B2B Insights Blog

Most Recent B2B Posts

Not everyone likes to talk about B2B integrated marketing communications. Or about the new technologies that promise to revolutionize the HVAC market, for instance. It's like being dressed up and having nowhere to go. So we created the B2B Insights Blog. It's a place where people with a passion for B2B marketing can go to have those conversations. And we'd love to hear what you think about what we say here.

Next week, the largest construction show in North America will descend upon Las Vegas. For five days, the construction world will be introduced to new equipment, technology, and innovations that are sure to set new standards across the industry. The show is CONEXPO-CON/AGG, and it happens once every three years.

Jan 30, 2014

We recently took a look at 2013 web statistics to see what was attracting attention and action on Godfrey.com over the past year.  Here are a few highlights we find interesting and may provide an indicator of B2B marketing trends in 2014:

Jan 20, 2014

I’ve been thinking about the year ahead for B2B marketers. We are experiencing a significant increase in the demands and expectations coming our way, along with an accelerated pace of change within our organizations, in customer dynamics and of course in marketing technology. It’s exciting and challenging.

Dec 30, 2013

It’s never too late for B2B companies to invest in a content marketing program. In fact, having an integrated content marketing strategy could mean all the difference in how effective and successful you are when communicating with customers and prospects. Michael Brenner, Sr. Director of Global Marketing at SAP, spoke at Godfrey’s FWD:B2B conference. See what he has to say.

Dec 23, 2013

It’s almost a new year, and as a B2B marketer, you’re probably asking yourself a variety of planning questions.  They may be as simple (or as complicated) as the following: Where is my company’s business right now?  Where are my customers right now?  What digital marketing and communications tools will effectively connect the business to customers? 

Those were some of the questions posed by LuJean Smith, global communications leader, and Steven Pepe, digital marketing leader, of GE Water & Process Technologies at the recent FWD: B2B Conference 2013 hosted by Godfrey.

Dec 19, 2013

During the FWD:B2B Conference we heard from Ralph Oliva, executive director of the Institute for the Study of Business Markets (ISBM). Ralph’s presentation focused on the findings of the The B2B Agenda, composed by the B2B Leadership Board at the ISBM, which provides insight from 72 forward-looking CMOs and 30 academic B2B thought-leaders about the ever-changing industry landscape. Revealed and discussed were four key trends that are shaping business marketing and seven major challenges that business marketers face in 2013-14. Here’s a brief look at the trends and challenges that will define the modern B2B marketer:

Congratulations! You (or your company) have just been featured in an industry trade publication with a success story or as an industry thought leader where you provided commentary. Your work is done. Add that to the list of public relations successes and move on to your next item, right?

While it is easy – and necessary – to get caught up in the latest advances in marketing technology, we need to be mindful always of the human factor: how customers, prospects and influencers react, interact and engage; how we as marketers collaborate and perform... The marketing technology at our disposal is awesome and pretty much useless without focused attention on the human factor at every step.

If you didn't have a chance to read the initial responses from Ralph Oliva, executive director at the Institute for the Study of Business Markets (ISBM) and FWD:B2B Conference speaker, check out Part I below this post. This is Part II, highlighting our final question around the unique nature of B2B marketing:

Next week, Ralph Oliva, executive director at the Institute for the Study of Business Markets (ISBM) and Professor of Marketing at the Smeal College of Business at Penn State University, will be sharing findings from The B2B Agenda during the FWD:B2B Conference. The B2B Agenda, composed by the B2B Leadership Board at the ISBM, provides insight from 72 forward-looking CMOs and 30 academic B2B thought-leaders about the ever-changing industry landscape—from commoditization and globalization to new rivals and buying behaviors.

In anticipation of the conference, Ralph took time out of his very busy schedule to answer five questions for us. (Thank you, Ralph!) We will post his responses in a two-part series – here is Part I:

Oct 30, 2013

Until recently, all too many of us would have assumed that political squabbles don’t affect private industry. But this October has shown that even an industry as stable as the chemicals sector relies on the stability of Washington.

On November 7th, Michael Brenner, vice president of global marketing for SAP, will be sharing his content marketing expertise at our FWD:B2B Conference. He recently posted an entry on his own B2B Marketing Insights blog that is worth sharing entitled, “9 Questions On Content Marketing.” While we are certain we can challenge him with a number of questions when he comes to visit in November, here is an excerpt addressing five questions he often receives:

An increasingly complex buying process. A lot of data. And the need to be ready to change on a dime. FWD:B2B Conference speaker Scott Brinker has crafted the following thought-provoking blogs worth reading around agile marketing, data-driven marketing and the buying process on his Chief Marketing Technologist site over the past month:

In just over two weeks, here at Godfrey, we are hosting the FWD:B2B Conference, highlighting the growing intersection of marketing and technology. The five speaker sessions will look at trends in B2B marketing while tackling timely topics ranging from social media to content marketing to online reputation management. It promises to be an informative, invigorating day!

In anticipation of the event, we wanted to highlight the speakers through a series of blogs leading up to November 7th. First up is a guest blog from B2B Social Media Expert, Paul Gillin.

Ah, content, content, content. So much of what we B2B marketers do revolves around content. This week Dan Pacifico zooms in on Google’s new algorithm – Hummingbird – and how it will likely make search more intuitive and how marketers, meanwhile, need to remain focused on meeting the needs of web-property users. Leanne Terpak highlights a free, go-at-your-own-pace way to assess the value of your great content via Google’s new Analytics Academy. And getting straight to the heart of the matter, Jenn Vitello reviews the latest B2B content marketing report from the Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs (definitely worth a look). That’s our round-up. Thanks for checking it out.

Oct 2, 2013

The news that Crain Communications Inc. will fold BtoB magazine into Advertising Age is sad news to us as practitioners of “real B2B” marketing for “real B2B” marketers.

This week Andy Hunt looks at the deployment of a technology through iOS7 that may hold great promise for B2B applications. Steve Graham joins our round-up with a post on understanding the native continuum in online advertising. Andy DeBrunner, who did an admirable job last week introducing our team blog, finds that LinkedIn has eliminated one complication of managing a company page on its platform. That’s our round-up as we glide into October and the last calendar quarter of 2014. 

This week our faithful CEO and introduction writer, Chuck, will be taking a much-deserved break from his intro writing responsibilities. He has (probably against his better judgment) allowed me to do the honors. In our roundup this week, Dan offers his views on Google's new view, Leanne continues to optimize how we approach optimization, and Jenn shows off some trends to help us marketers be more content with our content.

Sep 19, 2013

If you work for a company that manufactures anything at all, chances are you’re connected to the packaging industry. Maybe you work for a consumer goods company, or maybe your firm supplies the materials used in wrappers, food ingredients or even the components or systems used in a packaging operation. Much like the automotive industry, the network of suppliers and service providers in this industry is vast. With the industry’s premier PACK EXPO trade show happening next week, this is a good time to examine a few industry trends and see how they relate to B2B marketing.

Amidst the hub-bub surrounding the introduction of new iPhones and Twitter’s IPO, we take a look this week at two developments happening with somewhat less fanfare that will likely have more direct impact on the B2B marketing environment.  Andy DeBrunner looks at the way Facebook has enabled auto-play user videos as a likely forerunner to auto-play ads, which would require a fresh approach for B2B marketers using Facebook as a paid media vehicle.  Google’s purchase of the file sharing app Bump has not escaped the notice of Andy Hunt, who imagines a number of real-world, B2B applications for the technology in a mobile operating system.  That’s our round-up this week as we reluctantly ponder kicking the flip-flops in the closet one last time and getting ready for fall. 

This week we move from a light-hearted anniversary look at the industry’s leading search engine, to a hard-to-stomach metaphor for making analytics results more, well, digestible and useful, to some no-nonsense advice on developing content for a global B2B audience. Dan Pacifico helps us mark the passing of Google’s 15th birthday, inviting us to learn some things about the company we probably didn’t know. Leanne Terpak introduces us to the appealing phrase “number vomit reporting” with important tips on how to avoid it and actually do something less regrettable and more valuable instead. Equally hard to swallow for some career writers may be the point of view Jenn Vitello shares on the necessity of writing not so much for a person but rather for a CMS (content management system) as the most effective and efficient way to develop content for an international base of customers, prospects and influencers. Just a little slice of the diverse topics making up the B2B marketing environment this week. Thanks for checking us out.

While it is easy – and necessary – to get caught up in the latest advances in marketing technology, we need to be mindful always of the human factor: how customers, prospects and influencers react, interact and engage; how we as marketers collaborate and perform. For example, in explaining the importance of keyword quality scores in Google PPC campaigns, Dan Pacifico finds the trail leads ultimately to (guess what?) relevant content for users. With the proliferation of videos posted to YouTube by top B2B brands, Leanne Terpak points us to a useful blog that outlines 7 important analytics reports which explains why they are important so we can be better marketers. Andy DeBrunner is thinking about enlisting the sales force in an intentional way with social marketing, and underscores the importance of truly understanding our sales colleagues before we attempt to engage them – sound advice. Jenn Vitello is also thinking about the human element of content development with a post on staffing the B2B content marketing department. The marketing technology at our disposal is awesome and pretty much useless without focused attention on the human factor at every step. That’s our roundup this week.  

