Three Poisonous B2B Marketing Metaphors

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    11-Aug-2014
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Three metaphors in B2B content marketing and how they can lead you astray. Content Marketing is guided by the language we use to describe our activities. So metaphors can really shape our thinking. Three in particular are widely used and can be misleading.

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  • THREEPOISONOUS METAPHORSIN B2BMARKETING.
  • METAPHORSARE POWERFULTHINGS THATHELPUSMAKE SENSEOFTHEWORLD.
  • BUTSOMETIMES METAPHORSSTOP WORKING. ANDLEADUSDOWN THEWRONGPATHS.
  • THISISABOUTTHREE METAPHORSTHATARE CENTRALTOB2BMARKETING.
  • METAPHORSTHAT AREBROKENBUT ARESTILLBEING USEDEVERYDAY.
  • ITSIMPORTANTBECAUSE PEOPLETENDTOFORGET THATMETAPHORSARE JUSTMETAPHORS. SOTHEYENDUPACTING ASIFTHEMETAPHORS WERETRUE.
  • ANDTHATLEADSTO LAZYMARKETING. MARKETINGTHAT MAKESFATAL ASSUMPTIONS.
  • THEFIRST POISONOUS METAPHOR
  • THEFUNNEL.
  • INSOMEWAYS, THEFUNNELIS ANEFFECTIVE METAPHOR. AFTERALL
  • THERE ARE LOTSOF POTENTIAL BUYERSIN THEWORLD
  • ANDONLY AFEWOF THEMKNOW ANYTHING ABOUTYOU
  • ANDEVEN FEWER ACTUALLY MAKE THEMSELVES KNOWN
  • ANDEVEN FEWER ENGAGE WITHYOUR SALES PEOPLE
  • ANDA VERYFEW ENDUP BUYING.
  • SOWHATS WRONGWITH THEFUNNEL METAPHOR? TWOTHINGS.
  • REAL-WORLD FUNNELSBENEFIT FROMGRAVITY.
  • AFORCETHAT, IFYOUDONOTHING ATALL,COMPELS EVERYTHINGPUTINTO THETOPTOFLOWOUT THEBOTTOM.
  • THEB2BMARKETING FUNNELWORKSIN EXACTLYTHE OPPOSITEWAY.
  • THEFORCESACTING ONPROSPECTSTAKE THEMAWAY FROMYOU, NOTCLOSERTOYOU.
  • B2BMARKETING FUNNELSSHOULD REALLYBESHOWN UPSIDEDOWN.
  • WENEEDTO COUNTER THE NATURALFORCES THATDRIVE PEOPLEAWAY FROMUS.
  • REAL-WORLD FUNNELSALSO HAVEHARDSIDES.
  • THERESONLY ONEWAYOUT.
  • B2BMARKETING FUNNELSDONT WORKLIKETHAT.
  • THEREARE THOUSANDS OFWAYSOUT. ANDONLYAFEW THATLEADTOYOUR SALESPEOPLE.
  • SOIFYOUMARKETASIF THERESSUCHATHINGAS GRAVITYANDBELIEVETHAT YOURMARKETINGFUNNEL ISHARDTOESCAPEFROM YOURMARKETINGWILLSUCK.
  • ASSUMINGTHATPEOPLEWILL TUMBLEDOWNYOURFUNNEL UNTILTHEYBUYSOMETHINGIS JUSTPLAINWRONG. ITSJUSTA METAPHOR.
  • THESECOND POISONOUS METAPHOR
  • THEPURCHASE JOURNEY.
  • YES,PURCHASEPROCESSES AREKIND OFLIKEJOURNEYS.
  • PEOPLEWHOENDUPBUYING STARTEDOUTREALLYFAR AWAYANDNOWTHEYRE REALLYCLOSE. LOOKSLIKEA JOURNEYRIGHT?
  • NOPE. REAL-WORLDJOURNEYS HAVESOMEIMPORTANT THINGSTHATB2BPURCHASE PROCESSESDONOT.
  • PEOPLEONREAL-WORLD JOURNEYSSTARTWITH INTENTIONS.
  • THEYKNOWWHERETHEY WANTTOGOBEFORETHEY EVENSETOFF. THEYBUYAMAP. THEYPACKALUNCH. THEYPEETHEKIDS.
  • REAL-WORLDJOURNEYS ARESELF-MOTIVATED. PEOPLEGOPLACESBECAUSE THEYREALLYWANTTOGETTHERE. THEYNEEDNOEXTRAINCENTIVE.
  • INCONTRAST, B2BPURCHASERS DONOTINTEND TOBUYYOUR PRODUCTS. THEIRMOTIVATION DOESNTINCLUDE YOU(UNLESSYOU DOSOMETHINGTO CHANGETHAT).
  • B2BPURCHASERS AREGROPINGAROUND INTHEDARK. THINKINGABOUT THEIROWN PROBLEMS.
  • OCCASIONALLY, THEYSTUMBLEOVER SOMEKINDOFLUMP. THATLUMP ISYOU.
  • THEYMAYORMAY NOTINVESTIGATE THELUMP. PROBABLYNOT.
  • IFTHEYDO, THEYMAYORMAY NOTGETINTOUCH.
  • ANDEVENIFTHEYGET INTOUCH,THEIRJOURNEY HASJUSTBEGUN. MOSTOFTHEM WILLSTILL WANDEROFF.
