Joshua Nite

Get Heroic Results from B2B Influencer Marketing with Advice from Ashley Zeckman #CMWorld

Joshua Nite on Sep 9th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Content Marketing World, Influencer Marketing

Ashley Zeckman Presents at CMWorld 2019

B2B content marketers have faced many epic foes over the last few years. There’s the nefarious Content Shock, the demoralizing Facebook Algorithm, and the destructive Google Search Update. We have battled them all and continued to thrive.

But now we face our most fearsome foe: The Dreaded Trust Gap.

Less than half of consumers trust brands. Seventy-one percent of buyers are turned off by overly sales-y content. Buyers increasingly prefer content from industry influencers rather than brands.

It’s a daunting problem that needs a bold solution: The Guardians of Content!

In her Content Marketing World 2019 presentation, our very own Director of Digital Strategy Ashley Zeckman explained how B2B content marketers can initiate and scale up a heroic influencer content program of their own. Here are a few key takeaways.

Lane Ellis

The Currency of Influence in Marketing — Buy, Sell, or Trade

Lane Ellis on Aug 27th, 2019     Influencer Marketing

Paper currencies from many nations image.

Influence is its own form of a modern digital currency. Influence is able to overcome almost any obstacle, and more than ever, it’s the powerful (sometimes-hidden) global fuel that helps drive our multi-trillion dollar online business world.

In fact, according to the 2019 Edelman Trust Barometer “In Brands We Trust?” report, 63% of consumers trust what influencers say about brands much more than what brands say about themselves within their advertising messages.

An even more telling statistic from the same study is that 58% said they had purchased a product in the past six months because of an influencer, as shown below.

2019 Edelman Trust Influencer Image

As the internet has matured since its 1991 creation, networking between people around the world has expanded to truly astounding heights, helping make wonderful projects and partnerships happen.

Debbie Friez

Margaret Shepard Shares How Mayo Clinic Built its Facebook Live Broadcast Strategy #DSMPLS

Debbie Friez on Aug 19th, 2019     Digital Summit, Facebook, Influencer Marketing, Video

The Mayo Clinic, one of our nation’s most renowned hospitals, believes in being social. More than 100 years ago, the Mayo brothers got the social ball rolling by inviting other surgeons to come to its facility in Rochester, MN to talk and learn from one another.

Today, that sharing and learning principle continues through social media, particularly Facebook Live.

With the hopes of helping patients learn more about their health care options, Mayo Clinic knew that research showed that word-of-mouth and expert insight could make an impact. With that in mind, it began its foray into live video on social media with Periscope and eventually moved to Facebook Live.

The hook of the broadcast? Leveraging the expert insights of experienced physicians.

Debbie Friez

TopRank Marketing’s Ashley Zeckman Shares How to Build Consumer Trust with Influencers #DSMPLS

Debbie Friez on Aug 19th, 2019     Digital Summit, Influencer Marketing

Ashley Zeckman Speaking at Digital Summit

In a world of consumer distrust, especially when it comes to marketing messages, it can sometimes feel like you’re living in the “Upside Down.” Everything that you thought was true about marketing and how you engage with customers and buyers is now different. In fact, sometimes nothing seems to make sense anymore.

In fact, Edelman found that less than 50% of U.S. consumers trust brands. In her Stranger Things-themed presentation at Digital Summit Minneapolis, TopRank Marketing’s Ashley Zeckman addressed the current state of marketing affairs and offered insight into ways that brands can improve trust and connect with their buying audience.

What’s her advice on changing the narrative and winning back the hearts and minds of customers? Partner with influencers to create credible content that can change the day and save the world. Stranger Things have happened, right?

Ashley Zeckman

11 Qualities You Should be Looking for to Find Your B2B Influencer Match

Ashley Zeckman on Jul 2nd, 2019     Content Marketing, Influencer Marketing

At one point or another, we’ve all kept a mental list of the qualities we’re looking for in our perfect match. And over the years, that list has likely changed. Qualities that were once deal breakers (Justin Timberlake lookalike circa 2001), have now become “nice to have” or even “what was I thinking?”.

And over the years, influencer marketing has also matured in its tastes. Instead of simply focusing on the number of people in an influencer’s network, savvy marketers have begun to take a critical look at the qualities that REALLY make for a great influencer match.

At the core, working with influencers is about building solid relationships that last over time, not just a summer fling. B2B brands looking to partner with influencers should focus more on the quality of those relationships, and find ways to create mutual value for the individual experts that they co-creating with.