Aug 21, 2013

The most critical trend driving the pharmaceutical industry is the continued growth of mergers and acquisitions; in a recent Global Pharmaceutical Industry survey conducted by ICD Research, 63% of industry executives surveyed expected an ‘increase’ or ‘significant increase’ in M&A activity through 2013 — principally to pursue high-growth opportunities in global markets.

This week we revisit some favorite B2B marketing discussions to see what’s new. Dan Pacifico highlights a handy guide to keyword targeting, a slippery issue for SEO experts that hasn’t gotten any simpler but has big payoffs. Leanne Terpak finds that data-driven marketing is increasing significantly (she’s got the numbers to prove it) and that marketers indicate this trend will continue. Jenn Vitello reminds us to regard content as a valuable asset and to treat it as such as we apply it to B2B buyers, often globally, usually across multiple platforms and devices. Andy DeBrunner challenges us to consider not only the current reality but the future implications of user behavior: does it matter to you, for example, that teenage enthusiasm for Facebook appears to be waning? 

Welcome to August. Despite the new month’s reputation for being a slower-paced time – and we do hope you’re enjoying some of that – our experts find the pace of change unrelenting in the world of B2B marketing. Dan Pacifico warns that Google has flagged optimized press releases distributed broadly online as a signal for link schemes and a detriment to SEO. Leanne Terpak explains the expanded analytics available for company pages on LinkedIn and how B2B marketers can compare themselves to other companies. Andy DeBrunner brings us up to date on Twitter’s plans to use retargeting technology, apparently similar to what Facebook has been doing, and suggests ways to take advantage of the offer. Jenn Vitello finds evidence that two venerable tools – customer testimonials and case studies – are considered by B2B tech marketers as the most effective content marketing tactics. Andy Hunt considers the Leap Motion Controller and peers ahead at what it could mean for developers of B2B products.

This week we’re talkin’ mobile.  Dan Pacifico reveals one of the truths about Google’s push for Enhanced Campaigns and the ability to evaluate campaigns/ad groups on a device level:  the folks at the Googleplex want us to see the impact mobile, and mobile advertising, can have on our B2B marketing goals.  Leanne Terpak, meanwhile, finds a great source on the key similarities and differences between web and mobile analytics and why it’s important we understand them.  Andy DeBrunner brings us up to date on the growth of Facebook during the second quarter including a jump in mobile monthly active users from 751 to 819 million (that’s plus 68 million in three months).  Jenn Vitello reminds us of the importance of personas – the established UX technique – in also creating engaging B2B content.  (Jenn doesn’t mention this, but our B2B customers will be among those who, by the end of 2013, will be downloading an estimated 2 billion apps each week; a factor in building those personas).  To stretch the mobile theme further, Andy Hunt looks past the immediate gleam of Google’s Chromecast web TV device to the promise of its software developer’s kit that will allow apps to be optimized for the living-room sized screen, too; he thinks there are possibilities for B2B marketing and sales, how about you?

If you have wondered about the role of mobile ad clicks vs. organic search on keywords for which you already do well, Dan Pacifico reveals new research that shows they are complementary and can be strong traffic builders for some B2B segments. Leanne Terpak investigates the new Twitter analytics tool and shares one expert’s key metrics. A picture may be worth at least a thousand words, suggests Andy DeBrunner as he imagines how smart marketers may take advantage of the ability to post a photo as a comment on Facebook business pages. Jenn Vitello reminds us that LinkedIn is a preferred content distribution channel among B2B professionals and outlines important ways to leverage it. Andy Hunt sees B2B as leading the way on the Internet of Things (we’ve been at it for a while now). And that’s our roundup for this week.

Jul 17, 2013

B2B marketers are inundated with the latest nuances of applying big data and the growth of mobile devices. But “data” and “mobile” are more than just marketing buzzwords; these are now some of the biggest ideas on the factory floor, as rapid advances in technology re-shape our concepts of factory automation and industrial control.

On the heels of Microsoft’s strategy and re-org announcements last week, we get down to some digital B2B basics here.  Dan Pacifico reminds us that satisfying users is not only a good content strategy but also smart, and necessary, SEO practice.  Leanne Terpak highlights key social marketing stats for B2B marketers, while colleague Andy DeBrunner suggests the social media platform Tumblr, now owned by Yahoo, is worth watching.  Jenn Vitello shares a great post on how and why to integrate relationships and influencers into your content marketing program.  And rounding out this roundup, Andy Hunt reviews ambitious plans unveiled by Dropbox at its first developer’s conference. Enjoy.

This week Dan Pacifico notes the importance for B2B marketers of understanding semantic SEO, while colleague Jenn Vitello focuses on the necessity of SEO and content marketing working in harmony. Andy DeBrunner continues the “search” theme with thoughts on the rollout of Graph Search to U.S. users by Facebook. Of course it’s often the right search techniques that bring prospects to your website; Leanne Terpak uncovers steps to nurture them and grow business through marketing automation. If you are searching for a Digital Trend Watch post by Andy Hunt, he has this week off. Catch you next time.

There is no escaping Google’s influence in B2B digital marketing, as evidenced in this week’s roundup. Dan Pacifico reports the search leader will update its mobile requirements this fall, placing more emphasis on responsive design techniques, content formatted for mobile, etc. Leanne Terpak finds Google’s new Analytics Attribution Model Comparison Tool is a far better way to evaluate site conversions and allocate budget. Andy DeBrunner looks at another essential – the customized Google Map – for every B2B event planner’s toolkit. Rounding up other topics as we begin the second half of the year, Jenn Vitello takes a close look at a new study of the way B2B executives use deep and broad content to help them make buying decisions. Finally, Andy Hunt looks at the inclusion of native print drivers for 3D printers plus APIs for including 3D printing in apps with Microsoft Windows 8.1.

Getting and keeping digital assets organized and accessible can raise productivity and security for B2B marketing organizations, suggests Andy Hunt in this week’s Digital Trend post. That’s timely advice considering the explosion of content – with 91% of B2B marketers now employing content marketing, reports Jenn Vitello. Much of that content is being developed as video, and this week Andy DeBrunner frames another short-form video platform now available on Facebook. If your upper management isn’t responsive to your data, Leanne Terpak points out that the problem might actually be you. To put a final and even finer point on content, Dan Pacifico enlightens us on Google’s latest update to enhanced campaigns – one that allows control of copy in site link ads. Be content out there and let us know how we’re doing! 

Jun 21, 2013

Depending on what segment of the semiconductor industry your company occupies – or markets to – a rosy forecast for customer growth will increase management expectations for improved results from marketing and sales. For B2B marketers it’s critical that marketing and sales are well aligned to capitalize on opportunities in 2013 and that they remain integrated to create a competitive advantage going forward.

As summer officially approaches we take a look at what’s hot this week in digital marketing and what’s especially relevant to B2B. Google will make ranking changes to its mobile versions of Google Search, so Dan Pacifico advises we keep investing in mobile-ready websites and mobile SEO. Big Data analytics can improve B2B leads through a social scoring process, which Leanne Terpak thinks can also help us better understand and target audiences and lead to faster, better marketing decisions. Andy DeBrunner gives us the line on Line, the world’s fastest-growing social network – one that seems poised for a major presence in Asia with implications for B2B. Relevant content presented quickly and easily tops the list of essentials of a great web site, says Jenn Vitello, who offers more insights in her content blog. Speaking of essentials, Andy Hunt adds perspective for all who are implementing marketing automation systems or actively using them now: don’t be afraid to make hard choices between what’s really necessary and what’s just an option. Read on. And find us again right here next week. 

This week we discover the source of missing mobile data from Google Analytics, uncover a dozen ways to make social media data more actionable and welcome YouTube’s new “One Channel” design. We have tips on how B2B marketers can curate content – as we do here – as part of an effective lead nurturing program. And noteworthy in many markets: AT&T and the iPhone will step in with Push-To-Talk services as Sprint shuts down the previous PTT darling, the Nextel network. Read on for details, and post a comment to let us know what you’d like to see more of or less of in the weeks ahead.

This week we discover the source of missing mobile data from Google Analytics, uncover a dozen ways to make social media data more actionable and welcome YouTube’s new “One Channel” design. We have tips on how B2B marketers can curate content – as we do here – as part of an effective lead nurturing program. And noteworthy in many markets: AT&T and the iPhone will step in with Push-To-Talk services as Sprint shuts down the previous PTT darling, the Nextel network. Read on for details, and post a comment to let us know what you’d like to see more of or less of in the weeks ahead.

Penguin 2.0, a.k.a. “Penguin 4,” is the latest Google search algorithm update we now must consider. It appears that a keen focus on content, a hallmark of best B2B practice, rather than heavy reliance on external links satisfies this bird. Web analytics and the massive amount of data it can produce can be overwhelming. A savvy B2B marketer gets focused and avoids the irrelevant – below are some remarkable analytics guides to help. Vine, which we blogged about last week, is now available for Android devices, dramatically expanding its potential user base; keep considering the B2B possibilities of very short-form video integrated with Twitter and let us know what you think. Jenn Vitello notices that even B2B publishers, the kings of content, are optimizing for mobile. Maybe you should, too? Rounding things up this week, our director of marketing technology considers what makes a site highly interactive, engaging and easy to share – often qualities we want in B2B digital experience. 

