• Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

  • Summer Doldrums

    If you’re like me, the mid-summer period can be challenging in business. Client and staff vacations, warm weather & abundant sunshine, and a general “I’d rather be doing something outside” mentality all compete for your attention and get in the way of getting things done.

    What’s a business professional to do?

    summertime blues



    There is a saying in Taoism: “The shape changes, but not the form.”

    Marketing to millennials is challenging, but in no way impossible. Many companies have already found success—and even significant growth—because they were able to connect with this up and coming market. Millennials may be youthful, but they are still people with hopes, desires and dreams. They want to interact with you. They want to customize your products. They will do their research and they will hold you accountable.

    Millennial Marketing


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    What can I tell you about marketing to Millennials that you haven’t already heard, read or researched?

    Here’s what we know: This is a generation that grew up on a steady diet of radical change. Not the kind of slow-rolling progression from the industrial revolution on, or even the 50’s revolution of a throw-away consumable culture. No, millennials have witnessed lightning fast advancements in technology, upheavals of traditional social thought, education and economic infrastructure failings.

    Millennial Marketing


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    Attend a  Tradeshow

    By Jenny Kosek for our 15 Ways to Build Your B2B Brand in 2015 blog series

    You know those booths at trade shows that generate buzz? The booth everyone says you HAVE to see?

    Usually that booth is also a bank-breaker for the company hosting it, with the hope that the big spend on the flashy booth will pull in enough sales and opportunities to justify the expense. Of course, with enough cash, anything is possible, so for larger companies to put out an interactive, multi-story booth with full sound, lighting, and a waterslide (anything’s possible!), it’s easy. For smaller players, such luxury is out of reach.

    But luxury is not the same as impact, and without pouring your entire marketing budget into a tradeshow booth, you can still make a splash if you think creatively.  (more…)

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    Conduct a SWOT ANalysis

    By Karen Enriquez-Wagner for our 15 Ways to Build Your B2B Brand in 2015 blog series

    During strategic planning, a tool you don’t want to forget about is a SWOT analysis. SWOT stands for Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats. It’s a great way to identify and establish a sustainable niche in the marketplace for your company, product or service.

    The SWOT is intended for you to take an internal and external review of your company to make you aware of direct and indirect factors that can impact your organization. For example, the Strengths and Weaknesses should be based on what’s internal to your company, product or service; Opportunities and Threats are the external factors.  (more…)

    Focus on Social Media

    By Jenny Kosek for our 15 Ways to Build Your B2B Brand in 2015 blog series

    By now, 84% or more of B2B marketers use some form of social media in their marketing efforts. Yet studies suggest social media usage rates for industrial companies are much lower: a Belgian study found that only 26.7% of industrial companies in that country used social media in their efforts. If you google “B2B social media” you’ll find a lot of e-books, inspiring articles, and success stories from B2Bs that are just rocking their efforts and swimming in leads…or so it would seem. In my experience, most B2Bs are still struggling to connect the dots between social media, their products or services, clear strategy, and measurable success.

    In the past year, I’ve worked with B2Bs who all seem to be facing the same challenges with social media, and the challenge is summarized simply: what the heck do we do with it? (more…)

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    Build Your B2B Brand by Refreshing Your Website

    By Michael Isaacson for our 15 Ways to Build Your B2B Brand in 2015 blog series

    84% of all prospective customers check out a firm’s web site before they decide to do business. For a lot of businesses, it’s how they make their first impression with B2B buyers.

    Now picture yourself at the last trade show you attended. Did you make a mad rush for the people who put up the exact same booth, show the exact same products, and give away the exact same key chains year after year? Or… did you check out booths that drew you in with an intriguing message, invited an honest conversation, or offered something of real value?

    It’s time to treat your website the same way you would treat your trade show booth. Here are some things to keep in mind: (more…)

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  • Wednesday, September 21st, 2011

  • Two-way communication

    As a long-time disciple of direct marketing I’ve often stated how I believe the best use of the medium is for two-way communication; where the sender delivers information to the recipient for a little information in return. Direct mail and direct-response communication — via print, broadcast or Web-based media — work best when an exchange of valuable information occurs, as opposed to a one-way push.

    The same is true for social media of course, as both parties benefit when each participates in an exchange of opinion, some facts or (real) news. I realize I’m not stating anything new, yet I continue to be surprised at the amount of product-based information that is pushed out via social media without the expectation of anything in return. In other words, advertising via social media commentary, which is the wrong strategy to take if one seeks results. (more…)

  • Thursday, June 2nd, 2011

  • Pendulum swings

    I just read with great interest the findings from a recent marketing industry survey administered and offered by RSW/US, a professional development organization that excels in agency-client relations.  

    With all proper attributions to RSW, their data points to a trend in agency-client relationships that for me is quite refreshing, as I’ve been predicting it for months. The move by several clients in past years from full-service agencies to those who specialize in one discipline or another – like digital or social media – is reversing course, according to the latest feedback from leading client-side marketers.  (more…)

  • Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

  • Marketing is easy; Doing it well isn’t

    Everybody thinks they can be a marketer. Seeing thousands of marketing messages every day, there is no shortage of opinion about what is good and bad. And no shortage of confidence (often misplaced) in one’s ability to, for example, write a good headline or design a brochure.

    Unfortunately, few companies actually track the effectiveness of their marketing decisions so the “good/bad” assessment is often totally subjective. The biggest title in the room will determine if the work is “good.” To make matters worse, you don’t need any formal training to be considered a “marketer,” and actually having a marketing degree (or even experience) is no guarantee that you’re really any good at it.  (more…)

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