As markets become more fluid and fragmented, it becomes increasingly complicated for marketers to deliver the right messages to the right potential buyers to cultivate ready-to-buy leads. In response to the marketplace, leading marketing automation vendors are expanding beyond their original goal of providing a front end lead generation platform and beginning to augment their offerings to enable customer-centric, multichannel, personalized marketing across all stages of the Customer Life Cycle.

This session takes place on June 17th at the Digital Media Virtual Summit and will explore how marketing automation can be used to track and report digital behavior across all channels and across all stages of the customer lifecycle – from attracting to capturing to nurturing to converting and finally to expanding the customer relationship.

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The traditional marketing funnel is dead. As modern marketers have become increasingly held to generating meaningful business results, the role of marketing has changed. The guiding force for today’s marketer is the customer’s journey: a continuous cycle of engagement with customers as they move from Awareness to Conversion to Advocacy.

Video is one of the most powerful tools that marketers have to move customers through this journey. In this session, Chris Bondhus, Director Demand Generation at Brightcove, will highlight how organizations using video as a key part of their marketing strategy are ahead of the game.

This session takes place on June 17th at the Digital Media Virtual Summit . We hope to see you there!

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With the rise of smartphones and tablets, the number of mobile devices has outpaced the global population. According to CompTIA’s 2014 annual Trends in Enterprise Mobility study, more than 70% of organizations have made some level of investment to build out mobility solutions.

This presentation takes place on June 17th at the Digital Media Virtual Summit and is part of Marketo’s Definitive Guide to Mobile Marketing. Join Marketo’s Vidya Chadaga, Director of Product Marketing, to discover how to:

  • Think strategically about mobile marketing
  • Clearly define goals and KPIs
  • Develop an integrated cross-channel marketing strategy

It is now more important than ever to integrate mobile into your marketing mix and target customers in real-time.

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Perhaps one of the biggest challenges that marketers face when building a digital strategy is finding “human” ways to connect with their target audience. There are many digital channels that help us to reach our prospects but very few that enable us to engage directly with them.

In this session, Mark Bornstein, Senior Director of Content Marketing with ON24, will highlight best practices for turning webinars into interactive, engagement- based experiences that deliver behavioral data for more effective lead scoring.

This presentation takes place on June 17th at the Digital Media Virtual Summit and will cover:

  • Building interactive webinars
  • Integrating social media into the webinar experience
  • Increasing marketing touches in a single event
  • Measuring audience behavior

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Linda West is a true digital marketing ninja driving huge quarter-over-quarter growth in qualified lead flow to the Act-On sales team. And guess what: over 25% of these new leads are now coming from video content and targeted video marketing efforts. No way! Yes way. So what’s her secret, and why is she betting so big on video? How are other high performing marketers using video content and video analytics to increase CTRs, generate way more leads and improve lead scoring and qualification?

Join this discussion with marketing practitioners and industry experts to find out why video is becoming so critical to digital marketing efforts, the latest best practices for using video to convert audiences, and how to build out a more strategic video marketing strategy that aligns with your business goals (like making $$$).

This session takes place on June 17th at the Digital Media Virtual Summit . We hope to see you there!

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Best-in-Class Marketers Continue to Improve Their Impact on the Business

by Jerry Rackley, Demand Metric and Laura Patterson, VisionEdge Marketing

Today’s marketers certainly feel the pressure, not just to stay busy, but to prove their worth by measuring their value and contribution to the business.  The question the C-suite often has for marketing is: “what have you done for us lately?”  Most marketers are facing this constant scrutiny regarding their performance and contribution.  Very few, however, are responding to it in a way that inspires confidence.

The 2015 Marketing Performance Management (MPM) benchmark study measured this pressure, finding that 83% of the participants feel it. It is a persistent and all too familiar force at work on the marketing team, yet, the way marketing organizations respond to it differs significantly, and those differences are defining. VisionEdge Marketing and Demand Metric just completed the 14th annual study that reveals differences in how marketing organizations do more than just keep their seat at the corporate leadership table, but also earn greater credibility and influence.  The study details how some marketing organizations are achieving best-in-class performance measurement and management, earning recognition as a Center of Excellence and getting the associated benefits.

When it comes to grading the performance of marketing organizations, just 1 in 5 marketers get an “A” from the C-Suite for marketing’s ability to prove its value. Data collected over the 14 years the study’s history provides insight into the characteristics of these groups:

  • A’s: This group is more strategic and data-driven.  Their primary focus is to create value for customers and the business.  This best-in-class group leads all others in terms of performance and they are known as Value Creators.
  • B’s: This group sees their primary role as serving the sales team.  Their focus is on demand generation.  They represent the middle of the pack in terms of performance and are known as Sales Enablers.
  • C’s and D’s or lower: This group operates as a service provider or internal agency to the organization, producing marketing outputs as scheduled as well as on demand. Compared to other marketing organizations, they represent the Laggards in terms of performance and are known as the Campaign Producers.

