Merry Marketing: Capitalize on the Holidays

December 11, 2018   /   by  Diane Callihan

While B2C companies often count on the holiday season to be the most wonderful time of the year, B2B companies often think of the holidays as their slow time, and cut back on their sales and marketing efforts.

There are a number of ways, however, that B2B companies can use the holiday season to their advantage.

  1. Build or Re-evaluate Your Sales Strategy. Now is a great time to align your sales and marketing teams and create or refine your overall sales strategy. Do you know your business’ key value prop? Your elevator speech? Do you all agree on what differentiates you from the competition?
    What about your sales funnel? Do you have a common lexicon that defines what makes someone a marketing qualified lead or a sales qualified lead? What constitutes an opportunity? How historically have you moved prospects from one stage to the next? Take the time to have these conversations and map out your buyer's journey in detail, so everyone is on the same page.
  2. Take a Look Back. While the holidays may be to blame for a sales slowdown, it couldn’t hurt to do a little research and compare sales to previous years. Take a look at sales you’ve made during the holidays in the past to evaluate what tactics have worked best with prospects this time of year.
    Additionally, this could be a good time to perform a content audit on your site. See what content you have, who it is targeted towards, and what has worked well and what hasn’t. Then you can start to put together a plan for what additional content you’ll need in the coming year.
  3. Invest in Training or Team-Building. This might be an ideal time to allow your sales team to attend sales workshops or conferences to build up their skill sets. You could also host an employee retreat or outing with both your sales and marketing teams that lets them relax and have fun together, while also building a plan for the coming year.
  4. Make a List. Check it Twice. Collaborate with marketing and develop a list of prospects and personas to target in the upcoming months. Your marketing team can then create an inbound strategy to bring those prospects into the sales funnel for you to initiate conversations and close.
  5. Take Advantage of Your Sleeping Competition. If you cut your marketing efforts during Q4, your sales may drop in Q1 – not a great start to the new year. Be smart and get an edge on the competition who may not be marketing at this time by kicking your efforts up a notch.
  6. Build and Nurture Long-Term Relationships. Get into the spirit of things by including prospects or clients in a little holiday love. Consider inviting them to your office party, holding a special happy hour or luncheon, or participating in a charity event. A little informal time together can do a lot to cement relationships.
  7. Make Some Calls. Many companies slow down their telesales efforts during the holidays, assuming that no one will be in the office to answer the phone. While it’s true that there may be less people in the office, those who are working may have more time to talk. Even better, those who are working may be tasked with figuring out how to spend leftover budget before year-end. Some executives actually work through the holiday season, and this may be a great time to get them on the phone.

Ready to get the New Year off to a stellar start? We can help you build a digital marketing strategy that gets you there. Let’s Talk.

Diane Callihan

Diane Callihan

With more than 20 years of experience writing for some of the country’s top brands, Diane helped to shape Roger West’s content strategy, lead generation, and PR efforts as Director of Marketing. She currently serves as President of Callihan Content Creation.