HomeBlog Balancing Campaigns and Launches

Balancing Campaigns and Launches

October 17, 2012|Craig Moore

More and more, we find marketers adopting an integrated campaign strategy to drive increased sales productivity and marketing efficiency. An integrated campaign is built on a business-needs-based theme, and it runs for an extended duration (usually a year). Within the campaign is a series of carefully choreographed reputation, demand creation, sales enablement and market intelligence activities.

More and more, we find marketers adopting an integrated campaign strategy to drive increased sales productivity and marketing efficiency. An integrated campaign is built on a business-needs-based theme, and it runs for an extended duration (usually a year). Within the campaign is a series of carefully choreographed reputation, demand creation, sales enablement and market intelligence activities.

When multiple products are folded into a single campaign, marketing messages shift from a focus on products, features and benefits to a focus on the relationship between the prospective buyer’s business needs and the value proposition of the campaign’s offerings. They can be more impactful to the business overall, but they do not make the direct product push that product managers are used to.

Yet, we must recognize that companies generate revenue from their offerings and ultimately, that is what customers buy. Often the company’s internal environment reinforces product owners as responsible for driving the profit and loss of their product families. As a result, product owners want to promote those products and drive sales. It is not unusual for product owners in b-to-b companies to expect marketing campaigns for each of their products.

It can be difficult to move away from a tradition of planning marketing activities around product, service and solution launches. Often the development and release cycle concludes with a launch that might include several reputation, demand creation and sales enablement activities centered on the offering’s value proposition. Product and solution owners worry that, if their offerings are rolled into broad campaigns, they won’t receive the airtime they deserve.

In the campaign environment, launch becomes a milestone within the timeline of the campaign. That’s not to say that launch isn’t important – it certainly is. Existing customers are interested in new releases of products they are using. New customers might have awareness of, and pent-up demand for, important new products whose launches should receive significant investment from the campaign.

Product managers and line-of-business owners might be right to be concerned if campaigns do not truly focus on customer needs and instead focus on trends, buzzwords and technology. The campaign planning team needs to assess the needs it is addressing with its campaign themes and make certain that these needs are met by what the company sells. In this way, effective campaign planning not only accommodates individual launches, but actually makes them more effective and productive. Keep in mind that there may be multiple needs-based campaigns running simultaneously, each of which leverages some or all of the organization’s offerings.

 

Craig Moore

Craig Moore is Service Director, Marketing Operations Strategies, at SiriusDecisions. His three decades of experience span such areas as marketing operations, partner marketing, strategic alliances, product marketing and management, software development and entrepreneurship. Follow Craig on Twitter @cramoore.
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