VIP Experiences are Key to Closing B2B Sales

Posted on March 11, 2016

One of the unique aspects of being a contract CMO is the diverse range of B2B brand challenges that I encounter. While a Tech marketer by trade, my experience racing sports cars led to an engagement with Aston Martin Racing North America in 2015 to help them construct VIP experiences for B2B brand sponsors/partners to drive sales revenue. This weekend marked the first round of the 2016 Pirelli World Challenge race season at the Circuit of ...

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7 Reasons Why Brand Strategy is Essential for Effective Demand Generation

I regret to say that over the years I’ve worked in/with Marketing organizations that have operated in silos such that Brand Strategy/Management and Demand Generation were viewed as operating virtually on separate planets. Brand Management (it was thought) was involved in abstract research and positioning that was somehow removed from the daily “grunt work” of having to generate qualified leads to feed the Sales organization. The Demand ...

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B2B Sales Require Getting on the Buyer Short List

It's now become clear that there has been a dramatic shift in the alignment between B2B buying cycles and B2B sales cycles.  Lori Wizdo (Forrester) blogged at the end of 2012 that B2B buyers are 65%-90% complete with their buying cycle before contacting a brand's sales channel. Earlier this week, I spent an hour on the phone with Peter Burris (VP - Forrester Research) discussing B2B buying cycle dynamics for a client engagement in the outsou...

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B2B Sales Cycles are a Fraction of the Buying Cycle

Posted on February 19, 2014

Lori Wizdo posted on the Forrester blog in 2012 that B2B decision makers are 65%-90% decided before contacting a vendor. MarketingProfs published a great Infographic in yesterday's feed further outlining the challenges of demand generation for B2B marketers. What this means is that the amount of time a vendor has to actually persuade a buyer to purchase has shrunk to one-quarter of the amount of time the buyer will spend in the buying cycle....

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Creating B2B Customer Journeys

Posted on July 9, 2013

If you are reading this I'm going to assume you have been exposed to McKinsey & Company's Consumer Decision Journey ("CDJ") research that was publicized in 2010 and has shaped marketing strategy since that time.  However, some marketers may not be aware of McKinsey's efforts to benchmark the CDJ model for B2B companies -- hence, the acronym now being referenced as the Customer Decision Journey. One of the key differences in the buying ...

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Influencing Buyers to Choose Your Brand

Over the past 18 months I've had the opportunity to be involved in strategic marketing plans in three distinct industries: (i) healthcare, (ii) banking, and (iii) technology.   One of the questions that is central to deciding how to engage with prospects is to understand their buying cycle (customer journey).   Within the buying cycle, it is critical to understand how the prospect gathers information about products/brands and which sources of ...

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Experiential Marketing Lessons from Subaru

Posted on November 16, 2009

I took a break from the office over lunch hour to run an errand to Whole Foods with my wife.  Upon our arrival, the parking lot was packed with shoppers and corporate types enjoying an organic lunch in the restaurant section.  On our way into the store there were two new Subaru cars display parked on the sidewalk near the entry doors and 2-3 field marketing staff literally blocking the entry doors while asking customers entering the store to ...

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Marketing Lessons from a Fisherman

Posted on July 30, 2009

OK, so the title of the post has captured your attention -- now I hope the contents will keep it. As marketers struggle to find new customers and keep those that they already have, they seem to be overwhelmed with their tactical options (social media, promotions, advertising, events, grassroots, etc.)  However, that's because many marketers tend to bypass strategy and gravitate straight to tactics -- and getting the sequence wrong produces ...

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Twitter Tools and Tips for Online Retailers

Twitter buzz is reaching epidemic proportion as I write this post and many of us are experimenting with using it for a variety of marketing purposes.  But what about online retailing -- do we simply blurt out great deals, or are there more appropriate ways to use Twitter in the Awareness phase of the sales funnel? Here are a few ways Twitter is being used by online retailers: Selling: announce arrival or "end of line" on inventory ...

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The $50 Billion Gamble and Why Ads (alone) Don’t Sell Products

I couldn't resist the opportunity this week to comment on something I've been following for years: the declining correlation between ad expenditures and sales results. In 2008, the auto industry spent an estimated $9.5 billion on advertising alone -- not including incentives, rebates, and all other forms of marketing.   This expenditure comes in the face of an average 30%+ decline in unit sales thereby increasing the advertising cost per car ...

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