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ArdathAlbee
Sunny Southern California
Ardath is a B2B Marketing Strategist who helps companies with complex sales use multi-channel. contagious content marketing strategies to turn prospects into buyers.
Interests: storytelling, publishing technology, gamification, writing, word games, mass customization, cooking from scratch and playing with my Australian Shepherd, Bella
Recent Activity
Thanks, John! I feel your pain :)
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I interview a lot of people during buyer persona projects. This includes representatives from product development, customer service, sales teams, marketing professionals of various flavors, and, of course, customers and prospects. The thing that continues to astound me during internal interviews is the lack of knowledge about how buyers get here. In other words, how buyers become customers. Each of... Continue reading
Posted Sep 3, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
Hi Mark, Interesting post - thanks for sharing it. But I'd argue back that you can help prospects avoid pain by showing them the positive outcomes you can help them to achieve. Kind of splitting hairs but it's in how you go about it. And I'd also agree that there are both carrot and stick-driven people. This being said, I also know that the programs I help clients run that talk about positive outcomes result in more sales conversations than do the more "painful" ones. When a buyer meets with your salesperson and holds up a printed version of a web article your company published and says, "show me how 'this' would look at my company," you've made an emotional connection. So perhaps it's dependent on seniority and level of comfort and position in their role. As you become more senior, have more experience, perhaps this makes it easier to rely more on intuition than data. What do you think?
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It does - thanks!
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Hi Stephanie - thanks so much for sharing the reports. The link doesn't work, though. Can you repost it? Those excerpts make the point. I agree there is a lot of opportunity. Success will be based on how well we can identify commonalities that allow us to ramp emotional relevance when communicating with a segment, rather than one person at a time.
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For some reason, in B2B content marketing, we seem to forget about the "whole" buyer. More and more marketers are embracing buyer personas and the idea of becoming customer centric, but we often only focus on the business side of the buyer, as if they walk into the office and leave the rest of themselves outside. In the personas I... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
Thanks, Matt. Interesting how out of sync things can get.
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Hi Phil - you make a good point with "short-term" focus and the possibility of desperation. However, I see many more instances of this type of messaging than what I've posted here. It's not an isolated incident. And, it doesn't mean that being irrelevant and screwing up a prospect's impression of the company is going to help them do so... Just saying :)
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Hi Dara, Thanks for sharing your experience. As for SLAs, it's an interesting thought, but I'm not sure they apply well to relevance. This is more of a process and tools issue. It's also about developing the mindset of "customer first." I do agree that there must be a champion to affect change.
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Thanks for sharing your thoughts, Yasmine. You make a great point about accountability and transparency.
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Thanks, Carmen! Your example is even worse than mine.
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So, Geoff, what you're saying is that it's okay for salespeople to be irrelevant and irritating if the buyer hasn't been nurtured? And it's not frustration as much as it's wondering how much of a hit marketing performance is taking based on how salespeople attempt to engage.
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I sat pondering another in a burst of self-serving emails sent last week by salespeople who obviously lack any discipline in prospect research or the energy needed to attempt meaningful personalization. As one of the emails was from a company I'd thought "got it," it occurred to me that the salesperson just screwed up my perception of the company they... Continue reading
Posted Jun 22, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
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Thanks for your comment, Alex, and for writing the post. Three blog posts makes for a nice little dialogue! Your question about why things haven't changed is a good one. Change is hard, no one likes it, but it is the order of the day. We need to become better at adapting.
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Thank you, Nida!
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Thanks, Phil. Good points!
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The buying process has gotten messy for B2B marketers. This easy access to information means that engagement one second can turn into disinterest in the next. Every new channel puts a hole in your funnel. (Although I've never liked the funnel construct, it's appropriate for making the point.) Marketers who don't integrate new channels into their content marketing strategy will... Continue reading
Posted Jun 8, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
Thanks, Cliff! Love the "Tale of Two Cities" reference :)
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Totally agree, Andrew. Which web services would you recommend?
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Thanks, Jason! What kind of KPIs did you track to?
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I was reading an interview with Laura Ramos, VP and Principal Analyst with Forrester, and a couple of things she said caught my eye: “The ideal model for understanding how B2B buyers buy is a life cycle, not a funnel.” “When your sales involve multiple buyers in a complex, highly considered process, and when there is a distinct hand-off from... Continue reading
Posted May 20, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
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I attended a webinar this morning, What Marketers Need To Know To Achieve Content Marketing Success, with Robert Rose and Steve Walker. It was a good session focused on the technology needed to empower content marketing. You should go listen to it. At the end of the session, this question was asked: If I'm mostly focused on content writing, why... Continue reading
Posted May 12, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
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I was reading this blog post interview with Paul Greenberg over on Hubspot's blog about defining customer engagement and one of his examples stuck out to me. The essence of it was "don't make decisions for your buyers." Instead, let them choose. Regardless of how much research you've done, the number of personas you've created, you can only know so... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2014 at Marketing Interactions
Thanks, Peter. I agree there's a often a difference between what works for SEO and what resonates with customers. But, honestly, there shouldn't be...
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Many B2B marketers have jumped on the bandwagon about answering their buyers and customers' questions. There's a bit more strategy involved to do so in a way that drives momentum, but what I'm not seeing is marketers attempting to promote the curiosity that motivates their buyers to ask the questions they haven't thought of yet. Campaigns are dead. Even Forrester... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2014 at Marketing Interactions