James Anderson

James Anderson

Video Content Marketing: Pros, Cons, Examples and Best Practices

James Anderson     Content Marketing, Video

Video for Content Marketing (1)

For many B2B marketers video content is the biggest step in a content marketing plan, the one thing that is tackled last because it takes more resources to produce. That mode of thinking is changing, however, as more marketers lean on video content as an effective way to cut through the crowded content marketing landscape. In a recent CMI / Marketing Profs study, 76% of B2B marketers said that they plan to use video as a content marketing tactic in 2015.

Creating video and hosting it on your company site or sending it out on social media is a way to show that your brand is video and technologically savvy but don’t just produce video for the sake of saying you’ve done it. Video has to be done right to be effective. This post will explore the pros and cons of video as a content marketing tactic and will offer examples and best practices that digital marketers can look to for support in their own video content marketing.

James Anderson

20 B2B Content Marketing Examples and Case Studies for 2015

James Anderson     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

KillerContentAwardsCover

We know that 93% of B2B marketers were using content marketing in 2014. That number is up just a tick from 2013 and will likely climb again in 2015. But what does this slow trend mean for content marketers in the B2B world?

It means that it’s time to step up their content game. It’s no longer enough to simply produce “more” content. Now is the time to produce killer content that knocks the competition out of the water.

If you’re looking for great B2B content marketing case studies, we’ve published 11 killer content examples here and 12 more here. We’ve also collected 20 more B2B content marketing examples from the 2015 B2B Content2Conversion conference. Below you will find a brief example from each winning entry including one for TopRank Online Marketing. I think you’ll find some great ideas and inspiration, just like I did.

James Anderson

Wrap Up: Stories and Influencer Marketing Lead the B2B Content Marketing Bonanza at #C2C15

James Anderson     B2B Marketing, Online Marketing

C2C15-B2B-Content-Conference

More than 7,000 Twitter posts by 1,600+ different users generated almost 28 million impressions during this week’s Content2Conversion Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona. For three days, the resort at Gainey Ranch became a genuine B2B content marketing bonanza.

From opening night festivities on the Lawn Court, to the closing panel session, B2B content wishes, wisdom and wit was shared among the more than 400 conference attendees and their social media audiences.

Excellent opening night festivities for #C2C15 – Well done @content2convert !

A photo posted by Lee Odden (@leeodden) on

How About That Weather?

For those of us who traveled from the Midwest or the East Coast, weather was a common-ground topic, and probably 90% of the conversation starters. Coming from zero-degree Minnesota, the weather was a good way to break the ice (pun intended.)

James Anderson

The Most Important Thing Missing From Your B2B Content: Forrester’s @LauraRamos Tells All #C2C15

James Anderson     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences

Laura-Ramos-Forrester-Research

A lot of presentations at this week’s Content2Conversion Conference touched on theories and tactics related to creating customer focused narratives in B2B content. While some marketers might think of incorporating storytelling in their B2B content marketing as a gamble, Laura Ramos of Forrester Research says it’s time to make that gamble. According to Laura, it’s time to double down on the one key element missing in most B2B content: Storytelling.

B2B Marketing lacks enthusiasm and capability to use storytelling to connect with buyers, Laura said. It’s time to tell stories and it’s time to understand the power that storytelling has on your audience.

James Anderson

Build Your Own Brand Marketing Social Newsroom: Tips From SAP at #C2C15

Brand-Marketing-Social-Newsroom

SAP’s Celia Brown and Amy Hatch pose for a photo after their session at Content2Conversion

Celia Brown and Amy Hatch came to brand journalism from different directions: One marketing and the other journalism. It’s the perfect mix for setting up a social newsroom, as the two have demonstrated at SAP. 

At the Content2Conversion Conference, the duo offered three T’s of winning the marketing moment by establishing a social newsroom:

Talent

The two skill sets that each woman brought to SAP’s Social Newsroom dovetail perfectly. Amy, who sees the reporter side, said reporters love to get the big scoop. With a reporter on staff in the marketing department, content began to offer a transparency that wasn’t always evident, Amy said, in marketing content.

James Anderson

How Optum Transformed Their B2B Marketing to a Content-Led Strategy – #C2C15

Karen-Thomas-Smith-Optum

It’s a big task to move an 80,000 employee organization on to a completely different mode of marketing thought. But that’s what Karen Thomas-Smith and her team at Optum has done, and they did it in the sometimes slow-to-adapt industry of healthcare.

Karen moved Optum — a B2B healthcare software and services organization — from traditional marketing to content-led marketing and thought leadership. Though she was met with resistance at first, she has since transformed Optum’s marketing for the better, as she presented at the B2B C2C conference this week.

