At this time of year most B2B marketing directors are creating their strategies for the year ahead, working on the aggressive growth plans set by senior management and figuring out how far their budgets will stretch this time around.
As well as achieving the expected growth targets, B2B marketers are also expected to pull all the stops out to innovate, maximise all possible marketing channels and thrash the competition.
But innovation and competition thrashing comes at a price - and that's called risk. Now in a climate where marketing budgets are tight, senior management are pretty reluctant to take too much risk. Getting approval for extra budget to test out a new campaign idea or invest in a professional agency can be a real challenge.
What do the smart B2B marketers do? They work with their MDs/ CEO's and sales directors in a coordinated approach to gain that all important buy-in from budget holders.
So, here are 7 tips to help you get the support you need from the big guys in your organisation before you embark on a mission to create the next meerkat viral frenzy.
- Talk in numbers. Be specific about what the impact to the bottom line will be - extra sales, percentage increase, new leads, cost savings etc.
- Have a clear timeframe. When will the results start coming through?
- Have facts not emotions. Arm yourself with statistics, examples and any information from competitors or someone that is doing it successfully
- Fear factor. What are the consequences of not investing in your super duper idea?
- Highlight previous successes that you or your team have had in the past with other projects
- It's not your show, it is theirs. Remember CEO's usually have big egos, so ensure throughout the process you also give them the credit they deserve.
- Have a fan club. It really counts to have a couple of senior peers and your own team on board supporting the idea.