How to be a CMO & Create the Marketing Function of an Organization

EY-the-average-cmo.JPG

image via http://www.ey.com/gl/en/services/advisory/ey-dna-of-sales-and-marketing-leaders-reinvention-of-the-cmo#.WCsll-YrLIU

The role of CMO needs to focus on more than just marketing to increase sales as seen in this chart.

Image via http://blog.marketo.com/2007/04/are_you_a_cmo_o.html

To have success in the CMO role, you need to: get executive buy in on authority and the ability to make changes, otherwise you are doomed to fail.

Brand Message and Content Marketing

From a brand stand point, the brand messaging need to be in alignment. It should not take a genius to understand what your product does and how it will help the customer. To achieve this goal, you need to do the following: Audit, understand and improve Brand message, voice, sales, marketing collateral, print and digital properties.

Do the above before starting a content marketing program if the organization sells products because you will need to build and create a content tilt to be found by customers in search.

Developing Sales Processes and Shortening the Sales Cycle

Sales Managers hired; should train sales staff properly and hold Reps accountable to hit Revenue Goals. If you are tasked with creating/building out the marketing function of the organization, make sure that support staff are trained by the Sales Manager to handle inbound leads. Sales staff should be trained on objection handling, prospecting, product knowledge, making Sales, post Sales follow up and obtaining repeat business.

SMarketing

Have marketing partner with Sales. Go on Sales calls to understand customer objections /pain points to improve messaging and product. The goal of any Sales and Marketing program is to shorten sales cycles and increase Revenue.

Defining Your Target Market and Sales Channels

Audit, understand, and improve the sales structure of the organization, sales operations and sales processes. Define Sales Rep territories, compensations and commission structure using analysis that includes data from customer acquisition costs and ROI.

Decide if you will sell your product directly to customers or through re-sellers. Some companies do both.

Sales Management/Sales Reps

Hopefully if there is Sales Leadership at the company when you arrive, this will be handled. If no Sales people are present, start this process yourself and hire a seasoned rep or Manager from a larger competitor. If Sales leadership is there but has not done the above, give them a Sales Leadership improvement plan, look for a seasoned replacement and fire them. This applies to Sales Reps as well.

Market Research

Understand customers and buyer behaviors.

Share buyer personas and research with the sales staff.

image via smartdraw.com

Have sales staff complete a competitive analysis on how your company stacks up against your competition in the marketplace.

Product Development

Use Market Research to collaborate with product to come up with ideas for new products, features, promotions and pricing strategy.

Crossing the Chasm and Selling into New Markets

image via http://4.bp.blogspot.com/

Identify new markets to sell into. If Sales are stagnant, find a way to get in front of your customers before they become customers by using pricing in a crossing the chasm style analysis.

Proving you’re a CMO

Position marketing a source of revenue rather than a cost by putting marketing at the center of the organization. Showing how marketing can make an impact on the income statement beyond increasing sales. Show how marketing makes the organization run better.

Talent Branding

Improve the talent brand by creating a job site with employee stories. This job site will increase the amount of applicants and reduce recruitment advertising costs. Write more appealing job descriptions.

Attempt to make the organization the company of tomorrow by making it cross functional.

Company Revenue and Financials

Ask about the financial health of the company i.e. Churn rate, burn rate, Profitably, funding etc…

image via pinterest.com/explore/churn-rate

Ask the CEO about cash flow and if they can commit large amounts of cash to developing/executing marketing programs.

image via http://www.accountingcoach.com/financial-ratios/explanation/4

Data Driven Decisions

Above all, CMO’s need to use Data from Financials, Sales, Revenue and Analytics to make marketing decisions. The Data needs to be used continuously to justify marketing decisions and to pivot when marketing programs are not working.

The duties of the CMO will vary by industry and company size but these are the basics that a CMO must do to be successful.

What do you think makes a successful CMO? Comment and Share.

About the Author

Dan is passionate about using Marketing to help businesses drive sales. HubSpot Certified in Inbound Marketing, Dan has worked on various marketing assignments including Start Ups, a Political Campaign & a Digital Marketing Conference.

Prior to teaching, Dan served customers as an Outside Sales & Marketing Rep in NYC. In this role, he taught & trained Dentists on the company’s products & services using a consultative selling approach combined with direct marketing. He also supported the company’s marketing efforts at industry trade shows.

He writes & publishes a business blog on the topics of Sales, Marketing & Social Media entitled Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today; which has grown to over 16,000 followers on LinkedIn & over 11,000 on WordPress.

