News feeds listen to the market for you

The best way to get to know your buyers costs nothing and takes no effort whatsoever. Establish a news feed (Google offers one, for instance) based on the keywords you think matter to your buyers. Set your preferences to get a daily email  with links to any new web content and blogs published on that subject. If you notice that there is a lot of information you don't want, refine the keywords until you see valuable results.

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Topics: Advertising, B2B, Market Research, Positioning & Messaging, Public Relations, Software, Technology Buyers

What the bleep is a buyer persona

Thank you for asking – this is definitely my favorite topic.

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Topics: B2B, Buying Criteria, Market Research, Positioning & Messaging, Public Relations, Technology Buyers, Writing

Solution marketing should mean something

I'm looking for support for a new rule that restricts marketers from using the trendy "solution marketing" term until they can demonstrate that they know what problems their buyers want to solve. I don't know how this rule gets implemented, of course, but isn't everyone tired of the idea that a solution is just an internally convenient combination of products and services? How many marketers have used Microsoft Word to perform a "Find and Replace" function, substituting "solution" for "product" and, presto, the company is selling solutions!

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Topics: Advertising, B2B, Product Marketing Redefined, Public Relations, Technology Buyers

In search of market-driven companies

I just read a great post from Sarah Nielsen at Buzzmetrics about a recent presentation by the Chief Marketing Officer of Virgin Mobile, USA. I didn't hear the presentation, but Sarah recaps it in detail, including facts about the teenage persona the company targeted when it entered the already-crowded U.S. cell phone market a few years ago. But the best part is that this huge, wildly successful company attributes their success to "thinking like the customer". They know their product is a commodity so they don't market the product. They identify their target market's priorities, understand how they relate to new ideas and information, and deliver their relevant message where the kids are.

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Topics: B2B, Market Research, Technology Buyers

It's risky to sell marketing short

Let's face it. Everyone loves to poke fun at marketers. And that's OK, we're pretty tough, we can take it. But this morning I read a post from software developer Erik Sink that features fictional marketers Daisy and Goofy (yeah, you get it) at a planning meeting for a new product launch. Erik has good points about targeting markets, but his portrayal of marketing people inspired this post about one of my favorite topics; how tech companies underestimate the role of product marketing, and why its costing them a lot of business.

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Topics: B2B, Buying Criteria, Positioning & Messaging, Product Marketing Redefined, Software, Technology Buyers

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