What are the best B2B Marketing Campaigns?
In this weeks Funnel Vision I’m going to show you some extraordinary campaigns with clever creative content, and explain why none of these will help you to maximise marketing- generated revenue. Then I’ll show you what you do need to do, and then bring that creativity back into play.
Building a campaign list
I want to build the definitive list of campaigns that we need to build in B2B, and a few hints on how to build each. For example, you may need campaigns for
- Key targets (also known as Account Based Marketing);
- Volume targets;
- Movers (known and unknown);
- Searches early in their journey;
- Searchers late in their journey;
- Referrals, and;
Now they’re examples only, but they’re a pretty common set that we often look for.
Examples of great creative content
What I found when I googled didn’t go anywhere near towards what I was looking for. It was great, and I found some excellent, excellent B2B creative. I’m going to quickly show that to you now, just indulge me for about two minutes. Then I want to come back to answer the question I was trying to answer, which is, what are the campaigns that are best for B2B marketing?
- Our first contribution is by Ashley Taylor Anderson on the Ceros Blog, and you’ll find in her article that one of the key points that she makes about why these campaigns work , is that each of the elements are really well integrated. Great creative. It’s very much a design or creative perspective, and as I mentioned at the top, and I’ll mention again in a moment, that’s not what I was hunting for. Good article nonetheless, but what I’m after is something a little bit more strategic, a little bit less tactical, if you like.
- Let’s take a look at the next one, B2B marketing. Now, I didn’t bother with this one. It’s gated content. I would have thought this level of content oughtn’t to be gated, but that’s of course this organisation’s own call. But frankly, I didn’t bother looking, so I went on to the next one.
3 examples of successful B2B marketing campaigns
- Vision critical. Again, really excellent article. Three campaigns here. They’ve gone a little deeper on each of those campaigns. They did a really good job of background in the vendor’s stories, and that made this probably my favourite of the articles. It’s all creative led, though, and it’s also for only one type of audience, which is the unknowns.
- Next one was the Kapost Blog, and our contributor was, since we’re on this person, Anna Shenko. I thank you, Anna. Really good, again. Best examples from 2015. The focus seemed a little broader. It’s not just a single audience type, and for that I thank you, Anna. But again, you’re going to see shortly why I’m after something different from this, but I would still argue that this, and the other articles, are an excelled resource to refer back to, once you’ve worked out what you’re trying to do. I’ll make that point more strongly in a moment. Let’s continue with the review.
- Top Rank Marketing, and our contributor is Lee Odden. I’ve featured some of Lee’s work before, and good breadth of content. Eleven examples is quite nice. Again, another greater article. Well written and well sources as well, thank you Lee.
- More amazing creative from great bits of a campaign by me, and introduced by B2C marketers, too, Christine O’ Connor. One of her key points is that B2B can be amazing creative as well, and she links through each of those articles. I would agree with her. Again, I’m trying to answer a different question today, but I think she makes a good point, and she makes it well.
- Final one that I’m going to take a really quick look at, five great B2B campaigns that won Cannes Lions last week. Firstly Andrew, thank you. Great contribution. Really relevant to what most people are looking for. Not what I was trying to answer, for I really want to work out what campaigns we need at all. And you know what, if you got a great budget, fantastic. Most of us don’t.
So, a bunch of really great creative just for B2B, and I should say some great articles, well written, well synthesised content. All good, but that isn’t the question I was trying to answer for you today. What I’m trying to answer is, what are the campaigns that I need at all, and a few tips on executing those. The creative that I’ve just shown you will play its hand once you have worked out what we are trying to do at all. I wouldn’t start with a creative. Start with what you’re trying to do for whom, then get creative.
Let me explain
I believe you need campaigns for:
Key targets, or the Account Based Market
- What we’re referring to there is that for each of these, for example, 500 accounts, that’s our target accounts, these are the five roles that we typically want to market to. So, I need those five roles found, contact details found, for all of those 500 companies, and then I need some kind of campaign to out bound to them, because they’re all critical targets.