Dan is seeking a full-time marketing role in Direct, Inbound, Digital, Content & Social Media Marketing. He is willing to be a CMO to create and build out the Marketing function of your organization if it does not exist. If your company is hiring for roles in these areas, contact him directly via a free LinkedIn Message or email him at Dan@DanGalante.com to set up interviews.

Customer Marketing: What We Can Learn from Actors

What Actors Can Teach us About Customer Marketing

Image via Garrison Everest

When Actors land a role to play, they need to memorize their lines but for their delivery to be believable, they need to become the character. Actors become the character they play by doing research. This research is conducted by: reading books/watching videos about the life of the character, conducting interviews with the real life person if they are alive and/or meeting with people who knew them.

From this research, actors can identify the strengths, weaknesses, challenges and pain points in this persons life; all of which can help them successfully become this person.

How this Research is applied to Customer Marketing 

Successful Marketers have to conduct similar research to identify their target customer. For Marketing to be successful, businesses must understand their target market; analyzing their ideal customer similar to what Actor need to do.

To analyze this ideal customer, businesses need to do research to understand the life of their ideal customer. The result of this research is known as a Buyer Persona. According to research conducted by MarkteingSherpa: Marketers generated 171 % more revenue as result of using buyer personas.

According to research by the Buyer Persona Institute in 2016:

1.27% of businesses have no buyer persona

2. 44% of businesses have a buyer persona

3. interest in having buyer personas is growing as 29%  of businesses surveyed said will have them in the next year.

Creating a Buyer Persona

A buyer persona is a guide to understanding the needs, challenges and pain points of customers.

Questions to ask

What are these customer’s habits?

What concerns, needs and challenges do they have?

What actions are customers taking to address their needs and challenges?

Why do customers need to take these actions?

This question may be applied to multiple action steps described in Hooked by Nir Eyal as the 5 Whys.

What makes them want to buy?

Where do they look for information?

What type of content and medium do they use access the information?

What days and times are they most likely to look for information and consume content?

It is important to note that businesses with multiple products and more than one target market will need to create buyer personas for each ideal customer.

image via Content Marketing Institute /Bigstock

Where to obtain information on the Ideal Customer

1. Interview current customers and prospects.

2. Send out targeted surveys via email, direct mail and on Social Networks. Offer incentives such as gift cards and discounts to encourage people to provide the information needed.

3. Read biography and history books about your ideal customer.

4. Study the news.

5. Study existing research conducted by Market Research firms.

Building buyer personas will result in:

1. Creating and implementing  better and more targeted product messaging and communication

2. Getting the product in front of customers who truly will benefit from its use

This is how to create a Buyer Persona.

How are you using your buyer personas? Comment below.

Article sources & images

Garrison Everest

Content Marketing Institute 

MarketingSherpa.com/intecnic.com

Related article

Inbound 101

About the Author

Dan is passionate about using Marketing to help businesses drive sales. Hubspot Certified in Inbound Marketing, Dan has worked on various marketing assignments including a Start Up, Political Campaign & a Digital Marketing Conference.

Prior to teaching, Dan served customers as an Outside Sales & Marketing Rep in NYC. In this role, he taught & trained Dentists on the company’s products & services using a consultative selling approach combined with direct marketing. He also supported the company’s marketing efforts at industry trade shows.

He writes & publishes a business blog on the topics of Sales, Marketing & Social Media entitled Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today; which has grown to over 13,000 followers on LinkedIn & over 8,000 on WordPress.

Dan is seeking a full time marketing role in Direct, Inbound, Digital, Content & Social Media Marketing. If your company is hiring for roles in these areas, contact him directly via a free LinkedIn Message or email him at Dan@DanGalante.com to set up interviews.

 

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How Brands can use Customer Service & Sales Teams to improve Content Marketing

image via Content Marketing Institute

Marketing is being disrupted by technology. The technology comes in the form of new social channels such as the internet, mobile, social media, publishing platforms, audio books and video on demand. All of these channels have the effect of giving consumers instant access to information about products and services.

Competition in every product and service category has never been higher. This marks a significant shift from the days of Mad Men where brands controlled information and the conversation. This marketing shift is known as information marketing through content or simply content marketing. As a result, Marketers and brands have to become the educators or teachers of consumers. To become the educators of consumers, brands have to become the industry resource to consumers; showing how their products can solve problems and improve the lives of consumers.

