We’re glad you’ve joined us again for #SmarketingWeekly, TechnologyAdvice’s once-a-week roundup of the best B2B sales and marketing news (see our earlier editions here).
With “snackable” snippets and a direct link to each piece, #SmarketingWeekly is the smart way for busy smarketing professionals to keep up with the latest trends, opinions, and news — no matter where you are or how little time you have.
This week’s edition includes stories on creating case studies, content benchmarks, social video, automated and natural customer management, the rise and fall of two social networks, learning from failure, and much more.
At the intersection of smarketing, account-based marketing, and advocate marketing lies the case study. A central component of any sales enablement content plan, most case studies follow the tried-and-true “Problem-Agitate-Solve” structure, but you don’t have to put yourself in a box when conducting case study interviews. Brittany Fuller offers this list of 100 questions that will help you create multiple pieces of quality content from a single case study.
According to new research from the Content Marketing Institute, 95 percent of technology marketers have a content marketing strategy, even though they face a multitude of challenges:
- A complex buyer’s journey that’s often unique to each customer’s situation
- An industry characterized by long buying cycles
- Complex product/service offerings that can be difficult to explain
Despite these challenges, most technology marketers are doing an admirable job of getting good content in front of the right people at the right time. Check out Joe Pulizzi‘s findings, and see how your efforts compare. The SlideShare below provides some report highlights.
eMarketer: Age, Gender Are Factors in Ad-Blocking
Ad-blocking continues to frustrate online paid advertising — even smartphone browsers aren’t immune. Though mobile devices are quickly becoming the method of choice for accessing web content, “for smartphones, ad-blocking is not yet of great importance.” How long that will hold true remains to be seen, but changing demographics aren’t on advertisers’ side.
John Wanamaker, marketing pioneer, coined one of the best marketing quotes: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half.” While it makes for a funny quote, technological advancements in web analytics, email automation, and other marketing software mean marketers can’t make excuses for poor performance any longer. Tracy Kemmer of Conversion Logic offers nine optimization techniques that will help you identify and improve (or cut) under-performing campaigns.
Marketing Insider Group: Growth Isn’t Everything: 7 Lessons Learned From 5 Failed Companies
Coach Morgan Wootten knew the value of a loss. “You learn more from losing than winning,” he said. “You learn how to keep going.” Just as true in marketing and sales as it is in basketball, mistakes are a tough, but good, teacher. Sujan Patel details what went wrong at these five companies and offers seven takeaways to help you learn from their mistakes. Odds are, you’re making at least one of these mistakes at your company right now.
Speaking of success and failure, LinkedIn is a wildly successful platform in many respects, yet has significant problems. After losing almost half its stock value in a single day in February, many are questioning how (and if) it will recover. Hank Nothhaft, Jr., CEO of employee advocacy platform Trapit, offers his opinion on the flaw in LinkedIn’s business model and how they can right the sinking ship. If you use LinkedIn (I hope you do), you’ll find it an illuminating read.
If you’re in B2B sales or marketing, you’ve probably noticed a few brands using Snapchat, which sees more than 100 million daily active users. Kia Kokalitcheva tells us why we should expect to see more marketing activities on the popular social network, what we should expect from a new Nielsen/Snapchat data partnership, and how these two new employees might help Snapchat siphon some of Facebook’s ad revenues.
While we’re on the subject of Facebook, if you publish videos to the popular social network, you’ll be glad to hear the company has listened to publishers and will be providing far more data on daily audience engagement. For now, the new data will only be accessible via “Page Insights” and your video library, but it will be added to the Insights API shortly. Time to start building video engagement reports!
TechnologyAdvice: Why Drip Campaigns Work and How to Build a Good One
Shameless self-promotion here: our own marketing automation guru, Zach Watson, recently penned this post on why email is still the preferred method of communication for marketers. Through use cases and best practices, he shows you how to build a compelling drip campaign, win “micro-yeses,” and help your users travel through the sales funnel one email drip at a time.
For an alternate point of view, Jim Tierney breaks down a recent Accenture study that found 83 percent of U.S. consumers preferred digital interaction with a live human instead of automated engagement methods. In addition to explaining the study’s findings, Tierney identifies four steps companies can take to restore balance between digital and traditional customer service.
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As always, thanks for reading #SmarketingWeekly. We hope you found the content enlightening. If you have suggestions for stories, videos, podcasts, or other sales/marketing content you’d like to see featured, share it with the #SmarketingWeekly hashtag, mention @smarketingwkly, or connect with curator Charles A. “Drew” Settles.