By Rachel Markey | September 29, 2020
As in personal endeavors, in business strong relationships develop over time and across multiple interactions. Whether your organization is reaching out to current or former customers or members, or exploring new leads, following up a marketing campaign with outreach is crucial to your organization’s success. That said, there are so many things that can go wrong in the process. To help you optimize your approach, we’re providing guidance on how to avoid roadblocks and drive results through diligent persistence.
1. Strategize with research
As Stephen Kodrich, YGS vice president of corporate sales, emphasized, the key to a strategic and optimized sales follow-up process is, “research, research, and research.” It does take time, but rest assured the effectiveness of your campaign follow-up is dependent upon your ability to get to know prospects and to position your organization as a trusted advisor. Doing so allows you to determine if your product or organization is a good fit for their company or profession, and it will also play a major role in establishing trust throughout your communication.
Research also bolsters lead generation accuracy, which is why YGS recently invested in a new search profile tool. The results? As Kodrich explained, “Gone are the days of trying to guess someone’s email domain! Because there is a high level of accuracy in the contact information that is being provided right down to a contacts title, department, number of reports, email, and cellphone, the corporate sales team is now able to feel confident in their lead generation efforts. Just as importantly, the tool allows us to filter keywords like ‘marketing automation,’ so we can proactively understand where an organization might be in the decision-making process regarding a critical initiative.”
2. Adopt a multifaceted approach
When it comes to follow-up, many people are tempted to throw in the proverbial towel too soon if initial efforts fail to garner results. Others restrict the chances for ROI by limiting the medium of their method. But as Kodrich said, “Like any campaign, it’s important that outreach is consistent and that it is varied.”
According to SalesForce, it takes six to eight touchpoints to create a real sales lead. Consider using a combination of email, phone calls, and even social media in your campaign follow-up, and strive to keep campaign tactics from being one-and-done. “Remember that a great deal of time as been put forth around the creative campaign content, and follow-up touchpoints need to mirror that approach,” Kodrich said.
3. Make each interaction value-oriented
The purpose of the majority of your follow-up communication should be to send useful, valuable information to your prospects. Sharing industry news, connecting prospects with people they’ll find helpful, or inviting them to events they’ll find useful all demonstrate appreciation for and investment in your prospects. Content and information that enable and empower your prospects to do their jobs better is the ultimate way to establish trust. And when your campaign is fashioned to benefit its target audience, “account executives can repurpose campaign content in ongoing outreach,” Kodrich pointed out. “At YGS, account executives highlight specifics in order to emphasize what might be the most applicable topic based on our knowledge of particular accounts.”
4. Ensure follow-up is happening
How do you make sure your sales team is staying on top of the sales pipeline? How do you guarantee your sales team is tracking leads and moving prospects toward a buying decision? After all, proven sales follow-up formulas only work when they are put into play. “At YGS, Salesforce is the sole source of truth when it comes to making the transition from lead to an account,” Kodrich said. “This customer relationship management software allows YGS to keep track of touchpoints executed after each campaign tactic, and a Dashboard report can be generated to highlight where an association executive is in his or her follow-up of each tactic.” Reports maintain a sense of accountability while providing easy-to-digest metrics, which is a win-win for everyone.
“And in order to generate and refine best practices, we also highlight what individual team members are doing in their follow-up during our weekly team meeting,” Kodrich said.
5. Be versatile and actionable
When it comes to follow-up, it’s important to remember all methods are on the table—phone, text, email, snail mail, social media. Use whatever works and recognize that the more touchpoints you use, the better chance you have of staying top of mind. If you utilize different channels and stay polite throughout your communication, you will be able to form relationships that afford responses and close more sales.
With regard to campaign follow-up and beyond, your association has immense potential for non-dues revenue. Contact us to discuss how we can help you leverage market trends and translate them into strategic tactics that generate gains.