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#002: Your data is slowing you down

G’day you B2B folks!

Kev has let me take the reins on this one again, after doing “quite a good” job on the last one. Thanks to all who took the time to reach out to tell me they enjoyed it too!

You should be able to read today’s issue in 5 minutes or less.

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💡 3 B2B Strategy Tips

1) Be ‘helpful’ should be your marketing mindset: Marketers are obsessed with ‘hacks’, ‘tricks’, and tools. We think it’s the only way to get that growth our bosses are asking from us. Trust me – I’ve learned the hard way that this doesn’t work in the B2B world. Business in this world are built on relationships of trust, and trust is built by helping people – not manipulating them. So start putting the customer back at the heart of your marketing strategy by asking yourself at every turn: “is [insert x] helpful to my Dream Customer? Will it make their lives easier or harder?”. If the answer is ‘No’, then don’t do that thing. 

‘Be Helpful’ is stage 2/5 in our 5 BEs Framework. Kev and I discuss in depth why this mindset drives more demand for your business, and then show you how to do it step-by-step. 

2) Stop waiting for big data sets to make decisions: I don’t know when it happened, but it’s like if our dashboards don’t look like the opening credits to The Matrix, then we’re not doing a good job as marketers. And yet, the reality is for most B2B organisations – you won’t collect statistically significant data fast enough to make decisions that matter. If you wait for the data to show up in Google Analytics or a Hubspot report, you’ll never move faster than the competition. I’m not saying you should abandon data, you should just also start collecting qualitative data as well as the quantitative. Quantitative tells you the ‘what’, qualitative tells you the ‘why’. 

Great sources of qualitative data are customer interviews, surveys, self-reported attribution, and customer and audience feedback. It’s much harder to reduce to numbers, but much easier and faster to act on. 

Learn more about how to constantly improve using qualitative data.

3) Most B2B companies get this wrong with their marketing budget: They allocate 90% of their budget just capturing demand. Capturing demand is

investing money in places that your Dream Customers are ready to buy from right now. Think: Google, Capterra, G2, direct response ads on social, etc. The problem with that is in your market, only 3-5% of people are ready to buy RIGHT NOW. And if you and your competitors are all competing for that same 3-5% – it’s like jumping into a swimming pool full of sharks. It’s a blood bath out there.

A sustainable marketing plan should start to allocate more budget to creating demand. This means building trust with the other 95% of the market who aren’t ready to buy right now. 

Learn how your company can start shifting from only capturing demand, to also creating demand in episode 56 with Myles Madden.

✏️ Doodle of the Week

Capturing demand only is like swimming in a pool full of sharks. To survive you need to also create demand, and move to blue oceans.

📖 3 Articles and Resources

1) How to go beyond thought leadership and dominate your category: ‘Thought leadership’ is table stakes. Even your competitors are starting to do it. Here’s how to go beyond it.

2) Two exercises you should do to define your Dream Customer: Focussing on your Dream Customer is crucial. Here’s two ways to start to deeply understand them.

3) How to conduct customer interviews: Doing customer interviews can be scary. Expert Ryan Gibson shows us exactly how to do them in Episode 37 of The B2B Playbook podcast. 

Thanks for reading!

P.S. Don’t forget to subscribe to The B2B Playbook podcast

Strategy, Templates & Tools To Drive More Revenue With Marketing

Our 5 BEs Framework teaches b2b marketers exactly how to drive more revenue with your marketing.

We share our Framework step-by-step every week on The B2B Playbook.

There’s 3 ways you can learn and implement it in your own business:

  1. Listen to The B2B Playbook Podcast
  2. Subscribe to our Newsletter
  3. Apply for The B2B Incubator

(P.S. The B2B Incubator gives you strategy, templates and tools you need to implement this in your business over 12 weeks. Click here to find out more or apply now).

I'm George, and I'm an embarrassingly passionate B2B marketer.

But it wasn't always that way. When I first got into B2B marketing, I actually found it so confusing. There was conflicting advice - and I kept pursuing the promise of "the one thing" that would work - with varying success.

With my own agency and working in-house, I tested different strategies and tactics to see:
(a) which ones could be done by a small marketing team
(b) which ones actually resulted in REVENUE for the business

We then turned the stuff that works into one cohesive strategy that I follow when I consult with B2B clients.

It's called our 5 BEs Framework.

And now we're dedicated to sharing it, right here, on The B2B Playbook.

We're giving away our 5 BEs Framework step-by-step, and creating the resource I wish I had when I first fell in love with B2B marketing.

When I say step-by-step - I mean it! Start the podcast at Episode 1, and work your way through.

If that sounds like too much, we give you the strategy, templates & tools in our 12 week program - The B2B Incubator.

Check it out here:

I'm also extremely active and share much of our framework on LinkedIn - so please feel free to connect with me there and say hi!

Further reading