The numbers game
Without proper metrics, marketers that rely blindly on an intuitive approach don’t have the tools to measure their success, and duplicate it in other programs.
Creativity and analysis have to go hand in hand. But proper analysis of a number of variables cannot be done manually. Tracking systems for both success and failure, and easy tools to analyze the elements that affected the result, have to be integrated and reflect the company’s objectives. Therefore few out-of-the box software packages for different purposes (such as campaign management, affiliate scripts, Google AdWords integration, and others) might not necessarily be the best solution for your company because it will require quite a bit of integration effort and maintenance resources.
A credible marketing service provider will not only be able to consult with you on the most suitable solution, but also implement it and run the campaigns on your behalf, during the learning phase while your marketing team is getting familiarized with the program.
The benefits of overall marketing automation
Through the use of a database, marketing automation enables you to learn – in depth – about your prospects’ and partners’ behavior, along with the decision making process and variables that influence it. It allows you to automate communication processes and maintain relationships electronically.
Better-organized sales and marketing processes.
Superior customer retention.
A consolidated view of your customer and lead base.
Better lead qualification and retention.
Higher return on sales force and customer support technology investment.
Higher marketing ROI.
Better tracking capability.
A better platform for making marketing and sales decisions.
Which translates to:
Reduced operational costs.
Reduced marketing expenditure.
Marketing automation doesn’t just link marketing with sales – it helps marketing drive sales.
What you can achieve with the right marketing automation technology
SalesAnual will help you to improve your response rates and boost the revenues from your marketing efforts. We offer you the ability to easily manage sophisticated, timely, personalized customer communication strategies. Built specifically to meet the needs of key members of the marketing process, our product will provide comprehensive data management, campaign management, and advanced customer analytics in one integrated, easy-to-use solution.
Marketing campaign management
Marketing campaign management is easy with with our product. Through a single application, you can effectively plan your marketing spend, manage all your initiatives and campaigns, and analyze performance and results.
Our product helps you create targeted campaigns by segmenting your audience based on attributes such as demographics or product interest, and then send specific messages and offers for each group. You will have the ability to easily add contacts and leads to lists right from within campaigns.
Our system is designed to simplify ABC (split) testing. You can track, analyze, and optimize multiple campaigns such as on-line marketing and telemarketing. It will also allow you to analyze and optimize other campaigns such as trade shows, direct mail, advertising, and promotions, so that all marketing efforts are focused on the most effective campaigns.
ABC tests are typically conducted to determine which version or elements of advertising materials are helping the performance of the campaign. ABC tests dramatically challenge the assumptions that marketers and company executives may have about the best way to design a campaign or collateral piece. The automated functionality also enables you to solve conflicts between marketing and management.
While ABC testing typically applies to on-line adverting, we can build your system around a repetitive test process for all media, so it enables you to test Web pages, advertising copy, telemarketing scripts, e-mail messages, newsletter content and layout, and so on.
Testing yields the most valuable results only when the tests are conducted repeatedly; therefore efficient ABC testing is impossible without full automation of the test process. This is a key advantage of the SalesAnnual system.
Our software can create an “ABC test winners” table where all of the best advertising items will be stored. Each record provides statistics, upon which every new marketing effort in the same category will be measured.
Our product will help you identify the marketing activities that generate the most sales revenue by directly tying every sales dollar back to its campaign source. Campaign managers can analyze detailed analytics to track revenue, and measure campaign success.
Our product helps you to easily determine which prospects require follow-up contact after a campaign, and define the appropriate actions.
You can import and export campaign lists in multiple data formats from and to various marketing vendors. With SalesAnnual List Management, you can also create targeted, effective marketing campaigns with list management tools for segmenting, exporting, and analyzing lead lists.
This module enables you to create customer or prospect lists by selecting any combination of contact and customer information.
This module helps you to easily export your lists to outside suppliers and manage the results with SalesAnnual’s campaign management features.
The module allows you to quickly import sales leads from offline sources such as trade shows, seminars, and direct mail; matching group and campaign; eliminating manual data entry.
It also enables you to import leads provided in bulk by a specific referral partner as a result of a specific campaign. You can also map and segment any information you need to manage.
This module allows you to analyze lists and contacts to identify trends, and to optimize marketing campaigns.
