Quiet the Noise (Part 1)

Big data, sentiment ratings, Klout scores, inbound marketing, outbound marketing, demand generation marketing, word of mouth marketing, content marketing, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus, LinkedIN Pages, LinkedIN Groups, Pinterest, advocates, enthusiasts, curate, SEO, SEM, CRM, CMS.  

That’s a lot of buzzwords, and they all have a lot of different meanings. And no, I am not trying to optimize this article for search engines by peppering it with all of these keywords.  

A marketer is hearing these words all the time, from sales people, bloggers, CMO’s and CEO’s, and many other pundits.  But the reality is that we need to stop using all these cool words and start quieting the noise so we can think about focusing in on what is truly important for our business – Revenue!  

Revenue is just another word unless you have a clear path on how to get it.  Here are some simple thoughts on how to help quiet the noise. It reads like Marketing 101, but is easily lost in all those buzz words.

  1. Work with your VP of Sales and sales teams to determine the steps of their sales cycle. When they talk about free trials, or web traffic, probe deeper.  Be specific. Consider asking your newest customers what sold them on your product or service.
  2. Once you have mapped out the sales cycle, find out what activities best suit that opportunity. Let’s use a B2B company as an example. Here are the steps a prospect may take toward becoming a customer:
    1. It starts with anonymous research on the topic
    2. They formulate a question about how the solution works
    3. They contact your company and have a conversation with a sales person
    4. They gain trust in your company  
    5. A request for a quote is retrieved

3. Once this process has been mapped out, define tasks that can improve these steps. For example, getting your content to be used in trusted blog sites to be found during the research phase, and using newsletters to prompt people to ask questions.

If you stop using the buzzwords, and start focusing on your goals, you can make sure you are taking the necessary steps to make your marketing efforts work for your company.

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