The goal of your B2B marketing strategy may seem obvious—you want to attract new customers and clients. While this is a valid goal to have, you may need to execute multiple campaigns before you start to see conversions. Moreover, to make each campaign count, you should consider the various steps involved in the buyer’s journey.
To employ a successful B2B marketing strategy, you need to create specific, realistic, and measurable goals for every campaign. Each one should have it’s own purpose, aimed at helping your target audience move further along the buyer’s journey. The corresponding goals may include creating brand awareness, building brand loyalty, educating your audience, or encouraging people to engage.
In this article, we'll explore why goal setting is crucial for your marketing strategy, and reveal three tips you can apply to establish the right goals. Let's get started!
- Goal setting helps your team work towards accomplishing something definitive.
- Each marketing campaign should have a relevant goal that helps the audience member move towards making a purchase.
- All marketing goals should be specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.
The Importance of Goal Setting in B2B Marketing
In the B2B world, building trust with your buyer is extremely important. If they don’t know you, your values, or your product, they’re probably not going to purchase from you. This means a buyer is unlikely to make a decision based on the first piece of marketing they see.
The buyer’s journey consists of various steps that are typically taken before a purchase decision is made. Your marketing strategy needs to consider these steps and the decision-making processes the buyer the buyer is going through.
Setting specific goals for each marketing campaign will help your audience move down the pre-determined path to making a purchase. Setting goals can also help you track the success of your marketing campaigns and determine whether or not you need to make changes.
3 Tips for Creating Better B2B Marketing Goals
Deciding on goals isn’t always easy. Set the wrong ones and you might miss out on conversions or stunt your business growth. Thankfully, we've got three tips to help you create better marketing goals for your B2B business!
1. Start With Your Company’s Overall Goals
As a business, you’ve probably established some overall goals for your company. When coming up with your marketing goals, you want to consider how they can help you reach these larger goals.
For example, one of Estee Lauder's major financial goals is "to outpace the industry’s sales growth by at least one percentage point annually", something that drives the company's overall business strategy, including marketing campaigns.
Using broader company objectives as a guide makes it easier to come up with goals in the first place. If you think you might be going off track, you can check your marketing goals against overall objectives and do a quick sanity check. This way you can ensure you're always focused on the bigger picture.
When creating your campaigns, consider what would need to happen in order to reach those broader company goals. For example, you might calculate how many products you need to sell, the number of website visitors you need to attract, or how many email subscribers you need to convert to paying clients.
2. Understand Your Buyer’s Needs
As we mentioned, your buyer likely won't make a purchasing decision the first time they come into contact with your brand. In order to convince a customer to buy from you, you must consider what they need to make a decision. For example, when they are first becoming aware of your brand, they may be wondering if you're trustworthy, so a couple of testimonials might come in handy.
Understanding what your buyer is looking for you enables you to present the right information or materials to get them to make a decision. If you’re simply guessing, you’re not going to be able to establish a strong connection with them. Ultimately, when your marketing is hit or miss, you’ll struggle to convert leads into customers.
Think about where your audience is in the buyer’s journey. Do they need to become more aware of your brand? Are they familiar with you, but not sure exactly which products or services you provide? Are they using your product but you think they might benefit from a premium version? Consider what their “next step” may be and center your marketing goals around guiding them in the right direction.
3. Establish SMART Goals
Establishing SMART goals is a technique applied across many industries, but it is especially crucial when setting your B2B marketing goals. When a goal is SMART, it means it is specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound.
Creating a SMART goal means you should end up with tangible results to track and analyze. For example, it isn't enough to simply say you’d like to attract more leads with your B2B marketing campaign. It would be much better to say you’d like to attract 1,000 new leads in the next month. With this type of specificty, you can track and analyze your results and make changes as needed.
To get started creating SMART goals, think of the most basic goal you’d like to achieve, such as attracting new leads. Then go through and add more and more detail until you can confidently say it meets each of the SMART standards. Give it a specific number and deadline, and ensure you can realistically achieve the goal in the designated time frame.
Bonus: Challenge Yourself with Stretch Goals
Although realistic goals are important for your B2B marketing strategy, you can push yourself harder by setting stretch goals. A stretch goal is a larger, nearly impossible goal that you hope to achieve if you meet and surpass your original goal.
A stretch goal will encourage you and your team to go the extra mile. You’ll work harder to make your stretch goal a reality, allowing you to get closer to your end goal in less time.
To set a stretch goal, start with the main goal you’ve established. Then consider what you may be able to achieve if you went all in and pushed yourself a bit harder. How many more leads could you collect? How many more buyers could you connect with? Make this your stretch goal.
If you’re not establishing appropriate goals for your B2B marketing strategy, you’re simply making noise in an already loud space. In order to attract your target audience and convert them into loyal customers, you need to lay out what you’d like to accomplish with each marketing campaign.
Let’s recap our four tips for setting better marketing goals:
- Create marketing goals that help you achieve your company’s overall business goals.
- Consider where your buyer is in the buyer’s journey when establishing your goals.
- Ensure your goals meet the SMART criteria.
- Use stretch goals to push your team to go further and work harder.
Do you have any goal-setting strategies or tips you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments section below!