2010

B2B Conversations Now

Trending Sources

Product Content is #2 for B2B Buyers

B2B Conversations Now

Do you believe as a marketer that “product content is king&# for B2B lead generation ? Are you creating blogs, producing webinars, recording podcasts and saturating social media channels with hopes of winning the content race? Well, according to MarketingSherpa and Enquiro , you can stop running now; product content is #2 on B2B buyer’s wish lists. How can that be true? Wrong.

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Defining and Ranking Sales Leads

B2B Conversations Now

I enjoy working with the folks over at MarketingSage; they are what you call deep thinkers and the results they get for their clients reflect it. They just posted a short (2 page) but powerful paper on Defining and Ranking Sales Leads. In turn, the ranking allows both the sales and marketing teams to simultaneously apply different policies for sales lead management. &#. Enjoy!

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Why Free Trials Don’t Always Work for B2B

B2B Conversations Now

Are you a B2B marketer that uses Free Trials to try and motivate website visitors to engage? I am but it rarely works. First, I think using Free Trials for B2B Lead Generation is a good idea, especially for on-demand software companies, because most people want to try something before they pay for it. However, the idea is so saturated that the offers are bordering on desperation. Trials take a potential customer’s time and effort. Time is money. Effort is lots of money. Figure out a way to make your trial compelling by focusing on results the client will achieve during the trial.

Capturing High-Quality B2B Leads Using Self-Service Pricing

B2B Conversations Now

“You want to do WHAT ?” asked Nancy, CEO of StorTech, in disbelief. Jim, the VP of Marketing, quickly restated the request; “I want to use Self-Service Pricing as a way to capture better leads on our website.”. Nancy looked at Jim and smiled. Jim, we sell very complex and expensive products through many sales channels and partners. You know that.”. Here’s how it works….”. hope you enjoy it!

150 Content Marketing Tips

Drive traffic—and leads—with these tips for SEO, social media, content optimization, email marketing, and more.

Marketer’s Challenge: Pick ONE Slide to Make Your Point, like this …

B2B Conversations Now

Could you sell your product or service with just ONE picture or slide? It’s harder than you think. We provide a lead capturing service to B2B companies called EchoQuote. rarely get the chance to actually sit down with a potential customer at their location but, when possible, I never waste it by showing a power point slide show. That’s right. It’s harder than you think!

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Should Sales and Marketing Merge?

B2B Conversations Now

I attended a fantastic Focus.com presentation on June 29, 2010 as part of Focus’ interactive summit “ Mastering Lead Management “ For those of you who might have missed it, it is worth checking out. One of the presenters was Ardath Albee who continues to create value for her followers (I’m one of them) and clients by generating great content, non-stop. Here’s why.

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Ultimate Sales Tool “Box” By Category

B2B Conversations Now

As sales people we are always looking for ways to be more effective. Without realizing it we have gradually adopted more and more sales tools that help us improve efficiency and results. But how does a busy B2B sales person sort through the tools that are out there without wasting valuable time? There are 10 categories and you can download the free eBook here (no registration required J).

Blogs without Calls to Action are like…

B2B Conversations Now

I found this cartoon and immediately thought of the fun side of social media marketing, you know, the part that is enjoyable as long as you’re not trying to catch any customers. Giving away valuable content can lead to the same result - lots of fish around the boat but nothing to eat. What you use for your offer depends on what you are trying to accomplish. Your primary website and your blog.

Price Papers vs. White Papers for B2B Lead Conversion

B2B Conversations Now

While most B2B marketers are familiar with using white papers for lead generation, they may not have heard the term price paper ™ A price paper is a document that helps prospective customers with budgetary information about complex products and services. The above diagram shows two key ingredients for a strong B2B offer : Value and Scarcity. disagree with that. No new processes are needed.

Has Your Growth Strategy Run Out of Steam?

B2B Conversations Now

This is a guest post by Sam Reese, CEO of Miller-Heiman, The Sales Performance company. This post as well as other good sales performance insights can be found here. Has Your Growth Strategy Run Out of Steam? have been traveling quite a bit lately and I have not blogged for a little while. There is a ton of exciting activity going on out there to be sure, but companies are still cautious about projecting growth. Growth seems to be the hot topic everywhere right now. If we can help them then we will be in a great position. You can tell a lot about a company from the way they talk about growth.

