One of the blogs I read is Web Ink Now by David Meerman Scott (@dmscott).
Love the insight and tone, and the fact that he rarely lets me down. This week, David posted a great video (below) that he found through Trevor Young (@trevoryoung), that he found from Ross Monaghan (@themediapod) (boy, this twitter RT credit can get lengthy), that was produced by Engage | ORM and besides being a great short production, it too is insightful.
The video compares the rebellious, outspoken, revolutionary aspects of the Punk Rock movement to what we see today with Social Media -- the revolution not quite being politics, sex and drugs, but a revolution in how people communicate, share and propagate ideas. I follow it completely, but I'll add to it in a way that seems to extend or complete the analogy (for me at least).
Punk was Rebellion. Punk was Revolution. Punk was a Protest.
Communities and communications in Social Media are less about a Protest, and more about Sharing. I think that Punk burned out because it was never seen by the masses as acceptable and mainstream behavior. Social Media, on the other hand is. Generations of families are connected on Facebook. Competitors are having open discussions on twitter and even re-tweeting each other. Non profits and causes are thriving due to social media. Professional networks are reaching beyond the Kiwanis club and the golf course with LinkedIn.
Social Media is so much more than Punk. It has survived the early adopters, and it has broken through the mainstream barrier. Just as television and radio communications sparked changes in race relations, sexuality, politics and the balance of world power (different blog post), the new, "Social Media", will bring changes that we can't yet predict. What we can do is participate. Post updates, speak our mind, compare and contrast ideas, and connect with others.
The Clash got it 180° from where Social Media is today:
You have the right to free
Speech as long as you're not
Dumb enough to actually try it.
Clash, Know Your Rights
Engage | ORM's video:
What can Obama teach us b2b marketers? I was recently in a debate with a friend about Obama's marketing efforts. He had read an article about how the campaign was based on three simple tenants: Simplicity, Consistency and Relevance. I started exploring how the same three guidelines can be applied to marketing, especially as it pertains to demand generation. The examples I used were Cold Calling and Blog Marketing.
Blog Marketing - Writing a blog for business purposes isn't just a process of putting thoughts on the internet. It's about branding, educating the market, and thought leadership. It's about delivering messages that inspire conversation and allows readers to inform themselves and if interested, engage.
- Don't overwhelm a blog topic. Keep it simple. Provide basic information to open the knowledge share, provide links to other information, and keep it short enough that someone can scan it and/or absorb it at the pace they desire. Whitepapers and analyst reports are for lengthy detail.
- Be consistent about delivering content and messaging and presence. There is nothing worse than following someone's blog for months and then seeing it go blank for weeks. Or to see the shift from "Web 2.0" to "Social Media" overnight. Stay consistent, or at least emerge and grow with consistency.
- Stay on topic and be relevant. Stick with what you know. It is debatable whether a blogger should build some level of personal brand with off-topic content. But maybe put a relevant twist to it. For example, I'm passionate about Family and living a Green lifestyle, so I tie it into a post here and there, such as this article on Market Research, or this one on Father's Day.
Cold Calling - delivering a message to someone in a cold call is a process. Many people misunderstand the process of a cold call and lose the attention of the prospect. The same three pillars apply.
- First, it's not that the lead is cold, it's that you are catching the prospect "cold". You can take control of the call at that point. How do you take control? You only have 30 seconds to keep them from hanging up. Keep your opening simple. Enough said.
- The next 30 seconds allow you to continue to the real pitch. So make that 30 seconds relevant to what a prospect wants to hear. If you are calling to tell a CTO how your security software will help comply with Sarbanes Oxley, say that along with why they would want to continue the call. Don't bother with "How are you today?" (do you really care?) or "We're a leader in security software" (do they believe you?). Imagine Barack opening with "I'm the candidate everyone is voting for" (not interested?).
- Lastly, if you've gotten this far, then have the conversation, and stay consistent with your objective. If you are calling a C-level executive to set an appointment, then keep coming back to the appointment. If you are calling to invite the prospect to an event, keep inviting them. Don't waste time on the phone telling them how good the event will be. Just give them relevant info, consistently remind them why you are calling (appointment or invite) and let them decide. Barack didn't sell us, he informed us and we made decisions.
