What Do Top-Performing Marketers Do Differently?

Last Update: April 11, 2016

SOURCE: http://www.marketingcharts.com/traditional/what-do...

While most of us, of course, are small business owners, we all strive to be LARGE business owners one day. So, in my personal research, I'm always interested in what's working for others, no matter how large. Marketing trends and how they evolve, are always a good indicator of where things are headed and what may be good use of your marketing time..... I thought this was a very informative read.....

(image src: http://www.marketingcharts.com/traditional/what-do...)

What Do Top-Performing Marketers Do Differently?

Top-performing marketing teams commit to the customer journey and the customer experience, collaborate with other business units and enjoy buy-in from their executive leadership, according to Salesforce’s latest annual “State of Marketing” report that surveyed almost 4,000 marketing leaders across various countries.

Some 18% of the survey respondents are “extremely satisfied” with the current outcomes realized as a direct result of their company’s marketing investment. These constitute the “high performers,” whose actions and initiatives are contrasted with “moderate performers” (the 68% who are very or moderately satisfied with their outcomes) and the “underperformers” (the 14% who are slightly or not at all satisfied with their outcomes).

The research touches on several dimensions of high performers’ characteristics, some of which are highlighted below.

The Customer Journey

Almost two-thirds of high performers strongly agree that they have adopted a customer journey strategy as part of their overall business strategy, versus just 7% of underperformers. Likewise, more than 6 in 10 strongly agree that they are actively mapping the customer journey, compared to just 6% of underperformers.

The importance of customer journey adoption is underscored by the extent to which this strategy is credited with various benefits. Among those who have adopted such a strategy, roughly two-thirds or more agree that it has positively impacted: overall customer engagement (73%), customers’ willingness to recommend products and services (70%); revenue growth (70%); customer satisfaction scores (67%); and customer churn rates (65%).

The Customer Experience

More than 6 in 10 high performers strongly agree that they are implementing digital transformation across the company, versus just 23% of moderate performers and 8% of underperformers. Furthermore, 58% of high performers are leading customer experience initiatives across the business, again at a far higher rate than moderate (21%) and under-(8%) performers.

Salesforce links collaboration to customer experience leadership, noting that the majority of high performers are excelling at collaborating with other business units, while almost none of the underperformers are doing well in that regard.

Perhaps as a result of their greater inclination towards collaboration, high performers are about twice as likely as moderate performers to get executive buy-in, with 84% saying their executive team is completely committed to the overall marketing strategy.

Integration and Omni-Channel

High performing marketing teams are having much more success integrating business systems (with 60% excelling at this) than moderate performers (21%) and underperformers (4%).

That success spans across various channels, as at least 6 in 10 high performers have integrated their mobile (60%), email (64%) and social media (63%) marketing strategies into their overall marketing strategies. By comparison, fewer than one-third of moderate performers and one-fifth or fewer of underperformers have been able to integrate those channels.

In isolating some of the above-mentioned channels, the report notes that high performers are:

  • The most likely to track mobile analytics for mobile apps; align more mobile campaigns to email campaigns; track mobile versus desktop website navigation; and use deep links that take users directly to the app store to download an app;
  • Leveraging predictive intelligence or data science to personalize emails at a greater rate than underperformers;
  • Using more sophisticated email marketing techniques, ranging from the inclusion of marketing content in transactional emails to triggering personalized email in real-time based on events;
  • Excelling at responding to social interactions in a timely manner, and making greater use of social publishing and listening tools.

Marketing Technology and Tools

High performing marketing teams are heavy spenders and adopters of various marketing tools and technologies, per the report, with almost half saying they are substantially increasing their spending on these areas.

Indeed, roughly half of high performers are extensively using technologies such as marketing analytics (56%), data targeting and segmentation (51%), marketing automation (50%), lean/agile methods (49%) and predictive intelligence (49%). By comparison, fewer than one-third of moderate performers – and in most cases fewer than 1 in 10 underperformers – are making extensive use of those same technologies.

Emerging technologies are also seeing rapid uptake from high performing teams, as more than one-third are extensively using proximity marketing using beacon technology (43%), the internet of things (45%), podcasting (37%) and wearables (37%).