Jun 4, 2013

At last week’s BMA Annual Conference in Chicago a large majority of the speakers addressed true customer insight as an important part of a successful marketing organization. Even going so far as saying that not getting customer insights is irresponsible.

Making web content accessible across screen sizes and mobile devices is a necessity for B2B marketers. But what do you do if the data isn't enough to convince stakeholders in the value?

This week we highlight the “conversational search” capability unveiled by Google as Dan Pacifico starts to ponder the changes ahead for B2B marketers with natural language processing applied to search. We knew mobile was claiming more traffic:  how about more than one-fifth of all content visits? Other stats from Uberflip document the rise of shareable content and the importance of video. Speaking of video, Andy DeBrunner looks at the B2B potential of Vine, Twitter’s 6-second video service -- talk about tightly crafting your message! Helping us simplify things this week is a primer on the four keys to success in marketing analytics. We wrap things up with a reminder that users – often accessing mobile devices in the field, or in less than ideal settings – deserve our consideration as we design and deliver the content they need. Enjoy.

May 22, 2013

Change is happening fast in the energy sector: While global energy use skyrockets (especially in developing regions), the cost of renewables—particularly solar and wind power—is declining while both natural gas and crude oil production is expanding.

Welcome, or welcome back as the case may be, to The B2B Weekly Roundup, where we offer our take on some of the key developments affecting B2B marketing in bite-size form. Google’s I/O conference gave us all a glimpse into the firm’s integration plans; Godfrey’s Andy Hunt assesses the impact on B2B.  Separately, we note the opportunity to highlight your company’s deep expertise via web content for improved search results. Leanne Terpak poses a few key questions for marketers on the use of Big Data and suggests the most important thing is to turn insights gleaned into useful actions.  We share the inspiring story of a 17-year-old girl who won a Twitter hackathon as an example of the creativity that awaits B2B marketers in the social media space.  And finally, in case you missed BtoB Magazine’s Media Power 50 report, it’s worth a look; after The Wall Street Journal and WSJ.com, Google and LinkedIn occupy the #2 and #3 positions in the B2B media landscape.  No further comment on that one here, for now.  Enjoy and let us know how we’re doing.

May 16, 2013

Google's I/O conference kicked off yesterday. While the conference is billed as a developer's event, it really is a showcase for all things Google. During a massive 3 hour presentation various presenters showed all kinds of things we'll be seeing in the near future pertaining to mobile, search, education, maps and on and on. I've taken a quick look to see how it might affect B2B.

As a B2B marketing pro, you have a lot to keep up with. We’re right there with you. Now we’re right here with you, too, offering our take on some of the week’s most interesting news and powerful insights in the world of business-to-business marketing and communications. As we work out the schedule and topics I hope you’ll leave comments to let us know how to improve. Out of the gate, we’re committed to covering Search, Analytics, Social Media and Content Marketing and providing an anchor Digital Trend Watch. We know you’re busy. We hope this helps by giving you a quick handle on the relevant trends. Your feedback will help us do that better. Thanks, and welcome.

Making web content accessible across screen sizes and mobile devices is a necessity for b2b marketers. But what if there's a stakeholder you need to convince?

Apr 22, 2013

There’s a lot to learn from the construction industry – one so vital to our economy and yet so vulnerable to economic cycles. So here’s the question of the month: How do we plan when the future is murky at best?

Apr 18, 2013

Twitter released a new advertising service for any advertisers using Twitter’s advanced advertising options on Wednesday. They’re calling the new service, rather unpoetically, “Keyword Targeting in Timeline”.

Apr 15, 2013

Art galleries and movie theaters might help you stir a few B2B marketing ideas. But nothing beats your own manufacturing facility.

Apr 11, 2013

You’re at a client meeting when your customer asks you, “Your company can do this, yes?” You pause and think, “Sure, we could do it.” But you’re also aware of another company or service provider who would likely be better suited for the task. What do you do? You’re responsible for winning the account, and perhaps there is an incentive for your success. So, you agree with your customer, right?

Mar 27, 2013

Learn how the HVACR industry is dealing with the regulations and standards imposed regionally, nationally and globally.

Mar 26, 2013

This is my follow-up to the 10 things I was looking forward to the most at SXSW this year. I think the two matched up pretty well.

Mar 6, 2013

Delivering a killer B2B presentation can literally make the difference between feast and famine as a salesperson. Succeed and you’re often branded a hero. Fail and you’re one step closer to the cheese lines. Fortunately for all of us, presenting is a skill that can be taught and improved upon. It doesn’t require highly innovative products or a strong global brand at your back either; it simply requires focus.

Feb 28, 2013

If it’s March, it must be South by Southwest. There’s so much to see and learn it’s hard to narrow all the options down. Here are the top 10 sessions that I’m looking forward to and why.

Feb 18, 2013

Learn about Godfrey insights that can help you understand 6 misconceptions that B2B marketers tend to make when communicating with the “Mind of the Engineer”.

Feb 15, 2013

Working the B2B trade show circuit can be a highly rewarding experience toward cultivating relationships and developing leads, even if you aren’t formally exhibiting. Peddling in Las Vegas, however, is unlike no other destination. Consider these (lucky) 7 tips when selling in the desert (without a booth) to maximize your effort.

Feb 14, 2013

Show an engineer you appreciate them by letting them know you appreciate all they’ve done to help make modern life possible.

What does it cost to build a mobile app? It depends. Get the quick answers to common cost questions.

Jan 25, 2013

When it comes to pitching for new business, I’ve heard some fairly wild theories in my day. For example, if the client’s color is yellow, everyone should wear yellow to subconsciously appear as though the agency is “one with” the client. Or, everyone should sit in a very specific fashion so the first thing the client sees is the agency, thereby establishing a dominant position.

Bang. Head. Here.

Jan 16, 2013

Take a look at the construction industry landscape in some of the major worldwide regions; see what advertising channels have been effective and what is potentially in store.

Jan 10, 2013

Having been in the game for over ten years now, nearly six of them with Godfrey, I know a thing or two about responding to RFPs. Or RFQs. Or RFIs. Or RFwhatevers.

Jan 3, 2013

For those of you still considering a late New Year’s resolution, I have one. In fact, it’s actually three in one. It’s not losing weight, securing a better job or any of the other most popular American resolutions. This one you can actually, easily fulfill. And here it is: Take chances. Fail forward. Be bold.

Dec 26, 2012

With increasing frequency, I find myself discussing focus as a key growth driver for B2B companies in 2013. Obviously, the term “focus” can mean many things to many people. For some, focus applies to operational efficiency. For others, focus relates to market segmentation. Some organizations, like the Institute for the Study of Business Markets, even offer extensive seminars on the topic. In this context, however, I’m referring to focus as it pertains to new business development – choosing the right customers.

Dec 20, 2012

I remember watching Terminator 2: Judgment Day when I was a kid. I was 10 or 11 years old, visiting my family in the Dominican Republic, absolutely amazed at the story playing before me (even if I were too young to fully understand it). What a concept. Computers that can think. Learn. Reason. It got me thinking. Will computing power ever grow to these levels?

Dec 17, 2012

When specifying commercial building projects, it’s a team effort among architects, designers, engineers, and contractors. They will work with the building owner or facility manager to reach the best solution for the project. It’s important to understand how each party works together, and what their concerns are, in order to reach each audience with the right message.

Dec 13, 2012

Traveling to as many trade shows as I do, I’ve seen exhibitors use every trick in the book to lure suspecting attendees to their 20x20s. Yet no matter how many exhibits I see, one tactic continues to disgust me like no other – booth babes.

Dec 6, 2012

I’m making my professional new year’s resolution a little early – I will blog once per week for the remainder of this fiscal year, posting on this forum for all to see. What topics will I cover? I honestly have no clue.

Nov 26, 2012

If you want to win in the NFL, there’s a lot you can learn from B2B. For starters, here are five important lessons that NFL teams can learn from B2B marketers.

Are marketing directors getting what they want from their agency? Here are six key factors B2B marketers value most from an agency.

Oct 12, 2012

Technology may have blurred the lines between B2B and B2C, but at a fundamental level those lines are still there. And blurry or not, some of them aren’t going to be crossed anytime soon. Here are six reasons why B2B and B2C will always differ.

Oct 3, 2012

For many B2B companies it can be a struggle to align all four of the P's with the realities of a business-to-business marketing strategy. See how Motorola Solutions has evolved the thinking behind the model.

Sep 27, 2012

These four ruminations might just be what you need to bring your company to the social media front.

Sep 20, 2012

As B2B marketers continue to wrestle with the ROI of social media a recent survey indicates that it is being used by millennial B2B buyers to gather information, seek advice and comment upon the B2B buying decisions that they are making.

Sep 13, 2012

It is standard practice to present multiple options when working on a creative concept. After the research phase is completed and the overall strategy is developed, the creative team gets to work to figure out the best way to communicate that big idea. Naturally, the best ideas are presented to the client to show a range of thinking. Sometimes what you see is not what you expected, or sometimes it is just different. If you’re having trouble committing to a concept, ask yourself these three key questions.

Sep 7, 2012

I'd like to issue a challenge to the entire world of B2B. I'm inviting you to submit your list of B2B companies whose contributions changed the world in 2012. Submit your nominations as comments to this blog and provide a brief explanation (less than 100 words).

