As a content developer, I’m constantly trying to figure out ways to best convey our clients’ value propositions. When probing for information to help me express these ideas most effectively, I often follow a basic line of questioning: What’s the most important thing your audience needs to hear to be convinced to make a purchase decision? What technical advantages do your products have or enable? What are the exact words you use to connect with your audience? The B2B buyer is a different breed, and effective industrial marketing communications must play to their preferences.
Like or not, social media is here to stay. Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter, YouTube — these are the apps on the front screen of our smartphones, the favorites in our Web browsers, the ubiquitous presence in our lives that now serve as passports to our ever-expanding social universe. I freely admit there are things that I love about the “social age” we live in: connecting with friends, networking with peers and prospects, and monitoring trending events worldwide. But I must admit there are some things that annoy the living likes out of me.
At its essence, creating impactful content requires mechanical precision and deliberate execution. It starts with selecting a topic on which you have considerable expertise, progresses with extensive research, and culminates in the completion of a high-value, finished piece.
Starting in 2011 and most recently last month, Google implemented new search algorithms that have significantly changed the game of traditional search engine optimization (SEO). Named after cute and cuddly critters, Panda and Penguin updates have wreaked havoc on website rankings and have created a cycle of fear each time a new update is introduced.
I saw a commercial last night that nearly made me spit out my Cheerios. A man is riding a bicycle with tower of bread loaves stacked upon his head, happily tossing loaves to various people at every corner of the globe. It was mildly intriguing, in that I had no clue what they were selling, and then I saw the payoff tagline: Solutionism. The New Optimism. What? Solutionism? As a grammar-phile, writer, and one who generally cares about the words people use to express themselves using the king’s English, I was everything but optimistic about another solution spin-off word.
Mixed Messages Confuse Both Internal and External Audiences
It’s a fact of life that every business must evolve to remain competitive. Shifting economic and industry-specific conditions make this more of a priority for some businesses than others. Regardless of where your business finds itself in this continuum, long-term planning is critical to any business's success. A 5- or 10-year plan can serve to guide product development and, in today’s climate, shape the direction of a business model toward one that is ultimately more viable and profitable.
While everyone wants leads, not everyone wants to pick up the phone. It’s quite common for Sales (with a capital S = those good folks who are dedicated to securing new business) to not want to bother with making cold calls unless the lead is a notch or two above the “Cold” status (capital C = don’t waste my time). At the very least, multi-channel lead-gen campaigns should soften the beaches and qualify that first Sales call (be it phone or appointment) as one that is potentially productive.