When asked why his company kept on sending out vanilla, generic e-mails that didn’t get much response a CEO of our acquaintance replied, (with a commendably straight face), “yes, I know we would benefit from a targeted, focused approach but the internal changes required to make that happen are just too much, it stays in the ‘too difficult’ box”.
His situation is not unique!
There are both real and pretend difficulties in changing the way a business does stuff, usually an all too human reluctance to change creates the nebulous excuses but the real obstacles might stem from practical issues of infrastructure, process and resources.
Infrastructure and technology can be real showstoppers; if your data is spread over several systems and can’t be segmented your brilliant ideas for targeted campaigns won’t get off the drawing board.
Like it or not, we’re competing in a noisy, vocal, opinionated and discerning marketplace, increasingly intolerant of below-par marketing initiatives. It’s critically important to manage, as one, all the threads of an initiative whether they be social media, web landing pages, mobile solutions, in-app pointers, direct mail or any of the wonderful range of communication available to you.
This is where the problems start, initiatives spread across different systems become difficult and time-consuming to manage. Integrating an external e-mail service with telemarketing call-tracking using spreadsheets is bad enough, then add in website activity and links to the sales team on a clunky CRM. Multiply this by the many flavours of initiative to finely target specific groups of prospects and it’s not surprising that ‘just turning the handle’ is easier.We’ve seen three approaches taken to overcome these obstacles, with varying degrees of success
- The “Enterprise class” route – If the investment is there to support it an advanced marketing application that’s already integrated with a CRM (such as SalesForce and Eloqua) certainly provides a solution. Unfortunately,it costs, especially when setup and the experience required to manage the inevitable complexity are taken into account.
- The “Girl Friday” approach – By mapping out a well-defined process for your initiatives and taking some pragmatic decisions on the systems used and the level of integration it is possible to execute initiatives that work. But it’s labour intensive.
- “DIY”– If the expertise exists in the organisation it’s amazing what can be done to tie relatively basic systems together to implement rifleshot marketing affordably. This level of expertise, however, is rare and as with any specialist skill there’s always the risk of it disappearing.
There is a better way, especially for small and medium size companies that need to manage quite sophisticated lead generation initiatives but have tight budgets. In conjunction with our customers, we’ve developed an affordable platform for Rifleshot marketing, based on the proven Adara Pipeliner. It’s used “out of the box”, takes minimal setup, and addresses all the difficulties commonly experienced:
- It’s one fully integrated system, a CRM and mailer, with landing pages easily integrated with web sites and social networking.
- It uses a simple “initiative Planner” to ensure campaigns are thought through and incorporate best practise.
- It uses advanced workflow automation and templates to make it easy to define and then run, many different initiatives.
- It’s easy to find out exactly what’s going on so action can be taken in real time to manage and optimise initiatives.
Take a look at this short video of our approach to lead generation using the Adara Pipeliner, even if it’s not for you, you might gain some good ideas, just click here to view it.