Wed.Feb 19, 2020

Employee Branding: B2B’s Answer to Influencer Marketing

Marketing Insider Group

We’ve all seen them. Consumer brands fall all over each other to get celebs to endorse their brands – or better yet – star in one of their ads. Which works out just fine. Until the celebrity spokesmodel slips up and gets caught driving down the wrong side of the street while they’re on a bender.

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How to Create Better Business Personas and Actually Drive Sales


Customer personas are fictional characters representing the people most likely to buy your products, visit your site or otherwise associate with what you do. Although they’re effective ways to understand your target audience, there are times when it’s necessary to tweak and improve them.

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The Future of SEO: How AI and Machine Learning Will Impact Content

Single Grain

UPDATED: This post was expanded and updated for 2020! Artificial intelligence and its impact on different industries have been a hot topic of discussion for the past few years, and with good reason.

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Report: 45% of Marketers Now Say More than Half of Campaigns are Content-Driven

KoMarketing Associates

Many marketers have already seen the benefits of utilizing content as a part of their strategies, and new research shows that they will continue to integrate it into their work in the near future.

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Why B2B Contact and Account Data Management Is Critical to Your ROI

64% of successful data-driven marketers say improving data quality is the most challenging obstacle to achieving success. Given data’s direct impact on marketing campaigns, reporting, and sales follow up, maintaining an accurate and consistent database is a top priority for B2B organizations. This latest eBook aims to help marketing leaders understand the impact of data management on their company’s ROI.

Speaking of Alignment.


It’s pretty common knowledge that in order for marketers to be successful, they need to collaborate with other departments across the organization. Creating the most in-depth and effective marketing plan is absolutely a team sport involving departmental input across the board.

More Trending

Hot Seat: Finance Marketing Leader Crystal Eastman On Why Brands Need to Hire Journalists