Once brands convert prospects into customers, they still need to focus on and support customers post sale. Here is where Content Marketing can help. Brands can use Content Marketing for customer retention, cross-selling and up-selling. To take advantage of this, brands need to involve both their Sales and Customer service team in their Content Marketing strategy.

Sales Teams

Sales teams can provide a lot of information about customers, product concerns or issues and objections they face. They are front line soldiers that have a direct line to customer intelligence.

Integrating the Sales Team to your content marketing strategy

Meet with the sales team and encourage them to compile a list of customer complaints, objections and questions about products that they face. Ask the team to create materials that address these concern that customers can access. This could take form of blog posts, Power-points FAQ’s, product demonstrations and tutorials.

If the sales team feels uncomfortable creating content, they could be interviewed by the marketing department. The marketing department could take content /basic materials, emails from the sales team and polish it up into visually appealing content that customers can access.

Customer Service

Similar to the sales team, your customer service teams are front line soldiers to help customers with issues they face at call centers or through social media. Ask them to write down complaints they get from customers with the answers. These complaints of FAQ’s could be put up on a web site via a PowerPoint presentation, blog etc… If this is not possible for the team, interview them, collect basic materials, emails, notes and create the content yourself.

Sales and Customer service team are an important part to using a Content Marketing Strategy for customer retention. The more products a customer uses from a brand, the less likely they will switch to a competitor. Remember it costs more to obtain new customers that it does to keep existing ones.

Cross-Selling & Up-Selling

Sales and Customer service teams can also help with cross and up-selling by sharing promotion and new offerings with customers. The Sales and customer service functions of brands are essential to creating a great experience for customers.

This is how brands can integrate sales and customer service teams into their Content Marketing strategy. How are you using content from sales and customer service teams to help your brand retain customers? What are the goals of your brands content marketing efforts?

Feel free to comment and share.

About the Author

Dan is passionate about using Marketing to help businesses drive sales. He has worked on various marketing assignments that include a Start Up, Political Campaign & a Digital Marketing Conference.

Prior to Teaching, Dan served customers as an Outside Sales & Marketing Representative in the Dental industry. In this role, he taught and trained Dentists on the company’s products and services using a consultative selling approach. He also supported the company’s marketing efforts at industry trade shows & in the field through lead generation of Digital Technology along with large Dental Equipment.

He writes and publishes a business blog on the topics of Sales, Marketing & Social Media entitled Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today.

Dan is seeking a full time marketing role in New York City. He is interested in roles in Direct, Digital, Content & Social Media Marketing. If your company is hiring for roles in these areas, contact him directly via a free LinkedIn Message or email him at Dan@DanGalante.com to set up interviews.

How to Create & Execute a Content Marketing Strategy for Lead & Demand Generation

Content Marketing is a great way to connect and engage with potential customers. Only through thoughtful connecting and engagement with others will you be able to obtain quality leads and create demand for your products.

Making people want to connect with you on Social Networks is the key to uncovering any needs they may have. A great place to start is to write and create content that informs people on how they can use something or how they can fix an issue that they are having. This has the effect of offering a value message to potential customers because you are showing them what you can do to help. In essence this is your digital portfolio. Just as in the offline world, when you are trying to acquire new customers part of your strategy is to show samples of your work and what you have to offer.

Now this might sound like a lot. To start, try writing comments on blogs that you think are interesting. This is a great place to get comfortable sharing your insights in the digital world. Once you write a comment, make sure to follow up and respond to any replies as this will help get a conversation going. Make sure that you share the blog that you commented on so your insights can reach others. You can do this with articles on LinkedIn as well.

LinkedIn

image via amazonaws.com

As you start to build up your confidence to write, you will start to realize that you possess a lot of knowledge about your industry and business that you can share with others. However, if you are not ready to start writing blogs on a regular basis you can start by sharing thoughts on LinkedIn by using the LinkedIn long form.

The LinkedIn long form is a publishing platform that allows users to publish blog articles and share them with LinkedIn users. The long form can also be shared on other networks like Twitter & Facebook through the Social Sharing buttons. You can also share the URL on sites like Google+.

Using the LinkedIn publishing platform is a great way to generate leads because you can quickly share your thoughts and insights that demonstrate the value to connections. Your articles will also make people want to connect. People will start to send you invitations to join their network and send you messages asking to learn more about you. Once you have the interest of the people, you can tell them about what you have to offer.

The LinkedIn publishing platform is a great first step to creating your own blog. However, if you want to build up a following on other networks, you will need to build a website, and create blogs on sites like WordPress , tumblr & blogger. I use WordPress, tumblr, and the LinkedIn publishing platform.

