2016 is long over, and if you haven't already it's time to solidify a marketing campaign strategy for 2017 that will launch your business to the next level. Sounds good, but how? 

In 2016, only 30% of B2B marketers said their companies were effective at content marketing, down 8% from the year before. 

With diminishing confidence in a business that's all about growth, how can you improve your campaign strategy, and make 2017 your biggest year yet? Read on for ten tips.

This blog post is part of "Your Definitive Guide to Lead Nurturing" blog series.



1. Lean Towards Influencer Marketing Instead of Celebrity Endorsements

While similar in nature, influencer marketing, and celebrity endorsements were not created equal. 

Influencer marketing is similar to celebrity endorsements in that it employs a recognizable figure to instill trust and interest in a target audience, but is also successful in ways celebrity endorsements are not.

To start with, influencers are specialists in a niche, not just recognizable names.  

Influencer marketing, because it is based on a smaller, more intimate fan base than that of a true celebrity, instills more trust in the consumer.

Because the fans feel closer to the influencer, they accept the endorsement as more organic than the assumed contract behind an unrelated celebrity. In 2017, turn to what 94% of marketers believe to be a well-working marketing campaign strategy. 



2. Don't Underestimate What Social Media Can Do

Social media is, of course, an excellent way to advertise to new and previous customers. 

Beyond this, and not to be ignored in your revamped 2017 marketing campaign, is that it is also a perfect medium for building a relationship, and thus brand loyalty, with your target audience. 

Try interacting in a way that isn't too forced, or sales-oriented. Strive for a 70:30 special interest to promotional content ratio. Keeping the sales pitch dialed down let's customers relax and connect with the brand, leading to lead generation. 

Publish news from your niche, and keep your content marketing at its best



3. Use Technology to Best Understand Your Strengths

Take what was popular last year, and use it to make this year even better. 

Twitter Analytics makes it easy to track what your followers have enjoyed. Follow this analysis to publish more engaging content, and gain more authority, loyalty, and exposure in your niche. 

But your 2017 marketing campaign strategy doesn't just include online marketing. So how do you track the efficacy of your offline efforts?

Kissmetrics, using URLS and coupon codes, tracks traffic to your site, so you can see what came of all those flyers or brochures you had printed. 



4. Continue or Start to Publish on a Company Blog Regularly

Publishing regularly to a professional blog gives you great exposure. In fact, businesses that blog have 55% more visitors to their site. 

But other than creating interest, blogging regularly creates trust and loyalty in consumers, as your business and brand become part of their regular exposure.

This is a great aid in lead generation, as prospective customers can come to value you first as a source of information and entertainment.  If you're new to blogging or looking for some new ideas to up your campaign strategy in 2017, check out this article here





5. Host a Real-World Event 

Holding events for prospective buyers in person is not only a great way to rub elbows and humanize your company, but to give tangible worth to your business. 67% of marketers find this an effective tactic. 

Being able to put a face to a company makes clients more comfortable than a bodiless voice on the phone or online. 

Give value to your clients in the form of information, complimentary samples, or special discounts as an example of your gratitude and to reward their participation. 



6. Understand Current Cultural Tensions 

Not every product or service is explicitly political, but every product has cultural tension. To find out what yours is, ask yourself: what problems or affairs today are addressed or exacerbated by my product? 

Chances are, there's something. 

Now, with this information, the way to make your brand the most successful is to find the exact middle of the two opposing sides of your product's relevant issue and market from there.

Marketing from the middle allows you to appeal to the largest number of consumers while marginalizing the fewest. 

Need an example? Think of Dove, encouraging women to feel beautiful in their skin naturally while simultaneously telling them the way to achieve this beauty it is to buy their product. 

This way, beauty enthusiasts and naturalists alike see the appeal. 



7. Remember Your Existing Customers

While expanding exposure and customer base is great, don't neglect the customer base you have grown already. It's easier to make a sale to a repeat customer than to work your way through the sales funnel for a new one. 

So for your 2017 marketing strategy, dedicate some of your funds to retaining old customers and soliciting new orders. 

Provide great customer service, to make a repeat experience more likely, and rely on traditional email marketing to nurture that relationship. Increase your customer base more holistically by offering discounts for referrals. Also, try using social media as a customer service channel.

Existing customers are, of course, not the only part of your marketing campaign to be considered, but neither should they be forgotten. 



8. Bring in New Ideas

Creating a marketing campaign strategy doesn't have to be the brain child of you alone. Don't shy away from asking input from important stakeholders, like sales or product managers. 

The whole team is invested in the success of this venture. As a bonus, by making their voices heard, they'll be more likely to support your own ideas in the future. 



9. Follow Through with Stakeholders

After you've gotten their input, don't forget to follow through!

Maintain open communication with major stakeholders by setting up meetings weekly or monthly to keep an eye on what is developing well and what is not.

Besides just helping develop a killer marketing campaign, keeping the channels of communication open and flowing builds trust between you and your team. 



10. Look Back to Look Forward 

To round out your new marketing campaign, review what strategies were successful in 2016. What did you achieve, and how? Were any events you hosted particularly successful? What pitfalls should you watch out for?

Look for times when opportunities for sales or prospective clients slipped through the cracks, and ways to fix this. 

Lastly, track everything. There is no way to guarantee that everything you try will work, but if you track what does and what doesn't, you will develop a better understanding of how to get more things to succeed. 

2016 is an opportunity to learn, and 2017 is an opportunity to grow. Good luck with this year's marketing campaign strategy. 

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