What you need for a Crisp Marketing Campaign

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode, Olivia Hurley talks to Mary Pat Donnellon, Chief Revenue Officer at CallRail

Yeah, Hi everyone, welcome back to be, to be growth. My name is Olivia Hurley and today I'm joined by mary Pat Donnellan who is the Chief Revenue Officer at Call Rail. Hi mary Pat, how are you? I'm doing well, thank you for having me Olivia. Well it is my pleasure. I'm really excited to talk to you today, you have seen one or two marketing campaigns in your day and and I'm excited to learn more, but I want to kind of level set with everybody like you were saying a few minutes ago and get us all on the same page. So my first question is how do you think about a marketing campaign? Okay, we'll dive right in. So when I think about a marketing campaign, I think about it in multiple layers. Kind of the first layer would be, what is the message or outcome that we're trying to accomplish with this campaign? What do we want our potential buyers to do at the end of the day? Like what is the outcome were driving for and how do we want to communicate with them? Like what do we want them to know to get them uh, to that outcome. So kind of, that's the top level, like really being clear on what the outcome is and what the message is to get to that outcome, then you have a million channels as we all know in today's world, there is an unlimited number of channels that you have by which you can communicate to your audience with that message and the outcome and then you need to, basically the way I think about it is mapping the message and the channels to your buyers and their journey and to try to get the right message two at the right time to the right person. And that's nuanced and complicated at times. And it can be kind of simple too. But those are the elements that I think of and planning a campaign. I love that. It it seems like it's really succinct when you think about it that way. And I'm curious with this. You know, we have, what are you trying to accomplish? What's the outcome? How do we want to say it? What's the right time early? There are ways to complicate that and surely there are irrelevant efforts. And so if those are the ones that are essential to the marketing campaign success, are there parts that you've seen time and time again that people add in, marketers add in that are irrelevant or unnecessary? I think there's a couple ways to look at it. I think that people can overcomplicate for sure. One way to over complicate is to maybe start with the channels and think like, oh, we have all these channels that we can go after. We need to put our message on social. We need to advertise here. We need to and not just social, but every channel on social, we need to do facebook linkedin instagram Tiktok like whatever it might be, we have to do all of them. We have to advertise in all the places we need to call everybody and do all the things. And I don't think that that's really necessarily strategic or necessary. I think we can get really busy as marketers and feel like we're doing a lot by pursuing a lot of channels. But if they're not the channels where your buyers are, it's not gonna make sense. It's like we're doing that because we might like it. But if our buyers aren't there and that's not where they consume information, then you might be wasting your time and a lot of energy and we all know there's so many channels right now. So being really thoughtful about where your buyers are and the people you want to reach and then being very...

...selective on the channels. So that's, that's one way that I see wasted time and energy and and marketing dollars. The other way that I see it is when the timing and the message and the channel don't match. So let me give you an example of that. I am Chief Revenue Officer, my phone, I get so many phone calls and emails from very well intentioned business development representatives. I love BDR. I have BDR s on my team, I love them. But when they're cold calling me right now and saying, I want to give you a demo of my software. Like that's not where I am right now right now, where I am in my journey? I'm thinking about how am I going to grow my business. What am I going to do next year and All the planning that I need to do to drive more growth in 2022. That's like where my head is right now. I am absolutely not sitting around thinking what software can can I buy today? Like that's not where my head is. So if I'm doing like outbound calling as part of a campaign and coming in with a message to someone like me that hasn't engaged, knows nothing about your software and you want to show me a demo. Like I'm going to ignore you and it's not worth my time and it's not worth their time, a better use if you're going to use that channel knowing that a buyer that they don't a potential buyer that they've identified. But I haven't engaged is maybe to have something where they're inviting me to. Something about growth planning. How do B two B saS leaders think about revenue growth? That's what I'm thinking about inviting me to something where a thought leader on that topic is going to share insights. That's the way to maybe get me engaged. Or maybe we don't make that phone call until I have engaged with some other channels and they know, oh, she obviously has a problem that she's looking to solve and is looking around on this. She's a warm lead. I think probably at this at this point. She's ready for a phone call to see a demo of my software. But that's an example of where a phone call isn't necessarily a bad thing. It can be a very good thing. But if it's like going right on a cold outreach to see a demo of a software, you know, just, it's not the right time for that this fire and not the right message. And how how should a decision maker over the marketing campaign make those decisions, how should they make the call that outbound prospecting with cold calling isn't the right first move or? Yes. So the way I think about it, the first thing to do in planning your campaign is to really understand who you're trying to reach and doing research. It doesn't have to be a formal market research study. It can be informal research, like calling people, talking to them, understanding how they consume information and where they look for answers and where they hang out, et cetera, and how they think about things. So, you know, really buyer persona, understanding who your buyer is and how they consume information. And a little bit about the types of decisions that that person would make, where they look for information, how they think about things. So just do basic research and make a very simple map of what that journey is. And then it's a matter of mapping your message and your channels to that decision making process, knowing your buyer. And the way I think about it is, um, and I think it's pretty standard is that you would have kind of high level content for an offerings for people who aren't engaged at all that you don't know, you need to educate them on what's possible that they might have a problem that they could do things better in my case. Maybe it's like what are SAS leaders...

