Integrated campaigns align your organization around a common message in order to accelerate revenue growth. An integrated campaign can deliver numerous downstream benefits that include increased productivity and cross-functional alignment.
So, how do you actually run an integrated campaign?
Here are seven steps to help you get started.
1. Define your goals, strategy, budgets, & channels
Benjamin Franklin once said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
That’s certainly the case when it comes to launching an integrated campaign. Remember, your integrated campaign will rely on a variety of stakeholders, teams, creatives, and channels to accomplish your stated goal. Take time to properly prepare and set the groundwork for a successful campaign. At a minimum, consider these key areas:
Overall campaign goal(s)
Be specific. The more specific, the better. For the purposes of discussion, let’s assume that your primary objective involves capturing market share from a well-known competitor. How much market share? What does that look like in terms of net new accounts? Will any account do, or are you targeting a specific customer type, such as mid-market IT companies? What would motivate your buyers to switch?
Start an internal conversation and collect ideas from stakeholders across multiple teams and departments—especially from team members who will be supporting this campaign.
Your campaign strategy provides a high-level overview of how you intend to achieve your campaign goals. It answers important questions about timelines, messaging, special offers, key milestones, software requirements, outreach cadence, and marketing channels. Many companies formulate their campaign strategies as simple slide decks. You can also use a project management tool to map and visualize campaign strategies.
Budgets & channels
Two of the most important elements for finalizing your campaign strategy include budgets and channels. They’re closely intertwined, which is why it’s prudent to think about them simultaneously. For example, if your company already runs pay-per-click ads, you may be able to use historical data to forecast a fairly accurate cost of acquisition. You can then work backwards to develop a budget that will generate enough leads for that channel.
2. Get customer data
Simply sending email blasts to your entire database will not deliver results. To win business from the competition and achieve your campaign goals, you need to target prospective customers who align with your ideal customer profile (ICP) and buyer personas. And, to target at scale, you need reliable data in your CRM. Here’s how to get it:
Segment your current lists
Some CRM and marketing platforms offer advanced audience segmentation rules, which allow you to create dynamic and static lists for targeted campaigns. For your competitive switching campaign, you may want to build a list of people who:
- Decided to go with your competitor instead of your company
- Switched from your company to the competitor
- Are known customers of your competitor but have never entered your sales pipeline
Identify a trustworthy data partner
B2B data providers and enrichment services can be worth a look, especially if your contact database is thin or has obvious gaps. Just be careful to partner with a data provider who guarantees reliability and takes privacy seriously.
3. Review, refresh, & create sales and marketing collateral
Relying on generic collateral is not a winning strategy. To maximize performance, you’ll need a library of web and design assets that align with the central theme of the campaign. For a switching campaign, your collateral must make a compelling case for why prospects should consider your company. What’s in it for them? Can you help them save money or deliver better service? If you were the customer, what would make you switch?
After carefully assessing your campaign objectives and messaging, you may need to develop one or more of the following:
- Landing pages
- Marketing drip emails
- Email templates for sales outreach
- Product and data sheets
- Graphics for social media
- Product demo videos
- Savings calculators or other interactive tools
- Case studies that feature customers who have already switched
- Downloadable assets, such as whitepapers or checklists
Note: To save time, repurpose existing collateral rather than starting from scratch. For example, a product overview could be tweaked to include campaign-specific copy. Just be sure that everything fits together and tells the same story.
4. Design your outreach journeys & lead follow-up rules
Integrated campaigns use intent signals to guide buyers through multi-touch journeys. Prospects who click several emails, visit your landing page, and download a case study should be further along in the journey than someone who only clicks one banner ad.
Creating journeys for thousands of prospective customers is challenging without the right tools. That’s why taking a unified approach to sales and marketing—one that makes it easy to build and manage buyer journeys—is key to running integrated campaigns at scale. Here’s how a unified CRM helps your campaign planning and execution.
Design visual journeys from start to finish
Easily collect & use buyer intent data
Anonymous user interaction data from your third-party analytics platform is not useful for integrated campaigns. You need live campaign data—at the user level—in your CRM to identify the prospects who are the most engaged and most likely to buy.
Use signals to engage sales at the right time
Collecting and organizing prospect interaction data in your CRM makes it possible to alert the sales team when a user reaches a predefined engagement level. For example, you might configure your CRM to automatically notify sales and assign a follow-up task once a prospect reaches an engagement score of 50 out of 100 points.
5. Develop search intent & remarketing campaigns
Online search can be an excellent source of new leads for your integrated campaign—especially if your competitor has significant brand recognition. Remarketing can be a cost-effective way to re-engage people who previously interacted with campaign assets. Consider the following questions as you develop your search intent and remarketing campaigns:
Which search terms exhibit actual intent?
Bidding on search terms requires a certain amount of intuition. Does it make sense to bid on every term that pertains to your competitor? Or, does a refined approach work better? Bidding on “you vs. competitor” and “competitor a vs. competitor b” terms are bound to deliver higher-quality clicks. That being said, is there enough volume?
Where should you retarget?
Search engines aren’t the only platforms that offer retargeting. Social media sites, including Facebook and LinkedIn, provide a variety of retargeting tools to help you re-engage buyers. Your ICP and personas should guide your retargeting placement decisions. Retargeting C-level executives may look considerably different than retargeting gatekeepers.
Does your CRM make it easy to collect ad-level engagement?
At a very basic level, your CRM should tell you where a prospect record came from (i.e., online search). Ideally, your CRM would also offer comprehensive visitor tracking that monitors buyer interaction with off-page campaigns, such as remarketing ads.
6. Run your campaigns
If you’ve taken Ben Franklin’s advice and adequately prepared, then running your integrated campaign should be relatively straightforward.
Enable your outreach journey
If you’re an Insightly customer, running a journey can be done in two clicks.
Turn on your search intent & remarketing ads
Most ad campaigns can be enabled with a few clicks. For example, here’s a helpful guide for starting and pausing your Google Ads campaigns.
Let your sales team shine
Your data-driven campaign empowers sales to use buyer interaction data to prioritize outreach and follow-up. If you’ve set up everything correctly, your reps will be automatically notified when leads are ready for engagement. User-level insights from your CRM provide context to help reps engage prospects with meaningful conversations. Meaningful conversations lead to pipeline, and pipeline produces revenue.
7. Develop a near real-time feedback loop
No integrated campaign would be complete without a continuous, near real-time feedback loop between sales, marketing, and other teams.
Marketing relies on lead conversion and disposition insights from sales to continuously refine channel mix, advertising creatives, and email copy. Likewise, sales leans on marketing to identify the interactions, channels, messages, and content that influence sales. Achieving this level of reporting is difficult when your organization lacks a single source of truth for managing buyer journeys. Life is much easier when you have data-driven transparency into each step of the buyer journey.
Time to integrate your campaigns
Aligning multiple teams around a shared campaign objective can be a healthy and productive decision for your company—especially in today’s business environment of remote teams.
It’s time to define your goals, build your strategy, develop a cohesive message, acquire the right mix of skills and technology, and build a successful integrated campaign. Your bottom line—and your people—will thank you.