B2B Sales Pros Need to Create Demand with Content Marketing

b2b-demand-generationI recorded another video conversation with my friend Tom Skotidas. He is the founder of Skotidas, Asia Pacific’s leader in B2B Social Media Lead Generation. We have been talking about the intersection of sales and content marketing for B2B companies. A lot of people call this social selling, but that really oversimplifies the process.

Today’s conversation is about demand generation. Tom smartly points out that no matter how much content you create or share, if you are not creating demand for your product or service, nobody will want to buy it.

Highlights of the Conversation:

  • Without demand, there are no buyers.
  • Use authoritative third-party content to create demand for your products or services.
  • Create hybrid content that “wraps” your own content in someone else’s authority.
  • Speak the language of your prospects and customers.

How are your sales teams using content to drive demand for your B2B products or services?

Photo credit: Flickr

Marketing Team Drives B2B Social Selling Success

My friend Tom Skotidas and I recorded a video conversation defining social selling. He is the founder of Skotidas, Asia Pacific’s leader in B2B Social Media Lead Generation.

Social selling, or #socialselling, is a term that is used by lots of people to mean lots of different things. It is more than my definition of sales people using the tools and approach of social media. Watch the video to hear Tom’s definition.

Some highlights of the conversation:

  • Social selling is really a social marketing program for sales enablement.
  • It is a hybrid approach between marketing and sales.
  • Conversations about social selling should always start with marketing. Not only because they bring the strategy, the skills and the process to move the market, but they also bring the budget.
  • A well-executed program lets sales people connect more effectively, get more meetings and build more pipeline.

How do you define social selling?

Photo credit: Flickr

Weekly Roundup of B2B Blog Posts

As any good blogger, we don’t just write about social media in B2B, but we read about it too. In addition to some sites I check regularly, I have Twitter alerts set up to show me tweets related to B2B social. These are frequently blogs, but they are also thoughts, conferences, webinars and even online chats (#b2bchat). Posts that are frequently tweeted show up in these alerts. There is no algorithm to their inclusion in this list, just anecdotal evidence. If I see a post being tweeted a lot, I consider it. For some reason, Paul Gillin was especially popular this week, anectdotally. And I fill out the list with posts from other B2B blogs. Not scientific, but hopefully, this will provide additional perspectives on B2B social media. If you come across a post that we should include in our weekly roundup, let us know on Twitter @smb2b.

4 Tips To Go Global With B2B Search Marketing
from Search Engine Land (@sengineland)
For years, B2B marketers have refrained from putting search dollars into non-US markets because the userbase was lacking and the investment seemed too risky. But search markets around the world have matured considerably in recent years, and now offer a great opportunity. It is time B2B marketers took another look at global search.

Who Says B2B Social Media Can’t Be Fun?
from CRT/tanaka (@crttanaka)
I just got back from NewCommunication Forum and Paul Gillin’s session on “B2B Social Media Marketing-Really?” is still fresh in my mind. So here are some key takeaways from Paul Gillin that B2B marketers can introduce to their social media efforts. Unlike consumer brands like Pepsi, Ford and even Dell to a certain extent, traditional B2B companies don’t have the luxury of launching a viral video or a community blog that gets them thousands of unique visitors. Come on let’s be honest, how many of us really enjoy a product demo video or leave a comment on an extremely technical blog.

Current issues with B2B social media
from Daryl Pereira (@cagedether)
Paul Gillin penned an excellent article on the rise of social media in the B2B space for the latest edition of B-to-B Online. As the veteran tech journalist points out, marketers are now showing a higher comfort level with using social media, as evidenced by the ‘Twitter and Facebook emblems sprouting up on business Web sites like dandelions in a summer field’! As Paul explains, both Twitter and LinkedIn work well for getting in front of a professional demographic whereas Facebook has huge mass appeal but often the communication is less work, more play.

Four Cutting Edge B2B Social Media Marketing Best Practices
from Jeff Majka (@jmajka)
Tuesday morning in Chicago, I was perched atop a 38 story building listening to four top corporate marketers talk about how they have responded to the twin challenges of a recession and the impact of social media. No, I didn’t parachute in to some secret industry confab- I was attending the BtoB Magazine NetMarketer breakfast being held at the Hotel 71. And lucky for you, I took some notes…

Understanding How and Why B2B ‘Buyers Are Liars’ … and What This Means for Demand Generation
from Adam Needles (@abneedles)
Anyone responsible for B2B demand-generation programs—whether on the marketing or sales side—knows that self-reported data from prospects must be taken with a grain of salt. Whether it is titles or contact information, or the often ‘loaded’ questions about timeframes for purchasing, buyers regularly enter data that is not wholly accurate because it serves their purposes at that moment in time. And that means quite a bit of the data we collect (especially from prospects that are earlier on in their buying processes) is riddled with errors.