Content Marketing 2016: Staffing, Measurement, and Effectiveness

We surveyed 2016's content marketing leaders on their biggest issues, hurdles, and goals.

eMarketing Association Conference in Baltimore

B2B Conversations Now

EchoQuote will be a sponsor this week at the eMarketing Association’s annual conference in Baltimore (Oct. 20 and 21). The Power of eMarketing Conference offers an unparalleled experience in best practices, case histories and processes for search marketing and B2B lead generation. Marketing sessions, tracks and breakouts that provide you with the ability to design your conference around your particular interests. Networking opportunities with attendees and speakers will strengthen your network, and enable new opportunities. 35+ Speakers – 4 Dynamic Modules - 12 Breakout Roundtables.

Two Lead Generation Strategies That Work

B2B Conversations Now

This article was originally published by Bernie Borges in his OptimizeThis blog. The original post can be found here: Two Lead Generation Strategies That Work. At the 2010 Inbound Marketing Summit in Boston, I was on a panel on October 7th on the topic of Driving More Qualified Leads into your Funnel. One of the questions from the audience was from a marketer who shifted his 2010 online marketing budget from paid to organic inbound marketing. He said that his lead performance had declined and asked for input on how to address it. And, I do mean always! B2B Calls-to-Action.

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Why Won’t Anyone Return My !*#@$% Call? (guest post)

B2B Conversations Now

This is a guest article by Don Fornes , CEO of SoftwareAdvice.com. You can find the entire post here: Why Won’t Anyone Return My !*#@$% Call? Want to know why B2B sales is getting tougher? Hint - the customer doesn’t feel they need a Sales person as early in the sales cycle as they used to.) Don gives a great description of why sales people are getting pushed out of the sales loop by the self-service nature of the Internet. Of course, SoftwareAdvice and EchoQuote are poised to help Sales get back in the game , but that’s another discussion. Enjoy! It’s not just cold calling.

The Unsung Heroes of Summer Vacation Scheduling

B2B Conversations Now

It’s been an extremely hot summer here in Maryland with many days exceeding the 100 degree mark. While most people get excited talking about their vacation destinations, there is no rest for the folks that have to manage all that time off for large companies. They are the unsung heroes of summer. I’ve worked for large companies in the past, and I never realized the effort that goes into balancing associate time off with company objectives…until I talked with Terry Schilling at Tugboat Software. Labor Scheduling Software. The variables in Labor Scheduling are endless.

Study: How Much of Your Content Marketing Is Effective?

745 marketers told us how effective their content marketing is. Here's what we learned.

Michael Dell now on Twitter

B2B Conversations Now

What does the CEO of a $60 Billion company with 100,000 employees think about on a daily basis? Now you can find out. MichaelDell is on Twitter. What’s interesting is that I’ve had an indirect link with Dell (the company, not the man) via a VAR business for the last 2 years since Dell bought a company called EqualLogic. Many EqualLogic channel partners were rightfully anxious and weren’t sure if they could trust a company the size of Dell. It turns out the company could be trusted. They communicated often and did exactly what they said they were going to do. The result?

B2B “Fast Lane” Lead Conversion Podcast with Paul Dunay

B2B Conversations Now

Want to accelerate the quantity and quality of lead conversions on your B2B site? If so, you may be looking for a “fast lane&# lead conversion strategy. B2B lead conversion is a critical first step in a solid lead nurturing process. Paul Dunay (Buzz Marketing for Technology) and I discuss how to augment a lead nurturing system by creating a fast lane conversion process to capture sales ready leads. While we discuss one specific way to implement it using EchoQuote, it is certainly not the only way and there are no silver bullets. Choose what fits for your organization and target customers.

How to handle “DO NOT CALL ME!”

B2B Conversations Now

Have you ever had a person fill out a contact form on your B2B site and put in the comments “DO NOT CALL ME!&# ? We periodically review EchoQuote requests for our newer clients and we sometimes get these. But why so angry ? think web users are finally sick and tired of sneaky ways being used to get their information so a sales person can “help&# them. Guess what? They don’t need help or at least not the kind you’re offering. Here’s a sequence that works for our clients: A quote is requested from their website via EchoQuote. By the way, feel free to call me :).