The world has changed. Buyers view the buying process in a different way. They are more sophisticated. They make decisions differently. They listen to their peers and the industry more than they used to. Help them through this process by giving them what they need and want. They will reach out to you, and they will be receptive.
We all know that accelerating a prospect through the educational/discovery phase onward to a selling cycle and then a buying event takes time. Especially today when the buyer defines the sales cycle, not the seller. The typical decision maker is bombarded with marketing contacts each day, yet they are still finding information on their own, they are educating themselves on industry sites, blogs, twitter and your website and emails.
Genius.com helps you take back some of that control that the buyers are claiming. As with other product reviews on Smashmouth, this will be an ongoing experiment. Today I'll describe what Genius brings you, and in later posts, I'll talk about some of the benefits and issues it has surfaced.
There are two levels of product, Genius Pro and Genius Enterprise. Both have the ability to do email marketing, website tracking, instant web visitor notification, visitor session replay, and have salesforce.com integration. Enterprise adds marketing automation features such as lead scoring and automated lead conversion as well as advanced process design using the workflow design tool.
Here's a working scenario of using Genius Pro that I was able to test on my own using just a trial account:
- Load a list of prospect email addresses and send an email (this can be done as individual users, or marketing can send on behalf of sales teams)
- Launch the Tracker (which is a web-based client like Yahoo Instant Messenger but instead of showing your buddies you see your prospects), and see visitors show up live after they have clicked through the email
- Replay the visitor's session in a Tivo like fashion
- Respond to prospect activity and interest with additional or next-step level emails (or phone call)
- Review integrated activities in salesforce
Remember, prospects want to sell themselves nowadays, but it's our job as marketers and sales people to accelerate that process or educate them along the way. Combined with other tools such as LeadLander, LivePerson and Salesforce, the average sales exec can be armed to the teeth with the tools to track, nurture and accelerate the close of prospects.
The next level of the product, Genius Enterprise, gets into serious marketing automation, but with the same usability and non-IT methodology of Genius Pro. As mentioned I’ll provide a high level overview here, but blog review part 2 will be coming after I get a chance to experience more of Genius Enterprise.
- Use the workflow designer to map out an automated rules-based marketing campaign
- Define steps in the lead nurturing process
- Define Conversion Events that removes a prospect from the work flow and instantly alerts team member for follow up
- React to a visitor's activity in a complex and immediate manner
- Monitor activity within Salesforce
Let me give you an example of a typical use in simple terms: if a visitor who received a trade show followup email, they visit page X and they are not already on nurturing path A or B; you can use Genius Enterprise to automatically nurture them with an email later that day referring them to a study on page Y, increase their lead score, convert them to an active lead and notify the sales exec, etc.
Does it work? My real world evaluation is still under way, but one of the inside sales reps at Genius nurtured me during each of my visits prior to my evaluation (with follow up emails, etc.) and then once I did a 15 page session, my phone rang and there he was. I’d say that’s proof positive the system works. I'll give you my thoughts and experience using Genius Enterprise in Part 2 of the Product Review of the post.
Smashmouth recommendation: Thumbs Up
End of independent review.
During my evaluation, I had a chance to speak with Matt West, Director of Marketing Programs at Genius. I asked him what separates Pro and Enterprise as a reason a company would just purchase Pro versus the full marketing automation product.
“Many companies are just getting started using email marketing in conjunction with their selling efforts, so they may want to move forward a step at a time, and getting started with an email marketing service that also provides website visit tracking (and shares those results with the sales team) is an easy way for organizations new to email marketing to see real results very quickly. We started out that way ourselves and found that sending emails on behalf of the sales team increased our open rates (because the emails were from a real person) and then let sales see how prospects responded. As we grew and gained experience with what worked and what didn’t in terms of messaging and website content, we began running enough campaigns that we wanted to automated them, and that’s where Genius Enterprise comes in. It’s a natural progression, especially for smaller companies.”
More detailed review of Genius Enterprise and some real world results in Part 2
A few weeks ago I published a product review of LeadLander. Since then we've had a great experience using it. For what it touts itself to be, it does a great job. It did raise a question though, and before I put much thought into it I decided to ask 7 of my colleagues in the b2b demand gen/sales/marketing space.
