Nick Nelson

Nick Nelson

How B2B Marketers Can Build Their Personal Brands on Social Media

Nick Nelson on Nov 4th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Social Media

For some marketers, it’s second nature. For others, it’s uncomfortable territory. But no matter your predisposition, there’s no denying that personal brand-building is an essential skill in today’s B2B marketing environment. 

It’s also fun! Cultivating your social media brand offers an opportunity to tie your own interests, passions, and perspectives into your professional identity. 

Let’s explore why this is such an important focus for modern marketing practitioners, how to get it right, and how business leaders can encourage it.

Why Your Personal Brand on Social Media Matters as a Marketer

The list could go on endlessly, but at a high level, the rationale for personal brand-building on social media boils down to three key factors.

Nick Nelson

Trust Begins Within: The Vital Importance of Building Internal Trust in Marketing

Nick Nelson on Oct 28th, 2019     B2B Marketing

Building Internal Trust in Marketing

Let’s cut to the chase: If brands and marketers can’t build trust internally at their organizations, they’ll never be able to develop it outwardly in an authentic way. Plain and simple.

When marketers broadcast trustworthiness as a virtue through content and messaging, while their company visibly deals with discord and misalignment in its own ranks, the sentiment rings about as hollow as a sinister-looking Disney villain telling the protagonist through a wicked grin that of course they can be trusted. (Except that today’s customers are more savvy and adept than those necessarily naive fictional film heroes.)

via GIPHY

Nick Nelson

How Intuit Surmounted Stagnating Lead Gen with Customer Insight

Nick Nelson on Oct 21st, 2019     B2B Marketing, MarketingProfs B2B Forum

Here’s something you might already know about Intuit: The leading financial software company has been around for 35 years, buoyed by its primary software offerings, TurboTax and QuickBooks.

Here’s something you might not know (at least it was news to me): While Intuit does market to consumers, B2B customers comprise a large portion of the company’s base – its ProConnect division sells products to tax and accounting professionals, while Intuit, in general, is reliant on such pros to recommend TurboTax and QuickBooks to their own clients.

And on this B2B front, Intuit was facing a challenge: Leads had been flat for five years. Despite extremely high product awareness (I doubt anyone reading this hasn’t heard of those two main products) and strong tax firm industry retention rates around 90%, Intuit simply wasn’t bringing in new business at the desired rate.

Nick Nelson

Breaking Down Barriers for Healthy B2B Marketing with Lee Odden #MPB2B

Nick Nelson on Oct 18th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing, MarketingProfs B2B Forum

On Thursday morning at MarketingProfs B2B Forum, TopRank Marketing CEO Lee Odden asked a room full of marketers, “Who here has tried starting a diet or exercise program before?” Pretty much every hand in the room shot up.

The percentage of those individuals who would rate their efforts as a satisfying success? Not quite so high.

Falling short of aspirations with fitness endeavors is an almost universally relatable experience. We embark on a diet plan, but we slip. We go all-in on a workout regimen, but we stop. Life gets in the way, and other priorities demand our attention. Alas, any temporary progress we make ultimately proves to be only that.

Many marketers are familiar with this pattern in their jobs: Campaigns yielding strong results, which quickly fade and leave us unfulfilled.

Nick Nelson

A Primer on Combining Account-Based Marketing and Social Selling, from LinkedIn’s Ty Heath #MPB2B

Nick Nelson on Oct 17th, 2019     B2B Marketing, MarketingProfs B2B Forum

Lines are blurring. The B2B funnel is no longer tidily divided between marketing (top) and sales (bottom) because the buying process has grown more complex and less linear. 

Account-based marketing and social selling are both practices built for the new era of convergence, encouraging marketers to think more like sellers and vice versa. On Wednesday afternoon at MarketingProfs B2B Forum, Ty Heath of LinkedIn* offered her perspective on bolstering alignment by combining ABM and social selling, while calling out tools and tactics that can aid these efforts.

ABM, Meet Social Selling

At B2B Sales and Marketing Exchange a couple months ago, Sangram Vajre of Terminus kicked things off with an opening keynote in which he declared “ABM is B2B.” He argued that the principles of account-based marketing have become so ingrained in the fabric of B2B marketing that virtually everyone operating in the space is adopting an ABM framework to some degree. This was a sentiment echoed by others at the conference.

Nick Nelson

The Truth About Marketing Personalization, According to Arm Treasure Data’s Tom Treanor #MPB2B

Nick Nelson on Oct 17th, 2019     B2B Marketing, MarketingProfs B2B Forum

Personalization is one of the most-discussed topics in marketing today, B2B or otherwise, and with all the chatter it can be a little tricky to separate fact from fiction. At MarketingProfs B2B Forum on Tuesday afternoon, Arm Treasure Data’s* Global Head of Marketing Tom Treanor took the stage to serve up some truth. 

