What Works - What Doesn't

Which Transformation Soup Are You Selling?  

What Works - What Doesn't

With winter coming, it’s time to think about soups. Not as in savory stews, but in the unsavory slop we dish out when we carelessly talk about “transformation.” Blending the various definitions without thinking dilutes the message and leaves prospects confused , rather than wanting to learn more.

Blockchain Blues, Case Study Heartache.

What Works - What Doesn't

For those of you who follow this blog, sorry for having been out of touch. It’s been an extremely busy summer and fall, what with time off off touring Iceland and Scotland and then with increasingly strong demand for marketing content.

Nailing Differentiation: Lessons From a Concrete Screw

What Works - What Doesn't

Many of my small to medium size clients, such as regional IT service providers, struggle when I ask them what differentiates them from their competitors. The best they can come up with is often: “We really listen to our customers’ needs.”. Our staff really cares about our customer’s success.”. “We

Four Email Marketing Sinkholes to Avoid

What Works - What Doesn't

I recently finished an email nurture campaign for a major software vendor. It included multiple emails across multiple streams for each step in the buyer’s journey (awareness, education, consideration and qualification.). The writing was the proverbial tip of the iceberg.

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Lead Generation Companies: How to Pick a Right One

Have you ever had a bad experience using a lead generation company? If the answer is yes, you are certainly not alone; fortunately, MarketJoy has put together 4 simple questions that you can use to judge your next potential lead gen partner.

What We’re Doing Wrong in Blockchain Marketing

What Works - What Doesn't

One of the best pieces of advice I ever got was “ always explain what you’re talking about. Never assume your audience knows the background – even if they’re experts.”.

Pulling Case Studies Out of Customers

What Works - What Doesn't

One of the more predictable, and sadder, moments in my work with clients comes when I ask for a customer case study to help illustrate all the good things their hardware, software or services can do.

Five Ways Storytelling Goes Bad

What Works - What Doesn't

Wherever you go in the content marketing industry, people are talking about brand storytelling. You have to tell stories to get customers emotionally involved in your brand. The human mind is intrinsically geared to hearing and understanding stories. Hey, I’m all for storytelling.

Driving Thought Leadership in Blockchain

What Works - What Doesn't

Kosta Peric of thge Bill & Melinda Gates foundation describes a blockchain-based digital payment platform for the poor.

Do You Want Sales or an Audience – or Both?

What Works - What Doesn't

Give clients “real business metrics,” says, Joe Lazauskas of Contently. Walking the halls of my first Content Marketing World I wasn’t surprised to hear lots of agreement that high quality content is essential to effective marketing and sales.

15 Ideas to Jump Start a Blockchain Blog  

What Works - What Doesn't

Emin Gün Sirer of Cornell University tells the MIT conference how to build blockchains right.

7 Cold Calling Tactics You Aren't Using but Should Be

Cold calling isn‘t dead; neither is it on its deathbed. In fact, it’s one of the most effective ways to increase sales and drive revenue. Learn 7 preperation strategies to lessen your stress, and to become a better closer!

Get Off the Commodity Bus!

What Works - What Doesn't

Do you feel like you’re stuck trying to differentiate yourself in a crowded, “me-too” market like, for example, local IT service providers?

Blockchain Will Be Huge. We Think.

What Works - What Doesn't

Blockchain – the distributed ledger system meant to handle financial and other transactions without the need for banks or other central authorities – will be huge. Those is, if dozens of players with competing agendas can solve multiple complex technical problems, and convince regulators to overturn centuries of rules in everything from finance to utilities. That was my takeaway from this week’s “ Business of Blockchain ” event, organized by MIT Technology Review and the MIT Media Lab.

12 Quick Content Marketing Tips and Trends

What Works - What Doesn't

The frigid cold along Route 128 the other morning didn’t keep a standing-room-only crowd from Schwartz Communications’ Breakfast Roundtable on content marketing (using information shared on the Web to drive sales.)

Time to Kill the Press Release?

