May 23rd, 2014
Author: Jennifer Rideout
Why it’s time to align online marketing and sales, and the surprising stat you didn’t know

b2b marketing

If we go back 60 years, salesmen were responsible for the majority of a company’s sales (save those generated from advertising). Literally men travelled door to door selling products, speaking directly with consumers.

Not anymore. The reality is that today, nearly 60 per cent of B2B purchasing decisions are already made before customers contact your company, as recently revealed by the Corporate Executive Board (CEB).

The tide has turned, and the way customers move through the buying cycle has evolved to a ‘self-service’ model to research and decide for themselves whether they want to purchase before speaking with anyone. Read More

 
April 16th, 2013
Author: David Bertling
Top tips for successful branded utility

Branded Utility

It’s a crowded world out there with marketers competing fiercely for the dwindling attention spans of customers who are much more savvy, informed and cynical about marketing.  There’s too much advertising, too many messages and too little time for customers to sort through it all.

Ironically, these modern-day marketing challenges also present a solution.

If your customers are deluged with too much information, help them find what they’re looking for. If they have too little time, help them save time. It’s called branded utility and it’s about providing your customers with something that is useful to them.  Read More

 
March 5th, 2013
Author: David Bertling
The content marketing renaissance

content marketing

Content marketing is a popular term that’s been picking up steam for a while now.

Oftentimes a trendy marketing term is just a fancy new name for something that has been around for long time (we are marketers, after all), so I couldn’t resist looking for a definition online. As you might expect, there are myriad definitions, and I was delighted to find that Heidi Cohen had done the research for me in her informative blog post that collates 21 different definitions of content marketing.

If you take the time to read even a few definitions, many of you may be thinking to yourself that content marketing is not new. Look at Kraft for example: It has been producing cookbooks related to the use of its products for decades, and it’s still blazing a trail in the digital age with sites like Kraft Recipes, which offers recipes, tips and a community portal that allows fans to share ideas.

We believe what’s driving this new content marketing trend is, in a word, digital. Read More

 
December 4th, 2012
Author: David Bertling
Start with the idea….the rest (including digital) will follow
how to create digital content

Start with your audience first

In today’s fast-paced, ‘new media’ marketing environment, there are myriad digital technologies that allow marketers and communicators to create campaigns that really stand out – video, web apps, mobile, social media apps, interactive charts, infographics and on and on. Done well, these digital content methods enhance the story being told, keep audiences engaged and even entertain them. However it’s easy for even the most experienced marketers to get caught in the headlights of ‘shiny new tool’ syndrome – using digital to create something that looks good or behaves in a cool way, but doesn’t complement the story — or worse, confuses the intended message.

At best, a poorly thought out integrated digital campaign will simply have little impact and ultimately not meet your intended objectives. At worst, you’ll alienate your audience and damage your brand.

Take QR codes as a simple example. Their increasing popularity means they are now popping up everywhere, but are they always needed? In this blog post from eConsultancy, there are some excellent examples of getting it wrong. Read More