This module allows you to track incoming prospect inquiries that respond to particular campaigns, and automatically route qualified leads to the right people, enabling sales reps to get instant access to the latest prospects – and business opportunities are never lost.
Online lead capture
This module allows you to automate lead generation by capturing leads from your customers’ website, directly into our system, and automatically send a personalized response based on information supplied by the customer.
Lead search and merge
This module ensures that reps can easily identify prior interactions with a lead before following up. You can easily merge leads, contacts, and accounts – and remove duplicates – for efficient lead management.
This module monitors leads end-to-end – from creation to conversion – with capabilities that include automatic date/time stamping, campaign or lead source tracking (vendor, campaign, and partner), lead status changes, and lead activity management.
Channel partner program management
With our system you can easily manage various channel partner categories such as affiliates, referral partners, and resellers – and create efficient, automated relationships with them.
Affiliate program management
Our affiliate program management functionality is designed to manage your channel partners who mostly operate on the Web, and therefore the tracking system reflects the way traffic is sent to you website. Affiliates typically use your on-line marketing tools, such as text links, ad banners, video clips, podcasts, webcasts, as well as text documents such as articles, press-releases, white papers, and case studies.
Referral program management
Our referral program management functionality is designed to manage your channel partners that deliver leads in a less organized manner – in a verbal or written form for example.
Reseller program management
Our reseller program management functionality is designed to manage your Value Added Resellers (VARs), that engage in the sales and marketing of your product. Typically they bundle your product and services with those of their own company, and market to their existing client base.
Channel partner compensation management
Our lead tracking and payment management solution gives you an extensive reporting system that will put you at ease, because your team – and your partners – can always access the latest data about their account and lead performance.
Our system allows you to store the contracts signed with each partner and see the compensation due to each partner. The numbers are presented in % and $ value accordingly the agreement with a particular partner, as well as revenue generated to date since the partner signed up.
Our flexible reporting solution gives you the ability to choose a report template or to customize reports according to your partners’ needs. The status of leads is reported as qualified, unqualified, dead, and so on, and you can easily send reports to your partners on a regular schedule.
Our security controls and permissions capability allows your partners to access the sales leads in their own territories, or those provided by them. You can also manually share specific sales leads with any user you choose.
Automatic lead routing
Our product makes lead management easy by setting up queues and assignment rules to automatically route qualified leads to the right distributor (sales organization that is located in a country where a company has no inside sales capabilities) based on customized business rules, and track the status of every lead in your partner marketing channel. Your referral partners will get instant access to the latest prospects, and leads are never dropped or lost.
Email prospecting and tracking
Our system empowers your resellers and referral partners to send personalized, template-based, e-mail messages to prospects in large numbers, and to easily track all responses from one centralized lead management system.
Our system enables comprehensive tracking and accountability so you always know your lead status, in real time.
Our system allows you to create specific messages and publish them to each individual channel partner.
Document management system
Our system provides a central repository of all the documents and communications your channel partners will need to support their sales and marketing efforts. Your partners will have continuous access to all of your up-to-date documents (product brochures, presentations, and support documents) from anywhere in the world, so they can respond to customer information requests quickly and easily.
Our comprehensive search capability allows your partners to quickly find relevant information, view documents, and even send them as attachments to their prospects, directly from the search results.
Secure records management
Our security rules and custom folders allow managers to organize documents and communications based on partner type, department, or any other criteria with limited access for the intended viewer only. Document management is secure and customized.
Second-tier referral program
Our system enables you to track not only every sale from each of your 1st-tier partners, but also each sale made by the partners that were acquired through your first-tier affiliates or referral partners.
Compensation is calculated according to your agreements.
Co-marketing program management
Our system enables your partners to submit marketing requests for co-marketing programs, if you choose. Requests are automatically compared and deducted from the partner budget. You can manage partner claims for funds requests by analyzing each claim compared to the allocated budget for each partner. Claims can be documented with a proof of performance.
For all financial and non-financial transactions, partners submit claims with proof of performance. Documents and uploaded materials are integrated with the marketing programs.
Special promotion for partners
With our system, you can make your partner Web portal “stickier” and increase partner adoption, by creating and communicating rebates and promotions for the partners. We provide rebate guidelines and best practices to help channel managers design and launch winning programs.
Your partners will have the ability to submit special pricing requests for the competitive deals on which they are working.