What Works - What Doesn't

While writing a press release for a client the other day, I got to thinking about what I was doing. Dangerous idea, thinking too much.

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How Much Rope Should You Give a “Corporate Reporter?”

What Works - What Doesn't

Companies have been hiring ex-journalists for years as PR people because they knew how to tell a story and how to work with their fellow ink-stained wretches. For those old enough to remember ink.).

How B2B Marketing is Changing in 2018

Gain exclusive insights on priorities, tactics, and challenges from SMB Marketing Leaders.

If You MUST Write A Press Release, Do It Better

What Works - What Doesn't

At Schwartz Communications’ breakfast roundtable on content marketing last week, attendees were asked to rank which channels they used to get the news out about their company. Plenty of people use “blogs,” “Twitter,” “Facebook,” or “LinkedIn” but “press release” barely registered.

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Skill Set For Content Marketing: Number Crunching and A Gut Feel

What Works - What Doesn't

Back when the earth was young and so was I, feedback on my writing came from a grizzled, chain-smoking editor throwing a story back at me and growling “What the hell does this mean? Clean it up.”

Selling Your Weaknesses in B2B Content Marketing

What Works - What Doesn't

I’ve long argued that admitting your product or service isn’t the right hammer for every nail is an effective way to sell. The folks at marketing automation software vendor HubSpot seem to agree, judging from a recent blog post on “Seven Reasons Social Media is Bad for Marketing.”.

Stop the WordPress Madness!

What Works - What Doesn't

One month and hundreds of dollars worth of development help ago, I began consolidating my Web site and blog onto WordPress, the popular blog, Web site and content publishing system.

Best Practices for Selling to Government Agencies

The US government spends over $235 billion on goods and services each year. Because of this, selling your product or service to a government agency can be a great way to increase profits. A government buyer also offers consistency, at least for the duration of your contract. However, there are key differences between selling to a customer or business and selling to the government. MarketJoy VP of Customer Success, Curtis Bendt, has used his vast experience in sales industry to craft a list of best practices for selling to government agencies to give you a more specific idea of what the process involves. MarketJoy also provides you with several tips on how to increase your chances of success.

Are We Scrubbing the LIfe Out of Press Releases?

What Works - What Doesn't

When drafting a press release for a client recently, I highlighted a lot of the themes that would have made it a great newspaper feature.

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Maintenance Fees, a Cash Cow for Vendors, Under Attack From Users

What Works - What Doesn't

Some customers are pushing back on software maintenance agreements, threatening vendors with the loss of their most predictable, profitable continuing revenue stream.

Can PR Firms Find Gold in Marketing Automation Services?

What Works - What Doesn't

Some of the more forward-looking PR firms I work with are looking to supplement traditional PR offerings with demand generation services, using marketing automation software such as Marketo and HubSpot to track prospect’s actions to “nurture” them with additional content towards a sale.

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Finding the Mythical C-Level Exec

What Works - What Doesn't

Like the unicorn , whose horn was said to cure illnesses and neutralize poison, the C-level executive is a mythical creature, though long hunted by IT sales rep looking for a cure to their late-quarter sales slump. But, as Forrester Research points out in a recent report , “.no

Paradigm of Strategic Value-Based Discounting for the B2B Industry

Competition has increased to new levels of intensity and organizations have begun to look for new ways to acquire customers. Discounted pricing is a strategic tool, which when used correctly can drive a variety of business goals, from marketing through to sales strategy

Using Online Games To Sell Complex B2B Software

What Works - What Doesn't

I have to give IBM points for even trying this: They’ve developed an online game that walks players through a (BPM) Business Process Management) exercise. But is asking prospects to spend the time playing an online game good for all parts of the sales cycle?

Software Automates Sportswriting. Is B2B Content Marketing Next?

What Works - What Doesn't

Hell, no, I say, and not just because I make my living writing white papers, newsletters, and the like for the IT market. Here’s why. Yes, StatSheet of Durham, N.C.

