The Lie of B2B Brand Advertising

Don't Believe the Lies T-Shirt“We will start with an awareness efforts for the four weeks. This will provide air cover and soften the market for our demand generation campaign.”

Theory, benchmarks and the wisdom of the marketing crowd would indicate that you have a sound strategy. This approach is common in B2B marketing, particularly for mid-sized marketers.

Unfortunately, when you dig into it, the strategy doesn’t hold water. It fails, consistently, for two reasons. [Read more...]

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The Biggest Missed Opportunity in B2B Lead Generation

Lead Generation Opportunity: All Other Sources Are More Important for Lead GenerationWhen the success of your business is less important than the success of your marketing, something is seriously wrong.

Yet this is exactly how most B2B marketers approach lead generation today! You don’t care about the number of leads your sales team has. Instead you care about the number of marketing sourced leads.

We all know B2B marketing measurement is imperfect, yet we momentarily suspend all reservations in order to judge our effectiveness based on results attributed to our efforts instead of the results for our business!

This is crazy folks! [Read more...]

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No, Content Will Not Kill Advertising

Stop SignsAdvertising is dead (again). The latest killers are the social media and content marketing stars.

Not so fast.

Marketing is a spectrum. At one end might be the experience someone has using your product or service as you intended. At the other might be a tiny mobile banner or a transit bench on a side street.

Advertising isn’t dead. Comparing different parts of the marketing spectrum is like comparing visible light to X-rays; “better” is entirely dependent on your purpose. [Read more...]

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B2B Marketing Has a Perception Problem

Do you care if potential prospects see your services as high value or a complete rip-off? Of course you do.

This is about the perception each individual has about you. This is about your brand.

Perceptions are created by experience with your products, service and people, through what other people say about you (even competitors) and through your own marketing.

No one buys from a company they distrust or pays a premium for a solution they see as a low cost provider.

However, in B2B, the value of perceptions have been set aside, in favor of the new holy grail of B2B marketing: lead generation. [Read more...]

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4 Rules For Better Online Advertising Performance

You have agonized over your copy, crafting something with depth and nuance. You tell the story around the table of how the message and design combine to illustrate your brand’s superiority.

As you explain it heads begin to nod, the connection becomes clear and the program moves forward.

The problem is, you expect your audience to find the same winding road from creative to communication objective, with no map or guide. [Read more...]

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B2B Lead Generation vs B2B Advertising: What You Need to Know

Caution signAmong paid media and advertising tactics, lead generation programs are a key source of leads for B2B marketers, especially in the enterprise technology space. Tell a B2B publisher that you are interested in lead generation and the majority will point to some form of white paper syndication program they offer.

For the sake of this post, lead generation programs refer to publisher programs that promote your content and capture registration. These are contacts or inquiries, not sales leads, but in keeping with the terminology publishers use, we will refer to this as lead generation here.

In enterprise technology, publishers like IDG, Information Week and TechTarget have nearly turned these programs into a science, with guaranteed leads volume and a myriad of filtering and qualification options driven largely by email and newsletter promotions. [Read more...]

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An Inconvenient Truth: Your Advertising is Invisible

A growing portion of online advertising is purchased through DSPs and ad networks, and with literally millions of sites that sell ads through these channels, online advertisers cannot rely on knowing every site their ads are on.

With this has come a new wave of quality control issues for online advertisers. According to recent research from ComScore, 31% of banner ads don’t ever have the chance to be seen.

So how many banners really go unseen? Here is a summary of 2011 online advertising in the US, based on data from ComScore: [Read more...]

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Marketers Ruin Good Marketing Opportunities

Innovative marketers constantly put new ideas into practice, and some of the most effective new ideas quickly become marketing best practices or emerging trends.

However, when marketing ideas initially move from early adopters to the majority of marketers, they tend to lose their luster. The incredible results the early adopters reported are not repeated.

This happens for two primary reasons: [Read more...]

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The Importance of Woozles in B2B Marketing

The role of brand in enterprise B2B marketing can be a subject of debate (my friend Maureen Blandford even wrote a book “Branding Doesn’t Work in B2B“). With complex buying processes, multiple stakeholders, and a high touch sales process, how important is a brand? And what does that have to do with a woozle?

Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh

Woozle’s live in the hearts and minds of Pooh and his friends. And most importantly, woozle’s change behavior in the Hundred Acre Wood.

Like a woozle, your brand [Read more...]

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TV Really Is Easier to Measure than Social Media

KMart’s CMO made waves recently by saying TV, and other traditional channels, are easier to measure than social media.

Social media proponents responded, defending social media’s measurability and highlight the data social media provides. My favorite was this tweet from Jay Baer (who I have a tremendous amount of respect for and I don’t disagree with lightly).

The problem is, most social media measurement is myopic. [Read more...]

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