Lead generation is dead. Yawn.

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This blog on Bizible was published 18 months ago, but I’m highlighting it as a great example of the invention of a buzzphrase – in this case ‘Pipeline Marketing’ – to label a process that most of us have been following for years. Everything here is relevant, except the labeling.

Focusing just on leads causes misaligned goals with sales (leads vs. revenue) and media teams optimizing for cost per lead rather than true business growth.

Once you consider all this, it’s not a bit surprising that 99% of leads never convert into customers, according to Forrester.

Read the full article at Bizible.

Is outbound marketing no more?

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Inbound marketing is very much the in thing now, so is there still a place for outbound in the mix? Of course there is, silly, and this article on Conservit LeadSeed advocates the ‘horses for  courses’ approach; if it works for your sector, keep doing it.

The bloke from Hubspot, funnily enough, disagrees.

The other problem with outbound marketing initiatives is that they often have only a short shelf-life. A TV commercial may last 90 seconds, and then it vanishes into the past. Newspaper ads suffer from the same problem – nobody reads yesterday’s papers, let alone last week’s. Cold calls very often end up with the prospect slamming the phone down or the door shut. Emails are very easily deleted – that’s if they don’t end up in spam folders in the first place.

Read the full article on Conservit LeedSeed

Marketing automation: Treat B2B and B2C the same?

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Despite making some generalisations about the B2B business sales process, as well as attempting to sell a particular marketing automation system, this Maria Johnsen article makes some excellent points about the difference between B2B and B2C marketing.

B2B businesses don’t need to focus to the same extent as B2C on building strong relations through their websites. Why? B2B connections are very often built “offline” and are meant to last for a long time.

Read the full article at maria-johnsen.com

Sales and Marketing in perfect harmony

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Slightly utopian, but nevertheless good advice on how sales and marketing should work together to achieve corporate objectives. Tip number 2 vital. Er, high five?!

Sales and marketing alignment is key to driving success regardless of your industry. It’s also an issue that many companies find to be a struggle.

The marketing team is expected to generate as many leads as possible, while the sales team is under pressure to turn those leads into paying customers. Often this causes the former to focus on volume at the expense of quality, while the latter tends to blame failure to close on the marketing team for not qualifying leads effectively.

Read the full article at PUREB2B

Why lead nurturing matters

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This post on SaleProCentral demonstrates the importance of lead nurturing and shows how marketing automation software is used to warm leads.

However, I personally hate the quoting of statistics such as “15-20 percent of opportunities that aren’t quite ready to close, will eventually convert after lead nurturing”. Stats vary from market to market and are therefore pretty meaningless.

Lead nurturing allows you to pay close attention to that online activity while simultaneously providing check in points for potential customers to sign up for your newsletter, download an eBook, or view a demo video. With each action, your automated lead nurturing software tallies up their lead scores, segments them into nurture campaigns, and even sends alerts to sales when a scoring threshold is reached or that magic web page is engaged with.

Read the full article on SalesProCentral

Growth hacking? No, inbound marketing

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Interesting article from 2013 by ‘serial entrepreneur’ Gagan Biyani attempting to distinguish between ‘growth hacking’ and ‘marketing’.

I would suggest that, 3 years on, most of the growth hacking tactics he describes are standard inbound marketing techniques. Growth hacking in 2016 look very different.

Like most people who do marketing for startups, I have a love-hate relationship with the term “growth hacker.” On the one hand, it has allowed startup marketers to differentiate themselves from their counterparts in corporate America. On the other, it just sounds like one of those Silicon Valley buzz words that makes you want to puke every time you hear it (can anyone say “pivot”?).

Read the full article on The Next Web

Event ROI, it is measurable

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Events still take up a large proportion of many company’s marketing budgets and are not always subject to the same ROI scrutiny as other activity.

On Event Industry News, Jennifer Hawkins of DoubleDutch (who admittedly has a vested interest in event ROI) discusses how to make events more measurable.

Measuring return on investment (ROI) has long been the key factor in determining the success of any type of campaign. Being able to demonstrate just what you have achieved as a result of your financial commitment is not just common sense, but also human instinct.

As technology continues to shape the way events are delivered, it brings with it new ways to monitor ROI. However, like any new development we must first learn how to use the technology and interpret its results.

Read the full article at Event Industry News