My question: Within a day or two of sending an initial email to someone, leaving a phonemail or posting an interesting blog article or tweet, I see they (or someone from their company) have clicked into and visited our site.
Now, how aggressively do I go after them? Do I pounce immediately? Do I pause and call shortly thereafter? Do I just nurture them? Do I wait a couple days then call?
Results were based on their comments, not hard answers, but the end result is categorized into:
Pounce - Call immediately
Pause - Give it 15-30 minutes, then call
Nurture - Let the visitor keep educating themselves, educate them softly if you can identify them
Wait - Wait a day or two, then casually call
It was also unanimous to not tell them how you knew they were on the site (too big-brother-ish). Also unanimous was that whatever the style or timing of the followup that is made, it better be valuable for the prospect.
What do you think? (comment below)
My gut suggests there is a combination of all the opinions, although I opt for a more immediate (non pouncing) type of followup. In fact, the typical style of me and my team is to see if we can't research the person a bit, learn a little about their company, see if we may already know them or someone that knows them, and then proceed. So the results of my informal survey were confirming our gut.
Anneke Seley: "If the volume isn’t overwhelming, I suggest calling...The nurturing option is a great one if you have too many responses to call (don’t we wish!)"
Craig Rosenberg: "Net Net - the key is to capitalize on the moment."
Jeff Ogden: "I believe the best approach is an aged and gentle follow up with a subsequent action 3 business days or more out."
Jill Konrath: "I hate being pounced upon...(but)...I know there is research that supports getting in touch with a person immediately after they visit your site. Strike when they're hot. The key to success is in the how."
Mac McIntosh: "In addition, put these prospects on a more frequent nurture track, spoon feeding them info (by email as you know they are getting it) once a week, then calling them again in 3-4 weeks if they haven’t responded."
Miles Austin: "A bit of discussion that gathers a better understanding of the urgency and motivation for their contact, their selection process and time-frame, etc. can typically move your odds of a successful sale ahead positively."
Nigel Edelshain: "My instinct so far is call or email soon with some value-add (since leads go South fast) but not make direct reference to your tracking for fear of scaring them off."
Trish Bertuzzi: "Your nurture campaign should include more frequent human touches for those that visit your site more regularly. It is not a one size fits all strategy…that is the beauty of Sales 2.0. The buyer designs the sales process."
RSS for tweets from the clan above
Today is fathers day, and my kids lived up to the holiday tradition by surprising me with a baked french toast casserole and bacon. The joke was (for the big guy that has one stent in place already) that they were out to kill me. We're heading up to my sister's house today to visit with my dad, Roger Damphousse ("Pepere" as the kids call him), and eat again.
That said, it reminded me that one of the most influential people in my business life was my dad. After an incredible basketball career that paid for his schooling (a division 2 all-American at Merrimack College, scoring 1,774 points in just 3 1/2 seasons without the 3 pointer), he became the consummate executive and community leader. After several years at Avco (now Textron), he then moved to a job with Sanders in Nashua, NH. Despite a run in the middle where he stayed with his division as it was sold to Harris, he ended up back at Lockheed, who bought Sanders and retired as President of their commercial electronics division.
Growing up the oldest son of an executive taught me some things. They took a few years to sink in, and for that period of time when I thought I was going to be the next Tony Alva in skateboarding, I didn't quite listen hard enough and might have missed a few points.
The following wisdom comes from his being a paper boy for the Lawrence Eagle Tribune, to when he was President of a division of Lockheed, to when he retired and is still on the board at Rivier College and running a non-profit project each year in Florida in between his daily round of golf. My dad was never in sales, but he understood the fundamentals of selling.
Dad, here's to you...(see, I was listening):
1. Maintain honesty and integrity at all times
2. Build relationships with your clients
3. Be creative and solve a client's problems - bring value to the relationship
4. Personal Branding is all important (he probably doesn't know this is even a term nowadays, but he'll get it in 10 seconds)
5. Always be networking - work your social networks, be it sports, college, the neighborhood, charities, the country club or church
6. Family keeps you together, motivated, and provides a safe harbor when a business deal goes south
Thanks Dad, Love You!