When I shared the stage with Crystal Eastman at the Digital Marketing Financial Services Summit in November, I immediately recognized her as my favorite type of person to interview: A brilliant storyteller who stumbled into marketing by accident and figured out how to do great things inside complicated corporations. Eastman transitioned from an “artsy” four years at the University of Miami to a career as a finserv consultant after American Express made its way onto her personal list of most-admired companies. She worked her way up to VP/GM of marketing at Amex, turning around several early-stage LOBs though an advanced approach to content and digital marketing. She then went on to serve as the CMO of Behalf, a fintech startup that’s raised over $300 million in funding. Next came the managing director and head of retail marketing role at BlackRock. Currently a free agent, Eastman visited Contently’s office to give an honest assessment of the finserv marketing landscape. She discussed the biggest industry mistakes, advice for finance marketers, and why brands need to hire journalists. Check out the video interview below, followed by a transcript of our chat. What are a couple of mistakes you see people making in financial services marketing? I think the biggest mistake is to have experts at something be responsible for creating the content for customers. I’ve actually seen this at every company I’ve ever worked in. There’s this chasm between the corporate story and the customer story. And the corporate story is very easy to get lost in because we go to work every day and we sit in a conference room all day long with our colleagues and we talk to each other. We have this one discussion, and it’s about: What our product does that our competitors products don’t do. It’s about what the market opportunity is. It’s about how good our technology is—etc, etc. There’s no way for you to come up with the right story for the real humans in that conference room. So I think that’s the biggest mistake —when people who make the product or the services are also responsible for making content for the true customer. Companies get it best when they hire people who are video editors or have journalism backgrounds. They bring that external view and expertise on how to create content that people would actually consume and look forward to. Then you can merge the artistry and the science of those experts with the internal teams that are the experts at the product. That’s the way best content gets created for customers. Why do you think a lot of marketing teams are hesitant to bring in people with that pure journalism or editorial DNA? Well, I think it’s uncomfortable for brands, right? We all—me included—create content on a day-to-day basis, and we’re used to doing it our way, and we also feel pretty proud of it. So it’s quite something to confront that you may have been doing it wrong all of this time. When you invite a different type of expert into your process, it’s a shakeup. Everything about their approach will be different, and you have to be willing to be uncomfortable in order to get your content to the next place with this alternative point of view. What advice would you have for marketers at a financial services company who have trouble getting their content through compliance? I would encourage all marketers to treat compliance as their most important partner or even their customer. If you’re thinking about your compliance colleague like you would your customer, utilize design thinking to understand their unmet needs, understand what their outlook on life is and the emotions that they’re bringing to their own job, and figure out how to problem-solve your way to yes. In the same way you would if you’re acquiring a new customer, compliance partners are critical to the process. They’re there to keep us out of jail. You want them on your side. And it’s in all of our best interests in marketing to find a way to tell our story that also meets our compliance partners’ requirements. So I would say start earlier, schedule face-to-face meetings, explain why you’re doing what you’re doing, explain the goal of the content you’re producing. Invite your compliance partner into the process to help you understand how to say what you want to say in a compliant way. Compliance partners are critical to the process. They’re there to keep us out of jail. You want them on your side. Looking ahead into 2020, what are some of the big opportunities that you see in financial services ? The companies that are going to win are the ones that truly embrace customer advocacy and help regular everyday humans solve the problems that they have with managing their finances. I’ve been disturbed by how big credit has gotten in the U.S., and I’ve certainly participated myself in many aspects of building credit-oriented businesses. It’s very lucrative for a financial services company, but I personally believe it’s bad for customers. Companies will lose if they’re going too far on credit and not going far enough on helping customers live within their means, put away money for the future, and have an emergency savings initiative, so that whatever happens to their family, they can afford to do the right thing. Whatever their dreams are—pay for college, buy a house, retire—these are things that many people are not going to be able to afford to do unless their financial services partners help them by eliminating some of their unhealthy financial behaviors. The younger, nimble companies that are spending very little but really striking a meaningful tone and creating truly meaningful content in social media storytelling are the ones that are going to win. Content is really important for helping people understand the way they’re standing in their own way, right? I think content is a wonderful way where you can release stories of people just like you, whoever the you is, that help make it real, and help make it human and help people be able to kind of see themselves more clearly through the eyes of others. Because one of the big behavioral economics teachings is that people don’t see themselves clearly. So it stands in the way of them making smart decisions. What’s your big prediction for financial services marketing this year? I think the smaller players are going to win the day. I think the large financial services players are still spending an excessive amount of time on things like Super Bowl commercials and focusing on things that mattered 10 years ago. The younger, nimble companies that are spending very little but really striking a meaningful tone and creating truly meaningful content in social media storytelling are the ones that are going to win. The post Hot Seat: Finance Marketing Leader Crystal Eastman On Why Brands Need to Hire Journalists appeared first on Contently. Storytelling financial services Journalists Q&A video

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Stop Wasting Time: Review Your Website Analytics

Content Marketing Institute

Are you too busy to check your web analytics? CMWorld presenter Andy Crestodina reviews the analytics because he’s busy. Learn what he says your users are telling you about site navigation, conversions, social icons, and videos.

How to Create Case Study Videos That Win New Business


Case study videos are powerful tools for businesses looking to attract new clients and drive revenue. By using video, you add a personal element that’s difficult to achieve with a traditional, text-based case study.

4 Tips to Sustain Your Sales Kickoff Momentum


You’re going on a road trip. Do you A. review the maps step-by-step weeks in advance or B. turn on your GPS when you step in the car? In today’s digital age, few people travel anywhere without their GPS. The ability to get in-the-moment guidance has become a must-have.

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2020 Database Strategies and Contact Acquisition Survey Report

As buyer expectations continue to heighten, marketing and sales teams are feeling pressured to deliver authentic messaging to buyers at every point of their customer journey. This report aims to highlight the current state of B2B database and contact acquisition strategies, and organizations’ goals to leverage data to fuel their go-to-market strategies in 2020 and beyond.

What Is An SLA For Sales And Marketing?

Square 2 Marketing

Everything You Need To Craft An SLA For Sales And Marketing This Afternoon. A service-level agreement (SLA) is a contract that establishes a set of deliverables that one party has agreed to provide another.

Integrated Marketing Cloud for Better ROI and CX


With Kay Kienast , Chief Marketing Officer, True Influence. How a Marketing Cloud improves ROI and customer relationships. The B2B customer journey can be a winding, complex process that last months.

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Eight questions to ask before replatforming your ecommerce ecosystem


30-second summary: Capgemini’s white paper covers eight important replatforming considerations that retailers should ask before updating their ecommerce ecosystem.

