The answer is both depending on how you’re developing and nurturing prospects. Today both Drip Marketing and Closed Loop marketing are seen to be online strategies. Truth be known, these have been going on long before we had the use of the Internet tools. Effective marketing programs today should utilize both. We are fortunate to have these tools that help us monitor and measure our activities in infinite ways. Here are some suggestions on how to reach the Professional Tradesman using both Techniques:
Drip Marketing – I define this as an ongoing way to communicate and deliver product info and thought leadership to contractors and tradesmen who have identified themselves to us. It can use traditional methods like direct mail with things as simple as a series of postcards or other mailers to touch folks on a regular basis (monthly, weekly or daily). With the advent of the Internet we can add links to our e-mails to landing pages that can expand on content, offer incentives and interact with tradesmen.I’d suggest that to be effective, run and monitor these campaigns using an automated system.These automated systems will help you create and deliver messages and gives you the metrics to monitor open rates,click throughs and opt outs.They will also help reduce spam complaints and increase delivery.
Closed Loop Marketing – I define this as a more complex system that involves marketing working closely with sales to work a contractor through the sales process. It utilizes many if not most elements that are in a Drip program but goes beyond just delivering information based on a previous actions and their place in the buying cycle. Marketers literally “close the loop” by working with sales to provide the right info at the right time based on contractors responses. “Close the Loop” marketing provides feedback through reporting on each step and can adjust both timing and content based on feedback.
Both Drip and Closed Loop are great tools for B-to-B marketers. Deciding on which use or in what combination will be dependent on your own circumstances. If you’re trying to decide where to get started you might want to read a free white paper from DemandGen – calculating the return on lead nurturing.