Aug 30, 2012

Unified marketing takes “integrated marketing” to another level. While integrated marketing is about tactics working together, unified marketing starts with the strategy and concept and drives all messaging and tactical decisions. Here’s how to try it during the 2013 marketing planning cycle.

Aug 23, 2012

A very common reality among B2B marketers is that their annual marketing plan is closely tied to their fiscal year budget. Read about how you can make informed decisions about B2B marketing budget allocations and marketing strategy using the data you have and pairing it with customer insight.

Aug 16, 2012

Are you starting to think about your marketing strategy for 2013? While identifying the next campaign or product launch comes first, don’t forget to organize how you’re going to create and distribute your plan. Here are some tips to keep your internal content creation process running smoothly.

Making sure that there is a feedback loop between your search strategy and your sales process can pay off big time when executed properly.

Jul 20, 2012

B2B marketing insight can go beyond ordinary researching of facts and figures and become a high-tech eavesdropping situation, “listening in” and experiencing the conversations of your customers and prospects. Based on an actual Godfrey project, here are six ways to get a better handle – through social media – on what customers and prospects are really thinking.

Jul 18, 2012

Earlier this month, RAGAN’s PR Daily put out a piece called “12 traits of highly successful people”. As I read it, I couldn’t help but think that many of these same principles (most of which ring so true) also apply to successful B2B organizations.

Jul 13, 2012

John Deere apparel. CAT® footwear. Armor All™ vacuums. All highly recognized brand names, but who knew they made these types of products? Well, actually, they don’t. They are products of manufacturers who believe in the potential of brand licensing. With the right pairing of license and product offering, manufacturers can bypass entrance barriers in a crowded marketplace through higher brand recognition, stronger customer preference and a perceived quality differential. But, there are considerations when choosing such a strategy…

Is it true that you can’t teach passion for marketing but instead must be born with the desire?

Valuable lessons can be learned by B2B marketers on the power of individual interviews from the Joe Smith Collection recently donated to The Library of Congress. The Smith collection includes 238 hours of poignant, revealing interviews of virtually every rock and entertainment star of the era.

Jun 25, 2012

In two previous posts, I suggested the Millennial cohort is moving into B2B management positions. New research from The Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project sheds more light on how their tech-savvy, always-on nature may inform the B2B purchase decisions they are increasingly a part of.

As the myriad of interface displays and mobile devices grows, responsive web design can help design a website for the future---but it means you have to let go of how you approached the design process in the past.

Jun 18, 2012

Should your business create a Google+ page? We have the answer for you in this post.

Jun 15, 2012

Video is everywhere and consumers are embracing it. Over the past few years, we have seen the amount of time consumers spend watching video skyrocket. In B2B public relations, there are many ways to effectively integrate video into campaigns to engage your audiences.

In what seems to be a clear response to Google’s “Search Plus Your World”, Bing and Facebook have teamed up to include social search results.

A press release has always been seen as a platform to send a message, but in today’s digital world it is much more than that. Despite some claims that press releases are no longer an effective way to communicate, the opposite is actually the truth - a press release is the hub of activity.

May 18, 2012

Facebook® is now worth billions of dollars. But marketers are having a tough time getting dollar one from using social media. Let’s dig into why Facebook and other social media sites run into problems when evolving their business model from cultivating friendships (a.k.a., social networking) to growing cash crops.

May 17, 2012

The stats are all over the board regarding the B2B benefits of Facebook, with much of the feedback indicating a lag in Facebook popularity compared to other social media outlets for usefulness in B2B. Statistics aside, if you’re one of those in the “I’m skeptical about Facebook” camp here are several considerations that might help you rethink your position.

May 16, 2012

We have written about the importance of customer insight and unified marketing. For B2B and technology-oriented companies, it isn’t always easy to think beyond the product features. But here is one example of a marketer who is launching a new initiative to build the customer perspective into its global marketing organization.

May 14, 2012

Whether you’re a content strategy veteran or are just getting started, Margot’s new book "Content Strategy at Work" is a must-read for everyone. Read on to hear about Margot’s inspiration for writing the book and her thoughts on how b2b marketers can leverage content strategy with clients.

May 10, 2012

It's been hard to miss all the co-mingling of marketing and IT that has been taking place over the past few years. As the volume of work shared between the groups increases and the pace accelerates here are a few things to keep in mind to ease the integration.

May 9, 2012

There are plenty of statistics and information available on the growing trend of smartphone use. But some of the more recent moves from Google in the mobile space put a greater emphasis on its importance, particularly in the Search and SEO world. Here are five Google announcements worth noting.

According to Forrester Research, spending on email marketing, delivery, analytics, integration and creative will approach $2.5 billion annually by 2016, up from $1.5 billion in 2011, a compound annual growth rate of 10 percent. Since email is becoming more valuable in the B2B market, I encourage you to take a second look at your email marketing strategy and examine what your database of email addresses is worth.

Email marketing includes mobile email users. Are you meeting their needs or making these common email mobile marketing mistakes?

Apr 26, 2012

What kind of content do prospects and customers respond to most? Storytelling.

Apr 23, 2012

As B2B marketing efforts become more integrated, the line between paid, shared and earned media is becoming blurred. A successful marketing plan must incorporate all three, with focused messaging and strategic outreach. Find out what role PR plays in the overall marketing plan.

Apr 20, 2012

Today’s technology has so utterly changed the world of B2B insight that any organization can develop insight experts on marketing topics. This (hopefully) humorous post highlights the differences between insight efforts today and yesterday.

Apr 16, 2012

We must optimize PR efforts for search using tools and keywords that empathize with all audiences. Let's talk about SEO using a tried-and-true PR acronym, RACE. Fortunately, optimizing PR for search is a RACE you can win. Find out how.

Apr 6, 2012

This month’s collection of all things Social Media takes a step back to examine the tools of the trade.

B2B marketers are sometimes in a quandary about the validity of qualitative research, including, in-depth interview methodology. This post will be helpful in explaining how in-depth interviewing can produce valid results and may be a better alternative to traditional focus groups for deeper, richer insight.

Mar 29, 2012

Selling a movie like “Hunger Games,” which takes place in a futuristic dystopian society (the “Games” are an annual contest in which children fight each other to the death) is just as complex as completing a B2B sale. What can marketers learn from this movie’s success?

A visit to a large B2B company’s headquarters inspired the above question. Find out if your company has their headquarters on straight.

When writing website content for your global audience, consider the language you’re using. Make it easy to understand and translate by the international users. Here are some things to consider.

Events require a large portion of B2B budgets, but determining ROI is often overlooked in the planning process. Here are some tips on measuring success.

Mar 21, 2012

Millennials are moving onto B2B buying teams and influencing product and service purchase decisions. Are you in present in the right places to engage with them?

Mar 20, 2012

I was pretty blown away by South by Southwest. While it would be foolish to try and cram a week's worth of discovery into one blog post there are a couple of quick observations to be made. 

Mar 15, 2012

We have found that Paid-Earned-Owned is simply a categorization tool that helps with content integration and can add value through repurposing valuable content.

Mar 13, 2012

For many B2B companies with the right strategy and access to data, determining ROI can be quite simple. This post shows you how to do it.

Mar 8, 2012

How can you utilize breaking events and viral news to your advantage? Here’s a suggestion from David Meerman Scott: Figure out how to get your message in the second paragraph.

Google recently released 40 new updates to its Panda release from earlier this year. The changes are part of a continued effort from Google to improve search quality (probably also an attempt to drive SEO experts insane trying to keep up!). Anyway, I’ve taken a look at all of the changes they outlined and I’ve taken the liberty of pulling out a few of the more relevant updates for you here.

Mar 1, 2012

This month’s collection of all things Social Media follows the masses to Pinterest and gets nerdy with connected devices.

Feb 29, 2012

Spokesperson training is critical for any employee that will speak on behalf of the organization and that training must include social media engagement.

Feb 28, 2012

Training for and completing an Ironman triathlon bares a lot of resemblance to the development and execution of a website project.

Feb 22, 2012

If we only look at your company’s “news,” we are going to miss a lot of great placement opportunities. There’s “news” – something inherently new, noteworthy or different that’s also timely. But there’s also “thought leadership” – valuable information, based on your own experience and perspective within the industry.

Feb 17, 2012

The world is stuck on the newest social media network, Pinterest. Here, I outline some starting points to explore the network and see if it’s a good fit for your B2B marketing efforts.

Feb 16, 2012

In the world of B2B communications, some dealers, distributors and sales people are using e-tablets as a communications tool, often for sales presentations. But in a technology toolbox crowded with smartphones and laptops, it’s hard to figure out the real value of e-tablets and digital readers. Are they just another digital gimmick -- or the most disruptive force since Gutenberg’s printing press?

Feb 15, 2012

A recent article in Advertising Age (“When CMOs Learn to Love Data, They'll Be VIPs in the C-Suite”) provides some empirical support for an idea we’ve strongly suggested in the past: Marketers need to support their decisions with data if they hope to play a serious role in their organization’s future.

Feb 13, 2012

This blog covers understandings and agreements, or social contract that should exist between an interviewer and respondent for a positive outcome and to an honor an implicit professional code of ethics.

