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Q: Please indicate the LEVEL OF EFFECTIVENESS (in terms of achieving objectives) of using social media platforms in your inbound marketing efforts.
The only surprising part of this chart is the SlideShare info. We have reservations about that metric, but in agreement on the others.
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The recent study by MarketingSherpa shows that 32% of the marketers consider Blogs are 'Very effective' and 52% of them think it is 'Somewhat effective' for Inbound Marketing. Overall it seems Blog plays an important component of Inbound Marketing.
It’s obvious that Marketing needs help executing and managing marketing technology, and it’s not going to be internally done by IT. This is a marketing function, a marketing responsibility, and it needs to be carried out by marketing.
Great. Now what? So you want to solve your talent shortage by retraining staff?
Yes? It is a solution to train existing staffers on the new technologies. Doable, but unless they have the aptitude, are interested and motivated, and their current responsibilities can be reassigned, it won’t work. You need some baseline knowledge of tech to accomplish the work at hand. So it’s not going to happen: insourcing via existing staff will not work.
But hold on: we just touched on something. What about IT resources working in conjunction with Marketing resources? Couldn’t the two work together?
Again, we’re talking about burdening the existing staff with a whole bevy of new technologies. Remember that IT will need to be a part of the process regardless of outsourced or insourced assistance: from security to internal flows to integration. Now we’re adding new burdens, which means more hours, which means more staff. And for the paranoid: do you really want to cede some control over marketing technology to IT?
So insourcing relying solely on existing staff looks to be a non-starter. We’ll tie things up tomorrow with recommendations.
Have a comment? Email it to firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below. I’ll publish it here.
Today’s curated articles collected for your quick review:
-- > Easy Ways to Personalize Content with Marketing Automation - Kapost Content Marketeer http://sco.lt/5UORG5
-- > Why You Shouldn’t Hire a Marketing Consultant - QuickSprout http://sco.lt/8A9d7h
-- > Why We Are Hiring for a New Content Role (and You Should Too) http://sco.lt/7hlk7F
-- > 5 Google+ Tips to Improve Your Networking | Social Media Examiner http://sco.lt/5inr9t
-- > Value Proposition: 4 key questions to help you slice through hype | MarketingExperiments Blog: Research-driven ... http://sco.lt/79v4r3
-- > Three Scientifically Proven Tests to Select a Name That Works - Profs http://sco.lt/8SlBI1
-- > The Customer Experience - Gartner http://sco.lt/7SWd1N
-- > For Social Media Leads, Automation Begets Automation - Ad Exchanger http://sco.lt/8nA5CL
-- > 2014 Gartner Magic Quadrant for SFA | http://SugarCRM.com http://sco.lt/8OJ57Z
-- > Navigating the Class V Rapids of Marketing Technology - Chief Marketing Technologist http://sco.lt/7BeZub
-- > Digital to account for 75% of all marketing spend in 5 years? [Infographic] - Smart Insights Digital Marketing ... http://sco.lt/5Kh2ET
-- > Create Compelling Marketing Videos That Educate and Entertain [Infographic] - Profs http://sco.lt/776zpZ
See ALL Top Curated Marketing Technology Articles here.
► Receive a FREE daily summary of The Marketing Technology Alert directly to your inbox. To subscribe, please go to http://ineomarketing.com/About_The_MAR_Sub.html (your privacy is protected).
We believe the talent, products, and technology the Bizo team brings will enhance LinkedIn's ability to offer a comprehensive B2B marketing platform for brands…
This could be a big deal for the B2B marketer, and we need to keep an eye on this as they fold in Bizo.
As evidence of marketing’s central role, just look at which department in your firm is commanding the fastest-growing share of the technology budget and attracting the lion’s share of data analysts and data scientists. There are fewer marketing majors at the controls of marketing decisions than ever before, as the skills needed to participate in the revolution have been redefined. With data analytics as the driver and automation as the goal, marketing departments are scrambling to pull in skills that would have lived purely in IT and in the quant labs of financial service firms. These skills are now reaching beyond data analysis to encompass information architecture, application development, and technology project management.
This might be all to the good except that the rapid change in marketing roles and skills has come at the expense of the traditional IT organization. More than just a drain or overlap in skills, organizational budgets have shifted rapidly away from IT, leaving the CIO scrambling to support legacy systems that are still necessary and costly to maintain.
For this revolution to work, organizational power can’t simply continue to devolve from IT to the marketing department. CIOs and CMOs must meet in the middle. Decades of safe, smart IT practice needs to be applied to the new ways of finding and using data.