Other Findings

Other results from the report indicate that:

  • Customer satisfaction is now marketers’ top success metric, ahead of last year’s leader, revenue growth;
  • Brand awareness is a top priority for marketers, as is a higher level of customer engagement;
  • While moderate performers and underperformers say that budget constraints are their top concern, for high performers the top concern is keeping pace with customers;
  • Social media continues to benefit from budget enthusiasm, with social media marketing (67%), social media engagement (67%) and advertising on social platforms (65%) being the areas for which the largest share of marketers plan budget increases;
  • ROI perceptions have jumped from last year, with a sizable increase in the percentage of respondents using the following channels seeing significant or some ROI: mobile (77%, up from 43%); email (80%, up from 53%); and social media (75%, up from 29%).

About the Data: The results are based on a survey of 3,975 full-time marketing leaders (not limited to Salesforce customers) in the U.S., Canada, Brazil, U.K., France, Germany, Netherlands, the Nordics, Japan, and Australia. Survey respondents encompassed marketers in B2C (26%), B2B (29%), and B2B2C roles (45%) across a variety of industries and company sizes.

SOURCE: http://www.marketingcharts.com/traditional/what-do...

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Marcel92 Premium
Hello PJ. Great info. Great customer service and follow up are usually the key to a continuous and successful business.
theresroth Premium
Thanks so much, PJ!Worth tagging in capital letters!

Just one question: What is an executive buy-in?
Never heard that term before....
PjGermain Premium
LOL! Don't worry that won't apply until you have a huge staff, a bunch of executives and possible investors!
theresroth Premium
Oh, wow! Ok!:-):-):-)
gappleby Premium
Good article, PJ.

I used to view the ideal business growth path for Solopreneurs as Vision and Planning, Start, Scale and Exit, with each phase having it's own specific needs, goals and strategies. The idea was to move from one phase to the next as quickly as possible, by focusing and acting appropriately to the phase you're in at the moment, with awareness and preparation for the next phase going on in the background.

I now believe that the path must include another phase: Stabilize. So my path now looks like this: Vision and Planning, Start, Stabilize, Scale and Exit. Your article covers part of the reason I've added Stabilize to my pathway.

When you start, the goal is simple...start. Not make $1,000,000, have a full-blown business, etc. Those goals may be in the Vision and Plan you created in it's phase, but can only be achieved once you start. It all starts when you...start.

Eventually, you'll have a nice little business started. But if you continue to act and think as a starter, you'll never see additional growth, or if you do, it will come incrementally, by your working longer and harder. At that point, you have a JOB.

In the Stabilize phase, maybe you shift from Aweber, which served you very well in the Start phase, to something more complex and expensive, such as Ontraport or Infusionsoft, which will allow you to do some of the things you've described in your article. Maybe the free version of Similar Web needs to be upgraded to the paid version. Customer service? More complex sales funnels? You're stabilizing your current business and preparing for the most fun phase of all...Scaling, where growth goes from incremental to exponential.

And of course, adding Stabilize to the mix allows you to intelligently answer the most important question of all...do you even WANT to scale up? Maybe you're happy making $10K-$20K a month, and are not interested in getting bigger, with all that entails. You go back to your Vision and Planning notes to see if scaling enhances or detracts from your ultimate goals.

Sadly, most people leave out the Vision and Planning phase, and the Exit phase altogether. In fact, they are stuck in Start, leaving Acres of Diamonds, and the freedom that comes from following the full path.

The power is in you and me as Entrepreneurs, not in a particular business, strategy or tactic. Those are merely tools in the hands of the Entrepreneur, and nothing more. It's the Entrepreneur who creates success.

Thanks for reminding us of that.

An Entrepreneur
PjGermain Premium

As usual your insight is incredibly powerful and enlightening!

Thanks for the add!

mijareze Premium
Very interesting PJ. Thank you...
PjGermain Premium
Much appreciated Ed!
rolfkb Premium
PJ, thank you for sharing this interesting information. But it means that we, as mostly one man bands, will need to intensify our reading and implementation.

And as a 'newbie' I need to understand how this industry works before I can implement more elaborate techniques. So how can we cope in this crowded space?

PjGermain Premium
Ah, I see your perspective. Don't allow that to dishearten you. Many six-figure earners have branded themselves. Simply getting the word out, becoming an authority in your niche and provided engaging and compelling content will help.

For example, here are a couple of stellar marketers I follow ---- because I'm in this niche.....

rolfkb Premium
Thanks, PJ, I'll look at these two as well as read the background for your post because it was intriguing reading what you presented!.
PjGermain Premium
Thanks, the main points I took away from the read was email marketing and social media marketing. I put considerable effort in both and am happy to see the strong trends in each.