Feb 9, 2012

Google's new privacy policy will take effect on March 1. On the surface, the new privacy rules may not seem beneficial for advertisers, and there are definite drawbacks, however, there are many other factors that could potentially benefit Google advertisers— especially B2B advertisers, who often struggle to reach their target online.

Feb 8, 2012

Up until the end of the last century, most corporate identity guidelines were written like instruction manuals for minding the brand. Never do this; always do that. Use this grid and these colors (nothing else)...

Feb 7, 2012

Howard Stern knows how to re-purpose content. Marketers should take a lesson from his playbook.

I know what you’re thinking. “Sure, I know everyone’s using social media, but my company sells products that cost a ton of money and sales can take years to close. I can’t generate a sale, or even a lead, for any of my products using Facebook or Twitter.” If you’ve ever said some version of that to yourself, read this article to reframe the way you might want to think about social media for your business.

Why are you investing in a mobile app? Will this one offering make a difference with your target audience? Maybe you are expecting too much.

Feb 1, 2012

E-books have been getting a lot of attention lately and rightly so. E-reading devices are big sellers. Amazon and Apple have both expanded their support of highly designed and interactive content. We're releasing an e-book  for Caterpillar that takes advantage of some of those things and takes product literature in a new direction.

Jan 31, 2012

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month's collection of all things Social Media examines a collection of lesser known networks and the content that fuels our social habits.

Jan 30, 2012

More and more, we see B2B salespeople embracing social media to meet their personal sales targets. Marketing teams could learn a lot from salespeople (or their social media activities), just by asking a few questions (and spending some quality time surfing social media sites).

Jan 27, 2012

As a B2B communications professional, I’ve realized that being fully immersed in social media has taught me a valuable lesson: Less is more. One of the most important things we can take away from Twitter’s little blue birdie is the ability to write concisely.

Jan 26, 2012

In an interesting sequel to last year’s B2B research success story, primary research saves a client from a potentially damaging error in perceiving their audience.

Jan 25, 2012

After reading the excellent blog by my colleague Leanne Terpak on establishing KPIs, my thoughts returned to a topic I had raised earlier: If KPIs and the analytics they drive are so important, why aren’t we doing better with them? What is stopping us?

How do you know if your social media program is really resonating with your audience? Which tweets have resulted in conversions on your website? The following blog gives some tips on how to begin setting up an analytics strategy.

Jan 23, 2012

By now, you certainly have heard the term thought leadership around meetings or business dinners. It’s an up-and-coming concept in the marketing world, including B2B. It’s a radically different way of considering leadership – it doesn’t travel from top to bottom through the ranks, but outward to a whole industry— and it changes how people think.

Jan 20, 2012

Millennials are moving onto B2B buying teams and influencing product and service purchase decisions. Are you ready to communicate with them?

Jan 19, 2012

Google Analytics has long been a great free tool that has helped B2B marketers review, analyze, interpret and make website improvements. Find out how a recent Google privacy policy change is affecting keyword reports and how you should continue to manage your organic search program.

Jan 18, 2012

Customer Relationship Management has been around for quite a while now, and has been a key item in many B2B marketing strategies. It's lost a little of its sexy veneer— no longer the hot buzzword of a decade or so ago. Here are some tips on how to change your thinking, and your approach, to CRM.

Jan 17, 2012

How do companies go about creating a corporate social responsibility program? Here are a few simple steps.

With refreshed yearly budgets and objectives planned, now is a great time to establish new priorities and explore the possibility of thinking differently in your daily B2B work. I recently read a Fast Company blog post that discusses the notion of embracing the importance of accurate “small stuff”.

Last fall I had the opportunity to attend PR News’ Digital PR Summit in New York City. The one-day seminar was filled with information on social media platforms, how to include social media in B2B PR campaigns and how to maintain and build relationships with editors through social media.

Jan 12, 2012

Google just introduced “Search Plus Your World”. What does that mean for your B2B company?

Jan 11, 2012

To continue my series of blog posts on B2B web analytics basics, here we’re going to take a closer look at Key Performance Indicators and what you need to know about them.

Jan 9, 2012

Who is winning the smartphone wars? Apple? Android? Blackberry? With all the conflicting news about market shares of smartphones, what matters to marketers is what your customers and prospects are using and what they experience on your digital properties on their platform(s) of choice.

Jan 6, 2012

2011 was a whirlwind year for the world of digital marketing and communications. And through it all, B2B Insights was reporting live on the scene.

Jan 5, 2012

I had a healthy amount of skepticism when it came to eBooks. After working with a few of them, I’ve turned the page, so-to-speak, on the subject. If you’re a content creator or publisher, now’s a good time to look give them some thought.

Jan 4, 2012

There are some certainties to the typical January workday. There are no free treadmills at the gym, lots of leftover cookies floating around and my rationalizations such as "I'm not really breaking the resolution if I..." But I'm convinced there are a few B2B resolutions that are easier to keep.

Dec 29, 2011

The Public Relations Society of America recently unveiled their list of 12 trends that will change the PR industry in 2012. Noted on this list is the convergence of brand management and reputation management functions within organizations.

Dec 28, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media sees new interfaces and functionality under the tree and we get all sentimental looking at the past year’s roundups.

Dec 20, 2011

Media interviews can be intimidating, however, there are several techniques that a spokesperson can implement which will allow them to succeed at any interview. There are several myths that spokespeople cannot afford to believe as well as tips and tricks to help the spokesperson stay on message.

Dec 19, 2011

You need a business website with a content management system (CMS). Where do you start?

Dec 16, 2011

One of the most discussed and challenging issues marketers face these days is measuring ROI.

Dec 15, 2011

Your company has invested a great deal in the development of a strong brand identity system including a logo, color palette and fonts that capture the tone of your brand's voice. Using limited, "platform-friendly" fonts can weaken your brand personality and standards. Start using your corporate fonts online today!

Dec 13, 2011

We know you’ve got lots of questions about social media. Here is one that you’re probably seeking answers to, but don’t need to be.

Dec 9, 2011

Looking back on last year’s holiday/year end post with equal parts amusement and disbelief that I could be that corny, I decided this year to focus more on what has gone right in the B2B digital world.

Dec 8, 2011

If I'm being completely honest, I'm probably the least "social" social media professional you know.

You can't create a custom digital solution for every new mobile device. But you can create one design that will respond to them all. Could responsive web design work for your B2B website?

Dec 5, 2011

Web page speed and performance is very important when it comes to user experience and search results, and should be part of your search engine optimization strategy.

Dec 1, 2011

 A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month's collection of all things Social Media sees Wall Street looking for a deal and examines big league tweets.

Nov 30, 2011

Part four of a four-part series to help B2B marketers understand more about this powerful qualitative research methodology and the “how tos” of conducting, analyzing and reporting. This blog covers how to effectively analyze and report insights gleaned from depth interviews for B2B marketers.

Nov 28, 2011

Cheap digital readers and e-tablets are making it easier to consume content digitally, which means B2B marketers must consider the impact of the medium on their message – including branding and content strategy.

Nov 23, 2011

Creating effective surveys for B2B research is both a science and an art. The key is to engage the respondent, encourage well-thought-out answers, and – regardless of the medium used for the survey – keep respondents from “mailing it in.”

Nov 21, 2011

We know you don’t want yet another platform to put your brand on, but Google+ isn’t going away anytime soon. An Information Architect and Social Media Manager break down what you need to know about Google+ before you create a page for your B2B company.

Nov 18, 2011

Recently I launched my first Facebook advertising program. I’ll be honest: I was skeptical. After all, no one clicks on those little ads—or do they?

Nov 16, 2011

When Godfrey decided to produce our first e-book, it was quite the undertaking. Here are five tips I picked up along the way.

Nov 15, 2011

On the surface, it may not seem as though B2B social media and construction have much in common. But if you dig a bit deeper, you’ll realize that the practical processes of the construction industry are also quite relevant in B2B social media.

Nov 13, 2011

The situation: Your company is in the early stages of planning for a new product launch that is sure to be a hit with distribution and has the potential to shake up the competitive marketplace...

Nov 11, 2011

Part three of a four-part series to help B2B marketers understand more about this powerful qualitative research methodology and the “how to’s” of conducting in-depth interviews. This blog covers how to effectively plan and conduct in-depth interviews for B2B marketers.

Nov 9, 2011

Workhorse PR can reliably deliver good results year after year. With the rise in social media and other direct channels, is it time to implement more “racehorse” PR?

As 2012 B2B marketing planning should be in full-swing, I find myself internally rationalizing the necessity of early planning. A topical analogy seems evident as the 2012 Presidential Election is one year from today.

Nov 7, 2011

A recent announcement from B2B publisher Ziff Davis should not come as a big surprise – they are discontinuing the print editions of four magazines.


 

I recently came across a print ad in an industry publication that caught my attention. The ad was for Kleenex® brand tissues. It stated that Kleenex is a branded term that is often misused as a generic term for "tissues." The main image of the ad was a registered mark ® partially erased by an eraser. The last line of copy, "Just pretend it's in permanent marker."

Nov 3, 2011

A recent article in Ad Age presents the social media dilemma expressed by many large, global B2B companies: not knowing what to Tweet about.

Nov 2, 2011

B2B marketers can learn a lesson from the story of the man who sold hot dogs.

