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Case Study in Lead-Generation Excellence: How Anritsu Reached Key Decision Makers with a Three-Touch Campaign

To whet your appetite for how powerfully lead-generation programs can help drive your business success, enjoy the case of Anritsu, who cleverly figured out how to find and attract wireless industry engineers to express interest in learning more about a new handheld instrument for testing cellular base station transmitters.

Anritsu, a leader in test and measurement equipment for the wireless industry, had a problem getting through to its target audience for the company's handheld BTS Master Base Station Analyzer. The decision makers their sales team coveted were hard-to-reach engineers who spent most of their time in the field. Historically, these professionals had responded poorly to Anritsu's email and direct mail campaigns, converting from prospect to sales lead at a rate of only 2 percent. Anritsu's marketers needed a way to engage the other 98 percent. After they had the prospects' undivided attention, their job would be to convince them that Anritsu's instrument was faster, more accurate, and more compact than its competitors'.

Anritsu's director of marketing communications, Katherine Van Diepen, engaged Beasley Direct Marketing Inc. and Direct Marketing Partners to produce a multitouch, door-opener campaign. The program's objectives were to

  • Penetrate the sales team's wish list, comprising about 1,500 key customer targets at the four top wireless carriers in the U.S.
  • Engage key decision makers.
  • Set appointments for in-person demos.
  • Enhance and validate the target database for future efforts.
  • Track results and demonstrate a positive ROI.

Over the course of three months, the program's developers planned to achieve their objectives with three highly targeted touches. The first touch was a personalized, dimensional direct mail piece sent with a box replicating the product's compact size and picturing its actual controls on the outside, as shown in Figure 1.1. Respondents were invited to visit a personalized landing page (see Figure 1.2), which was pre-populated with the prospect's contact information. A business reply card (BRC), pictured in Figure 1.3, also came inside the box along with a brochure.

Figure 1.1

Figure 1.1 The dimensional mail's packaging shows a life-size replica of the instrument itself, along with a highly attractive offer, a personalized technical message, and personalized URL response vehicle.

Figure 1.2

Figure 1.2 The personalized landing page (PURL) response form was pre-populated with the respondent's contact information; it included a few key qualifying questions, and it resold the iPod Shuffle offer.

Figure 1.3

Figure 1.3 The printed reply form inside the box employed the same strategies as the web-based form to stimulate response.

The second touch was a personalized email to the same target audience. The email, shown in Figure 1.4, was intended to drive responders to a PURL.

Figure 1.4

Figure 1.4 The follow-up email, timed to arrive shortly after the dimensional mail, resells the key product benefits and the compelling offer.

A third touch, in the form of a personalized teleprospecting call to responders and nonresponders, came a day or two after the email.

The call to action for all three touch points were the same: to set an appointment for an in-person demonstration of the base station analyzer. A free iPod Shuffle (preloaded with Anritsu's datasheets and collateral) would be the incentive offer. The results? Wow!

To say the program was successful is a mammoth understatement. The campaign improved the response rate by a staggering 425 percent over prior campaigns and delivered seven-digit sales revenues. An enviable 7 percent of total targets visited the landing page, and 4 percent filled out the response form. A full 49 percent of prospects contacted by telephone emerged as qualified leads. At last tally, the return on marketing investment (revenue to expense ratio) was 41 to 1.

It doesn't stop there. In addition to exceeding sales-ready lead targets, the program gave Anritsu a model to drive revenue from hard-to-engage accounts. It's no small wonder that the program earned an Echo Award from the Direct Marketing Association in the highly competitive Information Technology category.

The secrets to the success of this campaign:

  • A clear understanding of the target market, their motivations, and their buying process
  • Multiple touches through proven media channels, deployed to capture the maximum penetration of a relatively narrow segment
  • A powerful set of benefits and a compelling offer
  • Strong focus on metrics, tracking the performance on each touch, not only response but qualification rates, and conversion to sales

In short, this campaign took advantage of proven best practices in B-to-B lead generation today. So, now, on to the rest of this book, where you can learn these practices and principles for yourself.

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