As a Demand Gen/Marketing junky, if there was one thing I came away with from MarketingProfs b2b Forum it's this:
Go to the next MarketingProfs event they host!
It was so full of nuggets, all I can say is to go read as many of the blogs as you possibly can on the topic. There is a thread of blog articles on MarketingProf's, a page of MarketingProfs speaker's social media contact info on my blog, and the whole twitter feed of #mpb2b hash tag comments.
Wanting to know more about the various speakers from MarketingProfs this past week, I started looking some of them up on the web, subscribing to their blogs, checking them out on LinkedIn and trying to find them on Twitter. After finding a few, I thought it might be valuable for others.
Speaker's blogs are listed if I could find them, otherwise their company link is there. If anyone has more accurate info, feel free to share it. If you're a speaker and want to share links to your presentations or handouts, that would be great too. Just send me the links.
Thanks to all of you for a great conference!
And of course...my shameless self promotion, but I'll do it in a non-table format as to not confuse me with the speakers ;)
Michael Damphousse, CEO/CMO at Green Leads
blog: www.damphousse.org (you're here)
Yesterday I posted my favorite tweets for the day. Tuesday's MarketingProfs b2b Forum was a bit more tiring, but just as filled with content. Again, the twitter feed was loaded. Find it with hashtag #mpb2b. Below are today's collection of what I gleaned as cream of the crop tweets.
BDSolutions: Apparently the proper term 4 "above the fold" in email is "prescroll"--& only 11% of email users venture beyond. Use ur 600px wisely! #mpb2b
jaybaer: Interesting that @kdpaine is down on Linkedin. I see a lot of potential for Linkedin, especially for B2B. Answers, groups, messaging #mpb2b
damphoux: as you target further up the title chain, make the emails shorter, simpler, something that a CxO can read on an iPhone #mpb2b
gscottshaw: Roadblocks for B2B Marketers: 1. Lack of Alignment, 2. Not Scoring Leads, 3. Not Nurturing Leads, 4. Monitoring the Pipeline #mpb2b
LisaMLoeffler: Looking for inspiration? On the job hunt? Want to do what you love or what you think is your calling? Twitter Search: Barry Schwartz #mpb2b
MarketingProfs: Do you have a job? A career? A calling? Allowing people to use judgment & intuition allows them to develop a calling. -Barry Schwartz #mpb2b
MackCollier: Teachers have to embody the ethics they are trying to instill in their students @barrysch #mpb2b
greenleads: iLoop: our role as marketers is to communicate, deliver, and exchange value to customers and prospects #mpb2b
justincresswell: "Don't be more, be different" George Hague #mpb2b
lisamcgrath: Good reminder from Hague: Brand is reputation not a logo. #mpb2b
kdpaine: anyone at #MPB2B who wants to see my preso its here http://ping.fm/UXtBF
MitziThomas: 7 Copy Motivators-Fear, Guilt, Flattery, Exclusivity, Greed, Anger, Salvation. Not sure I want to do this-so negative. #mpb2b
DonnaTocci: When designing your website the phone number should be clickable to initiate a call right away for mobile users. Good tip! #mpb2b
agravel: Less than 30% of online users scroll. - Amy Africa #mpb2b
DonnaTocci: The mobile phone will replace majority of functions on your laptop in 5 years! - Mickey Khan. Need to start planning for that now #mpb2b
jlysne: @amyafrica says a good lead form should take less than 20 seconds #mpb2b
JenKaneCo: I'm pretty sure my brain just exploded. If metrics were booze, I'd be blissfully trashed right now. This session rules. #mpb2b
justincresswell: Barry Schwartz just told us to stop Tweeting and ask him questions. I guess I didn't listen. #mpb2b
MarketingProfs: Check out photos from yesterdays MarketingProfs B2B Forum! http://bit.ly/mpb2bX (expand) (via @robertcollins) #mpb2b
MackCollier: http://twitpic.com/6znai - The twitter bat signal at #mpb2b
Today's MarketingProfs b2b Forum was great. Picked up lots of tidbits. Good news is that much of it is documented on twitter under hashtag #mpb2b. I thought I would collect a few during the day that stood out. More tomorrow.
