Ashley Zeckman

MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum: The Most Magical Marketing Conference on Earth #MPB2B

Ashley Zeckman on Oct 25th, 2016     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences


When I woke up on Monday morning, I was sad. The only thing I can think to compare it to is taking an amazing vacation in a warm sunny spot, and getting back home to blistery weather and cloudy skies. I had just spent a week with some of my amazing team members at the Disneyland of marketing conferences, the MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum and it was time to get back to reality.

Ann Handley (or Mary Poppins for the sake of this blog post) and her team at MarketingProfs have created something truly magical. From the moment you walk in the door to the time you board your plane home, you feel like you’re surrounded by people that “get you” and experience the same B2B marketing struggles that you do. 

Caitlin Burgess

6 Truth Bombs Every B2B Marketer Needs to Hear About Creativity

Caitlin Burgess on Oct 24th, 2016     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences


“Do you want to be creative?”

Jay Acunzo, founder, host and writer of, asked marketers this question as he kicked off his session Unthinkable: Content Creativity For The Hopelessly Uncreative at MarketingProf’s B2B Marketing Forum last week in Boston.

Acunzo acknowledged the question was a bit silly. It’s like asking if you want more time in your day or more resources for your team. The answer is always an unequivocal “yes.”

But while this may seem like a weird question to ask marketers, it actually gets to the heart of the creative struggle we all feel: Of course we want to be creative; creativity is necessary and intertwined with everything we do. But we often find ourselves aspiring to be more creative than actually harnessing what’s already inside us as creators.

Ashley Zeckman

Learn How to Turn Your B2B Content Marketing Into A Profit Center

Ashley Zeckman on Oct 24th, 2016     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences


Unfortunately, marketing is often seen as a cost center within many B2B organizations. Whenever it comes time to cut budgets, you know that marketing is the first to take a hit. But what if there was a way to not only take a lead generation approach to content marketing, but also generate actual revenue in the process?

Last week at the MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum, Content Marketing Institute Founder Joe Pulizzi shared some insider tips and secrets for companies that want to leverage their content to generate revenue.

When the godfather of content marketing has a session that describes how to profit from content creation, it’s a must-see. Why? Who better to speak on the subject than someone who has built a content media company from the ground up, with enormous success?

Caitlin Burgess

Marketer or Mind-Reader? 3 Ways to Find Out What the B2B Buyer is Thinking #MPB2B

Caitlin Burgess on Oct 20th, 2016     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences


When it comes to creating quality content that informs, entertains, engages and inspires action from our target audience, we marketers wish we knew one thing: exactly what our audience is thinking.

Unfortunately, that’s not exactly possible. While we’d all like to believe we have amazing mind-reading capabilities, most of us really only have the informed assumptions we’ve built with research and data.

But what if I told you there were a few things you could do to get closer to savant status? Well, it just so happens that I received some nuggets of insights today on that very topic.

During their session Are You A Marketer Or A Mind-Reader? How To Know What Your B2B Buyer Is Really Thinking at MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum in Boston, Aberdeen Group’s Director of Content Strategy Matthew T. Grant and Research Analyst Andrew Moravick shared three options for getting deeper into the minds of B2B buyers.

Ashley Zeckman

A Preview & Exclusive Insights for the 2016 MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum #MPB2B

Ashley Zeckman on Oct 19th, 2016     Marketing PR Conferences, Online Marketing


This week, members of the TopRank Marketing team are off to Boston to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum. It’s no mystery that this conference put on by Ann Handley and the incredibly talented MarketingProfs team is one of our favorites.

In addition to our CEO Lee Odden speaking at the conference on the topic of influencer marketing, a few of our team members will be live blogging some of our favorite sessions and connecting with other marketers.

Below is a preview of some of the sessions we’re most excited about as well as some exclusive conference insights from MarketingProf’s Marketing Manager, Rob Zaleski.

MPB2B Sessions You Can’t Miss

Session: Sexy Hot B2B Influencer Activation: The Art And Science Of Romancing B2B Industry Influencers To Collaborate, Co-Create, And Advocate Content Using Leading Influencer Marketing Tools

Caitlin Burgess

Social Media Marketing: 7 Opportunities for B2B Brands to Rock Pinterest

Caitlin Burgess on Oct 11th, 2016     B2B Marketing, Social Media, Social Media Marketing World


While other visual social media platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat are getting most of the press these days, Pinterest is still a growing platform that offers B2B brands and marketers an opportunity to grow and connect with their audience, drive brand awareness and website traffic, and enhance their overall social media marketing strategy.

But despite its potential, Pinterest hasn’t exactly been embraced by B2B. In fact, just 14% of B2B marketers say they use Pinterest to distribute their content, according to Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs’ B2B Content Marketing 2017: Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America report.

