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The Era of "Do And Gloom"

  • B2B Marcom

  • 21 Things You Can Do, Right Now, To Enhance Your B2B Marcom

    Compliments of the 2009 Annual BMA Conference

    For the past year we've been in, what many feel, was the era of "Doom and Gloom". We received nothing but bad news, and often, bad results from the global economy and our marcom endeavors. WIth our staffs shrinking, customers contracting, demand diminishing, and media morphing, marcom professionals faced trouble, with a capital "T".

    Today, things are still gloomy in some ways (there remains a bit of an economic cloud hanging over our creative little heads), but the sense of doom is lifting. I declare that we are now in the era of "Do and Gloom". It's now time to really "do" what must be done to take us out of this situation. But, how do we know what to do? Well, the people who attended the BMA 09 (Business Marketers Association Annual Conference) in Chicago two weeks ago know.

    I presented at BMA 09 (a member of a panel focused on B2B blogging), so I was in the thick of things. I attended every single session possible during the three days (some events were concurrent so a few choices had to be made) and learned a ton about what we all can "do". I gathered up as much as I could and am sharing it all with you. Here goes! (bold are my comments)

    #1: "Nobody cares about your products (except you)."  "David Meerman Scott  So, focus on what the customer cares about.

    #2: "Develop buyer personas."   David Meerman Scott  Truly seek to categorize and describe WHO buys from you. Accurately develop details on what each persona cares about (see #1).

    #3: "Consider moving your message from "content" to "thoughtful insight".    Matt Preschern Start with items 1 and 2.

    #4: "Use tools to accomplish more with less."  Patrick Crane  Dive in, experiment, research, learn, grow, discern, & discard, and get more efficient.

    #5: "Move from delivering 'information' to delivering 'insight'."  Patrick Crane  See items 1 & 2.

    #6: "Move from 'marketing' to 'place making'."  Joe Pine  Seek to "own the space", to be the thought leader in your realm.

    #7: " 'Authenticity' is the new customer sensibility."  Joe Pine  Let the customer see you, and be real.

    #8: "Create an experience so great that your customers will pay you for the experience."  Joe Pine  Be compelling, be valuable.

    #9: "Get your website WAP- and mobile-enabled. It is about to explode for industrial use."  Sam Sebastian    Clear enough.

    #10: "Build customer engagement using these 5 techniques:

    • put forth quality content

    • moderate your website consistently (to develop the desired tone)

    • be a member of the community

    • let it get personal

    • don't confuse the platform with the community"

                         Bruce Bergwall            Clear enough.

    #11: "Answer this question: What would the story be ... what would the message be - if you were to prepare a 45-minute feature film about your ...?"  Al Saltiel     Wow! THAT is a very interesting suggestion/concept. I'll bet the process (as I am imagining it all) can be so revealing. I am absolutely going to brainstorm this with my team.

    #12: "The new frontier of marketing is connecting, individually, with people."  Al Saltiel   This forces transparency. No more hiding behind slogans and brochures.

    #13: "Use social media to:

    • listen to and learn from customers

    • target and engage with customers

    • join the conversation and add value to the community

    • experiment"

              Steve Patrizi  This forces many to redefine their use of their daily hours. You can't "sort of" do this.

    #14: "If you are considering staging, or participating in, a customized virtual event, it should be an 'event'. " John Grosshandler     See #8.

     #15: Think beyond 'business to business', if it is appropriate, "think 'business to engineer'. " Richard McDonnell    See #2 above, then get busy.

    #16: "Overdeliver at your 'moments of truth'. "  Scott Davis    This forces us all to KNOW what our "moments of truth actually are". Have you ever had this conversation with your Sales staff? Second step is to know what the customer values (so you can overdeliver it). Then, you've got to actually have "it" to deliver. Wow!

    #17: "Stop thinking of products. Start thinking about experiences."  Scott Davis  Clear enough.

    #18: "Give people a reason to talk about your product."  Andy Sernovitz   Not as easy as it sounds.

    #19: "Make it easy for the conversation to take place." Andy Sernovitz    Think about EVERY place you meet the market, and transform each of them into an exchange.

    #20: "Find people who will talk (on your behalf)." Andy Sernovitz   The old "third party endorsement" or "case study" model. It is still just as powerful as ever.

     #21: "Build an army of fans who will advertise for you for free." Andy Sernovitz    "Fans"?  See all of the above.

    So, there you have it. I've been working hard to collect these goodies for you. Please put them to good use as you "DO"!