"Account-based marketing will probably increase because the ways you can touch customers have increased."
Louis Holzman is Manager, Business Development (BDM) for Altitude Marketing. His firm serves as an outsourced B2B marketing department for companies in the technology, manufacturing, life sciences, and other regulated and technical niche industries. In this interview, he shares details on his company’s services, typical customer profile, their marketing challenges, and his point-of-view on upcoming B2B marketing trends for 2020.
What’s your role in the company and what does your firm do?
I’m the Manager, Business Development at Altitude and I’ve been here for about three years. I’m currently developing different channels and sales resources. My main task for the first two and a half years in the role has been to maintain, sustain and expand our organic inbound pipeline. Eighty percent of our new business comes in through our website, so what we do for our clients we also do for ourselves.
Altitude Marketing is a full-service B2B integrated marketing firm with a full-time team of 25 employees. We work almost exclusively with B2B companies and mostly in the technology, manufacturing and life sciences arenas.
What products and services does Altitude offer?
Our team handles pretty much every facet that a marketing department for a B2B company could need. Our clients have an average of 0 to 4 people on their internal marketing team. We act as CMO on a strategic level as well as handling the day to day tactical execution. Every client is a little bit different and every sales process is a little bit different and everything we do for them is usually based on their business goals and the data findings we are able to append to a yearly strategy.
We also have our own market research team here at Altitude. We have an advantage for digging up information on our client’s competitors and gaining insights on their industry. Part of our initial process with a client is uncovering data that shows proof points on where we’d go next and how they are currently stacking up against the competition in the digital landscape.
Who do you help?
Some of our clients may be small businesses in the US with 6 to 15 people or revenue between $2 and $100 million. We have some clients with lower revenue than that and some higher, but they’re all typically selling to enterprises on a national or international scale. We don’t work with Main Street or mom and pops often. When the size of a client’s internal team gets bigger, there is less of a need for our deep bench and we may just fill in a single tactical area.
The industries we have the most experience with are business-to-business technology, manufacturing, life sciences, but we’ll work with anyone B2B, especially if it’s a niche space.
Ideally, we’re looking for clients comfortable working with hiring an outsourced marketing department and signing off on an agreement that will last at least a year. They should have the budget to support roughly 8k to 10k per month for a fully integrated offering. Although we have clients in the 4k range and some up in the 16k range.
What challenges do your customers typically have?
Within integrated marketing, there is no cookie cutter solution or one size fits all. The mix and match of strategy and tactics our clients typically need differ and can include but not be limited to website development and maintenance, digital marketing, market research, content creation and dissemination, advertising, public relations, social media, trade shows, and graphic design.
Our clients may also need market research or surveys put into the field, sales enablement material for account-based marketing, brochures and other types of print collateral. This includes blogs, white papers, e-books, print flyers in industry publications or direct mail digital advertising. We offer a full communications team with everything from setting the communications strategy to execution of media analyst relations, earned media, social media management, crisis communications, and internal communications, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and all types of social media.
Many clients need help with their tradeshow strategy and execution. This is a 6-month to one year process from deciding what shows to exhibit at, applying for awards and speaking opportunities to designing the booth, promotional materials, and leave-behinds. Of course, the most important piece of a tradeshow, designing and implementing the lead follow up/nurturing. We’re platform agnostic so we have our hands and all different types of marketing automation, CRM, email marketing, CMS, analytics and reporting dashboards.
We also have our own proprietary business intelligence tool we use for reporting. This shows our clients everything we’re doing for their business from campaigns and variants to spends and tactics. It pulls this all into one place and our clients get 24/7/365 access to their information which is continually updated. This lets us test, measure and adjust their campaign on a daily or weekly basis.
What are your thoughts on upcoming marketing trends for 2020?
I hear a lot of the buzzwords such as AI or VR, so I know those are coming out of the woodwork. Account-based marketing will probably increase because the ways you can touch customers have increased.
There is more noise and a lot more channels for people to tune into, so I think having a few more nudges are necessary to build awareness. Some of our integrated marketing campaigns have anywhere from 12 to 20 different touch points across a handful of mediums to resonate with the audience.