Business-to-business marketing gets a bum rap sometimes, doesn’t it? And meanwhile, B2B marketers get mislabeled as boring. Serious. Stuffy people in suits.
Some B2B marketers deserve that moniker, maybe. We've all been subjected to boring white papers, been pitch-slapped on webinars, and suffered through dull blog posts that plod along like death march.
(I'm not talking about you, of course.)
(Or am I?)
From where I sit, there's increasingly evidence that B2B marketing is a pretty exciting place to be these days. The truth is that some B2B marketers have always been innovators. As my friend Lee Odden writes, "There's a growing movement among progressive business-to-business marketers to break free of stale and antiquated digital marketing tactics. While consumer product marketing has long been associated with more interesting and compelling marketing efforts, modern B2B marketers include numerous companies that are creating amazing programs to attract, engage, and convert business buyers with infotaining content, compelling social engagement and memorable calls to action." (I love Lee's word there---infotaining.)
As a build-up to and celebration of the MarketingProfs B2B Forum conference in Boston later this week, Lee and his team created an e-book highlighting B2B marketing innovation, with advice from speakers at our #mpb2b event. These smarties represent some of the top B2B brands in the world (like Cisco, IBM, SAP, Salesforce, and Silverpop) and also represents a kind of Who's Who in B2B Digital Marketing.
Lee and his team did a fantastic job on this e-book---I especially love the retro theme that coincides with the MarketingProfs branding of the event: “This Is Not Your Father’s B2B”. As Lee says, "From the importance to data to use of visual content and humor, this eBook is chock full of practical advice for B2B marketers to be more innovative with their marketing." Check it out:
Download the full ebook here.
33 B2B Marketing Innovators and their submissions---a BIG HEARTY THANKS to all of you for participating:
1. Customer = Hero---me
2. Engaging Content---Michael Brenner
3. Stop Talking & Listen---Joe Pulizzi
4. Study Deeply---Christopher Penn
5. Be First & Fail---Rob Yoegel
6. Actively Adapt---Amber Naslund
7. Remarkability---Alan Belniak
8. Do the Unexpected---C.C. Chapman
9. Borrow Freely---Roberta Rosenberg
10. Automation Tools---Kathleen Christoph
11. Have Understanding---Mack Collier
12. Buyers Are People, Too---Amanda Maksymiw
13. Steal Shamelessly---Ellen Valentine
14. Create A Theme---Paul Gillin
15. Honest & Factual---Jeanne Hopkins
16. Uncover the Truth---Adele Revella
17. I’m Eric Granof---Eric Granof
18. Use Web Data---Chad Horenfeldt
19. Customer Needs---Susan Emerick
20. Talk to Customers---Matt T. Grant
21. Stick To Basics---Lou Imbriano
22. Serve Up Information---Shelly Kramer
23. Innovation Day---Mark Rice
24. White Paper Rut---Corey O’Loughlin
25. Awesome Audiences---Tom Fishburne
26. Tell Stories---Tim Washer
27. B’s & C’s Are People---Dave Thomas
28. Be Creative---Kami Huyse
29. Flexible Content Plan---Marti Konstant
30. Listen for Gold---Lee Odden
31. Appeal to People---Lynn O’Connell
32. Proof of Quality---Scott Williamson
33. Likes vs. Shares---Joe Yeager
Download the PDF of the B2B Marketing Innovations eBook. Or check out the eBook embedded from Slideshare. You can easily grab the embed code to add this to your own blog or site, too.
I'm looking forward to seeing Lee and all the authors at the MarketingProfs B2B Forum this week in Boston. And maybe you, too? A limited number of tickets are still available.... so I hope to see you there!
Ann Handley is chief content officer of MarketingProfs, author of Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Ridiculously Good Content, and co-author of the best-selling book on content marketing, Content Rules. Ann co-founded ClickZ.com, one of the first sources of interactive marketing news and commentary.