B2B Social Media Sharing StrategiesThere seem to be so many social media sharing options today at the bottom of blog posts, web pages and other content marketing assets. I’ve seen some blog posts that include as many as twenty different social sharing options at the end of the post. I’m afraid when there are that many choices, people will just glaze over and opt not to share the content. In my opinion, especially for B2B marketing, it is much better to have a few very focused choices. (more…)

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Inbound Marketers Report a 60% Lower Cost Per Lead

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | February 16, 2010 · 4 comments | B2B Research

Internet marketing technology provider Hubspot recently released a study entitled The 2010 State of Inbound Marketing. The study included 231 marketing professionals, 69% of whom worked for B2B companies in a wide variety of industries. The largest industries were professional services (22% of respondents) and technology (15%).

Inbound Marketing refers to marketing strategies and tactics designed to help companies get found when searching for potential product or service providers or when researching issues or problems. Think search engine optimization, paid search, and social media. Outbound Marketing refers to push-type marketing like trade shows, advertising, telemarketing, email marketing, etc.


Cost of Leads


Respondents who spent more than 50% of their budgets on inbound marketing channels reported an average cost per lead of $134, while those who spent the majority of their budget on outbound marketing channels had an average cost per lead of $332. That’s a 60% difference. (more…)

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Where Should B2B Bloggers set up the Corporate Blog?

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | February 12, 2010 · 2 comments | B2B Search Marketing

RSS icon denoting B2B blogging and where B2B blog should reside for corporate blogging

The question of where B2B marketers should place the corporate blog is a critical one. It has implications in terms of B2B SEO, positioning, and your ability to later successfully transfer the trust and authority you build up in the eyes of search engines. This post addresses some of the options and their implications. (more…)

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9 Tips for Leveraging Synergies of Email & Social Media

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | February 4, 2010 · 2 comments | B2B Email Marketing

Are you using social media to promote your email marketing efforts? Are you using your email marketing to promote your social media efforts? The easier you can make it for people to go between the two, the more connections and touchpoints you’ll forge. Here are 9 tips to help you do just that.

Promote your Email Newsletter on your Blog

Feature your email newsletter on your blog and provide a way for your blog readers to subscribe to it. Promote it in the sidebar of your blog near the top of each page. Be sure to include a link to a sample issue.

Link to your Blog

Somewhere in your email—either in the sidebar, header, or footer—promote a link to your blog. Have options for them to subscribe to the blog, either through RSS or via email. That way you can gain people as both email and blog subscribers. Not only does this give you two media through which you can reach your contacts, but it provides a back-up conduit, in case people for some reason unsubscribe from your email or your email is later blocked (e.g., change in recipient’s spam filtering).

Link to your Social Media Profiles

Put links to your social media profiles in your email marketing. Email marketing goes out whenever you send it. But you’re not going to send it every day. Perhaps only once a month. But if you promote links to your social media profiles, email recipients can connect with you on LinkedIn or Facebook, or discover and follow you on Twitter, where you can have additional and more frequent touchpoints.

Post Email Content to Your LinkedIn Groups

LinkedIn is one of the most popular social media sites for people in the B2B realm. Assuming your email marketing content continues on your site, you should promote that content in the LinkedIn groups to which you belong. Members of LinkedIn groups choose to get either a daily or weekly digest of activity within the group. That activity includes members’ postings of news, discussions, and other information. If you have good content that continues on your site, you should submit that content and its URL as a news or discussion item within relevant groups.

In posting to LinkedIn groups, you can link to either the web version of your newsletter or to individual stories within it.  Either way, however, you want readers to understand that the content came from an email newsletter and they can subscribe to it. For that reason, it may be best to link to the web version of the email. Just make sure the web version has a clear and obvious button that allows readers to subscribe.  Also, if you’re trying to point people to, let’s say, the third story in the web version of your email newsletter, be sure to insert named anchors in the web version and use URLs with named anchors as links to that content. That way, people who click through won’t have to figure out which of the four articles in your newsletter you’re trying to reference.  In posting to LinkedIn groups, however, remember to also post and cite others’ content. It’s good social media etiquette. If all you do is promote your own content, you’re really not contributing to the group. You’re simply using it as a sales platform. People can easily see the difference. (more…)

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30 of the Best B2B Search Marketing Articles of 2009

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | December 21, 2009 · 5 comments | B2B Search Marketing

The velocity with which B2B marketing has evolved over the past two years (let alone five years) is amazing. Frankly, it’s a challenge to keep up with it at times. I’m particularly grateful to all those who take the time to share their knowledge to help others. Here are more than 30 of my favorite B2B search-related posts over the last year, posts that either focus directly on search or on the issues that strongly impact search (e.g., content).

