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April 22, 2022

How to automate offline marketing with a scalable gifting strategy

By Alex Ortiz, Chief Marketing Officer at Sendoso

Marketing Leadership

This is part three of a three-part, thought leadership series for chief marketing officers (CMOs) and other marketing and sales leaders. For part one, check out How Gift Giving Can Boost Your Sales Enablement Metrics. For part two, check out 4 Sales and Marketing Alignment Best Practices.

KEY POINTS

  • The role of gifting in offline marketing
  • The challenges with gifting at scale
  • How a gifting platform lets you automate your offline marketing efforts

When we think about marketing automation, we usually think about drip email campaigns, audience segmentation, retargeting, and other digital tactics.

But can offline marketing also be automated? In my experience, it’s not only possible, it’s essential for creating value up and down the revenue funnel. Specifically, I’m talking about incorporating and automating gifting into your marketing strategy.

CMOs live and die on results, and having the right technology stack enables exponential successes. Automating offline marketing can play a lynchpin role in helping firms exceed customer expectations and drive results.

I know it sounds a little cliché, but prior to joining Sendoso, I was actually a customer (of Sendoso), and have had many first-hand experiences that highlighted the power of automating offline marketing through gifting. Here are some insights I’ve garnered over the years.

The Role of Gifting in Marketing

Who doesn’t like to receive a gift? Whether it’s a cupcake, a nice bottle of wine, or even a simple gift card, there’s probably not a single person in the world who doesn’t appreciate getting a gift. For marketers, gifting can be an excellent tool that can boost some of your most crucial metrics:

How Gifting Increases Attendance for Virtual Events

One of the challenges I faced in my previous role was the declining attendance rate at webinars, something many marketers are probably familiar with. We used to get 60 – 70% attendance rates, but that metric had hit a slump, with most webinars lucky to get rates around 30%.

We experimented with the simple addition of gifting by sending incentives to attendees, resulting in a six percent bump, a significant lift, particularly at the top of the funnel.

How Gifting Increases Lead Generation

Another classic example is adding a coffee eGift card with a friendly reminder about an upcoming sales meeting. It might not sound like much, but small touches like this led to a lift in meeting attendance rates and sales qualified opportunities, two key metrics for my former sales team.

How Gifting Drives Engagement

Gifting can also be another tool in the toolbox to leverage to help drive engagement directly with prospects. A great example of this is when the contact at a high-value enterprise account at my former company went on maternity leave. Our account executive who was working with the client sent a very thoughtful, branded onesie when she gave birth. Not only was she very thankful, but she took a meeting when she returned and eventually became a customer.

How Gifting Increases Your Marketing KPIs

These are just a handful of examples. I’ve seen time and time again that gifting:

  • Increases pipeline growth
  • Increases full-funnel conversion rate from top to bottom
  • Improves response rates

That last metric is particularly important, given that it is often the foundation for other conversions further down the funnel.

How Gifting Stands Out From Digital Marketing Efforts

The basic truth is that people tend to respond to gifts more than things like emails, whitepapers, or other digital messages we might normally send. This has become even more true recently, as many of us have been feeling significant digital fatigue since the pandemic.

The Challenge of Gifting is Scalability

The challenge with gifting has always been scaling. Sending out a gift by hand to each prospect or customer can get extremely time-consuming and labor-intensive. If you’re a large, enterprise corporation, you might even think that gifting isn’t scalable to do well with thousands of employees.

While it’s nearly impossible to do this at scale without the benefits of software, a cloud-based swag closet, and all of the services that can exist on top of the software, that’s where Sendoso comes in. As a Software-as-a-Service solution (SaaS), it marries personalized gifting with scalability.

Automated gifting gives you the ability to scale every part of the gifting process, which includes:

What’s more, automation scales the benefits of gift-giving in a way that’s orchestrated with your overall marketing strategy, all with the objective of improving pipeline, response rates, and conversion rates.

But to do that, you need to properly integrate gifting into a marketing strategy through automation.

Why You Need Offline Marketing Automation

Most of you are likely familiar with marketing automation platforms. They’re great for automating all the digital tasks throughout the sales funnel. And until recently, it was very difficult—if not nearly impossible—to automate offline marketing. Today though, offline campaigns can be automated as well, specifically in terms of sending gifts throughout the customer lifecycle.

Automating offline marketing is essential to creating excellent customer experiences. You need to be able to coordinate all the different touchpoints and to measure their impact.