Why Hubspot is Successful

B2B Conversations Now

I just attended what was probably the most enjoyable webinar I’ve attended in a long time. Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah, Hubspot founders, presented a behind the scenes look at how they started and grew Hubspot. It was called Money, Marketing & Management. The conversation was refreshingly candid and focused on five areas: 1. Idea. 2. People (Team). 3. Money (Angel and VC). 4. Management. 5. Marketing. I won’t spoil the content here but if you are in the process of starting or growing a new business, check it out. Many thanks to Dharmesh and Brian for sharing.

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Advocate Marketing Creates B2B Relationships That Lasts A Lifetime

Read this report to learn how B2B marketing professionals are developing strategies and programs to engage buyers in shaping opinion and sentiment about offerings. And learn how advocate marketing builds longstanding relationships that persist even when individuals move from one career opportunity to the next.

75% of IT Pros Won’t Register for White Papers

B2B Conversations Now

I just read an interesting post by Stephanie Tilton at Savvy B2B Marketing titled IT Pros Don’t Want to Register for Your White Paper. It dovetails into a recent post I wrote about the decreasing value of white papers as they become more ubiquitous. White papers still remain popular because they are a great source of information, they are just becoming less powerful as a lead conversion tool. As you read the article summary, ask yourself if price papers could augment white papers for B2B lead conversion. Stephanie interviewed Jay Hallberg, VP of Marketing of Spiceworks.

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Job Description for B2B Marketers

B2B Conversations Now

A new year always brings with it fresh ideas. Many reflect on the past year and yearn to make a career change. I was thinking of how B2B Marketers might pursue that change and the thought led to ask “what does a B2B marketing job description look like&# ? recently wrote a short white paper called “How B2B marketers became responsible for everything, including sales, and how to fix it&#. Taking that concept as a starting point, I thought it might be interesting to come up with several B2B marketing job descriptions, each from a different point of view. Put yourself in their shoes.

Surprising 2009 Lead Conversion Results

B2B Conversations Now

Ask business executives about 2009 and many will answer that it was a rough ride. Finding new customers with active projects, much less with budgets, was tough. However, some actually increased revenues by seeking new approaches to finding customers. Many realized that what potential customers need in a tight market is a way to determine budget fit. Using the psychology of self-service pricing , many B2B companies were able to boost their lead conversion rates by 250-300% and win new business. Another emerging technology company, GreenBytes , specializes in inline deduplication appliances.

Ten reasons to blog – even if nobody reads it

grow - Practical Marketing Solutions

 . Building an engaged community through a business blog can be extremely difficult — sometimes impossible. Look at companies like General Electric who do an amazing job with their blog and yet have almost no “community&# or comments at all. There must be some good business reason they do it, right? . There better be. Do your competitors have a blog? This is valuable real estate!

Content Methodology: A Best Practices Report

If you're concerned that your organization's content marketing isn't as effective as it could be, this report is for you.

11 B2B Marketing Predictions for 2011

Buzz Marketing for Technology

Around this time last year I wrote about the 10 B2B Marketing Predictions for 2010 and while I would say 7 out of 10 have already materialized and the others are on their way. So that begs the question – what’s on the horizon specifically for B2B Marketers next year? Here are 11 concrete ways I think the environment in which B2B Marketers operate will evolve in 2011. Enjoy! Email this to a friend?

A fascinating “hardcore” B2B social media success

grow - Practical Marketing Solutions

With many companies now engaged in social media marketing strategies for nearly two years or more, success stories are starting to emerge, even in the difficult marketing world of industrial B2B.  I discovered a great success story to share with you through a masters thesis being developed by Haakon Jenson of Norway. BACKGROUND. Limited marketing budget and employee resources. STRATEGY. RESULTS.

Calculating the Value of the Customer Life Cycle

Social Marketing Forum

The value of the customer life cycle, also called CLV, looks at the investments we plan to make for the customers (retention, sales, promotion, customer service, etc) and the return we expect from the customers. CLV has everything to do with the present and the future. An introduction. CRM Customer analytics ROI customer equity customer lifecycle marketing ROI return on marketing investment ROMI

A Simple B2B Marketing Framework

Everything Technology Marketing

We often discuss in this blog how B2B marketing is becoming more complex, and how to manage this complexity. Marketing is getting involved in many more areas that touch the customer along the buying process, multiplied by a dizzying variety of new tactics, online communications and engagement platforms. But that's content for another blog post. Let me know your thoughts about this framework.