While I’ve tried to bookmark this content throughout the year, I’m sure I’ve missed some really good posts and other resources. Please add to this list via the comments.

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B2B Illustrated: The Long Sales Cycle

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | December 16, 2009 · 1 comment | B2B Selling

b2b-long-sales-cycle

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Big List of Blogs Continues to Grow for December.

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | December 14, 2009 · 2 comments | B2B Marketing

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We continue to find more B2B blogs and receive suggested additions for the the Big List of B2B Marketing and Sales Blogs.

This month we’ve got 7 more great blogs to add. Be sure to check them out.

Congratulations to all the new additions!

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Are You Making it Hard for People to Mention You in Tweets?

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | December 11, 2009 · 1 comment | B2B Social Media

It’s a common practice on Twitter to mention the source of cited content, most often by including a “mention”, the inclusion of the person’s Twitter name, i.e., @twittername.

It’s a great thing to do. You get a chance to not only share great content, but to mention the author or contributor. Doing so potentially helps build the author’s Twitter following and let’s that person know you tweeted something that referenced her.

That opens the opportunity for dialogue between you and the person you cited. They’ll see you mentioned them. They might thank you, explore your profile and contributions, choose to follow you, or reach out to you in some other way. On the other hand, they may do nothing, and that’s all right, too; you shouldn’t mention another user in a tweet simply in pursuit of what’s in it for you.

I really try to include a mention when I find and tweet good content. If the person’s twitter name isn’t immediately available, I’ll click on the author’s name to see if her profile page mentions her Twitter name. If I don’t find it there, I’ll try a search on twitter for the person’s name. Sometimes the search ends without success.

I think one of the best ways to do this is to change your author name on your blog posts to include your Twitter name. Most blog posts note the author of the post right under the post’s title. Instead of simply the author’s name, also include the author’s Twitter name. This way it’s always there. And if you have a multi-author blog, it’s super simple to set up. I changed ours this morning. You can see it right under this post’s title.

If you’re writing articles or posts that get published elsewhere, make sure your byline includes your Twitter name.

Most people want to mention the contributor of good content, not just the content itself. Why not make it easier for them to do so?

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B2B Blogging: What are You Talking About?

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | December 7, 2009 · 3 comments | B2B Marketing

The other day I ran across a neat tool that generates a word cloud for a blog. This is different than a tag cloud. A tag cloud is a cloud of words based on how you’ve tagged your blog posts. As such, you obviously influence the cloud based on how you tag your posts. The word cloud, however, looks at the text of your blog posts.

b2b blog word cloud image (more…)

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Are Your PDFs Social Media Friendly?

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | November 11, 2009 · 7 comments | B2B Social Media

If they’re not, they should be.

White papers, eBooks, case studies, best practice guides…when done right, these B2B content marketing assets can be powerful lead generation and lead nurturing tools.

At the same time, they’re expensive to create. They’re also hard to get into the hands of the right people. Further, in the B2B market, you may get one of these assets into the hands of one of your contacts, but there are many other people at the prospect’s company who will influence the purchase decision.

So why are you making it hard to share these PDFs? Why not give B2B prospects quick and easy ways share them with a colleague through email or with broader groups via social media on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook? If your stuff’s good, it will get shared. (more…)

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blog-list-image6

We continue to find more B2B blogs and receive suggested additions for the the Big List of B2B Marketing and Sales Blogs.

This month we’ve got 6 more great blogs to add. Be sure to check them out.

Congratulations to all the new additions!

