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In our previous blog, we explored why unapologetically torching your existing marketing strategy might be pivotal in generating the results you desire. We also outlined the advantages, potential drawbacks, and risks associated with starting fresh. In this article, we will delve into key considerations and best practices for business and marketing leaders to determine whether your marketing strategy needs optimization or a complete strategic overhaul.

When to Optimize Your Existing Strategy

Optimizing your strategy involves making incremental improvements and adjustments to your existing plan to enhance its effectiveness. Consider optimization when you have experienced or are experiencing:

  • Historical success with your current strategy: If analytics show that certain campaigns or tactics that have been highly successful in the past are now experiencing a gradual decline in conversion rates or customer engagement, it may be time to refresh those areas while retaining the core of what works in your marketing strategy.
  • Shifts in customer behavior: If market intelligence reveals that your B2B customers are changing the way they engage with your services, such as a noticeable preference for interactive content over white papers or increased activity on professional networks like LinkedIn rather than traditional industry events, your strategy may simply need to adapt to these new interactive platforms.
  • Budgetary restraints: If financial reports suggest limited budgets and you cannot afford a comprehensive strategy overhaul, look for cost-effective optimizations, such as automating specific marketing tasks to increase efficiency. Consider cutting any tactic that isn’t producing or substantially contributing to a positive ROI.
  • Incremental innovation needs: Industry reporting or your own competitive shopping might show that competitors are adopting new technologies or trends. If your strategies are falling behind, testing new innovations could be necessary to stay competitive. The key is to ensure that only a maximum of 20 percent of your marketing investment is allocated to testing new innovative strategies while 80 percent remains in proven strategies.
  • Team dynamics and morale at risk: Employee feedback and performance reviews might reveal that the marketing and/or sales team is highly committed to the current strategy and showing positive morale, indicating that a strategy optimization could be more effective and less disruptive than a complete overhaul.
  • Short-term market fluctuations: Economic reports or sudden shifts in market dynamics, like new regulations or temporary supply chain disruptions, may necessitate quick adaptations in strategy rather than a full-scale revision, preserving the core while adjusting to any new conditions—especially if the shifts are temporary.

Leverage these best practices to determine when your marketing strategy needs optimization versus mass destruction, and implement targeted adjustments to enhance effectiveness.

When to Torch Your Existing Strategy

In certain scenarios, incremental improvements are not enough; instead you must radically reimagine your strategy. It’s time to consider a comprehensive overhaul when any of these red flags appear:

  • Market misalignment: Market research shows that key decision makers in your target businesses no longer find that your content resonates or engagement rates with your thought leadership materials have plummeted. This suggests that your brand’s messaging is out of sync with your audience’s current challenges and goals.
  • Persistent performance decline: Data analytics reveal a consistent downward trend in lead generation and conversion rates, especially if coupled with feedback indicating that your marketing messages fail to differentiate your offerings in a saturated market.
  • Outpaced by technological Innovation: Emerging technologies such as AI-enhanced analytics or blockchain-based customer verification are redefining engagement in your industry, and your marketing methods haven’t adapted to utilize these tools for targeted outreach, personalization, and security. Or a new market entrant is reshaping expectations with a radical approach, like using machine learning to predict customer needs, rendering your traditional marketing approaches less effective.
  • Competitive threats: Competitive analysis reveals that your rivals are capturing market share by leveraging more sophisticated digital marketing techniques or utilizing data analytics in ways that significantly outperform your current marketing efforts.
  • Seismic industry shifts: There are sweeping changes in industry standards or customer procurement processes have shifted (like a move toward subscription models over traditional purchasing), and your marketing has not adapted to address these new paradigms.
  • Leadership changes: A new C-suite executive or marketing head arrives with a mandate for change, especially if they bring insights from markets or demographics that your organization has not previously tapped into, signaling that a different marketing approach is needed to align with new business objectives.

Reacting to these signs with a complete strategy revision—backed by deep market research— can rejuvenate your brand’s positioning, offering a chance to re-establish your business as a leading voice in your industry.

By Lori Turner-Wilson, RedRover CEO/Founder, Internationally Best-Selling Author of The B2B Marketing RevolutionTM: A Battle Plan for Guaranteed Outcomes

Taking Action

Unapologetically torching your existing strategy is one of hundreds of best practices found in The B2B Marketing RevolutionTM: A Battle Plan for Guaranteed Outcomes the playbook that middle-market B2B CEOs and marketing leaders lean on to scale. Backed by a groundbreaking research study, this book offers time-tested best practices, indispensable KPIs for benchmarking, insights on where your dollars are best spent, and, above all, the proven 12 BattlesTM Framework for generating guaranteed marketing outcomes. The B2B Marketing RevolutionTM is a battle-hardened approach to becoming an outcomes-first leader who’s ready to shake up the status quo, invest in high-payoff market research and optimization, and — yes — even torch what’s not serving your endgame. 

If you’d like to talk about how to build a marketing engine that delivers predictable results — whether you want to build it yourself or tag in our team to lead the way — we’d be delighted to help you get started. Just book a call with Jee Vahn Knight, our VP of Strategy.

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Lori Turner-Wilson

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