Caitlin Burgess

How to Intertwine Online & Offline Tactics to Cultivate B2B Influencer Relationships

Caitlin Burgess on May 22nd, 2019     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing, Online Marketing

Effective B2B influencer marketing is rooted in brands developing and nurturing relationships—relationships with individuals who have the relevant topical expertise, reach, and resonance to align with the goals of the brand.

Of course, those relationships are often cultivated in the digital realm via social media, email, and audio or video conferencing. And that’s OK. We’ve all gone digital.

But there’s simply no replacement for face-to-face communication—and B2B marketers may have more chances than they know to proactively facilitate interactions or take advantage of in-person opportunities as they arise.

It’s time to bridge the digital divide. How? When? Where? Let’s dive in.

Lee Odden

7 Top B2B Influencer Marketing Trends for 2020

Lee Odden on May 20th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing

B2B influencer marketing trends 2020

While there are some who think the expression “influencer” is an expired term, the role of influence on B2B buying decisions is irrefutable.

According to the World Federation of Advertisers, 65% of multinational brands will increase influencer marketing spending in the next 12 months and there’s good reason for increased confidence: The 2019 Content Preferences Survey from DGR reports 95% of respondents favor credible content from industry influencers as a top preference, a 30% increase compared year over  year.

Earlier this year in a post about The Business of Influence for 2019, I shared 5 influencer marketing trends including:

  • Micro AND Macro influencers
  • Centralizing Influencer Operations
  • Always On Influencer Engagement
  • Focus on Quality vs. Quantity Metrics
  • Influencer Marketing Software Investment
Caitlin Burgess

Do Your Homework: Selecting the Right Influencers for Your B2B Brand With Tips from the Experts

Caitlin Burgess on May 15th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing

Selecting B2B Influencers

The influencer identification, validation, and recruitment process is time consuming, resource intensive, and high stakes. Without the right mix of influencers to drive awareness, intrigue, conversation, and action, your marketing initiatives will miss the mark with your audience and fall short of expectations.

But how? How do you artfully and strategically find, vet, and entice industry experts to partner with you?

You need to do your homework—and fortunately, insights from several seasoned B2B influencer marketing experts can provide some great guidance.

Read on to get perspectives and advice from leaders serving a range of B2B brands, as well as some of our own resident experts.

Nick Nelson

Trust Factors: The (In)Credible Impact of B2B Influencer Marketing

Nick Nelson on May 14th, 2019     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing

How Influencer Marketing Can Help B2B Brands Build Trust

Trust is a currency. It’s arguably the most valuable currency in today’s B2B marketing environment. And much like real money, it needs to be earned; the risks of attempting to counterfeit trust are grave.

In the first installment of our Trust Factor series, we discussed how creating best-answer content serves a long-term trust-building strategy. Today we’ll examine the ways in which partnering with influencers can provide a dramatic boost to your brand’s credibility and authority in the eyes of your audience. We’ll also share some examples of companies that are already doing this effectively, and the lessons we can draw from them.

There are no shortcuts when it comes to developing genuine trust with your customers. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take the shortest possible path, so long as you know where you’re going. Walking this road with the right influencers at your side can expedite the journey.

Lee Odden

Inspiring Examples of B2B Influencer Marketing in Action

Lee Odden on Apr 22nd, 2019     B2B Marketing, Influencer Marketing

B2B Influencer Marketing Examples

While Instagram influencer marketing is expected to hit $8 billion in spend by 2020, the growth trajectory of influencer marketing is not limited to consumer brands.

B2B companies are also realizing the value of collaborating with influential experts for marketing purposes and count the practice as one of the top 4 tactics planned for 2019, according to a study by Spiceworks of B2B tech marketers in North America and Europe.

Many B2B brands are considering engaging influencers for marketing but are not clear on exactly how or what the best practices are. Having worked with B2B brands that range from Dell to SAP to LinkedIn on influencer marketing programs over the past 6 years, I’ve had a chance to dig deep into exactly what makes influencer marketing work for B2B.

Ashley Zeckman

5 Essential Questions to Guide Your B2B Influencer Marketing Strategy

Ashley Zeckman on Apr 11th, 2019     Content Marketing, Influencer Marketing, Online Marketing

Greetings friend! If you’re here, I assume it’s for one of three reasons:

  • You’re interested in the concept of influencer marketing and want to identify if it’s a fit for your B2B brand.
  • You’re dabbling in influencer marketing and are looking for ways to formalize your strategy.
  • You fell down some crazy internet rabbit hole and you aren’t quite sure how you got here.

Regardless of the reason, I’m happy you’re here.

Today, we’re going to dig into five essential questions that many B2B marketers are asking themselves about influencer marketing—everything from what it actually is (very important) to how to gain leadership buy-in and show value.

So dig in, enjoy the ride and be sure to add any of your own questions in the comments!