Create Sales-Ready Buyers with Marketing Interactions

Ardath Albee

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Top Stories by Ardath Albee

There are a few things bugging me that I'd like to air out. Over the last few months, I've seen and experienced some things that make me wonder if B2B marketing is evolving or stuck in the mud and applying old thinking that no longer works in a new context. Here are some examples: Marketing speakers who still lead with a 5 minute "About my company and products" intro. Snooze. "Experts" who have presented the same framework for years but talk about how the market environment is continuously changing. Disconnect. Contests to gain followers or Likes. Is the guy who wants the Kindle Fire really a potential customer for a B2B complex sale? Wrong goal. Exhibitors more focused on scanning badges than engaging people. Does it make more sense to try and build engagement later via email, or while the person is standing in front of you? Missing the point. Presentations that mention ... (more)

B2B Marketing Zone Launches

Tony Karrer (Browse My Stuff) and Tom Pick (WebMarketCentral) have created and launched the B2B Marketing Zone as a filter to aggregate content for us in one spot. Similar to the idea of The Customer Collective for sales and marketing professionals and My Venture Pad aimed at SMBs and Junta42 for content marketing, this site focuses on a niche. I'm excited to be one of their launch bloggers along with the terrific expertise provided by Brian Carroll, Paul Dunay, Newt Barrett and Jon Miller. I love that it also includes some new perspectives such as Cece Salmon Miller (PR Meets M... (more)

How Catchy is Your Content?

Information overwhelm. We all suffer from it. Our job as B2B marketers is to create contagious content that catches—and keeps—the attention of our prospects across the entirety of a long-term complex purchase. That means your marketing content has to work even harder than you may have thought to rise above the noise. Seem daunting? Doesn't have to be. Not when you use Catch Factors. How many times have you heard that your content has to be relevant? Probably a lot. The word relevance is used so much that it's a bucket term. It's simply too bottomless to be helpful in guiding the ... (more)

B2B Prospects in Funnels More Than Pipelines

It should come as no surprise that your B2B marketing content and nurturing programs are being tapped to provide value farther across the buying process. In fact, many of you are now tasked with moving prospects to that nirvana called sales readiness—before salespeople ever see them. Because B2B buyers can now push sales activities to whenever they're ready, your funnel may be longer than your pipeline. This reality layers additional responsibility on the marketing team, but it also leaves salespeople somewhat at odds. You see, when company's had a hold on critical information th... (more)

Stories that Sell - An Interview with Casey Hibbard

As most of you know, I've long been a proponent of storytelling for marketing and sales. Customer stories are one of the most valuable ways B2B companies can share their compelling value. They have the ability to simplify the complexity of considered purchases, validate that what you promise is true, and mitigate risk by proving the business case. Casey Hibbard, and her book Stories that Sell, provides a wealth of information about how to plan for, research and create customer success stories that help you sell more—and do so with ease. And, she ought to know. She's written over ... (more)