The A-Z Guide to Government Marketing – Part One
December 2, 2014 Leave a comment
Any marketing campaign has several factors, from strategy to execution that can make or break the campaign; this is especially true in the realm of B2G. In an environment where interactions are regulated and touch points are at a premium, every detail must be considered for your campaign to be effective.
Therefore, what better way to focus on those details than to go back to the basics — the ABC’s of government marketing.
So, here they are, letters A-M of the ABC’s of government marketing:
A: Automation – Being able to automate e-mails, landing pages and responses based on analytics and the engagement of your target audience has become fundamental to the success of any campaign. Eloqua and Marketo are just two of the many powerful marketing automation tools out there that can enhance the success rates of your marketing campaigns. They help you understand what content specific government audiences want to see so you can give them more of it. This is important when trying reach an audience base like this that can be highly selective of what content to trust.
B: Blog – Blogs are a valuable piece to any content marketing strategy when you’re targeting a government audience. These platforms should be used to position your company as a thought leader, but more importantly, blogs should provide tangible value to your audience. Whether you’re targeting a technical or a buyer persona, give them something immediately actionable from each blog post you write and they’ll keep coming back.
C: Content – Developing a marketing strategy without placing an emphasis on quality content is like trying to run a marathon without shoes or water. Any sustainment goals you have for your campaign will fall by the wayside very quickly. Content has become a crucial pillar to any touch point you have with your government audience and MUST bring value to the reader. Great content ideas include: blogs, whitepapers, on-demand webinars, slideshows, info graphics, and more.
D: Delivery – Often marketers focus purely on the content asset and forget that without proper delivery, the asset will not get consumed. While the marketing industry has seen bounce rates decrease with government targeted messaging, it is still important to diversify your delivery drivers. Finding the right delivery platform (e-mail, social media, Google Adwords etc.) and optimize the messaging for that specific platform as it is crucial to any campaign’s success. Always make sure the vehicle, landing page, and content asset are aligned from a messaging perspective and the delivery of your asset will have the best chance for success.
E: Evergreen Content – Evergreen content pertains to assets that are not perishable and continuously provide value regardless of when your audience comes across it. Great examples of evergreen content include evidence-based case studies and assets built around best practices because they tend to reference experiences that can be replicated for long periods of time. However, it is important to interject content that is perishable within your marketing strategy because there is more urgency around those assets. Finding the right balance is key.
F: Funnel – The journey a buyer goes through during the government procurement process is often referred to as the buyer’s funnel. Mapping your content to the different areas of this process is important to ensure your prospects continues down this funnel. Providing the content out of order can change their perspective about your product and could ultimately leads to losing sales opportunities. Learn more about mapping to your buyer’s journey by downloading immixGroup’s “Government Marketing: Optimizing Content & Creating a Lead Nurturing Program” Report.
G: Google – Google can be a massive driver in your marketing strategy. By incorporating targeted keywords in your landing pages — for your audience— you are using Search Engine Optimization to increase you visibility on the web. How your pages rank on Google, based on SEO, will help with your visibility within the search terms, but can also be a money-saver if you use Google AdWords. If your government audience can find your page organically, instead of through artificially-promoted links, you will save money which can then be used to target other keywords and search terms.
H: #Hashtag – Do you use hashtags? Do you know how to use them strategically? Hashtags are everywhere these days. You see them on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Google+, and most recently, Facebook. As a marketer, you can’t ignore them. You need to know how to strategically implement these tagged topics. Hashtags can expand your content reach, amplify your brand, target your market, get your content found, improve your SEO, and more.
I: Info graphics – Visual content marketing is growing in popularity. Graphics, photos, charts and graphs are great way at getting your message out. People adopt info graphics in their marketing strategy to convey complex information in concise, visual pieces that are compelling, entertaining and easy-to-consume. This adoption can help you in increasing traffic to your content and information. Posting info graphics on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter can attract more followers. There’s a lot of chatter on social media daily. Info graphics can give your brand a powerful mouthpiece.
J: Jargon – Segmenting your message to the appropriate target audiences is an important pillar in creating a marketing strategy, but once you know your targets, you have to speak their language. Getting an understanding of technical jargon used by target audience and utilizing it in a campaign can go a long way in creating that relationship with the buyer or influencer. Understand what keeps them up at night and tailor your message to how your product/service can help with their pain points.
K: Keywords – Targeting keywords, whether with SEO or SEM, has become an integral part of any government-focused campaign. As buyers have gotten smarter, the usage of long-tail search has increased and has made it more important for marketers to be knowledgeable about the nuances of their market and product. There are several free SaaS tools online that can help you dissect your keywords and find what your audience is searching for including long-tail. If you are a Google AdWords user, here is a tool Google provides to help you find the right keywords for your campaigns.
L: LookBooks – With 67%+ of the buyer’s journey happening digitally, your busy prospects need the best possible experience with your content. And you need to better control and ability to track what they see and read. LookBooks let marketing and sales aggregate and sequence the parts of your buyer’s journey into an engaging, trackable experience that tells you who is ready to buy. This platform is a great way to make sure that your content investment is amplified to your audience.
M: Mobile – Within government mobile devices have been prevalent for some time. It is very important that your content marketing campaigns are optimized for these platforms. The government audience behaves differently on smartphones and tablets, which have varying functionalities and capabilities. Marketers need to analyze behavior and experiences across the entire purchase funnel to understand the best move for their content marketing mobile strategy.
Let me know what you think about my A-Z Guide to Government Marketing. If I missed something or you want to hear more on a certain topic, I’d love to hear your feedback. Just post a comment below.
Follow me on Twitter at @chidesterab.