Make Your Buyer Move: How to Add Rhythm to Your Marketing
By: Matt Naffah | 12/08/2017
An orchestra, when in rhythm, can bring harmony to life. Its beauty derives from the combination of different sections that are arranged together to create something spectacular. If a section is missing or out of tune, it will immediately fall flat. The same can be said for your marketing initiatives.
Too often, brands try to meet today’s customer demands by randomly executing programs with little connection to each other – in theory, just checking off requirements from a list while lacking the context to be relevant. This disconnect does not allow brands to align with the expectations of today’s engaged buyer.
Your marketing must have fluid movement, consistency and rhythm that will move your audience towards purchase.
Who Is The Listener?
These are individuals who are empowering themselves to make key buying decisions with confidence. They are engaging less with brands and sales reps and taking more ownership of their purchase journey. To do this successfully, these buyers are seeking relevant content across touchpoints they are comfortable with or that they discover through the buying process. Content is key – according to the 2017 IDG State of the Customer Engagement Report, 7 is the average number of assets downloaded during the purchase process. As marketers, meeting the demands of these new buyers can become difficult if your programs or teams are disconnected from each other. Your marketing must have fluid movement, consistency and rhythm that will move your audience towards purchase.
How Do We Create a Marketing Orchestra?
Step 1: Know who is listening.
Before activating anything and to better understand context, take the time to know your audience by monitoring consumption and behavior of current content and programs. Context gives you confidence to execute against what your audience has indicated is relevant to them. If you don’t have that data, partner with a company like IDG. By using our rich audience data, we can define that context through persona development that will direct your specific strategies.
Step 2: Establish a baseline to set a foundation.
A baseline within your strategy assures that your company has content across priority touchpoints to immediately meet the needs of engaged buyers knowing that they are actively researching on their own time. To build a baseline program, identify “always on” tactics that allow your brand to be on-demand with contextual content supported with the right channels that align with your persona’s journey.
Criteria for baseline marketing strategies and tactics include:
- Supporting business objectives with a broader set of KPIs
- Developing a mix of rich content and relevant distribution channels
- Content is “on demand” meaning it can be consumed individually and timing of consumption is dictated by the buyer
- Content meets a broader set of audience needs
- There is a distinct story line threaded throughout the full funnel/journey
- Content provides meaningful value, educates and empowers
- Activities are agile with ongoing testing and ideation
- Programs are supported with strong nurture tactics
Step 3: Infuse the beat through pulse programs.
Layered over your baseline strategy should be pulse programs that provide the beat by creating differentiation for the brand, its products, solutions and messaging. Pulse programs are meant to make a lot of noise in a shorter period of time in hopes of grabbing the attention of a focused audience while leaving a clear message and call-to-action. Pulse programs can also be leveraged to help shorten an audience journey, sometimes helping the buyer to move quicker towards a purchase decision.
Criteria for pulse program marketing strategies and tactics include:
- Creating a controlled message and clear call-to-action
- Messaging that is catchy, feels tangible and wrapped in a specific program theme
- Very focused on a singular marketing objective
- Likely to focus on a single persona or buying phase
- Has a clear program start and end date
- Is interruptive and adds energy to your brand and its products/solutions
- Built on top of a baseline foundation
When in sync, the marketing baseline and pulse program will create an orchestra that will meet the demands of your engaged buyers while successfully achieving business KPIs. Also, it can and will connect the dots across a buying committee, assuring all influencers and decision makers are addressed.
So next time you update or revise your marketing roadmap, make sure you define your audience through data and include a plan for both your baseline initiatives and focused pulse programs. At IDG we use proven content activation frameworks to work with our clients to help build these orchestras and find harmony within their marketing through the right mix of platforms and messaging.
Contact IDG Strategic Marketing Services and start engaging with technology buyers globally.
Written by Matthew Naffah
Matthew Naffah oversees the IDG Strategic Marketing Services U.S. Program Architecture team as Sr. Director, Program Architecture/Digital Marketing Strategy. Matthew’s job, along with the other Program Architects, is to develop rich, integrated marketing campaigns using IDG solutions and custom tactics.