...thinking about for growth going forward, that would be like top level. Then once we've gotten some engagement in there, we talk about how people are solving these problems, what tools might be available where they could get insights to help them deploy their resources better and and find more growth opportunities. And then once they're engaged at that level, then say, okay, now would be the time to put a call in and see if we can get them to do a demo of our software. So it's kind of like just mapping it out in advance and doing that planning up front and then being able to capture what's happening along that journey. So that's, that's the hard part often is like understanding what's happening along that journey. So that you know, how engaged is someone, how interested is someone, where are they on their journey and being able to track and know that so that your surfacing those write messages and have the right tactics at the right time? What do you think people stand to lose or maybe you have an example of maybe a time where you missed out on, on, on something like this? But what do you think people stand to lose by continuing to kind of include some of these like irrelevant efforts of like going after every channel or not knowing who the buyer is. Um yeah, yeah, there's two problems. One is, you can and I would love to say I've never done this, but I have the number one problem is that you can burn out a team. Like you can exhaust people like there is so much work that you can put into these efforts and it can be an unlimited amount of work. So whoever is running these campaigns, like if if you're doing extraneous work, it's hot. Like we need to be smart about what we do and um otherwise you can be on this hamster wheel that never ends. So that is one like big internal risk is that you burn out the people doing the work because they're just doing everything and sometimes when you do everything, your, you're not doing the things. So being careful of burnout for your team, the other one is you can waste a lot of money to and so I think the way to, you know, you've talked to buyers, you know where they are, you need to definitely focus on putting your efforts there. It's also okay to try new things, but I would strongly encourage marketers to test into those before they go all in and put tons of resources just because a channel exists or we think it might be good like test into it and find out for sure. So that's the other thing. There's a risk of a lot of waste and valuable resources. Lastly, and probably the worst is you can create a really bad customer experience if you are going out with really aggressive messages that aren't like suited to where a person is, it makes it feel like you don't understand or care or get your buyer and and it can feel inauthentic, irrelevant and really damage your brand. So I think that's probably the greatest hazard of all is that you that you do things that just are tone deaf and wrong um for the person that you're trying to engage with and and it creates not only maybe a different opinion, but actually a negative impression which you don't want. Do you have an example of that? Maybe not from your own experience? Oh yeah, I've never seen that done. I'll go back like every day I get so many emails from good companies just like with these super technical invitations talking all about them that they want me and come to this like super specific...