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35 Content Ideas for B2B eNewsletters

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | November 5, 2009 · 7 comments | B2B Email Marketing

This is not another “How to” article for creating newsletters. Rather, this is a “What to” article, with 35 B2B eNewsletter content ideas to help you think about “what” to write about. There are in fact, a number of excellent resources with “How to” tips for creating, producing, publishing, and managing newsletters—including our own B2B Email Marketing Best Practices eBook. This list on the other hand, is intended to poke you, prod you, make you think and give you ideas about where to look to generate stories that make relevant, meaningful, engaging, and entertaining content for B2B email marketing. Of course, the ideas are also great for business blogging as well. Have more ideas? Please use the comments to add to the list. (more…)

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Your B2B email marketing should be much more than putting together the email and pressing send. Given that most B2B email marketing newsletter content continues on your site, there are some important things that you should remember to maximize the online visibility of your newsletter. In doing so, you help ensure your content marketing gets found by many more people than just those in your email marketing databases.

Remember SEO

Most email marketing newsletters carry abstracts or snippets of the stories. Readers then click through to a website to continue reading. If you’ve got good email marketing content you’re going to post on a public part of your site—content for which you’d like to get found via organic search—optimize your content for the search engines. Make sure your email copywriters understand SEO. All the best practices for website SEO apply here—keyword-rich content, title tags, alt tags, headings, meta descriptions, URLs, etc. (more…)

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8 New Additions to the 2009 Big List of B2B Blogs

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | October 7, 2009 · 5 comments | B2B Marketing

blog-list-image6

Thanks to everyone for all the great comments and suggested additions re the Big List of B2B Marketing and Sales Blogs.

We continue to find more. This month we’ve got eight more great blogs to add. Make sure to check them out.

Congratulations to all the new additions! (more…)

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B2B Email Marketing Best Practices eBook

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | August 28, 2009 · 2 comments | B2B Email Marketing

Image fo Proteus B2B eBook on B2B Email Marketing Best Practices

Our new eBook:


    Features more than 130 best practices, strategies, and tips for B2B email marketing


    Focuses on the most popular type of B2B email marketing—content marketing, such as email newsletters


    Goes beyond the email itself, discussing how to integrate and leverage social media, web analytics, and search engine optimization


    Covers general email marketing issues, as well as those specific to B2B marketing

Hot off the press, our new, 58-page eBook is a comprehensive guide to improving your B2B email marketing practices. We put this book together to help our clients and friends improve the results of email marketing to other businesses. (more…)

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2009 Big List of B2B Marketing and Sales Blogs

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | August 28, 2009 · 73 comments | B2B Social Media

Big-List-B2B-Blogs
With all the micro-blogging, I’ve often wondered whether the number of bloggers who actually create original, substantial content is decreasing. Don’t get me wrong, you can create meaningful thought in 140 characters, but it’s a lot easier to write 140 characters (no matter how well crafted) than it is to consistently create original content for a blog. And that ease may have driven many to abandon blogging or not even consider blogging when there is a relatively easy way to start “blogging” on Twitter.

It’s been more than two years since anyone had tried to pull together a list of B2B marketing and sales blogs. Jon Miller of Marketo did it in early 2007. When we reviewed that list, we found a lot of those blogs were no longer active.

So we went searching…

And we found some really great B2B blogs. More than 200 of them. Hats off to all who made the list! Thanks for your continuing contribution. (more…)

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B2B Selling. It’s About Relationships, Right?

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | August 17, 2009 · 11 comments | B2B Selling

In short, no.

Growing your existing business with a particular customer or client may very well be about cultivating the relationship, but getting customers in the first place is not. While relationships with referral sources can lead to referrals, relationships with prospects will often only create a sale if everything else is equal.

Consider the following scenario. A prospect you would really like to land is doing business with another company like yours. Common wisdom suggests the first thing to do is establish a relationship with the prospect. Let him get to know your company. Get some face time. Build some trust. Then, you’ll get an opportunity to quote or present a proposal.

So you send him something. You have a telephone conversation. Engage in social media activities. Get a meeting. Have lunch. Take him golfing.

Then, after several months, you get the opportunity to make a presentation. The presentation goes well, and you feel you have established a rapport with the prospect. Afterwards, you keep in contact with the prospect, periodically calling him or sending him things to show you’re thinking of him and his business.