Interesting phenomena: budget shifting to Marketing leaving IT to maintain existing systems. No: it should not be like this. IT is a partner, and must be treated as one.
Shortly, the company will launch a hybrid marketing automation/CRM-light/social media marketing capability for sales reps that will live right inside their Gmail inboxes. It’s called LeadRocket, drawing on technology from an acquisition CallidusCloud made in February of this year, and theoretically, it will integrate seamlessly into what sales reps already do.
It’s much like a marketing automation system but much simpler. Inside Gmail, sales reps can tap into assets and campaigns defined in the CallidusCloud marketing automation system, run their regular correspondence as they would normally do, and still have the tracking and management features that the higher-ups want.
The tool includes automated follow-up and integration with nurture campaigns, taking some stress off reps’ shoulders. It also provides editable pre-built blocks of text for sales follow-up emails, and it gives sales reps insight into whether or not emails were opened, right within Gmail.
For our SMB brethren. However, I still cannot figure out CallidusCloud and their products.
I use quite a few of these tools and can personally vouch for them.
Here’s why you shouldn’t hire a marketing consultant:
Consultants aren’t miracle workers
A lot of small and medium businesses hire consultants because they are looking for miracles. I hate to break it to you, but no consultant is going to take a business that is doing very little in revenue and quickly turn it around. You need to figure out how to create a sustainable business on your own. That’s what being an entrepreneur is all about. If it were easy, everyone would do it instead of working 9 to 5 jobs.
You can’t build a skyscraper without laying the foundation
Without a good product or service offering, your business is bound to fail. To prevent that from happening, you need to figure out how to create a business model that allows you to get paid for solving other people’s problems. Don’t worry, your business doesn’t have to be unique. It just has to be different.
You need to walk before you run
In essence, you have to try to market your own business first. From optimizing your code for search engines to building your social media profiles and implementing your content marketing, you need to test these initiatives on your own. Here’s what I recommend you do:
-- > Optimize your code for search engines
-- > Speed up your site
-- > Start a blog
-- > Interact on the social web
Moral of the story: a consultant can make the good better. A consultant cannot (and should not) make a bad thing good.
Google+ offers important networking opportunities that set the stage for future partnerships. In this article I’ll share five ways to cultivate Google+ relationships.
#1: Identify Industry Influencers Fast
I truly love to use NOD3x with my Google+ account. NOD3x is Ripples on steroids with a magnifying glass. It brings you right to the doorstep of people you want to meet.
#2: Find Hidden Engagement Opportunities
While that new circle helps you keep up with the people who interacted obviously with your content (e.g., you can see they left a comment or mentioned you in a share), there may be other people and interactions you can’t see. Google Ripples helps you find those interactions.
#3: Validate Expertise With Helpful Tips
Relationship marketing should be your top priority on Google+. Do what you can to help others succeed. Promotion of anything—even self-promotion—is an ongoing task. Constant and blatant self-promotion, though, is a bad idea. Be subtler than that and come up with a commenting strategy to engage with other people’s Google+ posts.
#4: Engage Like-Minded People
It’s easiest to start building your relationships with people you already know, but not in the way you may think. Look at your current friends and followers and see whom they’re connected with. Those friend-of-a-friend connections are very likely to be relevant to you—you already have something in common (your friend).
#5: Focus on Visibility to Connect
The mistake some people make is not taking the time to cultivate a relationship before they start asking for something. First contact has to be handled more delicately than that. Listen to the people you want to connect with. Help them become familiar with you by consistently giving +1s, resharing their content (don’t forget to plus mention them!) and being active in their comment section.
Very practical guide with concrete steps for you to take. Click through for details!
Here are three simple tests to select a name that works.
1. Is your name easy to say?
Forget Greek, forget Latin, forget inventing new words. The very first (and most important!) test comes down to fluency: Is your name easy to say?
2. Does your name clearly describe who you are or what you do?
If you have to explain, translate, unpack, justify, or do anything else other than just say your name, something's gone wrong. Your name should be screamingly obvious. Again, clarity trumps creativity... and absolutely murders clever.
3. Is your name about them or you?
You know who "them" are, right? "Them" are your prospects, your customers, your audience. Like everything in marketing, your name should be about "them," not about "you." To be effective, your name should be about the people you're trying to reach. Your name should address their problems, their fears, their solutions, and their hopes. It should hint at the hell from which you'll deliver them and the heaven to which you'll save them.
