B2B Customer Delight

Is Your B2B Marketing Delighting Customers?

Customer experience is the new demand creation.

Bold words, I know, but Influitive‘s B2B Customer Engagement Leadership Series last week made me a believer. It was an incredibly eye openingexperience. The conference focused on teaching marketers how to engage customers in a way that delights them into advocates for the company. This is something that HubSpot has been touting for years, but that marketers have been slow to understand and adopt. Read more

Two people wanting privacy

B2B Marketing: Are You Still Speaking To Us?

The recent story in Wall Street Journal about the Facebook kerfuffle was just one more voice in the crowd. We’re all just lab rats. Likely illegal. People are shocked. Why? Didn’t anyone hear about that little blip on the radar about the National Security Agency?

As a marketer, I find this uproar extremely interesting on several levels. First, I’m amused that people seem to feel so violated. If you’re online, big brother is watching. We know all about you, your friends, your family. Your digital footprint is everywhere.

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talking past b2b customers

New Study Shows That Most B2B Marketing is Talking Past Customers

New research from McKinsey & Company highlights an interesting gap between the messaging that B2B brands use and what their customers most want to hear from them.

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saving face

Content is King in B2B Marketing, but Customers are the Power Behind the Throne

Most marketers, especially those in B2B, understand the importance of customer relationship management. CRM tools like Salesforce, Sugar, SAP CRM and others have made it easier to integrate marketing automation with sales opportunities among a company’s current customers, in addition to nurturing leads towards becoming customers.

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dried up lake bed

B2B Reality Check: Are Your Business Relationships Too Shallow?

I’’ve learned a lot from Mark W. Schaefer, a marketing professional, professor and friend I first met through Twitter about three years ago. Mark’’s Twitter account is quite active, too. He’’s one of the pied pipers of the microblogging service with more than 20,000 followers (I’’m among them somewhere). The difference with Mark is that he has an amazing ability to listen while he plays, and he responds in an almost superhuman way to almost anyone who makes an effort to engage him. It could be about marketing, social media, blogging or life, and whether you’’re curious, inquisitive, contrarian or doubtful, he’’ll often reply. That’’s an unusual quality among social media gurus. Schaefer writes the blog {grow}, and with it he’’s built an entire community of engaged individuals who enjoy active discussions in the comments section under each post.

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B2B marketing evidence

B2B Marketing Evidence: The Importance of Support

When developing your B2B messaging, you may choose to provide evidence to support the unique selling propositions (USP) of your product or service. However, what if you have a promotion you think takes precedence over the evidence? Should you downplay the evidence in order to highlight the promotion? Or what if you simply don’’t have enough space or time to state all the evidence? Well, behavioral scientists have researched the concept of evidence, and their findings can be useful when determining when and how it may prove to be the most persuasive.

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shark with diver

In B2B, a New Business Opportunity Is No Place For Fear

How to ‘Tonic the Shark’

It was amazing to watch: On a recent science channel program, a marine researcher used a mind-boggling technique, called “tonic,” that had sharks nuzzling up to her like the family dog to be “petted” on the head and around the mouth. Yikes! During these encounters, she would first relax the sharks, sometimes even rolling them over or standing them on end. According to her, the key is to suppress your own fear because the sharks can sense it. Certainly easier said than done, but the results spoke for themselves; she was able to interact calmly with one of nature’s most feared creatures and gain insights that could lead to significant scientific breakthroughs. Later it occurred to me that, in B2B marketing and new business, there may be some parallels here worth noting.

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Super B2B

Super Bowl or Super B2B: What To Do with an Extra Week of Prep Time

I always enjoy the lead-up to the Super Bowl, and I’m amused by the “in-depth” storylines that fill the two weeks of dead air since the last playoff game: Is the Cheese Head just as iconic as the Terrible Towel? Will Brett Favre be watching at home? Will he be texting during the game?

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boat anchor

Customer Engagement: “You’ve Got to Have Faith”

I recently spoke with a prospective client interested in adopting a B2B social media strategy. Her expressed objective was to expand customer reach and to save some money on marketing along the way. Apparently, upper management was intrigued by all the “free” social media tools and had noticed the competition’’s activity in the social space.

I naturally broached the objectives for engagement,… the audiences they’’d want to reach, the customer challenges they could speak to, the objective expertise they could provide ongoing, their available content resources, etc.

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What customers say about you?

What Are Your B2B Customers Saying About YOU?

I read a case study about social media on MarketingProfs that I simply had to comment on with this week’s blog. Though it’’s a B2C case study, it clearly illustrates the importance of social media and, thus, is applicable to B2B marketing as well. It’’s about how the American Automobile Association (AAA) noticed its customers were migrating to social media, so it began monitoring and engaging with various social media sites. Now, this is nothing new, and something we are (hopefully) all doing in B2B marketing; however, it was what they found that is important and worthy of commentary.

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