Nov 1, 2011

While B2B journalists are using social media more than ever, they still rely heavily on company contacts and industry sources to research, report and write about breaking news and emerging trends in the B2B space.

Oct 31, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media looks at the latest in the mobile landscape and a power player in hosted blogging solutions.

Are you willing to hear what your customers have to say, knowing some of it could be ugly? Does the way you interact with them reflect their needs – or your frustrations? And most importantly, are you prepared to respond – really respond – to the insight, and set your own milestones or benchmarks for improvement?

Oct 27, 2011

Big ideas are like sea turtles. About 1 in 100 make it out of the nest alive but only 1 in 40,000 survive to adulthood. That’s because truly original ideas sound strange at first. They are usually squashed as soon as they hatch. So, the success of a big idea depends on selling it from day one.

Oct 26, 2011

The recent Wisconsin-Michigan State game was a perfect analogy to marketing communications. While the game-winning play got all the attention, every other play and decision had a part in the final outcome.

If the objective is to appeal to the audience, then why do so many B2B companies approach communications like a bad first date--only talking about themselves? There is a better way.

Oct 24, 2011

Many companies don’t think twice about dropping tens (sometimes hundreds) of thousands on focus groups while simultaneously ignoring a golden opportunity staring them in the face with social media.

Oct 19, 2011

A recent survey of CEOs found a vast percentage were frustrated with their company’s marketers and felt they failed to provide useful information about the role marketing plays in achieving business success.

What does it cost to build a mobile app? It depends. Get the quick answers to common cost questions.

Oct 17, 2011

Part two of a four-part series to help B2B marketers understand more about this powerful qualitative research methodology and the “how to’s” of conducting in-depth interviews. This blog covers advantages of in-depth interview methodology over traditional focus group for B2B marketing research.

Oct 14, 2011

On its own, the Apple logo is really not that clever. The symbol is pretty obvious: an apple shape for a company named “Apple.” So why is the Apple logo one of the most recognizable in the world? Because a logo derives its meaning from the quality of the thing it symbolizes, not the other way around.

Oct 13, 2011

As marketers and professionals, our clients rely on us to be knowledgeable about of lot of subjects. It’s not surprising then, that many of us fall into the trap of feeling that we have to know everything. Here’s everything you wanted to know about questions, but were afraid to ask.

Oct 12, 2011

Part one of a four-part series to help B2B marketers understand more about this powerful qualitative research methodology and the “how to’s” of conducting in-depth interviews.

Successful brand communication should be able to evoke the same understanding across all cultures.  While this challenge may seem obvious, the realities of making this happen are far from simple.

As a parent and a marketer I’m always looking for the positives. Looking at my teens, it became clear to me that there are some basic lessons that span both areas of my life. 

Oct 6, 2011

One of the things I truly love about what I do is that what I do is never the same. As an art director, I have to remember all my training—not forget it, and then put that all aside. If you can’t do this, you can’t keep up with all the changes in technology, and you will box yourself in, becoming stagnant.

Have you been considering the need for a mobile app, or better yet, a mobile website? Here are some thoughts and statistics that could change the way you look at your audience and their interactions with mobile devices.

Oct 3, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media plays politics while Google continues its quest for world domination.

Sep 29, 2011

Media monitoring should be used to gauge public opinion, track issues and warn us of pending crises. It should be comprehensive and include all things digital. No matter your budget, you can still start some monitoring now. 

Sep 27, 2011

In the wake of Mark Zuckerberg’s keynote presentation at the Facebook developer conference, f8, last week, there are a few new words you will need to add to your FB lexicon – real-time serendipity, open graph and timeline. In this article, we'll take a look at what each of these changes is and what it means for your business.

Sep 26, 2011

The changing landscape of interactive marketing, social media and digital technology challenges marketers to become proficient in these new areas of advertising in a relatively short time. But, as busy, working professionals, how do we find the time to learn about them?

Sep 23, 2011

Is there really any reason to wonder why Google would take this position in the rapid growing arena of mobile devices and mobile broadband access? The truth is that this has been in the works for a while at Google and they are just now putting some public movement behind it.

Sep 22, 2011

Today, decision-makers include Boomers, Gen X, Gen Y (or Millennials) and now Gen U. Each demographic is unique. Delivering messages and information using appropriate channels is becoming more complex and challenging. Gaining insight into our audiences is critical if we hope to reach prime decision-makers.

Sep 21, 2011

Today, it seems that many companies think social media platforms are best used to broadcast commercials for their company or brand. The idea that social media can be used to sell! sell! sell! 24/7 is all over the place.

Sep 16, 2011

Question and Answer sites have been around a long time but there have been some new additions to this category, including ones that have social and search implications.

Sep 13, 2011

It all starts with a plan. Without it you can quickly find yourself careening down the rabbit hole with no bread crumb trail to help find your way out. Through my experience, I’m still amazed to see the number of companies that don’t value, or maybe appreciate, the power of well thought out and monitored analytics. 

Sep 9, 2011

What is the relationship between profanity and marketing? Between profanity and business in general? Are there times when profanity is acceptable, and further, actually encouraged? This blog examines the power of those four to five-letter words.

Sep 8, 2011

Building a solid, lasting perception of your company depends on how well you align short-term marketing initiatives with larger brand objectives and common-sense brand stewardship. As you battle to defend and grow your brand, keep these five basic tips in mind...

A recent study released by the Pew Research Center found that 65 percent of adults who spend time on the Internet are using social networking sites. What does this mean for B2B marketers?

Sep 6, 2011

As of September 7, 2011, your company’s trademarks could become associated with an .xxx domain and website. There is opt-out period, but you must act quickly.

Sep 2, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media takes a look at how far Social Media has come and how we keep up with it.

As hockey great Wayne Gretzky once said, there is no point in bothering to go where the action has been, but rather it is more important to go where the action will be. That concept, my friends, is true for so many things in life—not just hockey, but also to social media and measuring its success.

Thought leadership is a phrase that is thrown around a lot in strategy meetings and planning sessions, the idea being that you can build brand loyalty and active audience participation by sharing fresh insight that provides direction or even solutions to common challenges many of your customers face.

Aug 29, 2011

One of the staples of cause marketing is that in addition to doing good, the proposed cause marketing campaign should benefit the business. But I’d like to raise the bar.

Aug 26, 2011

We work in some competitive times. Regardless of industry, the pressure is on to be efficient, effective, and service-oriented while showing growth and staying ahead of the conversation. In all of the commotion and left-brain activity, it's hard sometimes to feel creative, much less produce truly innovative ideas.

Aug 23, 2011

Recently I stumbled upon an article about education in the New York Times online archives. It’s a wonderful resource for market research – a treasure trove of 13 million articles going back to 1851.

The article was entitled, "To Really Learn, Quit Studying and Take a Test".

Aug 23, 2011

Today may have been a record setting day: Earthquakes on the East Coast AND over 7,000 webinar attendees on 'The Science of Social Media'.

Aug 19, 2011

Very relevant Friday evening title right? But have you tried searching for a local pizza shop lately? This is relevant to your B2B business, I promise.

Is it a good marketing practice to request retweets or does merely asking the question have an adverse effect on your followers? I find there is an argument for both sides.

Aug 17, 2011

Customer intimacy is about trust. As B2B marketers, we need to be willing to make investments now that will help us become more intimate with our clients. And, as social media becomes more and more popular in B2B, we need to be aware of how it is changing the way that we interact with our customers.

Aug 16, 2011

It’s easy to think of metadata as some deeply encrypted line of code, tucked away in obscurity. But the truth is, a meta description may viewed more than any other copy on its corresponding page.

Aug 12, 2011

LinkedIn recently released their second quarter financial results, including the fact that there are now 11.5 million users. If you are looking to make the most of your company’s presence on LinkedIn, here are five suggestions for where to start.

Aug 10, 2011

How I learned to stop delaying and love the Chrome.

Users' comments provide the insight you need to succeed, now how do you address the issues that could make your design fail?
Aug 8, 2011

We’ve all seen the Forbes article and the studies that show us that nearly 80% of business decision-makers believe their company will experience a crisis in the next year.

Okay, so maybe you’ve actually met your CFO. Unless you are a close confidante, however, you may not know what keeps him, or her, awake at night.

Aug 4, 2011

It’s hard to come up with a strategy, or art direct, design, etc. without insight about the target audience. Insight is more than just knowing who your audience is — it's knowing and understanding who your audience really is.

Aug 3, 2011

Highly regulated companies inherently require more confidentiality/privacy than most. These companies often ask how they can confidently engage in social media, given all the red tape – or what seems like red tape. Here are five initial thoughts to consider.

Aug 2, 2011

Online secondary research can provide credible support to insight you may already have about your customers, markets and industries…and most of it is FREE!

Recently I’ve been testing the grounds with my twitter account and have started to follow the B2B trade publications and editors that I work with on a daily basis.

Jul 28, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media explores bureaucracy’s move toward the instant media and we mix business with pleasure at BlackBerry’s expense.

Jul 27, 2011

Skewed survey results, due to preconceived ideas, can be built right into the wording of questions. Here are 6 tips for avoiding this pitfall.

Jul 25, 2011

There really is only one way to know. Test. We’ve been working with a number of clients conducting A/B testing and refining the best time to send their B2B campaign emails.  We have determined that certain times of day can, in fact, increase the open and response rate by a few percent. I’d tell you but it’s proprietary information. Actually, your audience will differ and our audience’s best time is not going to be your audience’s best time. So where do you start?