But, I also need a campaign for Volume targets
- The grain unwashed. The people I’m not going to research individually, but I still need to out bound to them.
I need a campaign for movers
- So if I know you, we’re connected, perhaps on LinkedIn, and you’ve just moved, I need a campaign for that. But if I don’t know you, but you’ve just taken a critical role in one of our target accounts or in a target industry, then I probably want to be talking to you right now. What’s the campaign for that?
Searchers (both early and late in their journey)
- Separately, people who are already looking, but maybe are early in their journey, so they’re maybe looking for information that they can digest to start to get their thinking going, or searchers are required to lighten their journey and they’re looking for a product. Clearly, I want a very, very different campaign for each of those two.
And, just as a quick hint on that, you’re probably going to want organic to play the first role, and you might be willing to use paid search for the latter role. Anyhow, more on that later. Or, on another day, more correctly. Right now, I’m trying to answer, what are the campaigns that we need?
Here’s a couple more
- Of course I need a campaign for referrals to get them in to work with them properly.
- But, I also need a campaign for people who are just kind of browsing, they’re not really searching for content, they might be out looking for something else. But, maybe they’re in my target market, and they should see an ad from me anyway. That’s kind of where display advertising typically comes in.
In Funnel Plan, we typically use campaigns to get up to the point where sales needs to take over. And that’s normally the Gap Acknowledged stage. That is, sales folk typically are going to do mostly the same things with prospect, regardless of which campaign got them to the discussion table. What we’re looking for as marketers is, what are the different modes, different use cases, different buyers. Not segments, but buyer mindsets, buyer cases, buyer situations that we should be building campaigns for. That’s what I was trying to put together for you.
So, now I’ve given you some examples of the campaigns that we need for B2B marketing. I don’t believe that’s complete. What would you like to see? What other campaigns do you think we need in B2B? Please tell me. Respond to the email, if that’s how you came to this article. If you’re on YouTube, or LinkedIn, or Facebook, then please comment directly in that platform. Whatever is easiest for you. Or jump on our website, if that’s easier, but whatever’s easiest for you, come back and tell us. What are the campaigns that you would like to see? And what I’ll do is I’ll get together some research on the best way to do each of those campaigns. But, I’ll build off the list more fully with your input, please.
Hey, if you haven’t already got a funnel plan, you need one! Even if you get a free one. Go to www.funnelplan.com and get yourself a free one for now. The paid ones are not a lot of dollars, and they’ve got a lot more functionality. But, if you don’t already have one, start with a free one.
I’ve got a lot more lined up for you next week, and until then, may your funnel be full and always flowing.
In this week’s Funnel Vision blog I’ve got lots of contributors I would like to thank:
- Ashley Taylor Anderson on Ceros for ‘5 inspiring B2B Marketing Campaigns’
- B2B Marketing for ‘The 8 best B2B digital marketing campaigns for 2016’
- Matt Kleinschmit on VisionCritical for ‘3 examples of successful B2B marketing campaigns’
- Anna Washenko on Kapost for ‘Best Examples of B2B Marketing in 2015’
- Lee Odden on TopRank Marketing for ’11 Examples of Killer B2B Content Marketing Campaigns including ROI’
- Christine O’Connor on LinkedIn for ‘5 Great B2B campaigns that inspire me (and should inspire B2C marketers too)’
- Andrea Mono on LinkedIn for ‘5 great B2B campaigns that won Cannes Lions last week’
- Kirra Draper for production
- Hugh Macfarlane for scripting and presenting this week’s show
Thank you all for your articles, there’s nothing at all about your articles I was having a go at, I love them. They’re answering different questions than the one that I was trying to answer today, thought. That’s why I’ve shown something different from that. All great articles, and frankly, I recommend you take a look at all of those, they’re all good.