Image via zanderchance.com

WordPress & tumblr

Writing a blog is great way to share your ideas and market your expertise in an area. I began blogging back in November 2011. Blogging had connected me with so many great people around the globe. I began publishing on the WordPress platform. Recently, I began cross publishing my blog on tumblr.

WordPress

The first thing that you need to do is to register on the site. You will have the option to create either a wordpress.com address or a custom domain name. I suggest that you pick a custom domain name because your blog will come up better in search results. WordPress gives you a choice of web suffixes to choose from, for example .com, .me etc. I chose the address http://dangalante.me. If you decide to change the address after you set up the blog that is ok. The wordpress.com address will automatically be directed to your new address.

It is important to note that you will have to buy the domain name if you want your own. Hosting is inexpensive and should cost about $25 per year at most depending on the name you choose. The investment is well worth it because this will give your blog its own brand identity.

Once you register, you will see WordPress’s default theme. Click on the appearance tab and browse the free and premium themes that are available. You can then choose the one that you would like to install.

Now you are ready to write a post.

To do this click, on the new post tab. A window will pop up. Here you will find tools to write and edit your post. When you are ready to post, just click publish and you are ready to go.

tumblr

Like WordPress, you will have to register on tumblr to set up your blog. I have provided the link to the registration page. If you land on the home page, just click on the sign up button.

Once you have signed up, you will be prompted to create a web address. You will notice that the only address you could create is a tumblr.com address. Tumblr does not support or partner with site hosting companies. In other words, you will need to find a third party host on your own. I purchased a domain name from Yola.com . The name I purchased is http://askdangalante.com .

Once I secured the name, I had to point the address to the Tumblr servers. (Tumblr provides the specific address and exactly what CNAME or A-Records need to be changed. Here is the link. You will know if this is correct if your address redirects to Tumblr and it say page not found.

You can test your domain address in the box under your tumblr address in the blog settings. Your address will not link to the site right away. It took 24 hours; although it can take up to 72.

Now you can click on the customized theme and browse through the free and premium themes. Pick a theme and now you are ready to post. To post, click on the text tab which is located underneath the Dashboard tab. You will see a window where you can copy, paste, write and edit your posts. When you are done, just click the publish button.

Now you have your all of this content. How do you track your progress? To do this you will need to set up analytics. LinkedIn provides this for the long form and WordPress does this. However for your own blog on tumblr and a custom website you will need to use a site like Google Analytics.

Google Analytics

 image via adventuretravelnews.com

Google Analytics is a great way to monitor your efforts online. It allows you to see how many people are visiting your site, the duration of their visit, what content they are looking at and from what network. You can also see what country they are from. Another thing you could do is to set custom goals to check for certain things. The site allows you to measure the amount of traffic that comes from social networks. To access this, just click under the social tab under traffic sources. Google Analytics also lets you track your Adwords campaigns. I use Google Analytics for my website and tumblr blog.

How to setup Google analytics for your website and blog. The first thing that you will need to get started is a Gmail account. Now with your Gmail account, go to the Google Analytics website. You will need to click the create an account button. Next you will be asked to login to you Gmail account. You will then be asked to create a profile and add the website URL that you want to track. You can also provide your time zone. Once you provide this, the site will provide you with a tracking code. Next, you will need to copy and paste this into the html section of each page of your website or blog. If you have done this correctly, you will see that the tracking code is installed.

You will start to see statistics about your visitors within a few hours. It is important to note that you cannot use Google Analytics with WordPress.com. WordPress provides users with a set of analytics.

I have also included a video tutorial via http://www.brilliantbusinessadvice.com/

About the Author

Dan is passionate about using Marketing to help businesses drive sales. He has worked on various marketing assignments that include a Start Up,Political Campaign & a Digital Marketing Conference.

Prior to Teaching, Dan served customers as an Outside Sales & Marketing Representative in the Dental industry. In this role, he taught and trained Dentists on the  company’s products and services using a consultative selling approach. He also supported the company’s marketing efforts at industry trade shows & in the field through lead generation of Digital Technology along with large Dental Equipment.

He writes and publish a business blog on the topics of Sales, Marketing & Social Media entitled Sales, Marketing & Social Media Today.

Dan is seeking a full time marketing role in New York City. He is interested in roles in Direct, Digital, Content & Social Media Marketing. If your company is hiring for roles in these areas, contact him directly via a free LinkedIn Message or email him at Dan@DanGalante.com to set up interviews.