Experiences: The 7th Era of Marketing

March 23, 2015 I’m excited to share that today marks the release of a new book that I’ve co-authored with the uber talented Robert Rose – Experiences: The 7th Era of Marketing. As anyone who’s written a book knows, it’s no small feat. We’ve spent the last year synthesizing five years of research, workshops, consulting engagements and conversations with more …

Using Purpose-Driven Content to Create B2B Buyer Experiences

March 10, 2015 It’s no secret that the information pools that buyers can tap are overflowing. It’s time, however, that we start looking at the customer decision journey with a different perspective and begin focusing on purpose-driven content that creates distinguishing experiences for audiences. For the past few years, we’ve belabored the point that marketers need to map the customer …

Content Marketing and the Rise of the Citizen Storyteller

February 17, 2015For companies to make the transition from telling stories to creating brand experiences, they have to focus on the power of amplifying the essence of their brand story. Confining storytelling strictly to the brand or PR teams limits the value and impact that can be had. Creating citizen storytellers isn’t only about tapping the ranks for ideas to …

How to Create a Thought Leadership Strategy That Supports True Innovation

February 3, 2015 Thought leadership is a common approach for companies wanting to establish credibility within their industry and stand apart from the crowd — and for good reason. It’s true that thought leaders tend to be the most successful professionals in their fields, and because of this, have more influence over their audience. The problem is that people throw …

Creating Purpose-Driven Marketing Departments

December 9, 2014 by Carla Johnson In the late 1990s, Philip Kotler wrote a book called Kotler on Marketing. In it, he said that “marketing will be re-engineered from A to Z. Marketing will need to rethink fundamentally the processes by which they identify, communicate and deliver customer value.” For the last decade, people have talked about changing buyer behavior. …

Are You An Agile Content Creator? 6 Traits of Change Agents

November 25, 2014 In a previous post, I talked about why marketers need to embrace change to survive in today’s environment. Beyond just surviving, what do content professionals need to thrive and prosper? An agile learning mentality. As we adapt to new behaviors along the evolving buyers’ journey, content marketers have to prepare to draw on new insights and expertise …

Want to Keep Your Marketing Job? Why You Must Embrace Change to Survive

November 11, 2014 How buyers buy has changed how we need to think and act as marketers. If you love uncertainty, then being a marketer today feels like being a kid on summer vacation – so many opportunities, ideas and inspiration. But apprehensive marketers are holding onto traditional practices. They think that if they ignore the disruption, they won’t have …

Back to the Basics: Marketing with a Strategy

October 14,2014 The Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs released their annual research on the state of content marketing. B2B Content Marketing 2015 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends – North America highlights how far we’ve come in the last 12 months as it relates to the adoption and sophistication of practice in content marketing. I won’t go into details about the research …

Performance Anxiety and the Modern Marketer

September 30, 2014 For all the change that’s taken place in how buyers buy, it’s no wonder that marketers feel uncertain. It’s not just about learning new skillsets and making sure teams are staffed and equipped with enough resources. It’s about realizing, understanding and then doing something about the new roles that we need to have as marketers and marketing …

Sales and Marketing: Moving From Content to Conversations

September 16, 2014 Equipping B2B sales teams with the relevant content that helps them have long-term conversations with buyers is hard. Few marketers understand the strategy behind it and even fewer execute it well. It’s an area that’s vitally important to marketers and was the topic of a panel I moderated last week at Content Marketing World in Cleveland. I …

Ideation and Brainstorming: The art of team building through agreement

July 1, 2014 What’s better than sitting in a bland conference room, sun beating through the windows and fluorescent lights buzzing while your boss drones on about a brainstorming session? Probably everything. Brainstorming. It always begins with that cliché, “Remember, there are no bad ideas.” Which actually isn’t true. There are lots of bad ideas: The mullet. Parachute pants. New …

50 Statistics About B2B Sales and Marketing (Mis)Alignment

June 17, 2014 It’s hard to imagine a 2014 topic hotter than Jimmy Fallon right now. I mean, who would’ve imagined that lip syncing would have such a come back? But if there’s one, at least in the business world, it’s how to fix the chasm between sales and marketing so companies quit bleeding leads (qualified or not) and customers. Why …

Think Inside the Box: Freeing Creativity with Constraints

March 31, 2014 There’s a belief that in order to be truly creative, marketers must unshackle themselves from anything that could hinder their process. Give them their creative freedom. Let them have no bounds. The sky’s the limit. FLY ICARUS, FLY! In other words, we want them to “think outside the box.” But marketers are like toddlers on Christmas morning; …

Content Marketing and Sales Enablement: Can’t We All Just Get Along?

If content marketing is supposed to support the sales cycle, why are so many companies bad at it? Too many companies think the answer comes from the right marketing automation system or other technology that gets content in front of a customer or prospect. It’s not. It’s about sales and marketing not having walked the proverbial mile in each other’s …

Teach Employees to Tell Your Brand Story

September 24, 2013 “Let me tell you a story…” is one of the most powerful phrases you hear. Yet while people relish this from Hollywood movies and best-selling authors, they often shun it in the board room. They shouldn’t. Some companies are slowly starting to understand the power of storytelling. Cisco uses it to strengthen its brand through The Network …

The Financial ROI of Brand Storytelling

August 6, 2013 At the Society for Marketing Professional Services annual conference a few weeks ago in Orlando, people who attended my session asked me how to get executive buy-in on storytelling. My response? Talk to them in their language: money. Successful organizations of all sizes (Fortune 100 to small and medium size) are drawing on storytelling to bring their brands to life …

Is Your Content Marketing Scaleable?

One of the biggest struggles between sales and marketing stems from understanding what sales needs to turn a prospect into a customer and what marketing has the bandwidth to produce. It’s a battle that repeats itself regardless of company size or industry focus. To help remove some of the animosity from the relationship, it helps to have everyone on the …