Once a dominant theme for marketing communications collateral has been established, the intended audience has been identified, and a top down strategy has been implemented with regard to producing the actual editorial content for the campaign, the objective that ought to become paramount is to identify the information required to qualify the likelihood of purchase interest on the part of prospects who may respond to the collateral with an inquiry, etc.
The task of collecting important information about prospects that will contribute to useful prospect qualification must start with the registration form that prospects will complete in order to receive what we call tier II collateral. Prospects receive tier II collateral when they take an action in response to a call to action that has been included in the initial product promotion campaign. The action could either take the form of an incoming telephone call from a prospect, or a click on a link embedded within an email version of the initial product promotion campaign.
Regardless of how prospects opt to act in response to receipt of direct marketing collateral about products, the procedure must be the same: collect targeted information before handing over tier II collateral to the prospect.
We think that it makes sense, at a minimum for registrations to collect at least the following information:
- Company Name (or Organization equivalent for inquiries from the public or from the not-for-profit sectors)
- web site address (if one exists)
- Telephone Number
- eMail Address
Once policy is established that makes receipt of these 5 pieces of information a mandatory preliminary requirement that must be satisfied before any further information is distributed, then the job of advancing the conversation further becomes that much easier, not to mention more efficient. After all, why task personnel to follow up on simply an email address when an inquiry has been received, when time can be better spent working with other prospects that represent more promising opportunties?
Further, it makes sense to research prospects that provide these 5 pieces of information. Where a web site may not be available, based upon company name and/or email address it ought to be possible to develop some familiarity with the incoming prospect. As we have noted earlier in this blog, we find that LinkedIn provides us with a lot of very useful information about companies; therefore, we highly recommend LinkedIn as a resource for gathering this company-specific research.
Based upon a prospect’s title, it should be possible start to put together an organizational chart. We think it makes a lot of sense to start working with organizational charts as early as possible. After all, these charts can provide the basis for assumptions about how the various personnel within an organization interrelate as regards formulating a purchase decision, which will certainly need to be tested, over time.
© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2013 All Rights Reserved