Today’s B2B marketers face increasing challenges and opportunities. At the end of the day, though, it all comes down to just one key factor: quality lead generation. Traditional marketing objectives include brand awareness, customer loyalty, increased market share, talent recruitment and the introduction of new products and services. But without leads, and the resulting sales, businesses simply can’t exist. While lead generation is hardly a new concept, recent studies show that 77 percent of marketers are focused on improving the quality of leads and nearly half have their sights set on improving the number of leads their efforts attract.
When we think of successful branding, certain images automatically pop into our minds. For example, consider MasterCard’s intersecting circles, McDonalds’ golden arches and the NBC peacock. These universally recognized logos are perfect examples of successful and even iconic branding. While these examples represent B2C companies, it begs the question: Can B2B companies achieve the same
Some suggest that telemarketing is dead. Some research indicates that a mere one percent of cold calls ultimately convert into appointments. But at the same time, other research shows that 78% percent of decision-makers have taken an appointment or attended an event because of an email or cold call. Why the discrepancy? The issue isn’t whether or not cold calling is an effective marketing strategy. Instead, it’s about knowing how to execute telemarketing initiatives that effectively reach and influence potential customers.
Finally, your portfolio is flourishing with successful and powerful work completed for your clients, yet no one seems to be noticing. What’s missing? How about the actual client’s opinion? In fact, 89% of B2B marketers consider client testimonials to be the most effective content marketing tactic available to them.
Most experienced business executives agree that in order to get and retain customers, it is critical to build customer relationships. But whose job is that? In one word: everyone’s. In the 1980s, Singapore Airlines trained their agents in this concept by claiming there are only two departments in the company: inside sales and outside sales. But not every company is set up that way. Traditionally, the individuals who are more involved in building customer relationships are those in marketing, sales and customer service. While there might be some overlap in each of these areas, their responsibilities vary.
CEOs run organizations. They are the highest-level executive officers in the company, and their primary duties include driving revenue and profit, making major corporate decisions and managing the overall operations and resources of a company. Even if the company is small, there’s still only one person at the top responsible for those key functions. As business becomes more competitive, complex and global, the need for CEOs to expand their knowledge beyond finance and operations to sales and marketing is an imperative.
Dealing with rejection is a reality in sales and marketing. Fortunately, rejection isn’t always negative. It provides professionals with an opportunity to set themselves apart from the crowd. They can analyze their roles as knowledgeable resources, use the time to learn more about their prospects and themselves and create a competitive edge to help them with future success. Help your sales and marketing personnel better respond to no by considering the underlying meaning, motivation and reasons why these responses occur.
Organizations such as American Express, Clear-Point Strategy and Thought Leaders International recognize the contributions and value of innovative thought leadership. Not surprisingly, everyone has a different opinion about who should be on the list. And, of course, like everything else, thought leaders are subject to change over time. What’s important, however, is that all of the individuals noted on these lists captivate, inspire and challenge others.
What company in business today doesn’t want to be quoted or published in the Wall Street Journal, Fortune, Huffington Post, Forbes, Inc., Harvard Business Review, Fast Company or other nationally recognized media? Not many. But it’s a goal that is difficult to achieve…unless you do your homework first. Here are some tips to get published in mainstream media.
To exhibit or not to exhibit…that is the question. In the last half of the 20th century, tradeshows were one of the most popular ways to meet and greet customers, prospects, strategic alliance partners and members of the media. The same is true today. Yet, in the age of digital marketing, many people are asking if tradeshows are still viable. The answer is, “it depends.”