Maark is a small marketing & advertising company that offers digital transformation services to businesses in Financial Services, Healthcare, Hospitality (hotel chains and luxury boutiques). The company operates across the United States and is a young player in an incredibly competitive market.
Being a new company on the market, Maark had an urgent need for new customers and therefore generating as many sales as possible as soon as possible was the team’s top priority. The reasons why Maark turned to Belkins for assistance were the following:
- Targeting big companies. The client wanted to bring in large enterprises with around $50,000 in revenue. While such a goal wasn’t entirely unachievable, it posed some difficulties for a small-size agency. Nevertheless, the client wanted those kinds of leads first and foremost.
- Need for a flexible outsourced sales team. Having started as a very small agency, Maark didn’t have the capacity and budget for an in-house sales team. Yet, at the same time the company needed experienced SDRs to initiate conversations with potential customers and steer these conversations towards booking an appointment.
- Need for leverage in a competitive industry. Any market is impossible to conquer without tackling some challenges. However, the Marketing & Advertising industry is an extremely large one and, therefore, makes it harder to gain visibility and get a head start. Entrepreneurs have to deal with well-established competitors, other start-ups, and the attention span of their target audience. The Maark team needed an advantage, a clear vision of how they could cut through the white noise and become more visible to their potential customers.
- Lack of the fitting approach. Every target audience responds to a particular voice and tone of the vendor. The client needed to find out what kind of words would appeal to the prospects and prompt them to investigate the brand and invest in its services. The Belkins team had the experience the company required for handling this task.
With these goals mapped out, we proceeded with moving towards them.
What we did
1) Deep research. We started with researching the client’s core strengths and the unique advantages that Maark could offer to the potential customers. We explored the business culture cultivated by the client and how it was reflected in the company’s marketing materials and general strategy. After this, we compared Maark's approach to the tactics and voice used by main competitors.
2) Exploring Ideal Customer Profile. At the same time, we paid close attention to building the Ideal Customer Profile together with the client. During this process, we pursued the goal of locating companies and businesses that could benefit the most from the client’s core strengths. Additionally, we researched businesses that could benefit from Maark website design services.
3) Creating a list of contacts. Our Lead Research experts scanned the companies throughout the United States, studying open data sources and LinkedIn profiles to validate corporate emails, map the org chart of the targeted companies, and gain insights necessary for reaching out to decision-makers.
4) Launching first campaigns. Our team of template writers crafted introduction emails that were based on the information gained from the research and the client’s Ideal Customer Profile. We segmented our lead list into the following categories:
Moving on, we sent those emails to the addresses in our hand-curated lead lists and started monitoring the results. At first, we maintained our focus on leads driven by Redesign campaigns - they showed good results and delivered the most responsive prospects. However, later the client requested that we squeeze more value from Adobe Marketing campaigns, which proved to be a challenging task.
5) Troubleshooting. After a while of managing our cold outreach campaigns, we realized that they weren’t driving the desired results. Additionally, we encountered an issue of the large number of negative responses coming from the companies we were targeting. As a rule, it’s normal for a certain part of prospects to reject your offer and ask to be removed from your lead list. However, when this number of negative responses isn’t balanced with a chunk of positive replies from high-value prospects, it’s time to take measures and scan your materials for any faults or issues. In our case, we saw the following areas for improvement:
- Need for a more specific approach. The sales offer needed some more rewriting and polishing in order to hit the recipients with the right value.
- Need for an additional sales channel. We required some extra platform for letting us elaborate on the benefits of using our client’s services, thus making our prospects look forward to receiving emails from Maark.
6) Building a multi-channel approach. Once we pinpointed the main issues within our initial outreach strategies, we worked on new ways of attracting companies that fit the client’s Ideal Customer Profile and could benefit from Maark’s services. Since we were targeting large companies, we needed more than one channel to start conversations and generate leads. This is why we focused on several directions:
- Cold email outreach. Our team of writers created three versions of templates to figure out the most effective message. To refocus our wording, we used the client’s previous experience of working with big clients, referring to the company name and emphasizing the pain points that Maark successfully dealt with. Also, we demonstrated some of the client’s case studies to show how Maark can add value to the prospect’s digital infrastructure.
We ran several A|B testing campaigns and monitored their performance with Folderly to evaluate the engagement rate, open rate, and overall deliverability.
- LinkedIn outreach. In addition to email marketing, we found our decision-makers on LinkedIn and interacted with them on the client’s behalf. We started with sending a connection request and, after gaining the prospect’s permission, went on asking them about their experience with Adobe Experience Cloud, offering a consultation with Maark. We launched LinkedIn campaigns for our Redesign campaign as well to maximize the number of nurtured leads.
7) Generating virtual F2F meetings. Having figured out the best approach and created a multi-channel strategy, we were able to focus on the endgame: generating appointments for the client. We went from nurturing the prospects to booking an appointment with a Maark representative, who would then meet prospects over a cup of coffee and discuss the potential fit.
Having worked with Maark for 3 months so far, we run the campaigns that delivered the following results.
- 25 appointments with high-value prospects. We managed to book around 25 meetings with the companies that met the client’s ICP. Some of those prospects had over 1 billion revenue.
- App rate increased by over 50%. Currently, we scheduled 56% more calls compared to the client’s performance prior to employing Belkins services. In spite of the initial pitfalls and issues with finding the right wording, we managed to give Maark a boost needed to gain more visibility and book more slots within a short period of time.
- Present your skills with confidence. Don’t hesitate to show off and speak proudly of what you do best. Your potential customers appreciate experts who can solve problems and know how to explain their approach step by step. Base your marketing materials, your design, and your campaigns around your core values and your vision, not what mainstream trends consider to be the most “productive” and “profitable” aspects today. Competence and proficiency are timeless and priceless.
- Be clear about your ICP. You must understand how to speak with your customers and your Ideal Customer Profile can give you all the insights you need. Start with gathering information about your target audience, starting with their revenue and ending with their success goals. Their benefit and your profit shouldn’t outweigh each other - look for the perfect balance.
- Work towards your goal no matter what. Sometimes, you have to try again and again before you create an appealing template and build a successful campaign. Stay analytical: look for the flaws, remove them with surgical precision, and don’t forget to test your new campaigns, finding the best combination and the most effective message. With that approach, a small start-up can get attention from large enterprises.
- Empower your campaign with a professional consultation. If your staff isn’t equipped with a sales team, it doesn’t mean that you have to postpone your grand plans. Combine your efforts with an outsourced team that can shoulder your tasks and help your brand make a name for itself even in the most competitive markets.