Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Marketing to Win: Creating a Cutting-Edge Digital Strategy

By David Romero
Chief Marketing Officer
Altitude Software

Done. You´ve got it. You’ve just been hired by one of the most important B2B companies in the world. You’re the new Marketing Director. You can even picture your future business cards.

Then comes your first day…and your first dose of reality. The most digital piece of equipment in sight is the calculator. So, your first challenge: How do you implement a digital strategy in a B2B ecosystem and, of course, how do you succeed?

Let´s do it. First things  first. Do not try to change everything immediately. It won´t happen. Let´s make a plan. It should look like this:

  • Assessment. You know the market, you know your product, you know your sales forces and you know the competition, your ears are open… Ready to start. To start designing a good digital strategy you need to settle your pillars. Moreover, prioritize them: website, social media channels,  apps…
  • Strategy. OK, you have your media. Let´s position the company. Now you need to work on the content, the most important thing. Some tips: Before creating any content, define your target “personas”. The only way to deliver your message is by knowing your target. Content creation means understanding the audience. Follow the trends as you create new trends; best ideas happen from the unexpected. Do not forget when creating content that it should be discoverable on the internet and easy to consume.
  • Implementation. So we have…what, where, why and to whom. Let´s go for it. Having a responsive website, full of SEO-friendly content and with a straightforward e-commerce (if necessary) is a MUST today.
  • Go beyond this. In order to be “visible” on the internet, why don´t you work on a blog? This is the right place to deliver your content; it will help you with organic positioning and you will save a lot of money on Google AdWords. It will also help you to position your company as a thought leader; building a reputation should always be one of your top priorities. If by chance you happen to leave some call to actions in there you will see how conversions increase…
  • Make content accessible. Entry blogs are always welcome, but if you have a look at your website analytics you will see how mobile readers are pushing hard. So, infographics, multimedia and interactive content should be an important piece of your content strategy.
  • Get social. What is a website in 2016 without a social flavor? To be social is not only about using Twitter or LinkedIn icons and sharing content …. You must allow comments, allow visitor recommendations, likes and more …it will help you to hear from your customers or prospects.  From time to time, online surveys (please, “super short” surveys) will also help your social media strategy. Make it viral. Today’s social media is a worldwide showcase, a virtual playground for your messages…and the place where you can interact with your community.
  • Select the appropriate channels… there are no rules. I just recommend that you focus. There´s no point in opening all social media channels and then not using them. LinkedIn always sounds interesting for B2B environments….but it’s not your only option. Of course, Twitter would help, Facebook and Instagram as well…but why aren’t you using Vine? Short videos breathe fresh air into your old fashioned strategy! Remember, let´s follow trends and let’s create new ones!
  • Measure. Adjust. Perform. (Repeat) This is what it´s all about… The game has just started. Review everything from the beginning; you will find missing pieces, redundancies, and, hopefully, a new point of view.
David is the Chief Marketing Officer of Altitude Software. He leads and oversees the company’s global integrated marketing activities, with a special focus on lead and pipeline generation, both online and offline. David has almost 20 years of marketing management experience, specifically in the B2B Information Technology industry. He was previously Head of Marketing for Businesses at ONO, a leading Telco in Spain. He began his career at Jazztel, and had marketing management roles at Sage and Polycom.