GinnyBartosek: Sales doesn't view quality of leads the same way as Mktg. At least we're not alone. 90% of the people at #mpb2b raised their hands.
agravel: Attending session about demand generation: quantity vs quality #mpb2b
BDSolutions: Learn how Twitter will change the way we live - @stephenbjohnson's Time cover story http://cli.gs/Tweet.TimeStory #mpb2b
MitziThomas: I’m wondering how many people in the room listening to Steven Johnson are actively using Twitter, either personally or for marketing. #mpb2b
nuvs: loves @stevenbjohnson's phrase "search cocktail"--aggregate of search data from multiple places (mainly Twitter) #mpb2b
swoodruff: Interesting parallel, about soc nets being like the ~17-1800's coffeehouses, where ideas were exchanged among "amateurs" #mpb2b
jaybaer: I'm wondering if number of tweets should be factored into speaker evaluations at conferences? Hmm. #mpb2b
ESLundquist: #mpb2b Sandy Carter at #IBM says #google is now rating blogs higher than web sites
damphoux: Kern - go back and read David Ogilvy http://bit.ly/oCXdf (expand) #mpb2b
anetah: OMG, Matt Grant just told participants of "Robust Online Content" #mpb2b to shut their laptops. I am rebelling &intend to keep on Twitting
LisaMLoeffler: Via #MPb2b: 1.Monitor profit generation. 2. Marketing is about relationships 3. Learn web 2.0 tools. (via sandy_carter)
jaybaer: IBM says that personal & professional worlds are converging. They created internal guidelines, but anyone at IBM can blog or tweet. #mpb2b
InboundMarketer: 30% of room using batch & blast email marketing to do nurturing in Kern Demand Generation session #mpb2b - suggest moving to mktg automation
MiriamKutcher: #mpb2b Laura Patterson Marketing Metrics discussion - Make friends with folks in Finance and Sales as they have data!
bluefishagency: "Don't overlook Sales as a valuable content contributor to your blog or community" makes them happy too. JDelToro Network Solutions #mpb2b
BDSolutions: Forrester rpt on B2B digital mktg in down economy as referenced @ #mpb2b: www.forrester.com/marketingb2bforum (courtesy @lauraramos)
greenleads: RT @allenweiss: Website URLs Are so 2005 : MarketingProfs http://bit.ly/x93H1 (expand) #mpb2b
anetah: SM tip for B2B marketers: all your slide-based presentation should be on slideshare.com &as of last week you can also add voiceover. #mpb2b
MichaelGrover: Give as many people as possible as many ways as possible to consume your content. #mpb2b
gibt: #mpb2b - hot dog carts out in the wild attract more visitors than clubs behind velvet ropes-do you want cool? require a login,else stay openLast, but my favorite (yes, from me, but it was Karin that said it):
damphoux: Karin McEwen, Mathworks: What is the most effective lead gen program? the "contact sales" button on a website #mpb2b
MarketingProfs: Check out episode #13 of BostonTweetUp TV... with special guest.. well, me! http://bit.ly/CZ6cc (expand) (via @bostontweetup) #mpb2b
LewisG: @swoodruff Sounds kinky. #mpb2b
nathanwburke: It's almost free drink and tapas time here at #mpb2b Excellent. Can't wait.
Been a busy few weeks with conferences. The CMO Club Summit and Sales 2.0 Conference were just a couple weeks ago, and this week is MarketingProfs b2b Forum in Boston. I'll be doing some live tweeting from the conference with hashtag #mpb2b, just like from the other two (you can look at conference tweets here: #cmoclub and here: #sales20). Thank you to MarketingProfs and Anne Handley (personal blog) for what should be a stellar event.
Just thought I would highlight the conference schedule, which is so chock full of marketing value, I wish I was bringing a whole team of Green Leads' folks to attend them all. Unfortunately, I'll have to do my best to attend the most relevant sessions on my own.