By offering clarity around what separates the leaders from the learners on this critical frontier, his session provided a blueprint for refining and improving our efforts to get in sync with customers and prospects.

B2B Personalization Is Challenging (But Critical!)

During another session earlier in the day, Samantha Stone of The Marketing Advisory offered up some truth of her own, which resonated with Tom and I: “We need to worry less about creating scale, and more about creating relationships in our marketing.”

Nick Nelson

A Journey Through Always-On Influencer Marketing with Ashley Zeckman #MPB2B

Nick Nelson on Oct 16th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing, MarketingProfs B2B Forum

Ashley Zeckman Presenting at MPB2B 2019

What is that makes Alice in Wonderland so powerful and resonant? It’s a tale that’s been retold – through books, movies, TV, video games, and various other content formats – time and time again. Terms like “down the rabbit hole” and “through the looking glass” are now fixtures in our collective lexicon. Almost everyone is familiar with Lewis Carroll’s whimsical world of fantasy.

Why?

There are many reasonable answers, but for me, it comes down to the characters. From Alice to the Mad Hatter to the Cheshire Cat to Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum, the denizens of Wonderland are deeply memorable, and – in their own ways – relatable. As humans, we connect with people on a level that transcends things or places. 

Nick Nelson

12 Must-See Sessions at MarketingProfs B2B Forum #MPB2B

Nick Nelson on Oct 10th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences, MarketingProfs B2B Forum

MarketingProfs operates on the belief that learning changes lives. And from that perspective, it might be fair to suggest next week’s B2B Forum will be a life-changing experience for those in attendance, because there is a whole lot of learning in store.

Dubbed by MarketingProfs as the “most let’s get down to business but not take ourselves too seriously while doing it marketing conference on the planet,” B2B Forum brings together many of the brightest minds in the industry around a singular focus: improving. The well-rounded agenda on tap will run the gamut of vital topics in the modern B2B marketing environment, offering opportunities to improve by learning from foremost experts and leaders in the field.

These 12 sessions, in particular, stand out to us as must-see attractions amidst a schedule brimming with brilliant business minds. 

Nick Nelson

Content Marketing Lessons from Music Icon Lizzo

Nick Nelson on Oct 7th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

Content Marketing Lessons from Lizzo

Here in Minnesota, home of TopRank Marketing and birthplace of yours truly, we tend to take great (excessive?) pride in famous figures who carry the “one of us” label. When you encounter a Minnesotan in the wild, you’re very likely to overhear some level of boasting about Prince, or Bob Dylan, or F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Why is this? Maybe it’s driven by an inferiority complex, stemming from our reputation as “flyover country.” Or maybe it’s just a natural extension of the “Minnesota nice” disposition. Whatever the case, we love to brag about our locally-sourced successes, and lately, that means showing lots of love for Lizzo.

Nick Nelson

Return to Sender: Email Marketing Is NOT Dead, But It Needs Rejuvenation

Nick Nelson on Oct 1st, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing, Email Marketing

Email Marketing Is Not Dead

Oh, look. Another death of email marketing headline. All too often, we see posts that lead with this provocative clickbait proclamation, while keeping the contradicting nuances under the surface.

Ironically, this kind of practice is exactly WHY email marketing has seen its reputation tarnished. The focus has shifted too far toward style at the expense of substance. Marketers became so singularly obsessed with compelling opens and clicks, through irresistible subject lines and poppy CTAs, that many of us lost touch with the core value of this digital channel: direct, one-on-one engagement.

I’m here to tell you that this value still exists, and might be more essential today than ever, in spite of (maybe even because of) the waters becoming so muddied. Recipients will welcome a little freshness and clarity in their inbox, from those brands and influencers that are willing to buck the trend.

Nick Nelson

What’s Missing In Your B2B Marketing Strategy? 5 Key Elements You Don’t Want to Overlook

Nick Nelson on Sep 23rd, 2019     B2B Marketing

A car engine without a water pump. A baseball team without a shortstop. A guitar without a D string.

All it takes is one missing piece to prevent something from working as it should. Your B2B marketing strategy might excel in certain areas, but a single overlooked element can cause results to stall out. 

I’m not talking about tactics here, because those can vary on a case-by-case basis. But there are specific considerations and focal points that ought to exist in pretty much every marketing strategy, and if we fail to account for them we are doing ourselves a disservice.

This isn’t a matter of covering bases or checking boxes. This is about thinking through your marketing approach holistically to set it up for sustainable growth. If any of the following aspects are amiss for your team at a strategic level, I highly recommend addressing them.