Track 103: Crafting Your Marketing Strategy and Plan

This track will help you develop a complete approach to your marketing your Salesforce Reseller practice. It covers the fundamentals of marketing strategy and planning and guides you through the process of developing and documenting a formal marketing plan. 

A well-designed marketing plan will help you address long-term objectives, manage a budget, and ensure your overall marketing approach is focused and productive. It’s also a great way to ensure you access the most funding possible through the Salesforce Co-Marketing Program. 

Establishing a marketing plan can be challenging. Salesforce recommends that you work with your Channel Account Manager or a Partner Marketing Manager to help you craft a plan that makes the most of your resources and support from Salesforce.

/s/track103-1.jpg?v=1Set Your Marketing Objectives

Setting clear, measurable marketing objectives is a critically important and often overlooked first step to creating an effective marketing plan. 

Start by considering your company’s basic business goals for your Salesforce reseller practice. Do you have specific financial objectives? Are you looking to grow in particular verticals or geographic areas? Are you looking to expand your existing client relationships, add new ones, or both? 

We recommended focusing on a few core business goals, usually no more than three, that can be directly addressed with marketing. Consider how marketing can specifically address your core business goals, then document your basic marketing objectives. As you do, keep these points in mind: 
  • The Salesforce Co-Marketing Program is structured primarily to help Resellers with lead generation, so it’s important to focus your marketing objectives on developing leads for your sales teams. 
  • Rather than ascribing generalized lead generation objectives, try to make them as specific as you can. Consider target verticals, market segments, companies or regions.

Design Your Marketing Program

As you develop your marketing plan, Salesforce recommends that you take a few basic steps to ensure you’ve covered every key factor that will impact your success. 

Define your target audiences 
As specifically as you can, identify the groups of prospective customers you need to reach in order to achieve your marketing objectives. Some factors to consider: 
  • Whether you’re up-selling, cross-selling, or reaching new prospects 
  • Target geographical areas, industries, verticals, companies and job functions 
  • Any prospective customer lists you have or can easily purchase 
Select your marketing tactics
You’ll need to choose a set of marketing tactics that will reach your target audiences and drive toward your marketing objectives, on a budget that works for your organization. As you select tactics, be sure to consider the amount of effort required for each of them, and shape your plan to match your organization’s capacity. The most common marketing programs include: 
  • Digital or traditional advertising, including web and print ads and search engine marketing 
  • Direct marketing efforts like traditional mail and email-blasts 
  • Telemarketing efforts like call blitzes or lead nurturing programs 
  • Events such as breakfast or lunch learning sessions, seminars, executive dinners or trade show vents 

/s/track103-2.jpg?v=1The Reseller Marketing Journey includes guidelines and templates for several of these tactical approaches. 

Establish tactical performance metrics

Once you’ve identified tactics in your plan, you will need to ascribe success metrics to each of them. Think about the purpose for each tactic, and the specific behaviors that each tactic is asking the audience to do (your “calls to action”). These should be concrete and measurable. 

Develop a campaign reporting structure

Referring back to your original set of objectives, create a plan to summarize your campaign performance based on a few metrics that gauge your overall success. These are your key performance indicators (KPIs). These might include total leads generated against your targets, the average cost of a lead, or even the overall value of a lead as determined through close rates and average deal size. As you execute your campaign, you should plan to track and share your KPIs, and monitor individual tactics to ensure maximum return on investment.

Finalize your budget and timeline 

The final step in the planning process is to document a detailed budget and timeline that clearly illustrates the tactics you will execute, when they will “go live” in the market, and all expected costs. To help you with this process, Salesforce has created a marketing plan template for you to capture your thinking and document your final plan. 

For a comprehensive guide to developing your marketing approach, read our Guide to Designing Your Demand Generation Program.

Resources for Further Exploration

If you’re interested in gathering more information and guidance about developing a marketing plan, try these helpful resources: