Zombie
Attack!
THE ONE RED BIRD
GUIDETO
B2B MARKETING
ONEREDBIRD.CA
P 2
MARKETING IS DEAD.
Marketing as we know it or as we used to know is dead. No one wants a brochure anymore.
No one want...
P 3
FIRST WHAT DOYOU MEAN WHEN
YOU SAYB2B MARKETING?
Right. We should start at the beginning. B2B stands for business-
to-...
P 4
1. Marketing needs to be tied to revenue.
The Dead Part — Marketing can no longer be the old axiom “I know half of my
...
P 5
Demand Gen and B2B Marketing
Demand Generation is the catch all name for generating demand for your
products and servi...
P 6
1 Nurturing leads until prospects are ready to buy
Lead acquisition is the bread and butter of many B2B marketing orga...
P 7
2 Using technology or marketing automation for newbies
Like just about everything else in B2B, technology is impacting...
P 8
3 Aligning Marketing and Sales
Possibly the most difficult part of creating a modern B2B marketing department is
align...
P 9
5 Using Content
You have implemented a great marketing platform, you understand your
customer’s buy cycle and needs in...
ZOMBIESARETOUGH.
DON’T BEAFRAIDTOASK FOR HELP.
Good B2B marketing is hard work. Great B2B marketing is even harder.
Don’t ...
ABOUT ONE RED BIRD
One Red Bird is a marketing services firm that transforms how B2B marketing can be used
to drive revenu...
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Zombie Attack! The One Red Bird Guide to B2B Marketing.

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Depending on what you read B2B marketing has been declared both dead and never more alive. That sounds like a Zombie to us.

So now that we have that straight you probably have more questions about the current state of B2B marketing.

Zombie Attack! The One Red Bird Guide to B2B Marketing will take you on a high level tour of the current state of things and get you up to speed on some ideas like lead generation, demand generation, content marketing, and marketing performance management.

We might not answer all your questions but after reading we are sure you will be at least asking the right questions.

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Zombie Attack! The One Red Bird Guide to B2B Marketing.

