Before you finish the last piece of candy in the bowl of Halloween goodies you’ll accumulate this month, chances are the sales and marketing goals you have in mind for Q1 2015 will already be prominent in your mind—and, more than ghost, ghouls and goblins, keeping you awake at night.
Remaining highly profitable and preparing adequately for future growth during the holiday season are goals that every B2B company wants to achieve and that relatively few rarely do. In the B2B space, the holiday season is particularly troublesome. How profitable can a B2B business expect to be throughout the holidays, especially with the rapid changes in technologies that are taking place RIGHT NOW, and the even bigger changes looming on the horizon? How should a B2B services provider prepare for the new year?
Below are three key considerations all B2B companies should keep in mind going into Q1 2015.
1. Timing is everything.
People get busier during the holiday season and have less time to perform their own research and make B2B purchases for their businesses based on that research. To help them along, avoid sending out marketing e-mails or engaging in full-scale e-marketing campaigns at inopportune times. Also, when it comes to marketing during the holiday season, try to make your messaging as concise and impactful as possible. Address the Q1 2015 fear points that you know will get the attention of your prospects and current customers during Q4 2014.
2. Target market identification is key.
Do you know which of your target markets will be most receptive to marketing or solicitations of any kind over the course of the 2014 holiday season? During the holidays, it may be more prudent than ever for you to separate your prospects and current customers through high-level lead qualification and scoring that uses specific parameters (e.g., geography, size, focus, purchase ability, seasonal trends, etc.) to set your target markets apart. Different markets may be more receptive to your sales and marketing efforts at different points throughout the holidays.
3. Synching critical communications is smart.
Make sure all of your critical communications systems are in synch. It’s no secret that decentralized communications infrastructures can cause a lot of problems for companies, especially during post-holiday season recovery periods and the early new year. Disparate systems, such as multiple, disconnected marketing automation platforms and unsynchronized CRMs, can mean serious losses for B2B companies of all sizes. Start the new year off right by converging your various systems and creating a more solid communications infrastructure now. Waiting to do it in Q1 2015 will only set you behind the curve.
There are plenty of other considerations you should be keeping in mind during the 2014 holiday season and as we approach Q1 2015, but if you can focus on the three suggestions listed above for the next few months, you should find your B2B business in a pretty sweet place when Q1 2015 comes around.