Direct marketing is any marketing action that involves targeted communication to one group, usually in the hopes of soliciting a specific response. Take it one step further, and a direct marketing campaign is a set of actions used to get a response.
This differentiates direct marketing from mass marketing in a way similar to outbound marketing versus inbound. Mass marketing may be targeted to a certain degree, but you’ll be marketing to a whole demographic, rather than a selected group or individuals.
Some B2B Direct marketing tactics include, but are not limited to:
As you probably noticed, most of these tactics can be used in a mass marketing way as well. It depends on the level of your targeting and the intended action you wish your prospects to take.
If you’re posting Facebook ads sharing reviews of your product with every woman between 24-40 in the US, that’s not direct marketing. If you target ads at women who have visited your site but left without finishing their purchase, encouraging them to return to their cart, that’s direct marketing. You have a specific audience in mind and a specific action you want them to take.
Note the word “campaign.” A campaign is most effective if it has a number of steps or tactics combining to lead your prospects to a partnership. Direct marketing is most effective when it combines a number of tactics to lead your prospects to the action you want them to take.
Here’s an example of B2B direct marketing from one of our clients.
One Inc has a particular clientele: they offer insurance providers a better way to process digital payments for premiums and claims.
They need to reach C-level leaders who can make the decision to partner with One Inc. At this level, executives are bombarded with offers, and multiple levels of gatekeepers guard their time. Reaching a C-suite executive requires much more than a Facebook ad or a blog with perfect SEO.
Knowing that only high-quality items can reach high-quality opportunities, we designed a specialty experience for 200 decision-makers. The look and dimensionality of the gift made it past the gatekeepers and directly onto the desk of key prospects.
When the executive opened the box, they were greeted by an individualized video that automatically played upon opening. Each video was tailored to the individual and their company's pain points.
The prospect removed an insert to find a bottle of fine wine for a memorable and generous touch. When dealing with high-value opportunities, it requires high-value thinking.
If this seems like too expensive an option, consider the high value of each potential partnership for One Inc. The ROI? 200x return on the expenditure.
If you’re seeking similarly high-value prospects, consider upping the perceived value of your B2B direct marketing efforts.
Next week, we’ll explore how to create your B2B direct marketing campaign so it drives maximum ROI. We’ve been building these campaigns for a while, and there are certain factors we see influencing success again and again.
We’ll share these next week, but in the meantime, explore these articles for more on direct marketing campaigns and outbound marketing.
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