5 B2B Marketing Mistakes That Are Hard To Avoid

Marketing Mistakes: But it looked like a good decision!The hardest mistakes to avoid are the ones that initially look like the right decision.

We all make mistakes. Sometimes you can see them coming, other times you only see them in hindsight unless you already know what to look for.

What mistakes should you see coming? Here are five mistakes that often don’t look like mistakes until after all is said and done, pulling from my own (regrettable) experiences. [Read more…]

You Are Not Building a Community

Ghost TownPicture an old town.

There is a town square, a general store, a watering hole or two in the town center and homes scattered beyond.

People know each other. More than that, they rely on each other. They gather together in large groups in the town center and in small groups in outlying homes.

Now a new family moves to town. They build a specialty store at one end of main street with an apartment above. They are certain their store will quickly become the key gathering spot in town. [Read more…]

Are Machines the Future of Marketing?

Watson on JeopardyThe idea that someday the CEO or Head of Sales will click a few buttons to set objectives, budget and timing and a machine will create and execute a marketing plan seems pretty far-fetched.

When IBM’s Watson can tackle healthcare issues, marketing advice from machines doesn’t seem so unlikely anymore.

As marketers, we will soon be the managers of the machines that are managing our marketing. Are you ready? [Read more…]

Getting Out of the B2B Lead Generation Trap

TrapsMost B2B marketing organizations miss the biggest opportunities to impact their business because they have not identified the right goals.

Why isn’t business coming out of your ears?

Dig into that question, ask why of every answer or assumption you come up with, and you will eventually get to the root challenge and the basis for goals that can move your business forward.

It is easier said than done. [Read more…]

A Guide to Creating a Thought Leadership Campaign

Desert LeaderSituation: Your B2B company is not seen as a thought leader in your industry. You have been asked to develop a campaign to establish your company as a thought leader and become one of the leading voices within your industry.

Normally I am opposed to the idea of thought leadership and campaign being used together.

However, establishing thought leadership is a common objective and many B2B marketing organizations continue to work within a campaign framework. Ideal or not, many B2B marketers need solutions that deliver real recognition as thought leaders within a campaign structure. [Read more…]

5 Signs Your Marketing Isn’t Integrated

"I think you're making a huge MISTAKE!"Integrated marketing is hard.

Every single marketing touchpoint should be working together. Executed well, it is a great example of 1 + 1 + 1 = 5.

However, integrated marketing isn’t an exact science, there is not a simple litmus test that tells you if your marketing is integrated. Often it is easier to spot the signs your marketing is not integrated.

So with that, here are five signs that your marketing is not integrated. [Read more…]

Marketers: Show Your Love

Just for you...There is a disturbing trend in both consumer and B2B marketing: Marketers do not love the people they are marketing to. Behind closed doors, many marketers don’t like or even respect them.

In turn, consumers and B2B buyers have come to dislike marketing. They see email, direct mail, promoted Tweets, Facebook ads, banners and TV ads clamoring for their attention and cluttering their lives without adding any value.

When you look at what passes for marketing, it is no wonder. Many marketers are talking incessantly about themselves with claims so disconnected from reality they make fishing tales sound like true stories.

This trend will eventually destroy your business. Your potential customers will live on without you, but you cannot exist without them. [Read more…]

4 Mistakes Marketers Make With Audience Research

FacepalmMarketers, encouraged by self-proclaimed gurus, experts and thought leaders, are increasingly misusing and abusing research and statistics when developing their marketing approach.

Yes, market and audience research can be incredibly valuable. But when it is misused, even the best information can lead you in the wrong direction.

Here are four mistakes marketers make when using market research data. [Read more…]

Three Reasons Marketing Is the First Budget Cut

Monopoly Money and DiceMarketing budgets are often one of the first budgets cut, time and time again, yet marketers continue to claim companies are making unwise decisions. To support the case, you point to research and cases showing companies who invest in marketing during a downturn come out stronger.

Is the answer turning marketing into a profit center, as some have claimed? For a few companies, particularly those with a direct response marketing model, this might work. But it isn’t the solution in most cases. [Read more…]