12 Damaging B2B Excuses (and how to avoid them)

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Too much B2B marketing (and content marketing in particular) sees too few results. While the hype can be deafening, the quiet reality is too often full of missed opportunities and avoidable excuses. In this presentation, we explore the 12 excuses we hear most often and offer some suggestions about what you can do about them.

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12 Damaging B2B Excuses (and how to avoid them)

  1. 1. ? WHAT’S YOUR EXCUSE12 damaging B2B marketing platitudes (and how to avoid them)
  2. 2. WE’RE LISTENING 
 TO THE CONVERSATION ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  3. 3. Listening is good – doing is better. 
 In the time you’re spending listening, listening, listening, others are experimenting, testing, making mistakes and driving greater results. ! The answer? Always look for low-cost ways to rapidly prototype approaches and test them in the field. consideredcontent.com
  4. 4. WE’RE LOADING THE TOP OF THE FUNNEL ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  5. 5. To a degree, B2B marketing is a numbers game. Without sufficient top-of-funnel volume, you’ll never see hard revenue gains. But do you really have a top-of- funnel issue? ! The answer? Check that what you think of as a demand generation problem isn’t in fact a lead conversion problem (it’s a lot easier and cheaper to fix). consideredcontent.com
  6. 6. OUR CUSTOMERS JUST 
 DON’T CARE ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  7. 7. True. They don’t care. Well not about you or your products. They do, however, care a lot about their own businesses. They care about better serving their customers, helping their staff and beating the competition. ! The answer? Focus on what your customers really care about (not what you wished they cared about). consideredcontent.com
  8. 8. WE’RE WAITING FOR INBOUND TO KICK IN ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  9. 9. Inbound marketing is brilliant, but it takes time. According to HubSpot, businesses with over 100 pages of content will see 2.5x the results of those with under 50. But how long will it take you to develop 100 pages of quality content? Probably too long. ! The answer? Start by focusing on outbound content marketing and make your content easy to find – you’ll get far higher results and still receive inbound traffic. consideredcontent.com
  10. 10. TODAY IT’S ALL ABOUT SOCIAL MEDIA ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  11. 11. If only. It would be lovely to think we could hit all our targets with some well-aimed tweets and a few LinkedIn updates. They’ll help of course – in B2B, social typically contributes around 5% of a company’s web traffic. But be careful to base your time investment on real world results. ! The answer? Try multiple tactics and invest more in what works hardest for your business. consideredcontent.com
  12. 12. SALES DROPPED 
 THE BALL (AGAIN) ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  13. 13. Sales exists to make more (and more profitable) sales. Give them the right leads and they’ll happily run with them. The problem is often that leads are either insufficiently qualified or passed over too early to be a good use of a salesperson’s time. ! The answer? Nurture leads longer, agree what ‘sales ready’ means and give salespeople the tools to take the story forward. consideredcontent.com
  14. 14. MARKETING DROPPED 
 THE BALL (AGAIN) ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  15. 15. The difference between sales and marketing is that sales knows customers and prospects personally, marketing doesn’t. Sadly, all too often, salespeople don’t take the time to really help marketing understand what makes a good lead (or else marketing doesn’t ask). ! The answer? Talk. Seriously. Have marketing people go on sales calls. Learn what’s it’s like to try to close a sale. consideredcontent.com
  16. 16. OUR DATABASE 
 ISN’T UP TO SCRATCH ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  17. 17. You’re not alone. No one’s data is ever perfect. Of course some is worse than others and good data is core to success. That’s why one of the objectives of virtually every marketing campaign should be to grow the database. ! The answer? Clean your data regularly and don’t be afraid to buy more if you need it (but focus on quality over quantity). consideredcontent.com
  18. 18. CONVERTING B2B SALES TAKES TIME ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  19. 19. It’s not unusual for a B2B sale to take 
 6 months or more. Of course some take longer – zombie sales can go on and on. So it makes sense to do what you can to accelerate the process. ! The answer? Work with sales to identify common points of friction that slow sales down. Then look at what content and/or assets could help speed things up. consideredcontent.com
  20. 20. OUR @#&*$! MARKETING AUTOMATION SYSTEM ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  21. 21. Marketing automation is brilliant but it can be a little oversold by vendors. There is no big red button marked ‘leads’ to press. And all too often new users try to do too much, too early only to be paralysed by complexity. ! The answer? Start small. Do the basics well and then experiment – look to explore one new feature in each new campaign. (Oh, and don’t panic.) consideredcontent.com
  22. 22. WE’RE NOT CREATING ENOUGH CONTENT ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  23. 23. With all the hype around content marketing, companies can often think they need to become publishers in their own right, competing with major industry publications and sites. They don’t. ! The answer? While there’s a baseline you’ll need to get over, it’s more important you have the right core content for each stage of 
 the sales cycle than simply volume content for every conceivable search term. consideredcontent.com
  24. 24. OUR CONTENT ISN’T 
 GOOD ENOUGH ‘ ‘ consideredcontent.com
  25. 25. Great content delivers great results. But creating great B2B content is difficult. 
 It demands you become pathologically focused on what’s important to your customers, where you can challenge their thinking, and how you can help. ! The answer? Interrogate any piece of content you create to find out who will benefit the most: you or your customers. If it’s the former, try again. consideredcontent.com
  26. 26. RIDDING THE WORLD OF CRAPPY 
 B2B CONTENT (ONE BRAND AT A TIME) Considered Content is an outbound content marketing agency focused on B2B and technology companies. We do three things really well: Whether you need to drive leads or accelerate sales, we can help. Check out consideredcontent.com to learn more or contact us at hello@consideredcontent.com.

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