The Age of the Customer – Optimising Content and Conversation for 21st Century Sales Success

lego men and computer

On Thursday 16th January I had the opportunity to listen to Forrester analysts Peter O’Neill and Ryan Skinner at the Forrester breakfast briefing, “Optimising Content and Conversation for 21st Century Sales success”.

The agenda focused on the changes B2B businesses must make to satisfy changing buyers.  Organisations must transform their current siloed, product-focused content and conversation approaches to a holistic, customer focused messaging strategy.

This blog post explores the following topics which were covered at the event:

  • The Age of the Customer
  • Customer reference programs in the age of consumer advocacy
  • The buyer is in control
  • What is lead-to-revenue management?
  • How to create your content marketing strategy
  • Effective content marketing examples

The Age of the Customer

Peter O’Neill spoke first and stated that we have moved from “The Age of Information” (1990) and entered “The Age of the Customer” (2010).  There are four market imperatives that companies must focus on:

  1. Transform the customer experience
  2. Embrace the mobile mind shift
  3. Become a digital disruptor
  4. Turn big data into insights

Continue reading “The Age of the Customer – Optimising Content and Conversation for 21st Century Sales Success”

Web Strategy: (Try to!) focus on the customer

On Tuesday I’m leading a workshop to develop the web strategy for our Demand Programs organisation – something which, to be honest, is completely DAUNTING.

In a large, complex organisation the web is also large and complex.  Each business unit has a vested interest in their own portion of the site, with different objectives and strategies.  The closest I came to finding a single strategy document was an architectural strategy and technical blueprint – god bless IBM and its engineering background!

With so many conflicting interests, the corporate website does start to represent what Jeremiah Owyang stated as:

“… an unbelievable collection of hyperbole, artificial branding, and pro-corporate content.”

In order to take a step back and approach the web with a fresh pair of eyes, I’m adopting the following approach: Continue reading “Web Strategy: (Try to!) focus on the customer”

Incorporating social media into face-to-face events: During the event

Following on from my post that explored how to incorporate social media into face-to-face events, pre-event, this blog post will look at ways of leveraging these tools during an event.

All pre-event activity should have made mention of the community sites being used – e.g. Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.  At the event it is a perfect opportunity to remind the audience of these vehicles and Continue reading “Incorporating social media into face-to-face events: During the event”

Social media – who wins? Large or small businesses?

Large vs. Small

I came across the following article courtesy of @miketrap on Twitter, “Small Businesses Show Social Networks Some Love“, which reveals research by AMI-Partners that small businesses have been quicker to adopt social media than some have contended.

It got me thinking about the differences in social media adoption between large and small corporations and the challenges and benefits faced by each: Continue reading “Social media – who wins? Large or small businesses?”

IT Marketing – Are you being heard?

Last week I was fortunate enough to attend a customer roundtable as part of the IBM Marketing & Communications Top Talent (TT) Program, where the CEO, IT Director and CAD Manager of an IBM client discussed their views on the marketing and communications they receive from the IT industry – their likes and dislikes (many of which came as no surprise!), and some insight into what they really need.

1. Relationships are key

At CEO level, Continue reading “IT Marketing – Are you being heard?”