  1. 1. Zombie Attack! THE ONE RED BIRD GUIDETO B2B MARKETING ONEREDBIRD.CA
  2. 2. P 2 MARKETING IS DEAD. Marketing as we know it or as we used to know is dead. No one wants a brochure anymore. No one wants to open your email. Perhaps most importantly no one (and by no one we mean no one who approves the budget and cuts the cheques) is interested in marketing that doesn’t generate results. Real results too with measurement, ROI and everything. Marketing has never been more alive. Mobile, social, webinars, e-books, Tweet chats, virtual tradeshows, video, microsites, lead generation, marketing automation, SEO, SEM, podcasts, SXSW, viral, +1, QR codes, direct mail, PURLs, guest posts, lead scores, content…and on and on. The sheer volume of possible channel, tactics and activities available to a marketer today is only limited by time and imagination. Yikes. Where does this leave us? Well let’s embrace the idea that B2B marketing is some sort of zombie living dead hybrid for the time being (maybe embrace is the wrong word, after all no one wants to embrace a zombie…) and that you still have questions about the current state of B2B marketing. Don’t worry because that’s what the rest of this guide is for. One Red Bird will take you on a high level tour of the B2B marketing landscape and get you up to speed on some ideas like lead generation, demand generation, content marketing, and marketing performance management. We might not answer all your questions but after reading we are sure you will be at least asking the right questions.
  3. 3. P 3 FIRST WHAT DOYOU MEAN WHEN YOU SAYB2B MARKETING? Right. We should start at the beginning. B2B stands for business- to-business as compared to B2C which is business-to-consumers. It might seem like a little thing but it is actually a big difference. The foundations of great marketing are universal but the specifics of marketing to consumers and businesses are quite different. Simple vs. Complex. The most important distinction between marketing to business as compared to consumers is that for the most part B2B buyers have complex requirements. The buy cycle is longer, there are multiple parties involved (some who influence the purchase while others make the decision) and the relationship will likely continue post purchase with things like training, implementation and customer support. Mass market vs. Niche B2C marketers look at markets of thousands or even millions of transactions. They look at the similarities in the mass market and appeal to those similarities. B2B marketers have a market of hundreds and in some specialized cases of tens. This means B2B marketers need to understand their customers well and make sure they are marketing to their specific needs. Relationships Matter Relationships matter a lot in B2B marketing. Large transactions, long buy cycles and time spent post sale all mean businesses need to buy from someone they trust and can deal with for a while.
  4. 4. P 4 1. Marketing needs to be tied to revenue. The Dead Part — Marketing can no longer be the old axiom “I know half of my marketing budget works, I just don’t know which half”. B2B marketing is about branding and awareness but its ultimate goal is to create leads. If marketing isn’t creating leads than it isn’t working. If you follow the logic that leads are the product of inquiries and sales are the product of leads than you can begin to construct a path that shows revenue that is attributable to marketing. The Undead Part — Marketing often is excluded from the big table in the c-suite. When marketing is tied to revenue this will no longer be the case. By using the same metric for success as the rest of the company – revenue – marketing can let its value shine. 2. The prospects and customers are in charge. The Dead Part — Prospects do not need a sales person to tell them about your rich history, your products, you leadership team or even your customers. They already know this long before they consider taking the time to meet you in person. The only time a prospect wants to talk to you is when they want to. When they have whittled their long list down to a short list and they want to get very specific about your product/service/solution, they might want to speak to sales. So how do you make sure you are on the short list? The Undead Part — The prospects are in charge and they want marketing. They need marketing. The flip side of the prospects wanting to self-serve themselves is they need information. It has never been more important for businesses to understand their customers and to be able to meet their needs with relevant and compelling information. Information provided by marketing. 3. The world has become increasingly noisy. The Dead Part — In the past B2B marketing meant advertising in a trade mag, maybe a brochure or a sell sheet and attendance at one big industry event a year. Anyone of these could get through and introduce you to a customer and help you kick off a long and profitable relationship. Not any more. You need to be laser focused on what value you provide and why a customer should choose you. You need to tell a relevant and credible story that cuts through all the noise and elevates you above the rabble. The Undead Part – There are more ways than ever to create a marketing relationship. B2B marketers are virtual publishing houses as they create content for hundreds of channels and tactics, both digital and traditional. (If you don’t believe me, e-mail me here and I will send you a list over 100 channels and tactics being used by B2B marketers). Let’s get back to this zombie thing for a sec… So marketing is both dead and undead? How can this be again? Well the B2B marketing landscape has been shifting for a while. Not a “while” like tectonic plates shifting for a while but definitely for the last few years. This shift is the root of the dead/alive zombie thing—some elements of B2B marketing have been dying while others thrive and it has changed not only the way you need to go to market but the role of marketing itself. We will dive into these changes in the coming sections but here are the top three reasons why B2B marketing is a zombie:
  5. 5. P 5 Demand Gen and B2B Marketing Demand Generation is the catch all name for generating demand for your products and services. It typically covers the entire continuum from creating awareness through converting leads to sales and all the planning that goes along with this. The underlying concept is not necessarily new or different as B2B marketing has always worked to create awareness, demonstrate relevance and generate demand but the difference is that Demand Generation requires marketing to take responsibility (including revenue responsibility) for the top of the sales funnel. Marketing is tasked with ensuring your products and services are found by prospects and to qualify and nurture prospects to ensure they are delivering a steady stream of qualified leads for sales to engage with. Demand generation usually reflects at least a few of these key trends: 1 Nurturing leads until prospects are ready to buy 2 Using content to attract prospects and to engage them over time 3 Aligning marketing + sales activities to manage the sales funnel more efficiently 4 Using personas to ensure marketing programs are tailored to prospect and customer needs 5 Using technology tools and platforms to integrate with CRM and to create closed loop marketing programs supported by deep reporting and analytics SO WHAT ISTHEAVERAGE NON-ZOMBIE FIGHTING B2B MARKETER SUPPOSEDTO DO? Stockpiling shot gun ammo aside, there is plenty. It means taking a new approach and embracing the B2B marketing zombiepocalypse. Let’s start with Demand Generation. Demand Generation is the catch all name for generating demand for your products and services”“
  6. 6. P 6 1 Nurturing leads until prospects are ready to buy Lead acquisition is the bread and butter of many B2B marketing organizations. While the mix of tactics used to generate leads varies they typically include some combination of telesales, physical and online events, email marketing and direct mail. The success of these tactics tends to rely on marketing’s understanding of the target audience, the effectiveness of the message and the relative strength of the product. The problem is, as we identified earlier, is that customer’s buy when they want to and not necessarily when you touch them. These prospects are engaging with you (most commonly on your web or social sites) to research your product and your industry. These ‘leads’ might have a good chance of converting to a sale but not today and engaging before they are ready to buy is a loser on all fronts—sales continues to think marketing generated leads are lousy and if you qualify leads are by telephone, the cost per lead increases dramatically. The solution would be to only engage when they are ready and this is in fact what lead nurturing does. Smart B2B marketers recognize that the sales team doesn’t really give a flying fig about leads. They want real opportunities that they can close are more interested in a pipeline with a few quality opportunities than dozens of long shots. Hand in hand with Demand Generation, lead nurturing works on the assumption that leads are the responsibility of marketing, and that marketing should nurture them until they are real opportunities for sales.
  7. 7. P 7 2 Using technology or marketing automation for newbies Like just about everything else in B2B, technology is impacting marketing in dramatic ways. The holy grail of marketing is to get the right message, in front of the right person at the right time. While we aren’t quite there yet marketing automation platforms are getting us much closer. A platform won’t do market- ing for you but it will enable you to monitor and track marketing activities that otherwise have to be performed manually. Implementing a marketing platform increases your ability to manage lead nurturing campaign and to develop a closed loop marketing + sales process that drives more revenue. It’s not like technology has been non-existent for B2B marketers, it’s that tools have not been integrated. Marketing departments used separate systems for content management, email marketing, analytics and reporting, direct mail, online advertising, and on and on. This made it nearly impossible to accurately figure out how well marketing efforts were working together. When you combined this with the inefficiencies of trying to manually manage Demand Generation activities, it was rarely worth the effort. The current generation in marketing technology (commonly called Marketing Automation) is providing B2B marketers with systems that automate manual marketing processes, drive efficiency and integrate with existing customer systems like CRM. The market for these platforms has become rather crowded lately too. This is a good news/bad news story for marketers. On the good news side it means that competition has lowered costs to the point B2B’s of any size can afford to get in the automation game. On the downside marketers need to assess a much larger set of providers before settling on a choice. With this bounty of choices come a wide array of tools, features and components. Here is a list of some of things most B2B marketers will want to consider when evaluating a platform: • Lead Scoring & Nurturing • Web Analytics & Visitor Tracking • Landing Pages & Forms • Campaign Reporting • Content Management • Email Marketing • Social Media Marketing • CRM Integration From a big picture perspective, automation platform software allows you to measure what works and tie those activities to revenue in real time. You can track key metrics like activities that drive inquiries, inquiry to lead conversion and lead to sale conversion. Perhaps most importantly implementation of a marketing platform when combined with a integrated marketing plan will allow you to create a closed-loop process that follows your activities from initial lead generation through to the sale. A marketing platform combined with a integrated marketing plan will allow you to create a closed-loop process.”“
