Many B2B companies have annual sales and marketing goals... and consistently miss these. For sales, annual targets can make sense due to the length of sales cycles (however many pros recommend quarterly targets). Marketing success on the other hand relies on frequent feedback and constant testing.
In this post, we are going to dive into how you can manage your B2B marketing team on weekly sprints and increase your overall marketing qualified leads.
In many B2B organizations, the outputs you need to accomplish are very clear. Unfortunately, the actual activities you need to do each week to get there are left up in there. In other words, your outputs are defined, but inputs are not clearly communicated or understood.
Due to this problematic foundation, our problem arises: Weekly tasks and roles are not clearly defined and your time is not protected. Thus, you are constantly launching new campaigns without ever perfectly doing previous ones. Because of this, “nothing seems to work” and you’re left with a team that is not hitting their output goals, because no clear inputs have been set.
Read this post, for more help on learning the B2B roles you need and building a comprehensive B2B marketing campaign.
The solution to breathing life into your marketing team and increasing your output is a weekly growth meeting.
In this meeting, we discuss work performed the previous seven days + results/learnings accomplished. Failure is unavoidable, but not learning is inexcusable.
Our weekly growth team operates off of both fixed and variable inputs. Meaning that each week each team member has specific inputs they perform. For example, a B2B content marketer might:
Promote latest blog post to 25 influencers
Write two guest posts for authoritative blogs
Respond to 10 HARO pitches
Write one piece of content for our own website
You can find a sample spreadsheet here that we use to track and report our weekly progress on: Spreadsheet Link
Here’s what our meeting agenda looks like:
Growth team lead goes over their thoughts and perspectives based on Salesforce reports and Google Analytics - 5 min.
Each member goes over their weekly inputs, learnings, and “what’s next”. - 5 min. per person
We plan a growth hack that we will execute as a team the next week - 10 min.
Your team can get burnt out from performing the same inputs every week. To avoid this burnout, we add a weekly growth hack that we will execute as a group. Here are some sample growth tactics you can test at your own organization:
Launch search ads on top conferences so that you gain exposure without expensive sponsorships or to maximize a sponsorship.
Follow customers in your CRM across twitter and send DM to your latest eBook.
Add chat to website and add auto chat to specific pages: services, case studies, etc.
Launch top of funnel facebook ads with specific audience targeting.
Try lead ads on linkedin for all retargeting.
Expand B2B SEO campaigns with HARO pitches to build links.
There are countless other B2B growth tactics you can roll out each week. The key is that you are consistent and never miss your weekly meeting.
Things We’ve Learned
We have learned a lot from consistently doing our weekly sprints each week for the past six months.
It’s very easy to become overly ambitious with the volume of tasks you will accomplish each week. For example, at first, I set goals that were unacheivable in order to hopefully motivate our team and make sure we weren’t coasting. Unfortunately, this bread a culture of failure and demotivated the team.
Learn from us and set accomplishable goals and then slowly expand these as you show consistent success.
Never Miss Meetings
Missing just one growth meeting kills your traction. Part of our success has been that we set out meeting for 8am Monday morning. We have found that by setting the stage for the week as the very first thing we do on Monday morning allows us to review the previous week and get ready for an awesome sprint the coming week.
To show that we were not messing around with our meetings or members of the team’s time, we would end meetings immediately or ask members who came unprepared or late to the meeting to leave. It was critical to the team’s overall buy in that we took this time incredibly seriously and that everyone came prepared.
The growth meeting is an exceptional way to get executive buy in for budgets and campaigns. It will be important that they know what the growth team is working on. By keeping the meeting to only 30 minutes you can also drastically increase the likelihood of getting the executive team involved.
Get Customer Success + HR Involved
High growth organization focus on more than just acquisition. It’s critical that your company has clear input goals for your hiring as well as customer success.
By adding hiring goals, you can make sure that you have the talent to consistently grow. While including customer success can then make sure that your new acquisition strategies and growth hacks are properly aligned. In addition, you should be working to empower existing customers consistently.
Hopefully you can learn from us and remember that by holding yourself and your team accountable, you can start to drastically improve your feedback loops and rapidly test new campaigns resulting in increased MQLs and revenue.About the author: Garrett Mehrguth is the CEO of Directive Consulting, an industry leading B2B search marketing agency serving mid-enterprise level firms with industry trusted SEO, PPC, Content & Social. He contributes to Marketing Land, Salesforce, Search Engine Land, Moz, CrazyEgg, PPCHero, Ahref, Convince and Convert, Wordstream, Raven, Local Search Ranking Factors, Kissmetrics, SitePoint, Marin, Acquisio, and more. He has spoken at SMX West, Digital Summit, Share16, 3XE Digital, State of Search, Big Digital, MozCon Ignite, General Assembly, and others.