Clearly Conveyed Communications is pleased to welcome its second guest blogger, Roger Burnett, CAS. Read on for Roger’s expertise in the marketing arena, specifically content marketing, which is a hot topic today. You can learn more about Roger at the end of his insightful post.
We’re a new business within an existing company: a start-up within an established, proven organization. While it’s thrilling to get the chance to conduct experiments on how to successfully market oneself with a disruptive, never-been-done-before concept that meets a hugely underserved market need, I’m acutely aware of the fact that I am essentially a charity of my employer until our business unit routinely pays for itself.
The self-imposed bulls-eye I’ve created keeps me focused on the task at hand. While the fact that ours is a needed service makes it easy for me to generate leads, I have to be mindful of ways to amplify my reach beyond my own efforts and the goodwill of our brand in the market we serve in order to get to the next self-imposed bulls-eye.
We won’t be successful for the long term without some marketing Sonic Booms: the kind of campaigns that send our inside sales team in motion with a flood of activity. Knowing full well that a significant part of what’s necessary to create a pipeline of Sonic Boom moments is my responsibility, it keeps me looking for ways to create them.
“We won’t be successful for the long term without some marketing Sonic Booms: the kind of campaigns that send our inside sales team in motion with a flood of activity.”
I’ve studied content marketing as a principle for a while now. For the majority of the last two years with my former employer, I challenged our marketing team to create things that solved specific problems for our clients and package them in a way that allowed our salespeople to immediately understand:
1) To whom to deliver the message, and
2) How to execute on the client-facing call to action.
Once proficient at doing so, the transformation we saw with both our account teams and clients was nothing short of remarkable. Suddenly, our clients became more collaborative with us as we set them on a defined road map toward their stated objectives. Because of the attitude change in their clients, our account teams quickly picked up on what was working and started expanding the reach into more accounts. Good salespeople are smart enough to know how to repeat success; if they see a client nodding their heads yes to a solution, good salespeople immediately identify similar buyers that will ALSO nod their head.
“If they see a client nodding their heads yes to a solution, good salespeople immediately identify similar buyers that will ALSO nod their head.”
That early success fuels my content marketing philosophy in my current role. I’ve been steadily building a library of information that serves a similar purpose for this new client base of mine. I’m fortunate as my prospects and clients are mainly former competitors and co-workers, so I have an intimate understanding of how what we’re doing solves problems for them and can speak to them as if I am one of them, as I was for a significant part of my career. Our solutions are built with them and their specific challenges in mind.
Expertise is wasted, however, if people looking for the kind of information you have don’t know how to find you, or that you even exist.
Hence the need for those previously mentioned Sonic Booms. Nothing fuels your Sonic Boom pipeline better than content, and we’ve settled on a rotation of 12 potential touches with our suspect and prospect base, one per month. The rotation consists of a number of things, some of which are of our own creation and some of which have been curated from the sources that we most closely watch for information, in a variety of formats and delivery mechanisms. Remember, just because it’s not new to you doesn’t mean it won’t be of value to someone else. We are always on the lookout for new and relevant information, and seek new sources for the kind of information we believe would be valuable to our client and prospect base.
Our content is meant to help people looking for answers better understand how to be successful; if they choose to work with us as a result of our sharing the things we find that can make people better at what they do, then that’s a great way to start a new working relationship. If not, no harm, no foul.
“Remember, just because it’s not new to you doesn’t mean it won’t be of value to someone else.”
When the content we publish resonates with the right audience, the results can be remarkable. Consider the following statistics that followed some of our content marketing efforts this year:
1) Our monthly webinar was filled to capacity in less than 24 hours after it was announced for the first time in company history. We had more requests for recorded versions of that introductory webinar than for every other webinar we’ve done – COMBINED. Clearly our business concept was of interest to the community we offered it to.
2) Our e-mail marketing campaigns are sent from the personal e-mail addresses of our team members so as not to appear to come from a robot. On TWO occasions this year, the response to our e-mail call to action was SO overwhelming it literally shut down my e-mail account. We have an internal goal of replying to all e-mail we receive the same day…. I was up until two in the morning to be sure that I responded to everyone personally.
It’s my belief that we’ve reached Sonic Boom four times so far this year, and our ability to grow our prospect and business pipeline has been exponential. We’ve got a ways to go, but what we’re doing so far appears to be working as the statistics show.
As you consider what I’ve said, know that our touches are nothing more than ways for us to share with people the interesting things we’re doing as part of our day-to-day activities. We’re just taking the trouble to document them in new and interesting ways and finding ways to share it with the people that might want to know about what we’re doing. It’s not complicated, as long as you know what it is you’re good at.
What you’re DOING is the story.
Roger Burnett, CAS
Vice President, iClick
While Roger Burnett is Vice President at award-winning promotional products supplier iClick, he also proclaims himself Maintenance Supervisor of the Worldwide Negativity Defense System. A gardener by marriage that laughs too loud but never too often, Roger stays busy as a father of 3 boys and an active outdoorsman. He’s an occasional writer, and you can check out his work at promokitchen.com.