Finally, after about six or eight months, the prospect gives you the chance to quote on something.

This is your big chance! If you do well here, you not only have a shot at getting this sale, but also the rest of his business. You and your team spend countless hours responding to the RFQ or RFP. You check the specifications. You identify areas where you can save them money. You carefully craft responses to their questions. Several internal meetings are devoted to establishing the right pricing and estimates. Then you send it off, go have a beer with your tired team, and hope.

Later you learn that you didn’t get the job. The prospect is cordial. He sincerely thanks you for your time and says you did fine, but they chose to go with their existing provider. You ask some questions to help you understand why they chose not to go with you. The prospect gives you some feedback and assures you you’ll get another chance.

A few months pass and, sure enough, there’s another opportunity. Using what you learned, you go through the same process again. This time, however, you sharpen your pencil a bit more. You say, “Let’s just get the job. Once they work with us, they’ll see how we’re different, and we’ll do lots more work with them.”

Finally after a few more proposals, you get the good news. You got the job! Quick. Marshall the resources. Put the team together. Make sure we do a great job—and make sure we over serve them so there’s no way they’ll go back to their old provider.

The job goes well, great even—from your perspective. And sure enough, you get the opportunity to propose on the next opportunity—along with a host of competitors.

What Happened???

What happened is simply all too common. (more…)

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Why Rebranding Often Fails

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | July 27, 2009 · 1 comment | Positioning

failed businessman small

As competition heats up and sales start to stagnate, companies often seek to breathe new life into the brand through rebranding. In all too many cases, however, those expensive rebranding efforts fail to yield the desired business results. Here are some of the key reasons why rebranding often fails. More than executional mistakes that blunt the effectiveness of rebranding efforts, these are critical errors that almost always lead to failure.

Lack of True Change

Sure, sometimes rebranding is done solely to sharpen the image of a company or brand; periodically things need to be freshened up. However, unless you operate in the world of packaged goods, don’t expect great things from launching some new designs and fresh copy.

Rebranding signals change. A new image will cause people to take a fresh look at you—and people’s primary motivation in taking a new look is to see what’s changed. If you’re the same old place dressed up in new wrapping and ribbons, you’ll merely confirm the existing position you own in their minds. You’ll have wasted a valuable opportunity to change their perceptions. There are only so many times your prospects are going to reconsider you. Use them wisely.
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email icon in computer screen to illustrate optimizing email for search engines

I know at first that may sound strange. What does email marketing have to do with search engine optimization? Fact is, the most prevalent type of B2B email marketing is content marketing, most often in the form of an email newsletter containing several articles. Most email newsletters carry abstracts or snippets of the stories. Readers then click through to a website to continue reading—and that’s the crux of the matter.

I get a fairly large number of content marketing emails each week. I’m surprised how many of them come from companies who do a pretty good job of SEO on their sites, but don’t apply the same practices to the email marketing content hosted on their site.

It’s probably the result of organizational silos—those who create email marketing, those charged with content creation, those responsible for maintaining the site, and those responsible for SEO aren’t working effectively together to leverage each other’s contributions.

If you’ve got good email marketing content you’re going to post on a public part of your site—content for which you’d like to get found via organic search—here are some things to keep in mind. (more…)

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New Social Media Marketing Industry Report

Galen De Young ( @GalenDY ) | March 28, 2009 · 2 comments | B2B Social Media

Michael Stelzner of White Paper Source recently released a study on how marketers are using social media to grow and promote their businesses. Nearly 900 marketers were surveyed.

Social Media Masrketing Industry Report

One of the great questions in the study was an open ended question that simply asked, “What question about marketing with social media do you most want answered?” The question only allowed one answer and was designed to reveal the most pressing concern people had on their minds regarding social media. The 685 responses were then clustered into groups and ranked. The responses likely mirror some of you own questions regarding social media and reflect people wresting with selecting the right tactics, measuring the effectiveness of this new media, and how to effectively use it.

The remainder of the report attempts to answer some of those questions by presenting other findings from the survey. While the report is not specifically focused on B2B marketing, it’s filled with  great information of significant relevance to B2B marketers. Here’s just a few of the findings  in the report: (more…)

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