A post for SMBs. So simple...so difficult.
“The first generation was about putting data into databases, and the second generation was about building automation platforms [like Salesforce or Marketo],” Bewsher said. The focus for Leadspace is to use public and proprietary social data to layer on top of a client’s existing sales platforms and find new potential clients, or add color to existing ones. Leadspace gathers data on individuals through the web, multiple social networks such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter, and any structured data, such as first-party CRM or marketing databases or third-party business intelligence data sets from Dun & Bradstreet. If an individual known by the client posts on an online forum, for instance, Leadspace’s technology is designed to gather this additional information and combine it to create a more relevant profile of that person and their interests.
Automating lead generation via social media isn’t limited to gathering newly available data and plugging it into a CRM. Some marketers are finding it useful to improve the community-building aspects that are the ostensible purpose of social platforms.
NextPrinciples brands itself a “social marketing automation solution.” Its product is similar to Leadspace it that it uses social media data to vet potential leads, but does so for the purpose of targeting leads with content on social platforms.
The company’s focus for now is on Twitter content optimization, but it has been working on integration with Facebook, blogs, forums and YouTube.
Social automation is a necessary part of the whole schema: CRM, MAS, SAS with a underlying 3rd party DB...and predictive.
Scott Brinker presentation that focuses on the marketing tech landscape.
Content - Want to marketing videos that grab your customers' attention and keeps them coming back for more? Then check out these tips for creating instructional, informational, and entertaining marketing videos.
The "growth hacker" or "full-stack marketer" is every CMO's dream. The challenge with finding this person, however, is that he or she is a unicorn – everybody has their fair share of strengths and weaknesses.
Instead of looking for one person that's a data scientist/programmer/designer/content writer extraordinaire, it’s important to fill these needs in bits and pieces.
First, make a list of your marketing team’s existing -- and potential -- growth opportunities. Next, determine the skillsets that are most critical to accomplishing these goals. You’ll likely need a strong project manager, someone who rocks with spreadsheets and numbers, a visual content pro, an enthusiastic programmer, a business development engine, a researcher, and a writer. Connect the dots between these skills by hiring multiple people who together, create the foundations of the "ultimate" marketing team instead of trying to find one person with all of these skill sets.
This blended hiring approach will force you to build an inter-connected, collaborative team. At the same time, you’ll boost efficiencies by hiring team members who can execute initiatives quickly with minimal direction.
It sounds so simple, but the sad truth is that demand is outstripping supply, and insourcing must rely on contractors to get the job done.
Even worse, too heavy a reliance on marketing automation in lieu of the kind of best practices that actually make it work properly can do a lot of damage to your content marketing strategy. After all, content marketing—and, really, all inbound marketing—relies, to a large extent, on your company’s reputation. Before they’re going to raise their hands and identify themselves as prospects and leads, visitors to your website (or consumers of any other content you create) need to know, like, and trust you. They need to believe you’re working with their best interests in mind, that you care about them as individuals, and that what you have to say means something important to them personally. Of course, it’s not possible to scale personalized email and social media messaging to the extent that it can support your business without some form of automation. But when your automated emails sound robotic, you suddenly draw the curtain back and shout out loud to your prospects, “You’re just cogs in this machine I’ve built, so stand in line and let me place you on my conveyor belt!” And that doesn’t leave your prospects feeling very good.
And as a result, the author indirectly argues for a persona-based content strategy. Which is a basic.
We’re quite certain that marketing is not about the technology. It’s about customers and the market, which are still influenced predominantly by the soft science and art that our guild celebrates. Yet we can’t deny that marketing has also become tremendously dependent — some would say codependent — on technology to deliver the fruits of our craft at the speed, scale, and contextual plurality that the digital world demands.
This tension between what we do with technology vs. the technology itself is reminiscent of the debate of art vs. science in our industry. But they’re both false dichotomies. They don’t have to be opposing worldviews. On the contrary, there can be a virtuous cycle between the two: technology inspiring marketing and marketing inspiring technology. The boundaries between them quickly blur.
We resolve our conflict by embracing technology strategy and management as a native part of marketing. It’s neither master nor slave, but an equal partner in concept and execution. We learn to see processes, systems, and technology as expressions of marketing in a digital world.
It’s more than marketing operations. It’s more like marketing engineering. More accurately, it is the engineering of customer experience, from a prospect’s first touchpoint through their lifetime relationship with your firm.
