I have come across this discussion numerous times and every time I wonder why companies do not give importance to other elements of marketing and why leads, though it is a lagging measure features most in any marketing discussions.
When was the last time you bought a car because the dealership sales person called you or because he sent you an email with an offer? Sounds weird – isn’t it? Then why is your B2B business, especially IT/ITES any different. Shouldn’t you give enough time for your prospect to understand what he is getting into and why he should select you above others?
Why are Leads the only measure of marketing
Companies must invest in enough amounts of awareness initiatives to let their target market know about their products and services or how it will help them to conduct their business better. Having achieved the awareness stage, through the existing marketing channels, they should move to the next stage and try and create excitement about their products/services. This could be through customer experiences, case studies, easy engagement/try-out mechanisms, a lot of free educational content etc. Based on some of the excitement that is created, you can expect some of your prospects to convert to a lead stage that you can then nurture through your sales process.
Most companies focus on just the leads and pump in a lot of efforts & money in interrupting customers with their offer. This also has the risk of creating a lot of negative branding about the company.
What marketing channels should be used across each of the different stages really depends on what your company is promoting and where your target market lies. It is definitely not rocket science, but just needs enough amount of thought to ensure that your marketing strategy delivers results for you.
Your views are valuable.