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5 quick tips to writing better proposals (RFP responses)

Confluent Forms

Faced with the situation of having to read 300+ pages of different vendors' proposals many people read the first page and then start skimming, and if they're not skimming, their minds are probably going numb. Again, faced with 300+ pages of vendor proposals, you are actually punishing the reader by making them read more than they need to. Too often companies fall back on pricing as the greatest differentiators between them and their competition. Get back to your elevator pitch, your 30-second explanation of what makes you new/different/unique/perfect-for-the-job.

How to Make Your B2B Website More Buyer-Centric

Savvy B2B Marketing

Acknowledge that readers need different levels of information This week I was looking at the resources page for a technology company, and they did something very simple that I thought was very effective. just starting to look or evaluating vendors) Role/position in company (e.g. Recently, I've been spending a lot of time evaluating and writing web copy for clients. tell them!

What is Your Unique Buying Proposition?

Content Marketing Today

The idea of a unique selling proposition is that you need to differentiate yourself from the hundreds or thousands of other vendors with whom you compete. The difference is that a UBP is all about the buyer and what the buyer will gain from doing business with you. Don’t get me wrong. The unique part is critical. Forget what they call it. Insightful reports.

How to Compare Demand Generation Vendors: Choosing Summary Measures

Customer Experience Matrix

I’ve more or less decided to offer a free summary of the demand generation vendor information in the Raab Guide. This might cost me a few sales, but it will enable many more people to benefit from the Guide’s contents and will make the Guide more valuable to the sponsoring vendors. This suggests the summary should contain two components: a self-evaluation where people describe their situation, and a scoring mechanism to compare their needs with vendor strengths and weaknesses. price range, and willingness to consider less established vendors. Simple enough.

ClickInsights: How can B2B marketers use content effectively for demand generation?

Connect the Docs

B2B Lead Generation Benchmark Study 2009. Your prospects goals will look different: Decide: the issue is worth learning more about. Designing content to answer your buyers differing needs as they work through their buying process will. Her clients who are technology vendors and venture firms leverage her strategic marketing and go-to-market expertise. Blogs. Books.

ClickInsights: How to make marketing messages memorable?

Connect the Docs

B2B Lead Generation Benchmark Study 2009. Her clients who are technology vendors and venture firms leverage her strategic marketing and go-to-market expertise. She identifies and transforms differentiation - customers crown jewels - into compelling, customer-centric value that sells. B2B Lead Generation Benchmark Study 2009. Think quickly. Blogs. via Beth Harte). Books.

Marketing Automation - What does it mean?

Digital Body Language

Whether it is through vendor websites, analyst websites, social media, or peer reviews, buyers can acquire the information that they need in order to move towards a purchase decision. However this transition in our buyers has meant that we as marketing organizations need to work with our buyers differently than we did previously. Let's look at why. What Can’t be Automated?

ClickInsights: How B2B marketers should forge customer relationships by providing compelling content?

Connect the Docs

B2B Lead Generation Benchmark Study 2009. And remember that each stakeholder is affected in a different way by the overflows of the project. Her clients who are technology vendors and venture firms leverage her strategic marketing and go-to-market expertise. What John believes about the state of a market or technology may be different than what his associate Kevin believes.

B2B Lead Generation by Phone: An Interview with Michael Brown

Sales Lead Insights

“Telemarketers&# are entirely different people from those you really need in business-to-business marketing. Doing so differentiates your communication favorably from that of telemarketers and your competitors and allows you to “make the case&# for the prospect to take the next forward step in the consideration process. There is a HUGE difference. This is one of a series of occasional interviews with top practitioners on topics of interest to business-to-business lead generation, marketing and new business development professionals. My guest today is Michael A.

We need an app for that

Chris Koch

He differentiates between a marketing funnel and a sales funnel because so many leads are lost in the handover between marketing and sales—94%, according to this report. Steve Woods of marketing automation vendor Eloqua has an excellent list of questions to ask about lead scoring here, but I wonder if they rely too much on making people fill out forms. Once again, however, we have a cultural issue: Sales and marketing people are just different. We know from our research that we in marketing don’t do much with analytics—i.e., But we need to start doing that. Lead scoring.

We need an app for that

Chris Koch

He differentiates between a marketing funnel and a sales funnel because so many leads are lost in the handover between marketing and sales—94%, according to this report. Steve Woods of marketing automation vendor Eloqua has an excellent list of questions to ask about lead scoring here, but I wonder if they rely too much on making people fill out forms. Once again, however, we have a cultural issue: Sales and marketing people are just different. We know from our research that we in marketing don’t do much with analytics—i.e., But we need to start doing that. Lead scoring.

Beanstalk Data Adds Service to the Marketing Automation Recipe

Customer Experience Matrix

But unlike most vendors, Beanstalk typically builds the scoring rules for its clients rather than leaving the clients on their own. That's fun, but the actual functionality is again pretty basic: each step executes in sequence, with no branching or filters to treat different leads differently. Beanstalk sees its marketing services as a major point of differentiation.

How should B2B content differ for Business and Technical Decision Maker?

Connect the Docs

We asked B2B Marketing Experts the following question - "How should content that is addressed to a Technical Decision Maker be different from content that is addressed to a Business Decision Maker? What determines the differences is the problem the content is addressing and the perspective of the person concerned with solving it. B2B Lead Generation Benchmark Study 2009.

Often maligned, RFPs are a valuable tool and opportunity

Confluent Forms

Some are more legitimate reasons than others, but as we've said before you should always be selective in the RFPs you respond to. 1) Cover for a pre-selected vendor The biggest fear of every vendor is that they're spending time pitching a project against a stacked deck, that the issuing organization has already selected the vendor they would like to use but that the RFP is simply being issued to satisfy a requirement and attach a veneer of transparency. This phase had the discussions, discovery, requirements gathering, etc. Let them and encourage them.

The Deceptive Distinctives

E-Quip

Virtually all firms want to pursue differentiation and the rewards that come with it. They make various claims that essentially communicate: "Hire us; we're different." But how different are they really? Several surveys suggest that clients see few significant differences among competing technical consulting and design firms. Are you interested in true differentiation?

Tom Pisello: The ROI Guy: Microsoft Virtualization with Hyper-V.

The ROI Guy

Wednesday, February 04, 2009 Microsoft Virtualization with Hyper-V - better value? However, in environments of 20 servers or more, 20 to 30% licensing and infrastructure cost savings was indeed the normal cost differential between Microsoft and the competition. Advantage Microsoft, but not by much. Advantage Microsoft. Advantage to the competition. Latest Research. Powered by Blogge

Marketing Automation: Bringing a Gun to a Knife Fight

WebMarketCentral

Those are the types of questions marketing automation / demand generation software vendors seek to address with their offerings. They get 95% of the information they need from the Internet—online publications, analyst reports, vendor websites, blogs and other social media—before they have any contact with sales. What should we do differently if he chooses path B? 5.

Marketing Automation System Trends: What We Found in the Raab Guide

Customer Experience Matrix

Summary: Social media and access for sales people were the two big trends among demand generation vendors last year. Could marketers finally be ready to spend on measurement? I’m pleased to report that the 2010 edition of the Raab Guide to Demand Generation Systems is officially available today, with updated entries on all vendors (alphabetically: Eloqua , Manticore Technology , Market2Lead , Marketbright , Marketo , Neolane and Silverpop Engage B2B ). Even though this is limited to the vendors in the Guide, it's a pretty representative sample of the industry as a whole.

B2B Lead Management Market Heats Up

delicious b2bmarketing

There are at least 4 amorphous groups of solution providers also setting their sights on this space: 1) Lead generation services or tools – Because this category contains both service providers (that look more like agencies or telesales outsourcers) and software as a service vendors, there are probably more than I could possibly name. Positioning yourselves as “lead management” does not help differentiate what you REALLY do. 2) Email services – Julie Katz at Forrester writes about this group. How do you differentiate between these two in conversation? Here’s the problem.

102 Compelling Social Media and Online Marketing Stats and Facts for 2012 (and 2013)

Webbiquity

B2B buyers are most likely to share useful vendor content via email (79%), followed by LinkedIn (53%), Twitter (39%) and Facebook (18%). Different social media channels serve different purposes. Globally, eight different social networks have now reached the 100 million user mark. 65% go on to visit a vendor’s website after watching a video. Visual.ly ). 8.

Stats 133

Microsoft Virtualization with Hyper-V - better value?

Tom Pisello

However, in environments of 20 servers or more, 20 to 30% licensing and infrastructure cost savings was indeed the normal cost differential between Microsoft and the competition. Every environment is unique so it is important to understand first the purchase cost differences for the competitive solutions. Server virtualization is one of the best ways for IT managers to meet cost savings goals, and most are well underway with thier virtualization programs. Advantage Microsoft, but not by much. Advantage Microsoft. Advantage to the competition.

2012 #Nifty50 Top Men in Technology on Twitter

Blue Focus Marketing

The concept of a brand’s “ purpose ” extends in many different directions, but it begins with strong leadership in the C-Suite. Enterasys’ customer service and support is universally recognized as true company differentiation. Based in Washington, DC, #Nifty50 alumnus Holger Schulze is Vice President Marketing at application performance management software vendor eG Innovations.

The lamest excuses to avoid social media marketing

grow - Practical Marketing Solutions

Every business is different, so you have to select your channel and your message carefully, especially in commodity markets. Why not look at using social media to differentiate your business through service innovations? 3) Our customers are not spending their time on social media sites, so it's a waste of time. By the way, all of these excuses. I've really heard 'em. This is true.

Flip the Funnel Book Review « The Effective Marketer

The Effective Marketer

Segment and Treat Customers Differently Although the methodology varies based on your industry and whether you are a B2B or B2C company, the big picture is clear. Customer service becomes your product, or better yet, the differentiator between your product and your competitor’s. What’s the verdict?   Buy the book. OK, now the explanations and caveats. We’ll see.

Marketing Automation: Like Bringing a Gun to a Knife Fight

Webbiquity

Those are the types of questions marketing automation / demand generation software vendors seek to address with their offerings. They get 95% of the information they need from the Internet—online publications, analyst reports, vendor websites, blogs and other social media—before they have any contact with sales. What should we do differently if he chooses path B? 5. Digg this!

Tom Pisello: The ROI Guy: The IT Hierarchy of Needs: Categorizing.

The ROI Guy

• Level 4: Business Transformation – these revolutionary investments seek to utilize business information and implement new processes to empower business capability and agility – enabling M&A programs, launching new businesses, empowering different go-to-market programs, launching new channels, or launching competitive programs. Vendor ROI: Can it be trusted?

Tech Media Publishers looking more Like Interactive Marketing Firms Every Day

The ROI Guy

As well, the Tech Media publishers have seen a dramatic shift in B2B vendors, who are looking for innovative ways to break through marketing fatigue to attract, connect and engage ever more skeptical and frugal buyers. Looking at the top three technology publishers: IDG generated 43% of its revenue from print in fiscal year 2008 and 39% in fiscal year 2009. To maintain revenue, these Tech Media firms have quickly morphed to develop and deliver interactive marketing services to technology vendors, including: On-line strategy development Building online advertising businesses.

Defy Gravity: Propel Your Business to High-Velocity Growth

Connect the Docs

Her clients who are technology vendors and venture firms leverage her strategic marketing and go-to-market expertise. She identifies and transforms differentiation - customer's crown jewels - into compelling, customer-centric value that sells. As I said I wrote the book in little over two months, from November 2009 through mid-January 2010. never looked back. Why did they win?

Tech Media Publishers looking more Like Interactive Marketing.

Tom Pisello

As well, the Tech Media publishers have seen a dramatic shift in B2B vendors, who are looking for innovative ways to break through marketing fatigue to attract, connect and engage ever more skeptical and frugal buyers. Looking at the top three technology publishers: IDG generated 43% of its revenue from print in fiscal year 2008 and 39% in fiscal year 2009. That was pretty much it.