  8. 8. P 8 3 Aligning Marketing and Sales Possibly the most difficult part of creating a modern B2B marketing department is aligning sales and marketing. Traditionally each regards the other with a healthy degree of suspicion and the world is rife with companies where sales is asked to find, nurture and convert prospects into decent leads as well as to convert those leads into sales and marketing goes to market with no input from sales at all. If sales is going to do all the heavy lifting and marketing is going to operate in a vacuum, neither is likely to please management. Combine this with today’s zombified B2B buyers are unlikely to speak to sales until late in their decision making process, marketing and sales need to get together for the good of both parties. They need to collaborate on at least three things—the definition of a sales-ready lead, how and when to touch prospects and customers and what lead information is going to be most useful to help sales close leads. The goal is never going to be to merge the departments into a single entity. There are always going to be activities that marketing needs to do and the same with sales. Without collaboration, mutually agreed definitions and trust however, success (not to mention revenue goals) will never happen. 4 Using Personas If you intend to get marketing and sales on the same page, a great place to start is with a common customer. You already know about the noisy world we live in but how does a hard-working zombie fighting B2B marketer cut through? The answer lies in understanding your customers. What do they look like as prospects? What is the criteria to get on their short list? Who are the influencers vs. the decision makers? What keeps them up at night? What do they need? If you don’t know your customers it is very difficult to get their attention and present yourself as a relevant and credible provider. Once you have figured out who the customer is, you need to institutionalize them across your company to make sure everyone is telling the same story to the right people. Customer personas are an excellent way to do this. What is a Persona? Personas are fictional buyers, based on real-life data and characteristics. They provide the detail on who a prospect is and what they need in vivid, tangible pictures that allow your company to effectively communicate with them. Personas will keep marketing focused and allow marketing and sales to speak (in different ways to different people) as one. Sales and marketing need to collaborate on at least three things for the good of both parties.”“
  9. 9. P 9 5 Using Content You have implemented a great marketing platform, you understand your customer’s buy cycle and needs intimately, your sales and marketing team are a well-oiled, collaborate revenue machine. You have accepted the B2B marketing zombie for its dichotomies. You are ready to go to market. You need content. Gulp. In order to get found and convert prospects you need to share something. You need to provide something in exchange for their attention and preferably their contact details. Unless you are a well-known B2B brand you also need to resonate with credibility and trust. You need to offer up content to nurture your leads over time and to keep them warm until they are ready to buy. You need content that can convince buyers you understand their problems and know how to solve them. When we talk about content for B2B marketing, we mean every communication touch point that doesn’t directly sell. This includes blog posts, newsletters, podcasts, video, whitepapers, Tweets and whatever else you can come up with. Your content should present your business as the industry expert and should share insights and information on things that your target audience wants to know about. Your content needs to speak to your audience on 1:1 level and be both meaningful and valuable.
  10. 10. ZOMBIESARETOUGH. DON’T BEAFRAIDTOASK FOR HELP. Good B2B marketing is hard work. Great B2B marketing is even harder. Don’t be afraid to get help when it comes to creating your marketing plan, generating content or evaluating marketing platforms. B2B marketing is not standing still. What is undead today may well be dead tomorrow. This guide will help you get up to speed and set the path forward for the foreseeable future (as unseeable as it may be) but actually going down that path may require some outside resources. You have a lot to do and you might need some help to get going or even someone who can help for the long run. Knowing is only the first part, doing is when you can really make the difference in your company. One Red Bird knows B2B marketing and we can help. And we aren’t afraid of zombies… much.
  11. 11. ABOUT ONE RED BIRD One Red Bird is a marketing services firm that transforms how B2B marketing can be used to drive revenue performance and fuel business growth. With deep expertise in marketing automation, content creation and marketing strategy, One Red Bird can develop, streamline, and resource your demand generation program. Contact Us One Red Bird Marketing Inc. 905 510 9194 ONEREDBIRD.CA INFO@ONEREDBIRD.CA T E W T E W T E W About US

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