The MPM study has tracked marketing grade trends over many years, and marketing is not getting better. Despite constant pressure and greater investment in technology to support performance measurement management, the number of marketers achieving excellence in this area isn’t increasing.    In the 2015 study the number of elite, Business Value Creators (A’s) and Sales Enablers (B’s) declined, while the number of Campaign Producers (C’s and D’s) increased. In fact, the number of elite marketers has steadily declined over the past three years.

 Chart 3

The percentage of Value Creators has declined over the past three MPM surveys.

The study found that only the Value Creators do a respectable job of clearly showing the leadership team how marketing is impacting the business.

 Chart 2

Almost two-thirds of Value Creators strongly agree that leadership understands their business impact, a 40-point delta to the Sales Enablers.

An alarming trend is how few of the Sales Enablers and Campaign Producers agree that it’s clear to their corporate leaders how marketing is impacting the business.  There is a substantial gap between the Value Creators and the Sales Enablers, and the Value Creators and Campaign Producers is significant and growing.  Since the 2013 study, the Value Creators have outdistanced all the other marketers.

The Value Creators earn such high marks for a reason. When it comes to key business indicators such as win rates, customer retention, and new customer acquisition, the Value Creators far outpace their counterparts. The average gap between Value Creators and Campaign Producers for these business indicators is 40 percent!

 Chart 1

Over half of Value Creators showed improvements in each of these areas.

Find out how this elite group of marketers excel at MPM, what core competencies they are building, and steps each group can take to accelerate their MPM initiatives at the free webinar, Tales from the Marketing Performance Pack Leaders, on April 29th at 9 am eastern.

Tales from Leaders VEM

 

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Ever feel like your emails are falling on deaf ears (or eyes, as it were)? Your open rates are low and your click through rate is even lower. As a marketer, nothing is more frustrating than feeling your messages are not getting through.

Email marketing has come a long way since inception. Now, there are spam filters to work around, noise to compete with, and tabs to contend with. It’s a tough task but can also pay big dividends when it’s done right.

Make your 2015 more profitable with these innovative email marketing tips that will help you get your messages in front of more customers.

Break It Down

Perhaps the biggest mistake email marketers have made in the past is not breaking lists into segments. Most small and medium sized businesses send mass messages with the hope that they’ll resonate with at least a portion of their audience.

This is damaging. It hurts the relationship with the customer by showing that your business doesn’t care about his or her personal needs. Your customer will feel like you’re just trying to make another sale instead of help him or her with a specific need.

Break your lists into targeted segments. Then, send each segment a personal email with a benefit-driven message specific only to their needs and demands.

Integrate Your Email with Other Technology

To funnel your messages and create a stronger inbox-based relationship with your customers, integrate your email marketing with your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool.

Your CRM is the lifeline to your customer relationships. Make it easy on your sales team by integrating programs, such as MailChimp, with an app that’s already tracking each step in the customer sales cycle.Insightly integrates with MailChimp and is planning to expand email options with new mass email features. These new and existing features will make it as easy as possible to nurture leads and strengthen customer connections.

Personalize The Message

Your customers don’t want to get an email from a company. They want to get an email from a person in your company.

In 2015, personalization will become exponentially more important. It’s the way around the spam filters and into the hearts of your customers. There are a few ways you can personalize your messages:

  1. Add the first name to the subject line. Most email marketing programs make this fairly intuitive and easy.
  2. Pay attention to the email address. Your reader will notice if your email comes from a “no-reply” email address or a personal one. Whenever possible, send your emails from a personal email address.
  3. Reiterate the first name in the body of the email. Keep your reader feeling like your marketing message is written directly for him by reiterating his first name in the body of the email.

The more personal you can make your emails look and feel, the better your email marketing efforts will be received.

Takeaway

If you want your email marketing to work harder for your business, stop sending messages meant for a general audience.

Segment your lists and target your messaging to each group of customer’s unique needs. Make an effort to keep your emails as personal as possible by focusing on creating a stronger human-to-human approach. In the end, you’ll be able to send emails to the right people at the right time with the right message, solidifying a strong customer connection.

 

Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources and business news. Megan has several years of experience on the topics of small business marketing, copywriting, SEO, online conversions and social media. Megan spends much of her time establishing new relationships for ChamberofCommerce.com, publishing weekly newsletters educating small business on the importance of web presence, and contributing to a number of publications on the web. Megan can be reached at megan@chamberofcommerce.com.