  • NOWYOUMAYCHOOSE TOCALLALLTHISGROPING ANDSTUMBLINGAJOURNEY. (IWOULDNT.)
  • BUTINB2B,BUYERSARE NOTHEADINGYOURWAY ALLONTHEIROWN. THEYDONTHAVEAMAP. THEYHAVENTPACKEDLUNCH. THEYDONTKNOWYOUEXIST.
  • ASSUMINGTHATPEOPLE AREONAJOURNEYTOYOU ISAFATALASSUMPTION. ITSJUSTA METAPHOR.
  • THETHIRD POISONOUS METAPHOR
  • THEFOLLOWER.
  • WHETHERITSONTWITTEROR FACEBOOKORLINKEDINORGOOGLE+, YOURFOLLOWERSARENTREALLY FOLLOWING YOUANDTHEYRENOT YOURFRIENDS ANDYOURENOT REALLYINTHEIRCIRCLES.
  • THOSEARE METAPHORS.
  • INSOCIALMEDIA,THERES ONLYONEWAYTOGET PEOPLETOREALLYFOLLOW YOUANDREALLYBEYOUR FRIENDANDREALLYINVITE YOUINTOTHEIRCIRCLES.
  • YOUHAVETOEARNIT. WHICHISALOT HARDERTHAN GETTINGTHEM TOCLICKFOLLOW.
  • YOURFOLLOWERSARE STRANGERSWHOHAVE GIVENYOUATBEST AMICROSECOND EVERY MONTHORSOTOGETON THEIRRADAR. THATSALL THEYARE.
  • IFYOUREBUSYCOUNTING YOURFOLLOWERSAND COLLECTINGLIKES,YOURE IGNORINGTHETHINGTHAT REALLYMATTERS.
  • THETHINGTHATREALLY MATTERSINSOCIALMEDIAIS EARNINGAREPUTATION ASANINTELLIGENT, CONSISTENT,ENTERTAINING SOURCEOFINSIGHT.
  • IFYOUCANDOTHAT,TENOFYOUR FOLLOWERSWILLBEWORTHTHE MILLIONPHANTOMFANSOFTHAT PERSONALBRANDGURUWHO PUMPSHISBANALEFFLUENTINTO THETWEETOSPHEREEVERYHOUR, ONTHEHOUR. YOUKNOWTHEGUY.
  • FOLLOWERS ANDFRIENDS AREMETAPHORS. LOOKBEHINDYOU. SEEANYEAGERFACES, AWAITINGYOURNEXTPOST? ITHOUGHTNOT.
  • LETSREVIEW.
  • FUNNELSARENT REALLYFUNNELS. THEYDONT HAVEGRAVITY ANDTHEYDONT HAVEHARDSIDES.
  • PURCHASEJOURNEYS ARENTREALLYJOURNEYS. YOURPROSPECTS ARENTSKIPPING DOWNTHEYELLOW- BRICKROADTOYOU.
  • YOURFOLLOWERS ARENTREALLYFOLLOWERS. THEYREJUSTPEOPLEWHO AREDESPERATELYLOOKING FORFOLLOWERS.
  • SOWHATDOES THISMEAN?
  • ITMEANSYOUHAVETO CREATETHEGRAVITY INTHEFUNNEL. THEFORCETHATIMPELS PROSPECTSTOWARDSYOU.
  • ANDYOUHAVETO BUILDTHEHARD SIDESTHATKEEP PEOPLEENGAGED. MAKINGITHARDERFOR THEMTOWANDERAWAY.
  • ANDYOUHAVETO TURNTHELIGHT ONSOTHEYSEE WHERETHEYARE ANDWHYTHEY NEEDYOU. SOTHEYSTOP GROPINGAND STUMBLINGAND STARTLISTENING.
  • ANDYOUHAVE TOEARNTHE REAL ATTENTION OFYOURSOCIAL MEDIACONTACTS. SOTHEYSITUP ANDTUNEIN WHENYOUTWEET.
  • ANDYOUDOALL THISWITHONE EASY-TO-SAY BUTNOTSO EASY-TO-DELIVER THING DRUMROLL
  • YOUDOITWITHCLEAR, COMPELLING,INTERESTING, USEFUL,PASSIONATE,FUN, INTELLIGENT,ARTICULATE, BEAUTIFUL,LOGICAL, DISCOVERABLE,MAGNETIC
  • CONTENT.
  • CONTENTTHATHELPS PEOPLEDOTHEIRJOBS, SOLVETHEIRPROBLEMSOR SEIZETHEIROPPORTUNITIES.
  • THATSTHEONLYTHING THATFILLSFUNNELSAND INCITESJOURNEYSAND INSPIRESFOLLOWERS.
  • SODOMOREOFTHAT. (ANDLESSOF EVERYTHINGELSE).
  • THANKSFORCLICKING.
  • COMEANDGETSOME. B2BContentMarketing StrategyChecklist Great content marketing starts with a sharp content marketing strategy. This Checklist will help you sharpen yours. TheB2BMarketing Manifesto A tirade against the reactionary forces of traditional marketing. A wake up call. Okay, a bit of a temper tantrum. TheB2BContent MarketingWorkbook A short primer on the single most important weapon in the B2B marketing arsenal: content marketing. Its hot! TheHolyTrinityof TechnologyMarketing The three questions you have to be able to answer (quickly) if youre a B2B marketer. Its pretty simple, really.