I have been a strategic marketing consultant and Fractional CMO for 17 years and seen a lot of pain. It’s not the kind of ailment that completely cripples a B2B business. Marketing pain is more like a dull ache that hurts a company’s ability to compete and limits growth potential.
The good news is that it is curable with some time, attention, and expert advice. Here are the top 5 marketing pain points and insight on their remedies.
1. “We’re flying blind.”
Company leaders often express that they are sitting in the marketing pilot’s seat and they’ve never learned how to fly the function. Their co-pilots are often marketing coordinators or marketing managers who are looking for clear direction. These leaders and their businesses tend to fly in circles without ever reaching their goals for marketing.
Remedy: Fractional CMO services can help steady the plane and steer the company in the right direction. Most small and middle market businesses don’t need full-time marketing leadership. A “slice” will do just great. For more information, read Slicing off a Piece of a Fractional CMO.
2. “Nothing seems to work!”
Putting start-up companies aside, most B2B businesses come to Marketri after trying to hire in-house and contracting with various agencies. The net result of those actions tends to be many marketing things (website, collateral, videos, infographics) surrounded by uncertainty as to whether they are the right things and how to use those things to drive a result.
Remedy: Successful marketing always starts with a strategic marketing plan. A well-crafted plan by a strategic marketer will lay out the infrastructure and the recommended actions to drive results. For more information, read Ten Critical Elements of a B2B Marketing Plan.
3. “Our story isn’t being told.”
Businesses are much like humans: the longer they live, the richer their stories. And like humans, most companies don’t take the time to craft their stories in a way that’s meaningful and memorable. The attention spans of B2B buyers are short. Businesses have a brief moment to connect—and don’t.
Remedy: The story, which is sometimes called a brand narrative, is a critical foundational element of successful marketing. Temporarily pause the lead gen efforts and partner with a strategic marketing consultancy to uncover your company’s unique message. For more information, read B2B Marketing Strategies: How to Create Clearer Messaging.
4. “The pipeline needs to be fuller.”
I often hear, “Once we are in front of a prospect, we close. We need more ‘at bats.’” A full pipeline is possible for most companies. What is lacking in most cases is an actual marketing function with strategic leadership and skilled, consistent tactical execution.
Remedy: Build a lean, but effective marketing function through outsourcing or embracing a hybrid approach that combines an inhouse hire with outsourced marketing specialists. Having a modern, results-driven marketing department is critical to more ‘at bats.’ For more information, Read This Before Making Your First Marketing Hire.
5. “We got sold a bill of goods on marketing technology.”
Marketing automation platforms, like HubSpot, Pardot, and Marketo, are $10,000-$20,000 investment per year. Some companies get sold the promise of full pipelines and sales qualified leads from the software. Unfortunately, marketing software is no magic bullet. When companies use these robust platforms as email software, the ROI will be minimal or zero.
Remedy: Companies need three things to see an ROI with marketing automation software. First, they need to have marketing talent that is trained on how to fully use it. Second, there needs to be a “full-funnel” content strategy. And finally, companies need to create lots of content according to the strategy and measure results. For more information on when to buy marketing automation software, read Why Not to Start Your B2B Marketing Journey with Automation.
Are you connecting with any of these marketing pain points? I hope this blog post helps you to realize that you’re not alone! These are common marketing ailments that are curable.
Feel free to reach out to me if your organization has marketing pain. Marketri loves tackling challenges and helping guide organizations to their growth goals through modern marketing.