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Every small business hopes to grow up and become a big one, right? If that’s true in your case, take a moment to learn about some big-business growth strategies might make your dream a reality. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 49 percent of small businesses survive for five years of more – and you want to make sure your business is one of those!

Don’t let your business find out the cost of a bad sales experience. Take a look at these tips to make your business jump to the next level.

Leverage Partnerships

Some small business owners dwell on the fact that they can’t compete with the vendors that the big guys can. It is true, small businesses can’t play like the Fortune 500s, but your small business still can leverage partnerships in a confident way.

Negotiate for mainstream production and distribution without handing over the hefty upfront cost of building a plant or hiring a shipping company. Focus on your product instead of fretting over making it.

Big businesses have no problem paying for partnerships up front, but small businesses should go ahead and negotiate for partnerships that pay per sale instead.

Use To-Do Lists

Large businesses have enormous facilities, large equipment and multifaceted supply chains. Managing daily operations is simply too much for one individual because there are countless variables to track.

Small businesses are similar: the owners wear many hats.  This means it’s easy to get lost doing tasks that aren’t truly essential.  It’s simple to forget to perform an essential task and instead, become caught up in the hustle and bustle of daily activities and putting out fires.

Follow in the footsteps of big businesses and develop checklists for tasks and jobs. This gives you a baseline and a clear sense of priority – and points your business in the direction of success. A to do-list list acts as a reminder to complete the essential tasks every day. Consider using time-saving small business tools too – technology can help you maximize your time.

Transform Into An Industry Leader

Big companies often make their name known by showing off their expertise in the industry, while other businesses sit on the sidelines.  Successful, fast-growing small companies generate awareness and credibility, ultimately influencing audience behaviors. In order to make that happen, they become industry leaders. Self-promotion only gets companies so far. Volunteer to speak at industry events, publish blogs and use social media. Get your name and company out there in the public eye for the right reasons. Do one or two things and do them well.

Construct Your Team With Care

The people who make up your team define your company’s culture, product, customer service, happiness and overall business success.  So don’t rush it when it comes to hiring.  Hire people who will make your business stronger, people who are smart and will challenge you.  Hire experience over education, experience is valuable.  Focus on building a powerful team.

Market Segmentation

Not sure what this means? It means picking up a subset of the marketplace that you can organize your sales around. Identify which people in the world you will try to sell to. Most big businesses know their niche market, and they do what they can to own that space. Most small business owners are afraid to segment their market because they are afraid to eliminate part of a potential market. While it can seem daunting, it will benefit your business to focus on your core customer and will help lead you don’t the path of growth.

While it may be hard, don’t be afraid to take on and conquer the problems that other small businesses avoid. Implement some new strategies and be bold and be brave — and you’ll likely see your small business growing into a big one.

What big business strategies has your small business adopted?

 

Megan Totka is the Chief Editor for ChamberofCommerce.com. ChamberofCommerce.com helps small businesses grow their business on the web and facilitates connectivity between local businesses and more than 7,000 Chambers of Commerce worldwide. She specializes on the topic of small business tips and resources and business news. Megan has several years of experience on the topics of small business marketing, copywriting, SEO, online conversions and social media. Megan spends much of her time establishing new relationships for ChamberofCommerce.com, publishing weekly newsletters educating small business on the importance of web presence, and contributing to a number of publications on the web. Megan can be reached at megan@chamberofcommerce.com.

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Marketing Revenue Process

In 2011 Danaher (2014 estimated revenue of $20.0 B) approached Eric Albertson’s company to help them provide a repeatable process for generating marketing revenue  with the consistent precision Danaher relies upon for their world renowned manufacturing process. This process is an agile, powerful and reliable process for producing above trend line growth in sales-ready leads that turn into revenue. This talk will be an entertaining trip through the steps in this process that will help you on your way to achieving new heights in revenue production.

This session takes place at during our Feb 25th Marketing Technology Virtual Summit. What You’ll Learn:

  • The specific reasons most marketing programs fail to deliver above trend line revenue growth and sales-ready leads that sales will prioritize and close.
  • The simple trick to durable marketing and sales alignment.
  • The three things you must do if your marketing programs are to succeed in 2015 and beyond.
  • Why Content Marketing as practiced by most and advocated by many vendors is largely a waste of time and money if producing marketing revenue quickly is a priority.
  • Why the battle is not so much about Inbound or Outbound but more about relevance and how you can systematically achieve that relevance.
  • A process that your competition will struggle to imitate and will likely never catch up to.
  • A way to track KPI’s that takes one page and allows little room for debate as to the success or failure of your marketing programs.

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