One big reason for this may be that B2B companies struggle to find a way to fit in on a visual platform like Pinterest. Oftentimes, a B2B company’s products and services don’t always have a recognizable physical presence or give off an exciting vibe—which B2C brands typically have going for them.

Lee Odden

Where to Learn About Influencer Content Marketing in Europe & the U.S.

influencer content marketing
As a fast growing content marketing agency, especially when it comes to working with influencers, TopRank Marketing has experienced great growth this year working with new clients in the U.S. and abroad.

To continue building awareness of the great work my team has been doing and to share the insights I’ve learned as an active practitioner and strategist, I will be giving keynotes, solo presentations and workshops in 4 different countries over a 60 day period during October and November. Of course I will be joined by an excellent cadre of talented and experienced marketing speakers covering a range of topics, so each event is a great opportunity to learn, network and get inspired for 2017.

Ashley Zeckman

Top Takeaways & Words of Wisdom From Content Marketing World 2016

Ashley Zeckman on Sep 12th, 2016     Content Marketing, Content Marketing World

Last week, over four thousand marketers gathered together to immerse themselves in the world of content marketing. The 2016 Content Marketing World conference was filled with insights from some of the top content marketers on the globe and offered two days filled with education and networking. In just a few short days, attendees (and even those that weren’t able to attend) began sharing their experience on social networks. In fact, last week alone there were 45,000+ posts on social networks by over 10,000 users with estimated impressions of almost 4M.

Ashley Zeckman

Learn How to Optimize Your Content Marketing Agency Investment

Ashley Zeckman on Sep 12th, 2016     Content Marketing, Content Marketing World


Each year, brands are investing countless hours and thousands if not millions of dollars in marketing to prospects and current customers with content. Often times, internal marketing teams are finding that they need content marketing agency expertise and support outside of their organization.

Working with an agency that specializes in content marketing can provide brands with a more strategic and scalable marketing program that leverages expertise and additional resources that specialize in content. However, agency retainers can be substantial and there isn’t a marketing executive out there that isn’t in search of maximum return on that investment.

Ashley Zeckman

How to Build Momentum For Your Brands Around The World Through Content Marketing #CMWorld

Ashley Zeckman on Sep 9th, 2016     Content Marketing, Content Marketing World


Marketers are experiencing a major problem. That problem is that there is no longer a captive audience for anything. Consumers have tuned out advertising and traditional marketing tactics, leaving many marketers searching for a solution.

In her presentation at Content Marketing World, Tami Cannizzaro from Oracle offered some great insights that she has gathered from her years of experience at everywhere from IBM and eBay, to her new position as Vice President, Head of North America Marketing at Oracle.

She opened with a story about her experience on the New York Subway. One day she was getting off of the Subway and noticed that there was someone handing out money. Instinctively, she walked right by him. Similarly, marketers could literally be handing people money but people will move right by you if it feels like you’re selling.

Ashley Zeckman

The Microsoft Factor: Scaling Influencer Marketing to Transform a Global Brand #CMWorld

Ashley Zeckman on Sep 8th, 2016     Content Marketing World, Influencer Marketing, Online Marketing


Influencer marketing has proven to be a very effective way for brands large and small to build credibility and trust with their audience. However, many influencer marketing programs fail before they even get off the ground. But why?

There are many reasons that these programs don’t work according to Traackr CEO Pierre-Loïc Assayag in his presentation with Microsoft’s Amanda Duncan and Eve Psalti at Content Marketing World. These reasons include:


Often times, these transient interactions with influencers yield limited results. Think of it like a lot of first dates that don’t develop the relationship further or lead to a marriage.

True influence is based on trust and built on relationships. And the secret to influencer marketing ROI is to play the long game. But how do you scale intimacy?

Ashley Zeckman

How Dell Approaches Integrated & Authentic Influencer Marketing #CMWorld

Ashley Zeckman on Sep 8th, 2016     Content Marketing World, Influencer Marketing


Shelley Ryan and Lauren Mauro of Dell kicked off their afternoon session at Content Marketing World with some exciting news. According to the dynamic duo, Dell has purchased EMC, which I believe makes them the largest privately held company in the world!

At the beginning of their session, Lauren and Shelley shared what their session would NOT be. They vowed not to talk about the case for influencer marketing, the risk of not having a strategy or a college course for why you should do influencer marketing.

What they did focus on was their point of view, real examples and their own journey with influencer marketing.

Dell’s Approach to Authentic Influencer Marketing

Shelley Ryan shared that TopRank Marketing CEO Lee Odden has been a great sounding board for their influencer marketing program. One of the things he said that stuck out in her mind was: