TopRank Marketing Top Takeaways & Words of Wisdom from MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum #MPB2B


Last week, the amazing Ann Handley and her team at MarketingProfs put on a phenomenal conference for B2B marketers from all over the country. The information, networking, events and even the swag were all top-notch.

On the first day, Ann set the stage and asked everyone in attendance to find their squad of other marketers at the event, and to take their work seriously, but not to take themselves too seriously. I’m so thankful to have gotten to know some familiar faces a little bit better, and to make some new fast friends in a short amount of time.

This great conference inspired me to share what I thought were the top takeaways and words of wisdom from the speakers for those of you that weren’t able to attend.

If you want B2B Content to be Great, Ask Your Community to Participate! #MPB2B

Lee Odden MPB2B

The bar for great B2B content marketing is being raised since brands have become publishers and no longer need to rely on traditional media sources for exposure. Unfortunately, budgets and resources don’t always match the required output.

Not many B2B marketers realistically have the budget to hire journalists to compete with industry publications. Even those that do, are still struggling to create engaging content on a consistent basis, improve content effectiveness and provide a variety of content.

The wisdom of your community is a bank rich with useful marketing content and can help scale a B2B content marketing program. In his session at MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum, TopRank CEO Lee Odden made the case for why adding participation to your content can help solve the problems above, and three examples of content co-creation in action.

13 Considerations for Creating Successful Landing Pages from Oli Gardner of Unbounce #MPB2B

oli gardner unbounce mpb2b 2015

While B2B marketing KPIs such as views, shares and impressions are important in helping to determine your digital marketing strategy, conversions will always be more important. You have to provide enough value to encourage people to click on your content, and then once they reach your destination, you have to convince them again that it is worth providing their contact information.

Landing pages can be an incredibly powerful tool for moving prospects through the sales process but they are not all created equal. Oli Gardner of Unbounce provided an incredibly amount of information on the four corners of conversion for landing pages in his presentation at MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum.

Case Study: How IBM Changed Perception & Increased Revenue by 20% YOY #MPB2B

IBM mainframe

“Why not let every client who sets foot in the door know that this agency has entered the future?” – Don Draper

If you ask most people what they think a mainframe is, most will likely get visions of black and white photos of antiquated computers housed in an IBM backroom. As the Vice President of Z Systems Marketing for IBM, it’s Deon Newman’s job to change that perception.

Believe it or not, all of us are connected to a mainframe multiple times each day. The stats might actually surprise you. For example:

  • 80% of all corporate data resides or originates on mainframes.
  • 55% of all enterprise applications need a mainframe to complete transactions.
  • 30 billion business transactions are processed on mainframes every day.

Digital Marketing That Focuses on User Intent – Avinash Kaushik #MPB2B


“It’s not the ink, it’s the think.”

This quote was the basis for Avinash Kaushik’s opening keynote at MarketingProf’s B2B Marketing Forum. For those of you that don’t know, Avinash is a Digital Marketing Evangelist at Google and best-selling author.

According to Avinash, the difference between companies that will be great and those that will die (either quickly or slowly) are the ones that understand how to obsess about the think. Thinking about how your company can connect with people and execute process and structure will make you masters of marketing. Below are some of the many highlights from his entertaining, informational and inspiring keynote.

How Does Uberflip’s Hana Abaza MAKE Marketing Magic? #MPB2B


Individuals that are new to B2B marketing often make the mistake of marketing to target businesses, instead of the individuals within the business. Unfortunately, more seasoned marketers are sometimes guilty of the same blunder. Understanding how best to target and personalize marketing isn’t always easy, and can require additional training and direction from industry experts.

The upcoming MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum (October 20 – 23) will help newbie and experienced B2B marketers alike find their way through the clutter to create marketing programs that truly speak to the needs of their customers. We had the fortunate opportunity to partner with MarketingProfs to bring you insights from some of the top speakers that will be presenting at the upcoming conference.

What is the Future of Content for B2B Marketing? Find out at #MPB2B

B2B Content Marketing

Content makes the B2B marketing world go round in so many ways. But will content of the future be as important as it is today?

