Reducing the number of marketing campaigns from many individual product promotions to just three or four campaigns designed around shared buyer needs is a best practice approach to achieving better results. The customer-centricity it delivers is foundational to maximizing marketing effectiveness, efficiency, and ROI.
Many marketers express to me their need for more leads and the concern that their resources are stretched too thin to drive sufficient demand generation and engagement. For many of them a great deal of relief can be found through a different approach to campaign planning.
Needs-Based Campaigns vs. Product Based Campaigns
So what is a needs-based approach and how is it different from one that is product-centric?
A product-centric approach is as @marisa_kopec would say “the marketing equivalent of taking a Selfie”. It assumes the buyer cares about the product and focuses messaging on articulating value and differentiating from the competition: “We have the fastest THIS or the most comprehensive THAT.” It’s all about the product.
A needs based approach is one used by leading marketers for years now, but most widely recommended by B2B analyst firm SiriusDecisions. It’s based on the premise that buyers have pressing issues that supersede your company’s desire to sell something.
Examples of issues you might find familiar include:“Generating More Leads For Sales“, or “Getting Value From Marketing Automation.” It’s all about the buyer. Leading with valuable content around these issues attracts buyers searching for ways to solve for them. Using the conversation to connect them with the products and services that are germane to solving their problem is how opportunities are created.
Now that we know what needs-based campaigns are, why adopt them?
Customer centric messaging converts better.
It’s no secret that buyers care about their problems not your products and services. By tapping into the issues that keep them up at night – the issues they are actively seeking solutions for – you can attract and engage more effectively. This kind of thought leadership and valuable content builds reputation and makes you a trusted source that can be nurtured into sales opportunities for your products and services.
Fewer campaign executions make the most of lean resources.
Few organizations have enough budget dollars to build campaigns for all the products they offer. Especially organizations that have hundreds or thousands of SKUs. Limiting your plan to a few campaigns enables a more comprehensive integrated approach that’s more manageable and proactive instead of tactical and reactive.
Shared Issue-Based Campaigns Make Content Marketing Easier.
Content marketing is difficult enough. Why not make it easier by enabling content to work harder for you? Much of the content required to develop top-of-funnel demand an nurturing is issue-based. That means you can produce less (better quality) content because it will work for multiple products in your portfolio. It is only when you get further into the buying-cycle that you need more product and sales enablement assets.