Staffing and Launching Your Content Marketing Program

Brand voice? Editorial calendar? Approval workflow? Learn how to craft the crucial parts of a content marketing program. In the third installment of our five-part playbook series, discover the necessary steps to execute a content marketing program.

Primer: Understanding Word-of-Mouth Marketing in the Social Media Age

Social Marketing Forum

Word-of-mouth is not something new. People have always talked about their experiences, emotions, needs and also products, services and brands. With the arrival of interactive and social media the patterns, role and impact of word-of-mouth have changed. However, the rules of word-of-mouth marketing have changed and evolved and they continue to evolve. Think about it. Period. Distinction. Certainly.

Cartoon: Who is creating content for your company?

Digital Body Language

Today's my first attempt at cartooning (okay, not really, all the hard work was done by gifted cartoonist Brady Bonus ). hope you enjoy it! First posted this morning on It's All About Revenue : Tags: Social media Content

The 4 C’s of B2B Marketing

Buzz Marketing for Technology

We’ve all heard about the four P’s of marketing. Product. Price. Placement. Promotion. The four P’s were created mainly to describe the ideal “marketing mix&#. The term “marketing mix&# became popularized after Neil H. Borden published his 1964 article, Concept of the Marketing Mix. Connection – connecting with the audience you wish to attract. Digg this!

How PR and Social Media Can Work Together

Webbiquity

Social media and PR would seem to be natural allies. Both are primarily focused on brand awareness, credibility building and image enhancement. Both are critical tools for dealing with bad news or crisis situations. Both require relationships with influential people in one’s industry to be effective. And both rely on the ability to tell an interesting story. Since many (most?) Share this on Bebo.

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Marketing Optimization Toolkit: The Science behind Marketing Analytics

Marketers are well-versed in the art and science of optimization.

11 Myths of Social Media Marketing

Webbiquity

Though social media marketing is rapidly advancing in terms of adoption and sophistication, many marketers and business executives still struggle with it. They wonder if their organizations are doing enough, if they are doing things right, even if they should be involved in social media at all. This confusion is partly due to some still-common misconceptions about social media marketing. Argh, no!

What You Really Must Know To Succeed in Social Media Marketing

Social Marketing Forum

In social media marketing, value often means relevant content, tailor-made promotions, useful information and a “real” relationship. It's about people. And of course it also means value for your business: the bottom-line. Here is what you really should know to be successful in social media marketing. Social media marketing cross channel social media marketing

Facebook Advertising Tricks for B2B Marketers

Buzz Marketing for Technology

If I could offer you a billboard in the middle of Times Square for little to no cost for you to advertise your company would you do it? One of the great things about the Facebook is that it provides you access to a large audience of over 550 Million people worldwide at a very low cost so why not take advantage of it. Trick 1) Place specific Job Titles into the Likes and Interest field. Tweet This!

The Best Email Subject Line For Teleprospecting I've Seen Yet.

Sales Prospecting Perspectives

The best email subject line I've seen in my career came through my Inbox this week. Brad G, one of our inside sales reps shared an email he had received from a prospect praising his persistence in prospecting him. We call it "polite persistence" here at AG and I was very proud that the prospect not only responded to Brad, but took the time to compliment his approach and work ethic. Love to see that. As I was closing out the email I glanced at the subject line that Brad had sent to the prospect. It read " Attention: Jim - Final Follow up". or "do I know Pete"? Next he uses Jim's name.

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Content Marketing Playbook: Strategy and Roadmap

Every brand’s content roadmap is different; each path to success is unique to that brand’s story, perspective, assets, and goals. But there is an overarching approach that’s proven to work—one we’ve refined after helping hundreds of brands reach their content marketing goals and after speaking with some of the brightest minds in the industry.

7 Mistakes To Avoid In Your Next Webinar Invitation

The Point

I’ve written a number of times in this space about how to maximize response from email Webinar invitations. The campaign below from Parallels , a Swiss-based software company, provides a handy illustration of those techniques by displaying what key mistakes to avoid. For example: 1. Sell the offer, not the product. Lead with compelling benefits, not just facts. Use images wisely. See #1 above.