The article's written by Scott Brinker (no wonder). Note that reference: "It’s more than marketing operations. It’s more like marketing engineering." Marketing Engineering! Now that's a great moniker that seems to make sense. Wouldn't be surprised to see this presented at the MarTech conference.
Here are some key takeaways:
• Go responsive: 41 percent of opens now happen on mobile devices Opening email on mobile devices is now more common than opening in desktop or webmail clients. For this reason, marketers need to prioritize responsive designs to get the best possible outcome from their campaigns.
• Improve the content: First open results in fewer clicks on mobile Readers are less likely to click through on the initial open from mobile devices than they are from their desktops. The standard for compelling content is higher than ever.
• Create incentive: Drive second opens on desktop Mobile readers who open emails a second time from the desktop are 65 percent more likely to click through than readers opening for the first time. Marketers need to understand how to drive subsequent opens.
You can find the report here: http://cl.ly/2z0P0Q3g0Q0R
Marketing automation tools are being used with a number of important objectives in mind, and have been generally successful in achieving those objectives, according to a new report from Ascend2 and its Research Partners based on a survey of 291 marketing, sales and business professionals from around the world, three-quarters of whom are B2B-focused. The most commonly-cited objectives were improving marketing productivity (45%), increasing sales revenue (44%), increasing lead generation (42%) and improving lead nurturing (41%); only 7% rated marketing automation as not being successful in meeting their objectives.
Improve marketing productivity? NO! It's about improving marketing efficacy...measurably!
How Do You Do It? With dynamic content field merge. The technical process differs depending on what type of marketing automation software you have. We’ve gathered content around some of the heavy hitters, so for a more in-depth look at the technical side of things, check out the resources below.
-- > Marketo - Personalization Cheatsheat
-- > ExactTarget - Personalization Strings
-- > Pardot – Dynamic Content / Personalization How-To
-- > Eloqua - Using Field Merge to Dynamically Display an Image / Personalizing Emails from Custom Data Objects
-- > MailChimp - Getting Started with Merge Tags
The value from this post: comparing and contrasting the different means to personalize from the big 4 plus MailChimp. I should do a compare/contrast of triggered email flows to point out the differences.
This person was tasked with gaining an amazingly in-depth understanding of all the current content assets owned by the organization (i.e., no outside content gets factored in). Starting with a full-blown content audit, the curator who holds this position has ultimately taken responsibility for:
-- > Understanding the content assets available to work with, including textual content, imagery and audio content
-- > Effectively tagging, categorizing, and coordinating these materials into some kind of a data asset management system
-- > Working with the content marketing team on a clear channel plan
-- > Developing and executing on a content curation strategy by using existing resources.
Once the content is organized and there is a process in place for continual asset placement and management (including making sure those assets are easily findable), the curator can begin to fill needed gaps in the overall editorial calendar without having to spend money creating new content.
It should never get to this point: get organized from the get-go.
Question #1. Is our claim tangible?
Our senses love being rewarded, so if your claim offers tangible value, the nature of it should connect directly to the customer experience.
Question #2. Is our claim relevant to customers’ needs?
The power of relevance rests in crafting copy that deals directly with any key concerns already present in the mind of a customer.
Question #3. Is our claim unique?
Identifying and expressing the exclusivity and appeal of the differentiators your product or service offers is the best way to avoid the pitfall of “me too” marketing claims.
Question #4. Is our claim true?
Claims that underperform have a greater tendency for being generic. The best thing you can do to add credibility to generic claims is strip them down and add quantifying values your product offers that are relevant to customer pain points.
Ultimately, these four questions serve one purpose: transparency.
Marketing is in a unique position for the customer experience. Understanding the customer relationship, the company’s value to customers, the customers’ value to the company, the importance of learning and reacting to customer interactions, meeting customer expectations for business goals like customer satisfaction, customer loyalty, advocacy and ultimately revenue, are all under marketing’s purview.
This, of course, is an enormous responsibility. Creating an environment for a positive customer experience means that processes must be accessible, dependable, thorough, timely, adaptable, flexible and personalized. A tall order. A big issue is that marketing doesn’t completely own the customer experience. It is certainly shared and orchestrated with the customer themselves.
Marketers must overcome silos to help plan, design, and facilitate start to finish positive experiences and get to a place where they are living up to the high-level expectation brand promises that they are making.
You'll see Brand at the B2B Enterprise level...sometimes. So who owns the CX? PM owns it, and Marketing contributes to the cause.
And it's the companies that manage their brand well, from the inside out, that consistently provide the best customer experiences.
Compliments of SugarCRM.