...technical thing. It's just like a turn off, especially if it's marketing software that would be coming to me like trying to say like really technical detailed demo and or kind of increasingly aggressive outreach. It's a real negative, it's in my in box all day long. I won't name any names. But I'm sure if you're a marketer you get them in your probably anybody and B two B you're getting that from vendors and it leaves a negative impression and it's in my in box all day long. How many do you think you get every day? Like I would say, I now I do try to unsubscribe to a lot, so I get it better and then it explodes again once my name gets put on another list someplace I think. So I would say 10 to 15. Yeah. And a lot some really good companies, you know, maybe they bought a list of, you know, my profile, they buy a list and then they start hammering me and then it's just like go away. I don't want any part of this. Yeah. Is it one of those things where because of the nature of the outreach, even if that was a solution that you were looking for, it was just delete it. Yeah, I don't even it's just like delete unsubscribe. Unsubscribe without even looking. Yeah. And then they've lost me for everything, you know, I'm unsubscribing, right? Oh, what a loss. That's yeah, that's a bummer. So instead of these, you know, inappropriate, strong word. But he's like outreach, that doesn't make sense with the, you know, the level of engagement, the place that you're at or going after every channel, you know, instead of doing those things, what do you suggest in their places to have a really tight focused effective campaign. Yeah, so again, back to mapping out that buyers journey understanding where people are and then it's very important for marketers to know and look at what is working and what isn't. So you have to understand how people are engaging and what is driving outcomes and not. So you have to be very critical and and look at that at all at all times. Actually, it's interesting that is what I call real provides for small businesses is tools not to do a shameless plug here, but that is what Call Rail is all about, is providing that kind of insight into into what's working and what isn't for small businesses so that they can see what actually drove to a phone call, what actually resulted in in bound form fill or a text or chat on their website and they know what works and what, what doesn't. So all marketers need to have some level of data to understand that otherwise you're flying blind and it feels right to you, but you can actually test with the level of engagement and what activities are out actually leading to outcomes. So we try to be pretty crisp on that and our business as we're marketing and then we're, it's like actually great to be able to offer that just small businesses of all sizes as a company. I think that's awesome. I'm so, and I look like you use the word crisp, that's just so visual for me. I'm curious what the, you have a campaign going, you're measuring, you had your understanding engagement from your ideal buyers and something needs to change. Um, I'm curious about about the, how you alter the focus, how you kind of turn the ship mid campaign. That's a great question. So any time you're doing something, you'll get some things right and you're going to get some...

...things wrong. So again, just to be open minded, data driven, so that your, your emotions don't cloud your judgment. And if something isn't even if it's your, what you thought was amazing and it isn't getting engagement or working, there's a couple things to look at. One is, is the message right? Like, is it just the way we presented something? Could it be done differently? And you could test that, You could introduce a new, a different variation of that and see if it performs better. You could ask yourself is the channel right? Is the way I'm communicating correct? And if it is, maybe that isn't, maybe you start with a message and that's probably often the easiest place to start. If you're like, construct in your channel is off. You need to be open minded and look at that. If you're advertising in some place and it's not working. Like don't keep putting thinking like, if I keep putting more money into this, it'll start working all of a sudden like be honest with yourself and try to look at what is working and maybe redeploy some of those dollars toward what is and and further away from what isn't. So those are the kind of things. I think it's just being open minded and like looking at it regularly, like you don't launch a campaign and go away, but like on a regular cadence, you're inspecting it and seeing how things are progressing, you know, it call real and most B two B business is, we're looking at how engaged in measuring how engaged are prospects are through a lead score and understanding all the touch points that drive to that lead score. And if you see things getting stuck and not progressing, you have to, that's like your trigger of where things might need to change and you just go in and you keep working it, testing iterating, redeploying, you've got to be nimble. That's the way it is. It's not set it and forget it. It's an ongoing process. You got to be nimble. What results have you seen in your career from kind of reducing some of this waste and readjusting as you go, I've seen great results from this over time and again, sometimes we haven't gotten it right, but a lot of times we have and sometimes you get it right after all the iterations, what we've seen is just huge engagements improvement with target market. So, you know, an example of a market that car rail works very closely with is a digital marketing agencies And we've really one of the things when I came to call rails, like looking at how can we better engage with marketing agencies, speak to them in their language, find them and get them into our fold. And we've been able to increase our penetration of North American marketing agencies like by 20%. We have really high market share with marketing agencies. A lot of them used call rail, especially if they have small business clients. So we've done really, really well with that. But it involves getting into the mindset of a marketing agency understanding where they are speaking to their pains and then showing tangibly how our solution can solve their pain agencies want to show our ally to their clients and prove the value of their work for their clients and we talked to that about that at a high level. But then tangibly as they get engaged, show them how Call real can do that for them. So that's a been a huge success story for us, it's been a big driver of our growth, which has been exciting. That's awesome. Congratulations friends. That's yeah, if you were kind of to paint like a sweeping generalization of the BdB world right now, do you think that that many marketing campaigns kind of our super focused only have the essentials or do you think you generally see a lot of marketing campaigns? And I'm thinking back to the fact that you get a lot of these cold outreach. So I...

