Sales pipelines can be extraordinarily complex and multifaceted. When most businesses think about their pipeline, their first thought is often lead generation i.e. the top of the funnel. Since lead generation is the primary revenue growth fuel, this begs us to answer the question; what drives lead generation? The answer is brand strategy.
Brand Strategy [Creative, Positioning, Messaging, Price] → Leads Generated → Opportunities Created → Sales Made
To understand brand strategy, we must differentiate brand strategy from marketing. Brand strategy is strategic focus on the value and authenticity of the organization or service. Marketing is tactical, focusing on capturing the day-to-day attention of buyers. Brand strategy defines the rules and parameters of the sandbox within which marketing plays.
We can break brand strategy down into four core areas of focus.
- Creative – How the brand looks and the materials it creates
- Positioning – How your brand is differentiated from competitors in the customer’s mind
- Price – How much services cost
- Messaging – The language used to describe the underlying value proposition
Demand generation is the natural extension of brand strategy.
Once the foundation has been laid by creating an excellent brand strategy, the next consideration is driving demand for the service. Demand generation is a comprehensive sales and marketing approach used to attract the attention, conversion, sale, retention, and revenue growth from target buyers.
- Demand generation
- Inbound campaigns
- Digital ads
- Search engine marketing
- Social media marketing
- Search engine optimization
- Outbound campaigns
- Cold email
- Sales prospecting
- Paid partners/resellers
- Joint ventures
- Key opinion leaders/influencers