According to the “hot of the press” report from Content Marketing Institute and MarketingProfs, 2015 B2B Content Marketing Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America, 86% of B2B companies are using content marketing. That’s actually down from 93% last year. The definition of content marketing has evolved as well and I suspect, so will the nature of content in the coming years.

But what do those changes mean for you, business marketers trying to create a variety of engaging content on a regular basis without blowing your budget into space? Luckily we have thoughtful insights from 3 people who know from companies that are growing and selling to business customers. These B2B content marketing insights come from none other than Moz, SnapApp and our very own agency, TopRank Online Marketing.

The B’s in B2B Are People Too – A More Human Approach to Business Marketing

People focused B2B marketing

Answering any question about what’s next in B2B marketing must involve the increasing attention on buyers as people vs. simply “business to business”. The human element of business marketing has attracted a lot of play in the B2B marketing conversation and rightly so.

While there are many changes and trends to consider to stay ahead in the B2B marketing game (paid, earned, owned and shared media for example) the thing that unites departments, tactics and technologies is common ground and common goals. By viewing B2B marketing from the buyer’s perspective, whether it’s an individual or committee, business marketers can start to break free of the mechanical and start creating more meaningful marketing experiences for buyers.

B2B Marketing Convergence: Disappearing Silos, B2C to B2B Mind-Meld, Inbound Outbound Mastery

convergence b2b marketing boston

My first experience with B2B Marketing in the digital marketing industry started as the worlds of Public Relations and SEO started to collide early in 2001.

Our tiny agency won a media relations account for a $1 billion company in the high tech industry. What set us apart from all the other big PR shops was how we used SEO with PR content to attract incoming media opportunities on top of outbound media pitching and brand content creation. As time went on and content as the key player, other disciplines converged in our B2B marketing practice.

Since then, the coming together of marketing/communications disciplines in the B2B world has accelerated. Why? Changes in technology and buyer behaviors for sure (like prospects pulling themselves through 60-90% of the sales cycle before contacting sales). Other driving forces range from the need to achieve greater impact to delivering a more congruent experience for buyers through the sales cycle.

31 Predictions on the Future of B2B Marketing

B2B Marketing Forum eBook

Precognitive Marketing, neural interfaces to marketing dashboards, Google cranial implants – is this science fiction or is it the future of B2B marketing? Maybe a bit of both!

These and many more insights (of the predictive and practical kind) can be found in our latest eBook, The Future of B2B Marketing as part of our promotions for MarketingProfs B2B Forum. With a conference theme of “Marketing for What Comes Next” we’ve connected with 31 of the top B2B marketers from Xerox to LinkedIn to Marketo to get their predictions about the future of marketing to businesses.

The future of B2B marketing is far from boring and now, more than ever, B2B marketers are thinking creatively and dreaming big about new ways to attract, engage and inspire business buyers.

2013 MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum Preview – And a ‘Cheers’ Plug

Cheers to B2B Marketing Forum

Let me start by saying that any trip to Boston has high expectations. Just a few months ago I, along with our Executive Director of Operations Jolina Pettice, traveled to Boston to meet with one of our favorite clients.

During our stay we dined at the ‘Cheers’ bar and later ‘ran into’ NBC’s Lester Holt (ran into = sat in the same hotel lobby). In regards to the latter, one of us may have gone a little fan crazy. I won’t say who, but their name rhymes with ‘Molina’.

Suffice it to say that while attending MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum in Boston I fully expect to run into more celebrities while carving out time to revisit America’s favorite bar to perform my best ‘Naarm!’ call (to this day I don’t change the channel when it comes on).

B2B Marketing Innovation eBook – Break Free of Boring B2B With These 33 Tips

b2b marketing innovation

Is your B2B marketing feeling “old fashioned” and out of date? Have your white papers, direct mail and webinars been called out as “boring”? Maybe you’re losing interest with prospects because corporate chest beating about products and services just isn’t enough anymore?

There’s a growing movement amongst progressive business to business marketers to break free of stale and antiquated digital marketing tactics. While consumer product marketing has long been associated with more interesting and compelling marketing efforts, modern B2B marketers include numerous companies that are creating amazing programs to attract, engage and convert business buyers with infotaining content, compelling social engagement and memorable calls to action.