It's Official: Forrester Says B2B Buyers Hate Confusing Jargon

What Works - What Doesn't

I’ve been yelling for years that technical jargon in marketing content turns off B2B business buyers. Now, it’s official – or at least corroborated by a Forrester Research Inc. report.

Toyota Ad Shows Need For Outsider's Eye on Marketing Content

What Works - What Doesn't

  One of the biggest blunders tech marketers make is not clearly explaining what their products do. A recent ad from Toyota makes this thunderlingly obvious mistake, and shows why it’s so important to get an outsider’s eye to review your copy.

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The Account-Based Marketing Playbook

Account-Based Marketing is a strategy, not a solution.

First Rule of Content Marketing: Don't Say Anything Dumb

What Works - What Doesn't

OK, maybe some people are so dumb they don’t know a heater gets hot. But they’re not who’s seeing your marketing content if you’re selling a big-ticket IT product or service. Those types are knowledgeable, have a lot on their plate, and make snap decisions on what to read and not to read.

787 Lessons From Boeing For Content Marketers

What Works - What Doesn't

Head out to Paine Field in Everett, Washington, and you’ll see 20-25 brand new, nearly finished 787 airliners sitting on the flight line. Boeing can’t deliver them to customers (or get fully paid for them) until they perform more than 140,000 fixes.

Just Say No To "Social Media Press Releases"

What Works - What Doesn't

To succeed, the “social media press release” must focus more on content than Web bling.         Catherine Marenghi , senior PR manager at Cognizant Technology Solutions (a client of mine) read my recent post asking if it’s “Time to Kill the Press Release? because it’s too stilted and vendor-focused, and asked what I thought of the Social Media Press Release (SMPR) template.

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What B2B Readers Want, Circa 2010

What Works - What Doesn't

I’ve had a great opportunity recently to learn what B2B customers want in content by – shock of shocks – asking them. The impetus is a competitive analysis I’m helping do for a publisher, which includes asking readers about everything from what they read, how they get it (print or online) to how they use content to do their jobs better.

The Sales Enablement Handbook

In the sphere of sales, it helps to get your definitions down. You might have thought sales operations and sales enablement are the same thing - but there are important differences. Both have the objective of improving sales performance, and although there is some overlap, they do this in different ways.

Why Marketing Automation is Floundering (Amen!)

What Works - What Doesn't

Trying to Get the Big Mo A recent post by Jeff Pedowitz argues that marketing automation vendors – selling tools that automatically send and track responses to marketing material to target prospects – are floundering, or at least not growing as quickly as they should.

787 Lessons From Boeing For Content Marketers

What Works - What Doesn't

Head out to Paine Field in Everett, Washington, and you’ll see 20-25 brand new, nearly finished 787 airliners sitting on the flight line. Boeing can’t deliver them to customers (or get fully paid for them) until they perform more than 140,000 fixes.

How We Can Help

What Works - What Doesn't

By creating compelling white papers, case studies, blog posts and other content based on an in-depth understanding of your competitive differentiators. We can create anything from full-fledged email marketing campaigns to white papers, case studies, ghosted articles and blog posts.

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Stop the WordPress Madness!

What Works - What Doesn't

One month and hundreds of dollars worth of development help ago, I began consolidating my Web site and blog onto WordPress, the popular blog, Web site and content publishing system.

Intent Data: No Tricks, all Treats

Speaker: Michael Ballard, Senior Manager of Digital Marketing, Lenovo

The modern era of MarTech is great, isn't it? Using social media, machine learning, lead scoring, and so much more, we can learn so much about our prospects. and then proceed to annoy the heck out of them with endless emails, ads, and other marketing messages. Wait a second - that wasn't part of the plan. Since when did a 1.5% conversion rate start looking "good"? Why aren't we tailoring our messages? Michael Ballard, Senior Manager of Global Digital Marketing at Lenovo, shows how marketers can reach the right contact, using the right channel, at the right time. Michael will take us through how Lenovo piloted three different intent programs to integrate intent data into their marketing strategy allowing them to trigger relevant and timely campaigns that any sized organization could emulate.