November, commonly overlooked, because it’s the month that sits between you and the last-mile that determines whether you’ve earned the year-end bonus you’ve labored over all year or not. This time of year leaves marketers fatigued, but not the go-to-sleep type of fatigue. It’s the end-of-year-budgeting-planning-and-keeping-the-leads-flowing type of fatigue. All marketing leaders experience it.
This time of year, most marketing executives are torn in so many different directions – preparing budgets and commitments for 2019 campaigns and somehow pulling out a few final killer campaigns in November and December to reach their annual marketing sourced pipeline goal.
On top of all that is the looming threat of losing those end-of-year dollars that must be spent before 2018 is over. If you’re like many marketers who conservatively spent 2018 budget and found yourself with some leftover that you lose if you don’t use by the year, you’re being forced into hustle-mode to determine where to spend those hard-earned dollars.
When you’re in scramble mode, rash decisions are made. Now’s the time to breathe and evaluate your options. Some marketers are thinking, what will make an impact on business right now? Truthfully, not a lot, especially in the B2B world. With the average sales cycle hovering between 4-6 months for mid-market sales, and 6-9 months for enterprise sales, nothing you do right now will boost end-of-the-year pipeline for the sales team. I know, that’s a tough one to swallow.
If you’re a marketer sitting in a use-it-or-lose-it seat with budget dollars, here are two things to consider before thinking about spending EOY dollars on the newest shiny object:
Revenue-focused marketers are defined by how they convert an audience member throughout the customer lifecycle. The task seems simple, yet the pressure is real. The connection is based on a ton of factors, but the commonality all comes down to – how much do you know about your audience? In order to connect with a prospect or customer (depending on the lifecycle stage), you must be relevant. To be relevant, you need to have data points to connect your compelling offers with people, so they will convert.
There’s no doubt that data is a marketer’s most valuable resource. Having the correct data to drive engagement, gives marketers the ability to:
- Improved Funnel Efficiency
- Personalize Marketing Messages
- Improve the Customer Experience
When you look at your audience, do you feel like you have enough data to make an authentic connection? If not, this a great place to focus year-end budget toward. Complete all the contract profiles you’ve obtained in 2018. Take your underrun dollars to start building 2019 Q1 pipeline. Trust me, your sales team will love this decision!
A salesperson audience is also a marketers audience. Sometimes it feels as if marketing and sales teams operate in data silos. Marketers heart-of-gold lies within their MAP and sales source of truth is a CRM. Most marketers don’t generally trust their gut when analyzing CRM data, rightfully for good reasons: CRM data is sales-focused. But what many marketers don’t realize is that the roots of their CRM systems can be a treasure trove if utilized properly for marketing contact database development.
The data a sales team uses to create compelling stories isn’t always the same as the data marketing teams have access to. Here in lies, the tragic data silo epidemic high-powered sales and marketing teams face.
Do you trust the accuracy in your CRM data to build compelling campaigns for 2019? If not, here’s another easy-win to push spend year-end dollars toward.
Our ideas for end-of-year spend, may not be as cool or sexy like a bright shiny object, but one thing that resonates with data-driven marketers is, data is sexy. Incomplete and inaccurate data is not much. So now’s the perfect time of year to invest in bringing the sexy back to your data management plan for both your MAP and CRM heading into 2019.
Don’t forget to grab a copy our Synthio’s white paper, 3 Ways to Capitalize End-of-Year Dollars to start building pipeline in 2019!