- Eight Secrets to Delivering Top B2B Demand Gen Results
- Tie between: The 2009 Economic Impact on B2B Marketing Budgets & Practices, and a concurrent session, Create a Winning Targeted Accounts Strategy
- Make Every Investment Count: The Measure of Marketing
- Putting Measurement into Action to Improve Leads, Conversions & ROI
- Tappas Tweetup - (find me and say hello)
- Email Workshop
- Using a Multi-Touch Approach to Engaging and Nurturing Sales Prospects
- Creative Rules for Integrated Campaigns that Get the Attention of Your Prospects
Looking forward to meeting lots of new folks, sharing great thoughts, and seeing some old friends. More later.
We thought it might be interesting to augment our thought leader interviews with some demand gen product reviews. We are keeping the reviews independent--actually using the products/services, and then critiquing them.
I had heard about LeadLander from a competitor (surprisingly, not all competitors are enemies..that's another blog post). It touts the ability to provide to you all the standard website visitor stats, along with one huge differentiator - the names of companies that visit your website. They can't figure them all out, and you can filter all those Comcast and Verizon visitors, but they provide enough to bring additional value to a web stats application such as Google Analytics.
They meet their promise. I'll leave you to explore all the details of what the product does, and I'll give you a real world example of how to use it.
The following took place in the last 3 days.
Day 1. Installed LeadLander on both our company website, www.green-leads.com, and on the Smashmouth Marketing blog.
Day 2. Published a blog interview with Joe Galvin of SiriusDecisions. Promoted it on Twitter, on LinkedIn, and through other channels.
Day 3. Reviewed the LeadLander Reports:
- Site traffic was up 45% for the day.
- Companies that visited were listed (Oracle, SAP, and a sizable list of other companies I haven't heard of).
- Realized that the fact that Oracle and SAP visited is cool, but we can't really take targeted action on it since they have hundreds of individuals we could target.
- Then we looked at the "other" companies, many of which were small to medium sized, some recognizable. We checked the companies out with the LeadLander Jigsaw link, and were able to identify 2-3 marketing contacts per company. Presto...Leads!
We were able to contact 2 of the companies that visited that day by phone and were able to set appointments
with both for further discussions (yes, we use our own service). The remaining prospects will be pursued by phone and email. Not bad for 3 days work. As for Oracle and SAP - they're always on Green Leads
So some benefits we found outside the obvious Lead:
- You can see what pages they visited during their session. Seeing a trend in what pages a company visits gives you specifics on their interests
- You can see what search terms they used to find the site.
- You can see when your competitors visit.
- You can see what referring page they came from. This was valuable as we identified that the referring site for the Oracle visit was their intranet site from their weekly sales call. Nice to know someone there is sharing our information.
- The LeadLander search function, where you can search by strings in URLs is valuable as you can use it to track specific links. We did this by using one link for Twitter, one for LinkedIn, and one for an email blast. Measure the effectiveness of campaigns.
- The Jigsaw link is very nice, especially if you have an unlimited Jigsaw license, like Green Leads. With one click you can see all the contacts at the company that visited.
Pricing starts at $160 per month for small companies and goes up from there depending on your company size, website usage, etc. Definite ROI for our 2 appointments (3 days for $15, 2 meetings, $7.50 each, the additional leads are a bonus).
This marketing/sales approach to website stats is extremely useful. Kudos to LeadLander for dissecting web traffic and presenting it in a manner that the demand gen user can benefit from.
Smashmouth recommendation: Thumbs Up
End of independent review.
I was able to catch Mike Schon, CEO at LeadLander, and asked him "What differentiates LeadLander from traditional web analytics services like Google Analytics?"
He shared with me "LeadLander was designed to turn traditional web analytics statistics that benefit marketing staff into reports that benefit sales staff, by providing specific information about the companies and people visiting web sites. You'll never see a sales person using Google Analytics, the data is just not significant enough from a sales perspective."
[nice blog comparison of LeadLander and Google Analytics]
Schon continues, "In contrast, LeadLander is used by thousands of sales people, because LeadLander gives them specific, relevant information about their leads and prospects. So we don't look at one system replacing the other -- in fact, we use both Google Analytics and LeadLander within our own company since they serve two different organizational purposes. Our philosophy with LeadLander is to put valuable lead and prospect information into the hands of sales people as quickly, simply, and cost-effectively as possible without the requirement to spend time and effort on implementation, administration, and other services."