Nick Nelson

Nick Nelson

CMO Maria Pergolino Charts the Path to Creating an Industry Category with Strategic Marketing #B2BSMX

Nick Nelson on Aug 13th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Marketing PR Conferences

Maria Pergolino at B2BSMX

What is the ultimate goal for any business or marketing unit? 

There are many valid answers to this question. But I think the subject of Maria Pergolino’s REVTalk on Tuesday morning at B2B Sales and Marketing Exchange (B2BSMX) in Boston offers a worthy aspiration for just about any organization: creating a category. 

Brands that are universally held in high esteem and pointed to as shining examples of marketing mastery – such as Uber, Salesforce, and Starbucks – often share this distinction. Their names ring synonymous with what they do. 

As a seasoned marketing executive who’s overseen this outcome at a number of different companies over the years, Maria has developed acute expertise on category creation, and offered us a glimpse of her process.

Nick Nelson

Wow Your Crowd: How Content Marketers Can Create Powerful Audience Connections

Nick Nelson on Aug 12th, 2019     Content Marketing

“Perhaps more than any other art form, comedy cannot exist for its own sake,” according to comedian Andrew Orvedahl in an essay published a few years back. “Comedy requires a bond between performer and audience. And if either ingredient sucks, comedy doesn’t happen.”

He’s right, but we could swap in content marketing for comedy and the statement would still hold plenty of weight. If your content isn’t connecting and resonating with your audience, it may as well not exist. This is one of the most critical skills of the discipline, and also one of the most difficult to harness.

Nick Nelson

Wow Your Crowd: How Content Planning Sets the Stage for Unforgettable Experiences

Nick Nelson on Aug 6th, 2019     Content Marketing

Wow the Crowd with Content Planning

We’re coming up on the 10-year anniversary of the movie Avatar, which was released in December of 2009 and held the title of highest-grossing film worldwide for nearly a decade before being unseated by Avengers: Endgame earlier this year. 

James Cameron’s signature cinematic spectacle presents a model worth following for any content marketer hoping to amaze their audience. We don’t need a $200 million budget, as Avatar had, but we should aspire to adopt the meticulous planning and strategic foresight that drove the film’s galactic success. 

This was the leading subject in our new interactive CMWorld experience, Witness the Greatest Content Marketing Show on Earth, produced in collaboration with Content Marketing Institute to create ahead of next month’s festivities in Cleveland. The show-stopper theme of the conference, and this experience, is designed to place content creators in the mindset of an entertainer, where dazzling viewers is the foremost goal.

Nick Nelson

Content Marketing Interview: Andrew Davis on Showing, Not Telling #CMWorld

Nick Nelson on Jul 31st, 2019     Content Marketing World, Video

One of the most fundamental requirements for content marketing is also one that unfortunately tends to get overlooked most: It needs to be entertaining. As marketers, we can get so caught up in conversions and funnels and business outcomes that we lose sight of this imperative. If your content doesn’t hook someone and draw them in, it isn’t going to accomplish anything. 

Andrew Davis is someone who doesn’t need to be reminded of this because he launched his career in the entertainment industry. Now a cherished keynote speaker and best-selling author, Andrew got his start as a program producer for WABU-TV, a local station in Boston. He later served as Workshop Production Manager for the Jim Henson Company, helping out with brands like The Muppets and Sesame Street.

Nick Nelson

Content Marketing Planning: How to Build Your Editorial Calendar

Nick Nelson on Jul 30th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

Building an Editorial Calendar

I can’t believe I got fired from the calendar factory. All I did was take a day off!

Opening today’s post up with a bit of levity felt fitting, because calendars can cause much anxiety. They bring to mind deadlines, meticulous organization, and time crunches, which are often oppressive realities for marketers with a million things on their plates.

But the truth is that you’re likely to encounter much more dread if you don’t house your content planning within a documented and strategic editorial calendar for blogging. Building out a set schedule (with a bit of flexibility) ultimately makes your life easier because it provides a guiding light, and ensures your content strategy remains cohesive and oriented around your objectives.

Nick Nelson

The B2B Marketing Funnel is Dead: Say Hello to the Trust Funnel

Nick Nelson on Jul 23rd, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

Say Hello to the Trust Funnel

The marketing funnel as we know it is gone. Or at least it needs to be, if we as marketers want to move toward a truly customer-centric operation. 

In this new installment of our Trust Factors series, we’ll review the conventional models for customer acquisition and explain why they’re going out of style. Then, we’ll present an updated version, geared toward long-term sustainable growth.

The Funnel Fallacy

We’re all accustomed to funnels: marketing funnels, sales funnels, conversion funnels. These frameworks can be helpful in guiding our strategies, but there’s an inherent disconnect at play: they tend to commoditize our customers, because these models are solely focused on the end result (revenue). Traditionally, the funnel is designed to usher prospects from awareness, to consideration, to purchase, and then the job is done. 

Nick Nelson

How to Educate, Engage, & Persuade Buyers Over Lengthy Sales Cycles

Nick Nelson on Jul 3rd, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing

Content Planning Strategy for Long Sales Cycles

In the world of consumer goods, purchase decisions are often made instantaneously and on a whim. 

“This blouse is exactly my style! I’ve gotta have it!”

“I’ve been wanting a PlayStation 4 forever. Finally it’s mine!”

“This tent is just what we were looking for. I don’t even need to ask the wife, I’m buying it now.”

Even large, life-changing purchases can sometimes be triggered in a snap.

“This car is perfect for me. I was going to check out a few other dealerships but no need; I’ll take it!”

Of course, in B2B, this is rarely the case. Recently, we discussed the expanding nature of today’s buying committee, which is part of the reason business purchase journeys are only growing longer

Nick Nelson

Buyers vs. Buying Committees: Not Knowing the Difference Could Cost You

Nick Nelson on Jun 27th, 2019     B2B Marketing

Buyers vs. Buying Committees

Working as a marketing or sales professional in B2B presents a unique set of challenges and hurdles. One that probably doesn’t get discussed enough is the nuance of trying to reach and engage buying committees, as opposed to single customers. It’s a hugely important distinction that too many strategies fail to fully account for.

If you’re not speaking to everyone, you might be speaking to no one. And we all know where that leads.

The Expanding Buyer Committee

A buyer (singular) is a sole decision maker responsible for researching solutions, vetting vendors, and authorizing purchases. It is exceedingly rare to see this type of setup in place anymore, unless at a startup or a very small company. Given the typical weight of these decisions, several people tend to now be involved with the process, and sign-off is often required from at least one high-ranking executive.

Nick Nelson

Social Media Secrets: 5 Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

Nick Nelson on Jun 24th, 2019     B2B Marketing, LinkedIn, Social Media

Under-the-Radar LinkedIn Features for Marketers

It’s plain to see that B2B marketers, at large, see the value in social media. The latest B2B benchmarking research from CMI and MarketingProfs found that nearly two out of three respondents (61%) increased their usage of social media for content marketing purposes in the previous year. Another new report shows that social content is atop the list of focal areas for B2B marketers in the coming year.

It’s also fair to say, based on various data points and conversations with folks in the biz, that most of us feel we could be doing better with social. The size of the audiences on these platforms make them essential to any digital strategy, but breaking through suppressive algorithms and showing clear ROI is a perpetual challenge for brands.