Jul 25, 2011

There’s good news and bad news in the survey BtoB magazine published on the use of marketing automation in support of events.

We’ve all heard life is like a box of chocolates, I’ve recently heard email marketing is like a restaurant, but I feel I can really relate a successful B2B marketing team to the workings of a renowned hospital.

Jul 20, 2011

After relying on advertising value equivalents (or AVE) for measuring media coverage, I've decided that it’s time to move on.

Jul 19, 2011

Content strategy — perhaps the latest buzzword — has taken the marketing world by storm. So what’s with all the hype?

Jul 15, 2011

"If you could say it in words, there'd be no reason to paint." Speaking to the value of artistic expression, American realist painter Edward Hopper would have most certainly extended his candor to the field of illustration.

Jul 15, 2011

Ten years ago if you wanted to find out more about a company or learn about its products or services, you would pick up the telephone and dial a number. After a few rings a customer service representative would pick up the phone and say, “Hi, thank you for calling [insert company name, typically followed by their slogan or catch-phrase], how may I help you today?”

Jul 14, 2011

A recent study by the Pew Research Center reinforces the idea that for a growing number of people, there is no such thing as a mobile Internet.

Jul 13, 2011

In its most recent issue, BtoB magazine published a survey of B2B marketing analytics in which most respondents confess relatively minimal involvement in analyzing their web data for marketing insights.

Jul 11, 2011

Do you ever hear this around your office: “Research is too expensive. And anyway, we know who our customers are.” We recently completed a project that proved how, in B2B marketing, a little insight leads to a better strategy, which drives a better creative solution. And it isn’t as difficult, time-consuming or expensive as you might think. 

Jul 11, 2011

Do you own,  operate or plan on browsing a web site in the next 12 months? If you answered yes then there are some new privacy regulations coming out of the European Union which will affect you. We're still in the early stages of this but there are a few basic things you can do now to start preparing.

Many advertisers, mistakenly focuses solely on clicks. Yes, clicks are a performance metric to monitor but they are far from the only metric that matters.

Jul 6, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media peeks behind the curtain at Google+ and starts to look at Facebook’s “awesome” announcement.

Ever been to a meeting where someone carries in a laptop, an iPad, a smartphone and a paper notepad?

Jun 30, 2011

B2B marketers can take a lesson from the Arab spring, your constituents are talking about you, are you listening?

Jun 29, 2011

Marketers today need to create maximum value with a minimum budget. And yes, marketing analytics can definitely help. Over my next few blog posts, I plan to discuss the basics of B2B analytics in a series, providing some primary education on this topic and taking a look at the actionable information that can come out of crunching the numbers.

Jun 28, 2011

How eliminating a $60 cable TV subscription leads to a B2B social media strategy.

Jun 27, 2011

When business gets tough, some turn to the shelter of professional publications, social media networks and even e-newsletters. This is especially true with architects who are toughing it out right now. This audience responds well to stories about spaces their peers have created. Here’s an example:

Jun 24, 2011

If you’re a B2B marketer and you haven’t jumped on the mobile marketing bandwagon, now would be a good time to hop onboard.

When your company CEO tells you to build an iPad app and your best customers want a web app, what's a B2B marketer to do?

Jun 20, 2011

An old-time baseball player once said, “If you have any questions, just go ahead and ask. Of course, be careful who you ask.”

Jun 17, 2011

A few scenarios outlining pros and cons of Groupon-like Daily Deals for B2B companies.

Jun 16, 2011

Jerry Thomas, CEO of Decision Analyst, a leading international research firm and friend of Godfrey, distilled some great guidelines about when and where it is appropriate to use qualitative research.

Jun 15, 2011

There’s a lot of buzz these days about B2B publishers offering more “marketing services” and thereby competing with agencies (including Godfrey) who are also traditional partners in planning and delivering marketing communications for mutual clients.

Jun 13, 2011

If “B2B Branding” was a company, it would have a branding problem. Too many business-to-business marketers and senior managements think branding means logos, taglines, business cards and letterhead. It’s a lot more than that today.

Jun 9, 2011

Help visitors find and understand your content with semantic tagging. With just a little bit of extra effort and added support from all the major search engines you have another tool to make sure your content is getting out in front of your audience.

Understanding your target audience and their goals is the first part of designing B2B mobile experiences. But even when users are at the center of your design, assumptions can weaken your approach.

How can you create a positive memory that is so strong that your top B2B prospects will never forget you or your company? How do you get your top prospects to drive to work each morning hoping that they’ll see your logo on a package?  The answer is suspense. Here are 9 tips for using 3D mail to create suspense and anticipation.

Jun 1, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt
This month’s collection of all things Social Media advances the renaissance of offline social interaction and puts some price tags on this Social Media thing.

May 31, 2011

We asked our partner agencies via Worldwide Partners, "How do you see B2B social media evolving in your country?" Stephanie Bishop, Online Marketing Specialist at Brighton in St. Louis, reflects on this question and gives us her views.

May 27, 2011

The basic building block for co-creation in marketing or business endeavors is asking questions: i.e. research. Asking the right questions of ALL key stakeholders who will be involved or benefit from the solution.

May 26, 2011

The smallest gadget or advancement in consumer electronics has the potential to affect the B2B realm. Call it the “tech toy butterfly effect.”

May 25, 2011

We asked our partner agencies via Worldwide Partners, "How do you see B2B social media evolving in your country?" Chris Knopf, Chief Executive Officer at Mintz & Hoke in Avon, reflects on this question and gives us his views.

May 24, 2011

The public relations landscape has changed dramatically but there are some tried and true “rules” to follow when pitching to the media that will never change.

May 20, 2011

We asked our partner agencies via Worldwide Partners, "How do you see B2B social media evolving in your country?" Lee Gatchel, Director of User Experience at Carton Donofrio Partners in Baltimore, reflects on this question and gives us his views.

May 18, 2011

In the B2B market, should email and social media compete or complement your marketing strategy tactics?

May 17, 2011

Online shopping is the greatest. I find it most enjoyable when the weather starts warming up and I’m seated on my back porch with my dog, Louie, along with the smell of grilled burgers in the air.

You know you need to optimize your B2B website for mobile, but what exactly does that mean? And how do you start?

May 13, 2011

Apple Computer’s “Think Different” campaign demonstrates how a client and agency can collaborate to create a compelling and memorable campaign.

May 12, 2011

Learn what a QR code is, what the benefits are as well as the top eight best practices you should keep in mind before charging ahead.

May 11, 2011

Greetings, friends and fellow industry peers. As spring raises its leery head in Central Pennsylvania, I’m reminded of all the pleasant changes that accompany this time of year – shorts, sandals, outdoor basketball, barbecues, no longer having to scrape the ice off your windshield and so much more; it’s beautiful, really.

May 10, 2011

B2B marketers know how important it is to optimize their websites for search. However, what they often fail to realize is that their search strategy must be expanded beyond their websites to be an integral part of all aspects of their comprehensive marketing strategy, including videos that are uploaded to YouTube.

May 6, 2011

How does public relations follow the motto of the Boy Scouts? When it comes to dealing with a crisis, you don’t know what may happen but you can take steps to be prepared for managing the communications.

May 4, 2011

As a marketing professional, I have learned over time that business is, unfortunately, not as simple and straight-forward as I may have perceived it to be when I was seven. Market dynamics, fierce competition and material pricing have a way of taking a fairly simple concept—selling product A to customer B—and adding just a few layers of complexity.

Back in March, Google announced the new version of Google Analytics, Version 5, as a closed beta to users who requested it. But on Wednesday, April 20th Google rolled out the update to all of their users.

Apr 29, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media takes “Liking” offline and explores that other network...

Apr 28, 2011

Looking for a clever or interesting way to communicate your brand message? Consider taking some risks. Experiment with crazy solutions. Even if your ideas don’t make it all the way to the audience, there is value in asking the questions. But when the they do work out, it’s the icing on the cake.

Apr 27, 2011

I’ve been reading them my entire career to keep up with what’s going on the markets I need to follow.

 

Thank you enlightened business publishers for continuing to provide a valuable resource to your audiences and the marketers that want to reach them.

Apr 26, 2011

The term “public relations” means many things to many people.  Even in my own company, there’s a difference of opinion.

Apr 22, 2011

Done properly, primary B2B research can set up, not just a “win-win,” but a “win-win-win,” benefiting a company, their customers and their end users, the consumers.

Apr 21, 2011

It has been a few weeks since Google rolled out their +1 technology.

What is it?

Apr 20, 2011

In this time of complete digitalization, it can be assumed that there are many products on the market that will end up having multiple purposes and functions. The product that I find most promising is the Xbox Kinect.

Direct Mail – been there, done that.

E-mail/E-news – testing and tweaking.

Relationship Marketing – let’s get personal.

Apr 14, 2011

In the early days of the Internet, there was tremendous enthusiasm (“irrational exuberance” was a term bandied about) for the potential of the new medium.

Apr 13, 2011

It used to be good enough to say, “We know who our customers are.” But now, it is important to challenge assumptions and make the effort to find out more about your customers. Technology has changed the game completely.

