3 Tips For Integrating Global B2B Marketing
Operating a multi-national organisation is challenging at best, but when it comes to marketing such a business, miscommunication and unrelated activity can seem like an insurmountable hurdle. With marketing, branding, social media and many other teams sometimes spread across multiple countries and even continents, a unified approach can be difficult to implement – especially in regards to what determines a qualified lead and what metrics are being measured. So, to help with this ever-increasing headache, I’ve simplified the whole process.
In order to clarify ‘what a lead looks like’, it’s necessary to put your marketing and sales teams in the same room (or at least on a conference call) and keep them prisoner until they agree. Ok, maybe don’t kidnap anyone, but it’s necessary for both teams to agree on the criteria which will determine what sales believe is a hot lead. These criteria can include things like location, buying authority, business challenges and budget. From here, it’s necessary for the marketing department to build persona documents of the typical buyers, their pain points and characteristics. Completing a survey of the database or asking sales what existing customers were like at the prospect stage are great ways of gathering persona information. Once these personas have been agreed by both parties, they need to be distributed throughout the organisation – and every corner of the globe (if necessary). This information will now be the go-to move for determining what decision-makers to target, how to engage with them, and also when they should be passed to the sales team.
This is another issue which can be solved with a company-wide document. With many different departments operating independently, there’s always a risk that company branding can be diluted and even lost all together. Given that branding is often the first thing a prospect will recognise and relate to your company, it’s necessary to make sure that the brand remains a priority. The team most qualified to spearhead this widespread implementation is the marketing team. As the group that have the job of getting the brand in front of prospects and keeping them engaged until they convert to a customer, they are best positioned to set the criteria. Everything from typeface, logo position, colour palette, headers, footers, referencing, and a multitude more must be decided, documented and then signed-off by the upper echelons of the business. Once this has been achieved it’s time to create the Style Guide document. Like the persona documents, these need to be circulated throughout the organisation and to its furthest-reaching outposts. The result will be that any prospect, lead or customer receiving a communication from the company will immediately recognise the brand and the organisation.
This aspect of a global organisation is a little trickier, but by no means impossible. Not only do you now have individual teams in individual offices, you also have managers measuring individual metrics and data. Social media managers will be providing results such as reach and Likes, marketing managers will have data such as open rates, click-throughs and leads, and a PR teams will reporting on media coverage. So how do you get them all on the ‘same page’. Well, firstly, a marketing automation tool managed centrally by the marketing team could help simplify a lot of the reporting. By measuring landing page visits, conversions and also visitor source it’ll be possible to determine what channels are creating the most leads. However, when it comes to measuring success from all of these teams, there’s ultimately one result that matters – ROI. All activities within these teams needs to be generating return on investment or they are simply a drain on time, money and resources. As part of multi-channel marketing campaigns it can be difficult to determine the ROI of some of these techniques, however using marketing automation software to attribute them to sales is a good way to prove their worth.
To find out more about aligning your multi-national marketing teams with a single vision of a customer…