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Messaging Matrix Process
Taking Complex Lead Generation to the Next Level

By Tiffany Melis, Sr. Segment Account Owner


At the core of every well-qualified lead for high complexity products is a conversation. The moment of truth comes when you engage a prospect for the first time. Figuring out how to have that conversation effectively, for both parties, is where the challenge lies. A well-established messaging matrix may be the answer to an effective business-to-business teleprospecting campaign.
 

The messaging matrix is a strategy and a set of tactics with one purpose - engage a target prospect in an efficient and productive conversation, as measured from both perspectives. It is applied at the campaign level and involves a series of steps. Rigorous testing, continuous improvement, mock calling with the client and detailed feedback sessions are all part of the process. The goal is to keep iterating and improving until results are being met.

Establishing a messaging matrix is a process:
 

Collect & study previous messaging, training, and reference materials for a particular topic/industry/solution/campaign. Direct marketers must be able to learn from previous programs and make use of training already received as a baseline for each new program pulling together relevant documents/materials for the new program. At this point, all marketing communications material should be collected.
 

Meet with the client or product manager to discuss the current campaign/tactic messaging requirements. This meeting should include all the major stakeholders in the campaign, especially representatives from the sales team. Talk through the campaign, target audience, key messages and relevant customer success stories that can be leveraged.
 

Standardize the messaging matrix template. The messaging matrix will give callers better tools to probe for current issues and tailor their conversation based on the contacts they are calling.

Each messaging matrix for different solutions and industries should include:
 

         Custom introductions by audience segment

         Common issues solved by that solution (for that specific job function)

         Corresponding probing questions to determine if the prospect has a specific issue

         Descriptions of how the solution addresses the issue

         Benefits of employing the solution

         Customer stories that illustrate how the solution has solved that problem for a similar company

 

Test the matrix by conducting mock calls to the client team, which include both sales and marketing contacts. A great way to do this is by using the marketing or account/campaign managers, allowing the client to actually hear the messaging in use to ensure it is effective. These calls should be recorded to provide a model of the messaging being used correctly; giving confidence that the product and how it addresses potential contact segments is understood.
 

Take lessons learned to the calling team. Leadership should then spend time training the callers, leveraging appropriate training materials and recording calls. The goal is to ensure with a high degree of confidence that each caller can effectively use the messaging tools, respond to questions appropriately and overcome objections. Mock calling could be done to the leadership team. If you are working with a client, mock calling could be conducted with that team as an added checkpoint.
 

Use mock calls to fill out a competency evaluation document. Before approaching potential customers, it is crucial to record and address any specific caller concerns - essentially rule out caller performance issues as a limiter of results, and to ensure it is simple to tweak the messaging.
 

Brief callers on a feedback process Since the messaging matrix is a process, callers should know up front essentially what feedback will be expected regarding messaging once calling has begun. Part of the process should be ensuring the database is set up appropriate to capture as much intelligence as possible in the fields so that resulting information can be sorted, queried and acted upon.
 

 After initial calling, bring the team together. It helps for each caller to provide a few taped conversations to this meeting that represent their initial campaign impressions. (these are probably not leads at this point they are likely to be referrals, rejections, suspects, etc.). It helps to collect qualitative information on:

         Who they are reaching - title, department, level, etc.

         Recall of marketing materials

         Who they are getting referred to, why

         What pain point or introductions contacts are keying into most frequently

         What voicemail messages are receiving call backs

         What positive interactions they have had to date - and what was the area of interest

         Reasons for rejection

 

Campaign management can then analyze all pertinent information collected. All taped conversations and notes can be reviewed to find trends and commonalities, capturing true intelligence about targeted accounts, looking for red flags and establishing opportunities to further coach the callers. It may help to fill out a brief scorecard for each caller and provide coaching as appropriate.

 

Whenever sufficient data is collected, a consensus on current messaging can be compiled. The purpose is to engage the full team on what is working and areas of improvement.

         Share feedback

         Play taped conversations

         Make recommendations

         Tweak the messaging

 

Wash, rinse and repeat. In almost all cases, it is essential to repeat the process until results are being met, further synchronizing the team with the product line and building confidence to engage prospects. A successful teleprospecting campaign relies on the ability to continually revise targeted messages for specific audience segments on how the solution will fix issues, making their business more profitable.

Tiffany Melis is Senior Segment Account Owner at Frantz Group, a business-to-business direct marketing company focused exclusively on the technology industry. She may be reached at tmelis@thefrantzgroup.com or 262-204-6034.

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