One-and-done vs The Long Game

Posted on by Greg Cholmondeley | No Comments »

by Greg Cholmondeley, Workflow Practice Director, PODi and Caslon & Company

Joe ManosI was talking with Joe Manos from MindFire Inc. the other day about what he thinks companies who are really successful at delivering direct marketing services do differently than the rest. If you’ve ever spoken with Joe it will be no surprise that this quickly became an intense and passionate conversation covering dozens of traits of successful operations. But, one message I heard loud and clear is that these companies present tight, focused messages about campaigns and results rather than about emailings and clicks. So, how do you do that?

Joe started out by saying that sales people need to change the conversation away from response rates to conversions – which typically means talking about the number of sales-ready leads being handed to their clients’ sales forces. This doesn’t sound like a big change, but it is. Measuring a response rate is like weighing yourself. They’re easy to measure and can be useful metrics, but by themselves don’t indicate health.

So what is the “secret sauce” to make this happen? Well, Joe’s recipe has many ingredients, in fact his upcoming course works through a list of “9 key deliverables that only a well-executed multi-channel marketing program can deliver,” but some of the major ones I gleaned from our conversation are:

  • Talk with marketers rather than buyers
  • Understand where they are and what they need
  • Talk in terms of conversions and business results rather than response rates
  • Explain the benefits that well-executed, multi-channel programs can deliver over simple blasts
  • Present how results and relationships from a tactical program can be extended into an ongoing strategic one
  • Have tight and polished messaging to open your discussion and make sure that you are comfortable talking to marketing executives about business results
  • Know what a prospect’s marketing department is trying to do and where they are in the direct marketing spectrum so that you aren’t wasting either their time or your sales people’s time
  • Carefully measure, report and analyze results to prove value, to adapt techniques, and to extend programs

So, how do you do this? Well, it takes hard work and it isn’t easy, but there are some approaches which are more effective than others. Developing a strategy is essential – but having someone share effective strategies they’ve seen can help save a lot of time and learning. Coming up with your own, unique messaging is something only you can do – but extracting relevant elements from examples can help you avoid pitfalls. And practicing your pitch, viewing how you do, and being coached by someone who’s seen the best succeed can get you past that all-important opening discussion.

So, there’s a lot of value in knowing these key ingredients to Joe’s secret sauce but learning how to use them and practicing cooking them is where the real payoff is. He’s teaching an online course starting Oct. 29th on this topic at the PODi Institute.  He’ll present 4, 1-hour classes covering:

  • Simplifying the Sale of Integrated Marketing Programs
  • Architecting Programs & Campaigns
  • Best Practices for Designing & Setting-up Programs
  • Executing and Tracking Programs

If this is your business, there is still time to sign up.

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