Apr 8, 2011

When the major players in social media are named, twitter always makes the list. But should it really be classified as a "social" network?

Apr 7, 2011

We are in the business of communication. So what happens when we don’t clearly communicate?

“We have to develop an iPad App” and “how much does an iPad app cost” are two things I have heard frequently over the last few months.

Apr 4, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt
This month’s collection of all things Social Media has Facebook asking questions and we are reminded to keep checking in.

Apr 3, 2011

Our marketing colleagues in B2B SEO use an interesting term, “link bait.” It’s usually described as something that makes people want to link to your site, thereby increasing your search-engine ranking.

I have a problem with that.

These statistics will convince you--and your B2B marketing stakeholders--that designing experiences for mobile is a must.

Apr 1, 2011

We’ve come a long way from PDAs. (Ok, I’m done with the acronyms, promise.) But have you seen some of the things people are doing with their cell phones lately? From faster networks to video conferencing and product research, the mobile world is moving fast and you have to keep up.

Apr 1, 2011

Actually you have a challenge. If you didn’t, then why would you have a project in the first place? Now that we have established you have a challenge you need help with, let’s figure out what the challenge is and the proper solution for it.

How do you make an impression on prospects that are bombarded with messaging and offers at every turn? How can you create a lasting memory for your message and your brand? In part two of this three part series I will look at selecting the right 3D giveaway item, one that not only gets in front of your target, but stays there.

Mar 28, 2011

Of course there is Wikipedia, the all-knowing Britannica killer whose crowd-sourced volumes we all cautiously adore. But clever developments in social media have opened the flood gates to the namesake of a humble Honolulu shuttle bus.

Mar 24, 2011

The audience information that media planners and buyers need in order to put together an effective media plan is a bit of a challenge when it comes to b2b online media channels.

Mar 23, 2011

Greetings, fellow rainmakers and marketing mavens. As the first quarter for many of you nears a finish, I hope this post finds you all doing very well with strong numbers and impressive ROIs at your backs.

Mar 21, 2011

I remember earlier in my ad career working on a national B2C account. I was new to this piece of business and responsible for in-store promotions and packaging. The client understood the value of research and was very thorough. Attending focus groups and reviewing research data with us was common.

Mar 17, 2011

The earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster in Japan may affect your B2B products or supply chain. Communicating with your customers and markets is essential during a time of high uncertainty. Hopefully you have a crisis communications plan in place.

Mar 17, 2011

Is your company using a dynamic approach to strategy? Are your marketing and communications programs keeping pace?

Mar 16, 2011

One of the greatest challenges that face anyone who works in advertising is staying current on the vast array of ever evolving media channels and platforms. There seem to be new and improved ways to connect with your audience emerging daily.  One event that accelerates this evolution is the annual South by Southwest Conference & Festival (SXSW) taking place in Austin this week.

Mar 16, 2011

“Computers excel at creating problems that take computers to solve.”*

That quote pretty much sums up the tendency of social media -- and really, any networked-based technology -- to expand like a supernova.

Mar 14, 2011

The iPad 2 is here and Apple apps are hotter than ever. Now B2B marketers are starting to want their own custom apps and are making room for these gems in their budgets. There are lots of facets to this issue. Here are five ways to rethink the iPad.

How do you break through the clutter and noise that appears in front of your top prospects? What makes them tick? What catches their attention? What would make them think highly, or think at all, of your company? In part one of this three part series I will look at how to micro-focus your 3D direct mail campaign as the first step in making a significant impression.

Mar 11, 2011

Ever have a salesperson talk your ear off, but never quite answer your questions? Don’t you hate that? So does Google.

Mar 10, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz & Mike Wilt

This month’s collection of all things Social Media speaks to when the biz’s big names break, the B2B marketing version of Terminator and a unique approach to targeting you and I as B2B professionals.

Suggested tools to help you find relevant conversations in social media.

Mar 4, 2011

Secondary research can be very helpful. But do you know where the information comes from? If not, beware hidden agendas and biased results.

Marketers are pressured every day for top-line growth and bottom-line results. You need to deliver measureable performance. Since the one constant we can all rely on is change, we need data-driven continuous feedback to design, execute and improve marketing campaigns to show that all-important ROI.  To do this properly, I recommend you develop an analytics strategy.  "A what?" you ask.

Feb 28, 2011

The numbers continue to build the case - mobile is growing. According Google CEO, Erick Schmidt, speaking recently at the Interactive Advertising Bureau's annual leadership meeting, mobile is growing much faster than predicted. He supported his call to “do mobile” with some interesting stats

You may be wondering how to integrate infographics with your B2B brand. Recently I stumbled upon an excellent example of a statistical infographic that is a perfect representation of what to do and what not to do all at the same time when creating a viral B2B campaign.

Feb 22, 2011

“Work smarter, not harder.” For brand managers caught between the time constraints and budgetary challenges of the present economic climate, this is sound advice. Another smart piece of advice is to revisit your marketing asset management (MAM) strategy.

I know email isn’t a trendy topic in comparison to all of the new developing technologies, but email shouldn’t be overlooked either. Utilizing your email lists can be a great tool to educate current clients on key brand and marcom strategy points.

Feb 18, 2011

I’ve traveled to enough trade shows to know that, without question, everyone has their own selling style. No, I’m not referring to little “tricks” of the game. You know, the classic (read: antiquated) techniques once taught in the sales books of decades past only to be sadly magnified by some phony salespeople who don’t know any better.

Does a social media program result in better search rankings? It's why many B2B marketers are allocating more resources to being social.

Feb 14, 2011

Over the past few years there has been a social media evolution taking place with Super Bowl commercials. Super Bowl advertisers are now leveraging social media to allow the audience to build a deeper relationship with the products and brands being advertised.

Feb 11, 2011

I got an e-news alert the other day informing me that a reputable consulting and research firm was identifying the four technologies that  B2B CMOs should be watching. I am not a CMO but I deal with them so I believe I should be paying attention to what they are watching.

Feb 10, 2011

It's easy to be overwhelmed by all the measurements that are available these days. Let's start the discussion about which are most actionable.

Feb 8, 2011

A Regular Roundup of Social Media Musings
by Anna Gerz  & Mike Wilt
This month’s collection of all things Social Media takes us uber-local, international and deal hunting with some of the big names in the game.

Feb 7, 2011

By now you’ve heard that good content is key to successfully attracting, interacting and engaging with customers online. In fact, this concept is so important that some companies have established the COO - chief content officer.

B2B marketers know mobile matters. But how do you start creating mobile experiences as part of a B2B strategy? There's one thing you must know.

Jan 26, 2011

Facebook recently rolled out a new type of ad unit, called “sponsored stories” What is unique about these ads is that an advertiser is not controlling the message; it is the user or consumer.

Jan 21, 2011

I've read a lot of great social media books lately. Here are a few of my favorites (and I would love to hear your favorites, too!)...

Jan 21, 2011

I don’t know about you, but we are actively engaged in re-shaping our company for the future – with one eye on the near- to mid-term (1 to 5 years) and the other on the long-term (10 to 30 years).  The trick, of course, is to manage the present while creating the future, and there’s some pretty good advice on how to do that.

Jan 17, 2011

Stratifying can enhance the precision of a sample estimate without increasing the sample size. In other words, you can get the same level of precision by either drawing a larger random sample, or by using a well-thought-through stratified random sample of a smaller size.

Jan 13, 2011

Facebook may be catching on in B2B, but face-to-face still gets the lion’s share of funding and contributes more to the bottom line. While the news is dominated by the social media explosion, B2B marketers continue to find ROI in the “social” atmosphere provided by trade shows and conferences.

Jan 10, 2011

Three months after we helped one of our clients survive the upheaval of being acquired, I picked up The Wave by Susan Casey. In the book she explores the phenomenon of rogue waves. Still largely unexplained, there are at least two known causes:

Jan 10, 2011

Social media reached new heights in 2010, so what's in store for 2011?

Jan 7, 2011

You’ve heard some great predictions for the New Year, but let’s be honest, 2010 was just too good to let go. And that’s why we here at Godfrey have compiled a 5 track, 13 disk compilation of what, in our fast-paced marketing world, are already oldies but goodies.

The start of the new year is a great time to evaluate ongoing PPC campaigns to determine if they are still the efficient search traffic drivers envisioned when they launched.  Start by considering what marketing, market and advertising changes have taken place over the past year.

Jan 5, 2011

It was about ten years ago that we published an article in one of our printed B2B Insights magazines called “the Sales-Marketing Gap.”  In it we talked openly about exposing B2B marketing’s “dirty little secret” -- that leads from marketing aren’t really what a sales rep would call “sales-ready.”

Jan 4, 2011

This week, the 2011 International Consumer Electronics Show provides a front-row seat to see how Foursquare is being used during a trade show promotion.

Jan 4, 2011

Based on what I think I know today, here’s what we can expect to see in the year ahead:

Jan 3, 2011

New York Yankees. Los Angeles Lakers. Dallas Cowboys.

When you hear those names, what comes to mind? Top-notch professional programs? Over-paid superstars with über-inflated egos? Collections of prima donnas that have altered senses of what $1 million can buy?

Regardless of your affinity for professional sports, there is a likely chance that you have some preconceived opinion of these brands.

Dec 29, 2010