Traditional Offline Marketing is Difficult to Measure

Traditionally it has been difficult to measure offline marketing efforts. It’s not always easy to know if someone has seen, say, a print ad or a billboard. It’s not always easy to know if someone is responding to an email campaign, but only because they received a direct mail piece first. There’s a lot of factors to consider when measuring a response to a call to action. And soon, it will be more of a challenge to measure digital metrics in a cookie-less world.

Now Measure Your Offline ROI with Marketing Automation Integrations

Sendoso already integrates with major marketing automation software, like Marketo and Hubspot, letting you combine automation and gifting. Thanks to this integration, not only can you measure your offline marketing’s impact, but you can also scale it.

This is particularly important for large enterprises that aren’t just sending one-off gifts to special prospects or clients; it’s for those who might need to send thousands of gifts each month—or in some cases tens of thousands of gifts—in a managed and measured way.

What Does a Gifting Platform Automate for You?

I know what it’s like to be frustrated by having to spend too much time researching vendors, managing orders, storing gifts, all while trying to figure out the impact gift-giving may or may not be having on my other marketing activities.

And while I might be a little biased here, I was also once a Sendoso customer as I mentioned earlier. I know what it’s like to have those frustrations essentially evaporate with the right gifting platform.

There are several steps in the gifting process that Sendoso automates for you. Let’s take a closer look at some of them to give you a better idea of what parts of offline marketing can be automated.

1. Ideation/Curation

How many times have you wished you had a personal shopper to help pick out that perfect gift? Sendoso’s team of Send Curators performs that role for you. Our campaign ideators consult with clients to align the act of sending gifts with your marketing goals, to get to know your industry and your targeted accounts, and to recommend campaign ideas, unique “sends” (Sendoso speak for gifts you’ll send), and even slogans. We have plenty of data on what’s worked in the past for similar organizations and have a proven process to execute ideation quickly and effectively.

2. Sourcing of Branded Merchandise

Any marketing or corporate purchasing director knows that it takes a lot of work to find vendors that can fulfill branded merchandise needs. Sometimes, finding just one vendor can take hours and hours of research, meetings, and back-and-forth communication.

At Sendoso, we’ve already done all the legwork, and we manage the entire vendor process for you. That means you simply choose the items you want to send, set up the parameters for sending, and we handle all the rest.

3. Personalization

Personalization of offline marketing can be a big hurdle to overcome at scale. But by integrating online tactics with gifting, you can more easily personalize sends. This is particularly effective if you’re incorporating account-based marketing into your strategy.

4. Centralized Gift Management

For enterprises that have offices around the country, and even around the world, managing a warehouse of gifts can be both an enormous task and a huge real estate cost. Not to mention the time and expense it can take to send gifts from one location to recipients in other countries.

Sendoso takes over that entire function. We have warehouses strategically located around the globe, so most sends can reach their intended recipients fairly fast. What’s more, we put everything in the cloud, so you can manage your swag and other gift inventory entirely online. No real estate needed.

5. Efficient Sending

One of the biggest challenges in incorporating sending into your marketing strategy is the physical labor it takes to simply get items out in a timely manner. Similar to how Sendoso manages the warehousing of your inventory, we also handle all the labor involved in picking, packing, and sending items. Just follow up with your recipients once they’ve received their gifts thanks to our Send Tracker feature. With our proven sending processes, you just choose your options, click, and we do the rest, worry-free.

How and Why Automated Offline Marketing Works

Ultimately, a fully integrated sending platform is the key you need to unlock automating your offline marketing efforts. Over and over, we see clients grow their pipeline and improve response rates, close rates, event attendance, and other metrics. For example:

Companies Results 1 Results 2
Zendesk Achieved 15x ROI Achieved 2000% increase in quarter-over-quarter pipeline generation with a single campaign
Gong Generated 400+ new opportunities Influenced $33 million in pipeline
Electric Increased qualified meetings and pipeline 45% of revenue was influenced by sending after one quarter

 

These are just a handful of examples of what happens when you integrate Sendoso and automate your offline marketing.

We invite you to see for yourself and give Sendoso a spin to see how the platform can make this year a breakout year for your enterprise-sized organization. Or check out our full on-demand webinar on new ways to market to your customers in 2022.

Alex Ortiz - CMO

About the writer: Alex Ortiz is the Chief Marketing Officer of Sendoso, the leading Sending Platform. Alex is responsible for the global marketing and partner organization and will focus on category leadership, brand strategy, and customer growth. Previously, Alex held executive marketing roles at high-growth technology companies including Tray.io, QuanticMind and Salesforce. He brings more than 20 years of experience in enterprise marketing.

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