When it comes to B2B email marketing, two main use cases come to mind:
- Nurturing leads into sales opportunities so that your sales reps (account executives) can close sales faster
- Nurturing recently onboarded customers so that customers get more value from your product or service and become brand promoters that make your growth flywheel spin faster
So given the more popular scenario -- using B2B email marketing to educate and build trust that transforms leads into sales opportunities, consider these six best practices that help your company, and more specifically, your sales team close sales faster:
1. Define your audience.
Before you can plan email marketing campaigns, you first need to know who your target audience is.
Who are your most important buyer personas? What do you know about these buyer personas? Are these buyer persona specifics documented so you can draw on these insights for strategy and copywriting?
What is the buyer’s journey that each of your most important buyer personas progresses through when they first began researching a goal or challenge and making a purchase decision?
2. Establish your goals.
The most effective email marketing campaigns prioritize being intentional about goals.
What are the SMART goals that you’re looking to achieve with your email campaign?
(A SMART goal is specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-bound.)
3. Create ways for prospects and leads to join email lists.
A B2B email marketing database can be a very powerful growth asset.
However, email databases decay over time, typically at around 25% a year.
So it’s extra important to make sure that you’re constantly growing your email database by creating many different ways for interested prospects and leads to join your email lists.
4. Understand and choose the right email campaign types.
Outside of digital marketing professionals, you often find massive amounts of misinformation about what people believe email marketing is.
For example, it’s very common for sales teams to pressure marketing teams to purchase email lists and append existing lists to cold email at scale. In addition to this strategy causing almost immediate mid- and long-term brand damage, cold emailing can result in getting suspended by your email service provider (ESP) and significant financial liability. (I’m not a lawyer. If you want to send cold email, definitely consult with your legal advisor first.)
Instead, make sure to educate key internal stakeholders on the right kinds of email campaign types to achieve various SMART goals.
5. Build an email schedule.
When B2B email marketing is used holistically to advance strategic business goals, you’ll need to plan ahead for how you utilize your email database -- including which segments to include, what messaging to introduce, and what goals to prioritize.
To help align email marketing campaigns with date-specific priorities within your company and your industry, take time to build and maintain an email marketing schedule.
6. Measure email marketing results.
Finally, because you really won’t know what’s working until you run a controlled test, you need to measure all of your email marketing results.
That way, your results can improve dramatically over time as you repeat your successes and steer clear of your email marketing tests that weren’t resounding successes.
What kinds of B2B email marketing best practices have you found most effective for closing sales faster? Let me know in the comments.