Optum’s Journey To Content Marketing Success

Optum’s marketing efforts were once what Karen called “one and done” marketing, meaning trade shows, brochures and other traditional efforts. The focus was on the big sale. If a brochure were a first date, it closed with a call to action that asked for marriage.

James Anderson

Lee Odden on How to Co-Create B2B Marketing Content With Influencers at #C2C15

Lee-Odden-C2C15

At the Content2Conversion conference in Scottsdale, there were a lot of hands up when Lee Odden asked how many in the audience had been tasked with developing substantially more content for 2015.

The hands in the air were far, far fewer when Lee asked how many in the audience had been allocated an equal amount of resources for the development of that additional content.

82% of senior executives are say more content is a significant driver in their buying decisions according to a report from Deman Gen Report. As more buyers are consuming more content, Odden says “you gotta fish where the fish are.”

James Anderson

Our Liveblogging Schedule for B2B C2C Content2Conversion Conference 2015 #C2C15

James Anderson     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences

C2C15

Today through Thursday of this week, you’ll see posts on TopRank Blog from the B2B Content to Conversion Conference in sunny Scottsdale, Arizona.

I’ll be live-blogging a few sessions from the conference, including our CEO Lee Odden’s talk “How to Create a Competitive Advantage by Crowdsourcing Marketing Content with Influencers.” Lee is speaking at 9:45 a.m. on Tuesday. If you have any questions on his presentation, be sure to let us know.

For many of us in the Midwest, as well as our friends out on the East Coast, it’s a darn good time to be heading to Scottsdale. Areas like Boston have seen some of the worst snow on record and back home in Minnesota it has been consistently below freezing for days on end.

James Anderson

Best Marketing Advice Ever from Symantec, Kraft, Marriott, Google, Motorola, Condé Nast

James Anderson     Digital Marketing

Best-Marketing-Advice

Last month, we published Worst. Marketing. Advice. Ever. Top Brands Share All. There were some doozies on that list – some of the worst marketing advice our group of influencers ever received. Thank you to our readers that left even more examples of bad marketing advice in the comments – some funny ones too.

I was inspired to put the list together after reading through the countless advice / new years resolutions posts in early January. Ever the contrarian, I couldn’t help but focus on the opposite. I asked, what is the WORST advice you’ve ever received.

In the process of putting together that post, however, I couldn’t help but wonder … what would these same experts say is the BEST piece of marketing advice they have received?

James Anderson

B2B Channel Marketing Strategies: 12 Data and Content Takeaways from #BMAMN

James Anderson     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences
BMAMN-Channel-Marketing-Data

Panelists, from left, Heather Anfang, John Peters, Barbara Merwin and Chris Hawver discuss channel marketing strategies at Tuesday’s BMAMN event.

What do marketing professionals from industries as diverse as food service, laboratory supply manufacturing, data storage and financial services all have in common? Each of them see consumer data and content management as keys to the future of channel marketing in their respective industry.

Panelists at Business Marketing Association Minnesota‘s February event, “Strategies to Win: The Evolution of Channel Marketing” all agreed that the level at which their company leverages data in its marketing channels has increased significantly in recent years. Marketers are leveraging consumer data to identify trends and better craft B2B buyer personas. Increasingly, these personas are targeted with inbound content marketing tactics to bring them along to a purchase decision.

James Anderson

B2B Marketing eBook: Inspiration From 14 Marketing Influencers

B2B-Marketing-2015

The digital marketing industry is shaped by great minds that, while keeping one eye on the work at hand, are focusing the other on the future. These great minds help us see “what’s next” and inspire us to create the next level of content for marketing.

For inspiration on B2B Marketing in 2015, look no further than the experts in “B2B Marketing 2015: 14 Visions of the Future You Can Use Today“. These B2B savants see a future in which content is co-created with brands, employees, customers and influencers. They see a future in which company data is used to shape conversations in real-time. Their future borrows from B2C marketing by humanizing the B2B journey and creating user experiences for buyers, not just companies.

James Anderson

How Locally Laid Got Paid by Turning Customer Feedback into Brand Storytelling

James Anderson     Online Marketing, Online PR

Locally-Laid-Brand-Storytelling

Here in Minnesota, a small egg company is getting big press after ruffling the feathers of a concerned shopper.

When Locally Laid Eggs received a letter from a grocery store shopper, saying that the company’s name is “offensive” and its advertising “vulgar,” the company took to its own blog to offer up a rebuttal. In doing so, they enlightened readers about locally-sourced food and responsible farming and revealed some key marketing lessons in the process.

Most companies would have tossed the letter and missed out on the opportunity to use this kind of storytelling to pick up on the interest that Locally Laid had generated. But Locally Laid understood the importance of story before marketing. From the tiny Wrenschall, Minnesota town (population 399) the small company had the foresight to not only address — respectfully — the letter writer’s concerns, but to point out the reason why their product stands out from competitor options on the shelves.