Search marketing management
Our system enables you to gain complete visibility and control over your search engine marketing campaigns-from keyword selection to closed deal. It allows you to put your marketing dollars to work with keywords that deliver the best results. You will can see exactly which leads were generated by each search engine marketing program.
Email marketing management
Our product has feature-rich functionality that helps you use a wide range of professionally designed templates for e-mailers and newsletters. One of our unique features gives you an easy way of creating landing page templates that match customized e-mail template and content.
Our system makes it easy to evaluate the success of e-mail campaigns with integrated response tracking and easy monitoring of key campaign metrics. You can easily identify which e-mail campaign generates the most:
Open emails (what recipients, when, how many times)
Our system gives you the ability to assign a specific identification to each affiliate or referral partners’ outbound email or telemarketing campaign sent via your system. Every incoming lead will be assigned to the appropriate partner and will be reported in the statistics on partners’ performance, accumulated compensation, and payment schedules.
Key features include:
Content editing supports a high degree of reusability and easy customization – push a button to insert a variable, “IF” statement, HTML template, and more.
Personalize messages using conditional content and data.
Default to standard content (such as “Dear Customer”) when conditions are not met.
Personalize subject lines.
Embed redirect URLs and attachments into e-mail messages.
Integrate with your favorite content editor, easily.
Flexible opt-in/opt-out support.
Viral marketing support – track and understand the value of customers who forward your messages, extending the return of those communications.
Rich re-marketing and wave campaign support via easy-to-create follow-up communications based on an individual’s response or lack of response.
New dashboards and reporting functionality
With our new dashboard and customizable reporting functionality you will have instant access to the real-time data and analysis you need to run your business. Dashboards pull it all together, providing instant access to a consolidated, real-time view of your sales data.
Dashboards give you an at-a-glance overview of the current status of your business, with benchmarks and critical metrics from sales, marketing, service, and more. One-click data refreshment ensures that your marketers are always working with the most up-to-date information.
Custom report formulas and highlighting
Multiple mathematical formulas are preprogrammed into the system to aggregate and perform calculations on raw data within the system. You no longer need to export your data to spreadsheets for detailed calculations.
Outbound sales campaign management
The module makes it easy for your telemarketers to create and test telemarketing scripts, as well as ABC test e-mail follow-ups that are automatically sent to the leads generated by each outbound sales campaign.
By default, unless customized, our system automatically sends three follow-ups to “non-responding” leads after which the system can automatically move them to the Dead category, which eliminates manual work.
Media buying and production management
We deliver a fast, powerful, and complete system that includes media buying, production, and result tracking, all designed with direct marketers in mind. Our system provides quick and easy access to information, and lets you track each campaign down to its tiniest details, because marketers and users need all the answers:
Which spots ads are profitable?
Which media is the most profitable?
Which creative is the best suitable for each particular media?
Which URL works best?
Which days of the week, month, and parts of the day work better for each media?
What is the cost per order for each media?
What is the cost per inquiry for each media?
What is the cost per lead for each media?
What is the ROI for each media?
Which call centers are the most effective?
Our system keeps everyone in sync and up-to-date because direct marketing is a complex process involving media buyers, scriptwriters, copywriters, designers, producers, call centers, accounting,
budgets… as well as innumerable sign-offs by clients and management.
Print ads in newspapers, 30-second spots on prime-time television, banner ads on websites – each can be considered a media buy. Managing your media is easy with our fully automated system.
Spot and network buys.
Inserts and circulars.
Cable and broadcast.
Our system helps you traffic and manage jobs, work orders, and schedules.
Note: Please note, some functionality is not available with the basic package and is only sold to clients that order 50+ seats, or is included as part of customization consulting. Please specify your requirements and we will provide you with a quick quote.
In the new state of the economy, your motto as a marketer should be “efficient marketing made simple with less;” at least ours is. Our programs and technologies will give your marketing department the ability to take greater ownership of leads, as well as customer and partner relationships, which keeps the cost per interaction as low as possible while guaranteeing greater marketing performance.
This means you can continually improve the effectiveness of your marketing efforts rather than potentially repeat what hasn’t worked. Marketing automation – and a well-selected marketing firm – will make your marketing programs more successful and remove discrepancies between your marketing objectives and your execution capabilities.
The result… your company generates more qualified leads at a lower cost per sale, and this helps your sales team achieve a higher closing ratio.