...think I can guess the answer, but do you think that a lot of them operate like that or that this is a really big need for people to move in this direction? Yeah, so I would love to say, I think some organizations probably do it thoughtful, pruned, careful from the buyer's perspective and let me just back up. I think most people want to do this. It does take so I don't think anybody wakes up every morning and think I want to spam uh, you know, thousands of people. I think that that happens when there's not time or you feel pressure or or you don't feel like you have the tools to know what's working or what isn't. So you just do everything. So I do want to say like, I don't think anybody intends to do that. Maybe some people do. I hope not many. I think most people want to do it the right way. So the key to being able to do it the right way though, is to understand your buyer just do at least a little bit of up front and make sure that you can understand what's working and what isn't so that you can tweak and manage. It's very hard. I think all of us as marketers can get excited about all the channels that are out there and like so called vanity channels where there's just never been more places to advertise or to participate in. I just encourage people to be judicious test into it. Don't go all in, do it a little bit, make sure it works before you go all in. So again, I think people Get it wrong, probably make up a percentage, 70% of the time versus 30%. I'm making that up totally. I think people are well intentioned, they don't want to do that. I think it's like feeling like you need to go fast and there's so much to choose from. Like they're just not as judicious or aren't patient to test their way through it or don't feel like they have the tools to measure what's working and really understand it. Yeah. And what you said about doing these like widespread, let's try it. Some of these things aren't going to work. So this cold outreach isn't going to work. These channels aren't going to work. Maybe they're doing that because there's a lot of pressure and I think to kind of loop it back into what you said earlier, like planning the campaign and and having these very, very focused elements of, you know, what are you trying to accomplish? What is the outcome? How do you say the right thing at the right time um is a really great way to alleviate some of that pressure as well. If there was one big takeaway you wanted a listener to either go try out or apply as a strategy or even just tell themselves as a marketer, what would it be? The number one thing that you can do as a marketer is understand your audience deeply. So take the time for that. Talk to them, get to know them. Hopefully it someday in the future you can go see them even if they're in your community or if you have to travel a little bit, but get to know or just call them and do a zoom. We all know how to do that. So just get to know your buyer and really understand them deeply. That is really the key is knowing your buyer and customer. The other things are all all flow from that. So don't start with channels. Don't start with tactics. Start with knowing your fire in your customer. That that's how you're going to get success. Oh my goodness. I love that. And as somebody who, speaking for myself, as somebody who doesn't know the specifics of that, Is that going to talk with current customers? Is that a really good way to get to know your buyer? Or is it is it going out and speaking with people like maybe like yourself, who they don't you haven't engaged with their marketing material or even their company at all? Yeah, I would do a little bit of both. Like...

...start with your customers. That's easier. Like understand them. Interview customers that have been successful. Like what? How did you find us? What did you think when you saw this? Like what encouraged you to take the next step? Like understand that deeply capture why did you choose us? Like have we lived up to what you thought we would be? Have the courage to ask all those questions and deal with it whether it's great or it's hard to hear or like some things could be hard to hear where you find out like maybe all the marketing was good. But then the experience of being an actual customers different than you than they anticipated. You need to know that too. So I would start there. It's easy. You know who they are. But then look at your market. I use the example of marketing agencies before. Find some that aren't your clients. Like how do you solve this problem? How do you show value to your clients? Where do you go to get information? Like what are the organizations you belong to? Who are the people that you respect and follow? Where do you find your information? Like just probe and ask and make sure you understand their pains. What problems are trying to solve? Uh and where they get their ideas and inspirations for being better. I love that you have given so much helpful information. You've educated me quite a bit and you've been so eloquent this whole time. so I'm so glad we got to chat today mary pat, how can listeners connect with you and learn more about Call rail. Absolutely. First of all, feel free to email me at mary paddock, Call rail dot com. I'd love to hear from you and I'm on twitter at Mp Donnellan at MPI down Ellen, but call real visitor site, it's called real dot com. You can check it out, see what we're up to. Start a free trial if you want and if you're ready but experience what we have, but we'd love to hear from you, I'd love to hear from you and uh I really appreciate the time With you Olivia and thanks so much for having me. I love that. Well it has been so phenomenal and thank you so much for being on B2B growth. Yeah, one of the things we've learned about podcast audience growth is that word of mouth works. It works really, really well actually. So if you love this show, it would be awesome if you texted a friend to tell them about it. And if you send me a text with a screenshot of the text you sent to your friend, meta. I know I'll send you a copy of my book, content based networking, how to instantly connect with anyone you want to know? My cell phone number is 40749033 to 8. Happy texting.

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