All posts tagged Marketing

Robot Sales Teams (And Why They Won’t Work)

"Mini" Vending Machine

Technology has enabled so much innovation and growth for Marketing and Sales so quickly that it’s easy to lose sight of the people behind the technology. These technologies are often discussed in a way that conjures up images of robot salespeople and giant vending machines that work independently of human interaction. Much of the technology is focused on creating a more individual experience for each person; various tools track and measure how people interact with brands; and people build and use and improve that technology. The human role in the technology suite is obvious but still often goes overlooked.

Technology designed to align Marketing and Sales does not automatically result in better alignment. A new campaign management tool does not immediately result in more successful campaigns. Having the best CRM and lead management suite will not guarantee better customer satisfaction. There must be people at the helms of these tools who are equipped to get the most out of them. The human element is a foundation for successful technology use because it is people who use the technology and they use it to interact with other people. At a fundamental level, the success of technology is still based on people.

Marketing and Sales can see better alignment by integrating lead management technologies; campaigns are much more successful when every element is controlled and optimized; and customers benefit from better data management and communication between departments. Technology can make everyone (at least somewhat) more successful and productive, but the tools are only valuable if people know how to use them. And this doesn’t mean the bare minimum; people should really be experts in every tool they use.

Every single person who is or will be using any piece of technology should understand what it does, why it’s being used, how it will help, and who to go to for help or further training. Training should take place in a low-risk environment where people can find out for themselves what a piece of technology can and can’t do, and they should be rewarded for their discoveries. They should be given opportunities to push the limits of the tools. If a new tool is introduced, users should be given time to get comfortable with the tool and encouraged to explore the full reaches of its capabilities. That’s when technology improves: the field testing. And many times, that’s where the real insights are uncovered.

If people are using a tool every day, they will have ideas on how it might improve. If they have the skills and the knowledge to experiment with the tool, there is a chance to capitalize on that improvement. If people only understand the bare minimum, that chance is never realized. When everyone is well trained and empowered to experiment, technology can drastically improve performance and productivity, but the key element is the people! We’re not at the stage of intelligent, responsive networks of robot vending machines…yet.

Is Marketing the Needed Background For New CEOs?

Chief Marketing Officer is no longer the highest position available for marketing professionals. With the changes in marketing portfolios, and the increased experience with analytical reasoning and digital strategies, they’re quickly becoming the coveted executives to take on the role of Chief Executive Officer. Although it used to be common to bring in managers that had worked in operations and finance, the marketing officers can now bring ideas that can allow for a more customer-focused vision.

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The Emergence of Growth Hackers

Finding someone that has the creative brilliance of a marketer and the technical background of a coder is no easy feat. It’s so hard, in fact, that it has become its own position in both start-up and developed companies, and they’re searching high and wide for their next “growth hacker”.

The purpose of a growth hacker is to push companies towards expanding their sales, reach, awareness, and leads by creative yet data-driven strategies. Their focus on metrics is what separates them from your typical marketer, and it’s what makes them so desirable. They are neither a coder nor a marketer – they are a combination of both, and they think outside the box in order to find long-term marketing solutions.

Growth hackers are expected to be well-versed many marketing tactics, including:

- Viral Acquisition
- Paid Acquisition
- Content Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Search Engine Optimization

To learn more about what it takes to be a Growth Hacker, take a look at this introductory article. Marketers and coders could be one step away from being the key to their company’s next great achievement.

Three Advantages to Video Marketing

3 Advantages of Video Marketing

Considering the soaring popularity of video sharing platforms like Vine, Viddy and Keek, and the indisputable dominance of YouTube, most marketers can agree that videos are the new frontier for content marketing. More and more businesses are turning towards video as the next domain for engaging consumers and pushing out relevant, engaging and well-received information.

Video content can be used to effectively find, educate and establish a brand in the mind of the consumer. When used properly, B2B marketers can benefit from including video in their content marketing strategy and can experience lasting results.

We’ve highlighted below, three benefits your business will notice in adopting video as a marketing medium:

1) Reach and Syndication: Simple and effective syndication is an invaluable benefit to video marketing. No matter the publishing platform, a video can be repeatedly shared and embedded across the web with the click of a few buttons. The extended reach provided by this ease-of-syndication, can rapidly multiply the number of consumers aware of your business.

2) Engagement and Education: Video content tends to be more memorable than text. For this reason, videos provide businesses the opportunity to engage consumers through the provision of entertaining and valuable content. A video will add value to a user’s visit to your webpage, increase the amount of time they spend viewing your offerings, and provide them with a memorable take-away from their visit.

3) Brand Establishment: Unlike quoted text, a video will be reproduced in full and therefore assures an intended brand message can be shared without alteration. Brand personality will also be more easily established as video provides visual cues neglected through other mediums.

In using video as a content strategy, it is important to keep the messaging simple, entertaining and engaging. Video content that is quick, easily-digestible, and memorable, will be highly effective at increasing brand reach, engaging consumers, and establishing brand identity.

As marketers, have you noticed any benefits from integrating video content into your marketing strategy?

*Guest post by Kylie McCabe – Couch & Associates’ Social Media & Marketing Intern

Sources:
9 Ways to Turn Web Video Into Your #1 Sales Tool – Andrew Angus
http://www.switchvideo.com/blog/2013/03/26/crazyegg-guest-post-9-ways-to-turn-web-video-into-your-1-sales-tool/

5 Reasons Why You Should Use Video in Your Content Marketing – Paul Wolfe
http://www.onespoonatatime.com/5-reasons-why-you-should-use-video-in-your-content-marketing

Content Marketing and the Power of Video [Infographic] – BrainShark
http://www.brainshark.com/ideas-blog/brainshark-articles/2012/December/~/media/Ideas%20Blog%20images/Infographic-the-Power-of-Video.ashx

 

Understanding Demand Generation

Understaindg Demand Generation

Demand generation is defined as the focus of targeted marketing programs to drive awareness and interest in a company’s products and/or services.  The key ingredients of demand generation come from building and enduring relationships through continuing communications across multiple channels.  According to Jacob Grobbelaar owner of BroadVisions Marketing, demand generation is the practice of creating demand for an organization’s products or services through marketing. The direct outcome he argues, is your audience is more likely to purchase your products or services.  Eloqua defines demand generation as the art and science of creating, nurturing, and managing buying interest in your products and services through campaign management, lead management, marketing analysis, and data management.

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