6 Steps to Help You Enhance Your Webinar Marketing Strategy


If you’re familiar with webinars, you’ll know that they best ones usually contain a wealth of valuable information that’s relevant to the issues people face. That’s why companies develop webinar marketing strategies to enhance the experience for their target audiences.

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Best Practices for a Marketing Database Cleanse

As frustrating as contact and account data management can be, this is still your database – a massive asset to your organization, even if it is rife with holes and inaccurate information. Entrusting a vendor to help maintain its accuracy and completeness is no ordinary engagement. Download ZoomInfo’s latest data-driven eBook aimed to help marketing leaders understand the best practices around choosing a B2B contact data provider.

Personalized B2B Marketing in 2020: 3 Key Strategies

Launch Marketing

With 2020 underway, it’s time to meet head-on some of the B2B marketing expectations that are anticipated to take shape in the new year.

3 Ways of Lowering CPC in Google Ads

SmartBug Media

Your Google Ads CPC is dependent on multiple factors, including the industry you’re advertising in, how competitive it is, and how robust your keyword list is. Industries like law and real estate have historically had much higher CPCs, at times ranging between $150–$300.).

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How Netflix is helping brands harness the power of interactive content


30-second summary: Netflix’s Bandersnatch offers a new window into creating a seamless and uninterrupted way to embed branded content into its programming, and in the process, the company may have shown other streaming platforms how to take advantage of an important new revenue stream.

The Guide to Workplace Communication Channels You Didn't Know You Needed


Emails and IMs and shared docs — oh my! With all the different communication channels we use every day at work, it's easy to miss their nuances. Sure, email seems like a good go-to, but it has its downsides. And what about Google Docs or Confluence pages ? When should they be open vs. restricted?

Cold Calling Tips and Tricks

In recent years, cold calling has become synonymous with rejection and failure. But the numbers aren't that clear; while less than 2% of today’s cold calls actually result in meetings, 78% of decision-makers have taken an appointment or attended an event as a result of a cold call. What’s the verdict?

How to Personalize for First-Time Visitors


Good personalization is based on good data. The more you know about a person – and his or her interests, intent, prior history and behavior across your channels, and other attributes – the more you can deliver a relevant, engaging experience that drives conversion.

30 of the Best Vintage Fonts to Use for Timeless Designs


When you hear the word vintage, you might associate it at first with old and outdated, or elegant and timeless. In graphic design, vintage can actually be a good thing, especially when we talk about typography.

Selecting the Best Social Media Channels for Your Business


The Digital Age has presented businesses with an ever-growing number of online marketing opportunities in the form of social media platforms. These days, there is a social media channel designed for just about everyone.

Why Reducing Friction On Your Website Is The Key To Accelerating Revenue Growth


At the heart of every B2B purchase decision, buyers and customers need to consume content to inform their decision-making. But many brands make it unnecessarily difficult to find and consume content, by throwing roadblocks or dead ends throughout the journey.

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How to Overcome the Pain Points of Your CRM

When used effectively, a CRM can be the life blood of your sales team – keeping everyone organized, efficient, and at peak productivity. However, as a company, sales stack, and database grow, it becomes difficult to uphold structure and governance to keep a CRM up-to-date. The result? Less organization, more confusion, and fewer deals closed. Leveraging leading industry research from industry analysts, this eBook explores how your sales team can gain back valuable time.

Building a Sales Team That Stays: Recruiting and Retaining Millennials


If you're a B2B sales manager, you're always concerned with filling your open sales representative positions. We hear you, and we feel for you.

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How to Prepare for a Smooth Marketo Implementation


It’s no secret: a Marketo implementation is a big undertaking, with many moving pieces and full team involvement.

In-house Marketing Trends 2020: What you need to know


In-house marketing trends are developing all the time. In 2020 they are changing the way brands operate and causing marketing teams to evolve. Knowing the facts is essential in order to make in-housing a success.

[Report] The Digital Marketing Trends Every Email Marketer Must Know


To be truly successful, marketers need to break out of their silos and use the power of email across channels. But when you’re struggling to just keep up with what’s trending in email, how are you supposed to stay on top of other channels, too? Our friends at HubSpot have you covered.

The Account-Based Marketing Playbook

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