From Theory to Practice: How to become a “digital, social, and content” driven B2B company ?
Most marketers in B2B today have a project to introduce or expand digital, content and social media marketing into their companies.
In the last few years these types of marketing have become extremely important.
I believe it is the solution to the B2B marketing challenges of today, where companies can transcend from fulfilling the basic marketing needs of their customers.
Transcend towards connecting with their audience by creating experiences that lasts. These experiences that provides your customers with the desire to share their experiences, and become your brand advocates.
But how do you move from theory to practice ?
CEO’s Agree: Marketers don’t show Marketing ROI. How to regain trust?
Showing Marketing ROI and the ability to contribute to the growth of the business is in many ways the biggest challenge of every marketer.
Every so often reports show that B2B marketers have problems showing Marketing ROI. And then marketers have to do ‘more with less’.
Why is this?
Why do we have problems in showing our Marketing ROI? What can we do to regain trust from our CEO?
What it takes to become a Digital Marketer
This is my story of what it took to become a digital marketer…
My story is not unique
My story is not unique. Hey, I’m sure if you Google a bit, you’ll find other people like me. Truckloads full of them.
But what I want to share with you is what it took for me personally to get to a level where I felt that I knew enough to start with digital, social and content marketing.
And then actually start doing that across the organization. And getting results.
A massive request for change
When I became convinced that digital, social and content was the way to go, the first step was to convince my management. Change was needed. Lots of change.
And that’s what we’ve gone through the last 2 years. And when looking back, the change that I was asking was massive: Read more
“Social media networking” : Don’t we have better things to do?
Many executives do not understand the power of social media networks.
And as such, your boss might be asking to you: why are you spending your time on “social networking” ? You should be plotting marketing strategies, and generate leads, and other stuff that marketers usually do.
If they ask you that question, just pop this counter-question :
How important is LinkedIn to your sales people?
He or she will probably respond that it is an important way of finding new business contacts, and information about companies and their occupation. And that for them it is a way to get in touch with people they want to meet. Or that its serves as a tool to track down occupations of people or companies to see if there is a link with business opportunities. Or that they are joining special interest groups on LinkedIn because that’s where people interact about trending topics, or even business opportunities.
If advertising is ineffective, how do I reach my buyers?
This post is about how traditional advertising has become ineffective in B2B and social media marketing is no answer to this problem. But there is a solution.
What does advertising mean in your life? Do you read industry magazines in which B2B companies advertise? Probably. Usually I flip through them, scan for titles and interesting images that link back to our business, and occasionally I will read an article.
How many times did you notice the advertisements? And I am not talking about us marketing people, who are naturally inclined to pay attention to advertisements, but put yourself in the shoes of your buyers.
Maybe your buyers are not paying attention to your advertisements because they are boring, but that’s another story ;-)
Traditional advertising has become ineffective
It might seem that I am the advocate to stop all our advertisement efforts. Now that is for sure not the case: advertising still has its place to put out important news, and reflect our brand in general. People still see these advertisements, consciously or subconsciously. And as with everything, they cannot “not” be influenced by it, so in that sense it does have its purpose.
But traditional advertising is generally so wide that it has become increasingly ineffective. And I do not distinguish between on or offline advertising.
One-way interruption marketing has become ineffective because everybody is “over advertised”: you receive 1000’s of advertising per day (!) trying to interrupt you. Just to give you an idea: in 1971 the average American was exposed to 560 advertising messages per day. By 1997, that number had increased to more than 3.000 per day. In 2009, it was more than 13.000 per day. And in 2012 you can bet it will be many more than that.
So in effect, people become agnostic to advertising. Just think about it: on signs along your way to work, in supermarkets, in elevators, even in toilets. Because it is just too much, it has become noise.