How Direct Marketing Creates Direct Results

It’s hard to ignore the trend of marketing less directly through the use of referrals, websites, and other forms that don’t rely heavily on a one-on-one conversation with people in your target market. This trend is also being felt even within the longer sales process of B2B industries. Business owners would rather google a provider for any process or product they need rather than learn about from someone who suddenly calls out of nowhere with an offer.


Granted, there are advantages such as giving more power to the prospect and setting your focus squarely on their experience, not acting on any presumptions.


But when you are just waiting around for your target market to do all the talking, there also lies one, significant disadvantage: your results are indirect and thus, harder to measure.


On Inc, Jon Miller of Marketo lists several false marketing metrics and one of them actually mentions so-called ‘results’ that are generated by indirect forms of marketing:


“Too often, marketers rely on ‘feel good’  measurements to justify their marketing spend.  Instead of pursuing metrics that measure business outcomes and improve marketing performance and profitability, they opt for metrics that sound good and impress people.  Some common examples include press release impressions, Facebook “Likes”, and names gathered at tradeshows.”


Have you ever asked yourself what a “Like” on any social network really entailed? What about views on your website? Could it be that someone just found it interesting? Did it mean somebody read? Were they after something on their site?


Now take that and compare it to the results of more direct approaches like, say telemarketing. You get only a yes, no, or a maybe.


  • Yes – A yes obviously means the person on the line is interested enough to meet with a salesperson. Sure you may have to wrestle with some objections, answer pricing questions on your own, and get through gatekeepers. But in the end, there’s really no room left for doubt about a prospect’s desire for a product or service.


  • No – This is arguably an even bigger no-brainer than a ‘Yes.’ When the person has plainly spelled it out that they’re not interested, your only choice is to back off. Arguing too long wastes precious time in the field of B2B telemarketing. Even if you believe you can wait for another chance, it might take a while so you might as well call other people while you’re at it. Either way, the result is already there.


  • Maybe – If they want more information, this just automatically puts them between yes and no. That’s a direct result too, even though it looks like the prospect’s interest level is in a state of limbo. You don’t have to spend so much time second-guessing when you already know that you have to follow-up as soon as they read the material you send them.


Take note though that there are challenges to using direct marketing tactics as well. But if you’re the type who can no longer stand the hazy guesswork you have to do to make sense of your indirect marketing metrics, asking prospect s up front is as direct as you can get.

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