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Growth Equity Investing and Revenue Generating Thoughts by growth-stage CFO/COO Kishan Shah
Kishan Shah: Growth equity investors find companies through a variety of methods. One, a referral or introduction from a trusted mutual connection. If you're a series BCDE investor, you're going to look at what seed stage, or series A firms you really respect, invest in them. The second would be marketplace buzz. Think about PR, think about mentions on the web, but also customer references. If customers are really loving the product, and they're getting a lot of value out of it, it's a great way to gauge demand and see if the dogs are actually eating the dog food. If the company's actually dog fooding. The third would be more thematically. Growth equity firms will have a set of themes that they'll want to invest in. Let's say, artificial intelligence. They'll look at companies within a specific sector, figure out what the market dynamics are going to look like, build relationships with a set of those entrepreneurs, figure out which ones are doing well, and then ultimately figure out if they can do a deal under their fund mandate. When a company raises growth equity, the first thing it should think about are the use of proceeds. There is two types. Primary and secondary. Primary is going to be capital on the balance sheet. That can be used for a variety of things. I want to hire more sales reps. I want to invest in my product. I want to increase my customer success team. I want to spend more dollars on marketing and ads. Or, I can also think about I want to do an acquisition of another company to get into another adjacency or tangentially related market. Capital that goes on the balance sheet, that a company's going to use to invest in, to effectively grow faster than it could on a stand-alone basis, but also thinking about it could be a path towards profitability, or towards a larger growth equity financing. The other reason is secondary capital. Secondary capital would be liquidity to earlier investors, or earlier employees as well. For transformational businesses that have been around for a variety of years, it's fine if they want to think about what's the next generation of how the company's going to look for the next five or ten years, because there's a shift in the marketplace, or their product is doing really well. Growth equity can solve a variety of constraints. In terms of thinking about performance, that could be the number of clients you're landing in a specific time period. It could be the amount of customers you onboard. It could be the amount of expansion revenue that you're getting. Do customers want the product? Is the product working? Would customers like to spend more dollars with your company? I love B2B Enterprise SaaS companies that are in a vertical like financials, or healthcare, where the customer has a very, very specific set of constraints, and they're willing to spend a large amount of dollars in order to solve that problem. Price is effectively a proxy for complexity. The higher the ACV, hopefully the more times you can renew that customer and get the value of that renewal revenue. But also, it means that from your product team and your R&D team, the product is going to have to be more robust, more feature rich, to solve that customer's pain points, but also thinking about from a sales perspective, it may be longer to land that client. That's okay. Because the amount of stakeholders that are required to actually make sure that at a large Fortune 500 buyer, they have the necessary support in order to feel that this is a partnership, not a transaction, and the partnership is going to generate a high amount of ROI, on not just the money they spend, but the time. I find that B2B Enterprise SaaS companies that rally around price as a proxy for complexity, are highly successful. I love looking at org charts as almost this manufacturing machine for efficiency and growth. What I mean by that is some folks will say well reporting structures aren't important, or things change so quickly. I like thinking about a critical view of the organizational structure and asking myself what does the company need in the next quarter? Are we facilitating growth? Are we going to get maximum efficiency? Are the right people in those seats? How can those people be managed and mentored such that they're able to achieve the objectives over the next quarter or two, and then thinking about how to scale up to achieve a whole other set of objectives. I find that every company in the world effectively has an org chart, but the question is, how many companies use it effectively? ...
Views: 107 B2BNXT
Grow Your Business with Data-Driven Marketing Strategies | TahaMedia
OMAR TAHA: My ideal client is a client that is doing relatively well in the market. They have a strong marketing position, yet there are in efficiencies in their backend marketing infrastructure. That sounds like a mouthful but what that means is that they're not tracking the necessary data that could get them more recurrent business, more recurring clients. That client just necessarily has the raw data but it's for us to bring it together and get them to the next level and set up that infrastructure so they're collecting the data making their company more profitable and more valuable to potential investors or buy-outs. A lot of my competition is very short-term because a lot of clients are short-term. They think that immediate boost in revenue, that means that's a good marketing firm. However, with me ... I have a former investment banking experience and I'm very much into valuation and buy-outs and so forth ... is getting the long-term valuation for your company through marketing. And so with us, we're more of a long-term data-driven consulting firm where we focus on teaching our clients and coaching our clients to set up this infrastructure that gets the most value per customer, in addition to that, decreasing the ad spend so you're having a higher profit and a long-term strategy of collecting more data and getting smarter than your competitors. Many of the companies we work for, they have a unique selling position. However, in the market today, things are getting much more competitive and we have companies stealing each other's unique selling positions all the time. What makes people different in the market and gets them results time and time again is just communicating a unique mechanism. What is a unique mechanism? It's the one thing that makes your company so unique that your competitors can't even compete with. And a lot of times, there's confusion on, I don't have a unique mechanism. And what we tell a lot of our companies is just name what you do. Just implementing that one strategy will get results time and time again. The mistakes that people are making out there is blatant copying, copying your competitor's ads, copying the messaging and so forth. That does not work well and I don't advise anybody to go ahead and do that. First off is you're not collecting the same data on the backend. If you're copying an ad, you don't know if that ad is actually working. You might be copying the wrong thing, that's number one. Number 2 is that when you end up copying, you'd then become a me-too product. You're going to get ignored almost immediately. And the third reason why you don't want to do that, you can't be better than your competitors if you are copying them. What's the point of doing business if you can't be the best? I got my first client in the B2B space at the tender age of 22 years old. Essentially, I had a unique selling proposition which was I brought Wall Street executives to Dubai. And that was in 2006, when I first started it, was like a complete novelty. Every single company that I would speak to would be like, "Great. How do we sign up?" So, just having that unique selling position, by the time I was 24 we had about I think the six of the top 10 investment banks as clients. The biggest opportunity that I've seen over the last year is the emergence of a clean LinkedIn. LinkedIn in the B2B space has always been a form to get more client engagement and more clientele. And they've really cleaned up their act through video content, video ads. For us personally, we tend to use the LinkedIn messenger ads or the InMails all the time and they've worked on a consistent basis. And they continue to work because most of the time people get four or five messages on LinkedIn daily at most, whereas in their email box, they're getting 20 or 30 emails. Companies reading our emails and engaging with us is a lot more likely, so we're really bullish on the LinkedIn InMail strategy. The best book that I've read in business and marketing has been Breakthrough Advertising by Eugene Schwartzman. I went to the Wharton School, got my MBA in marketing. And that single book has taught me much more than any MBA. Essentially what the book teaches is that customers have heard of your messaging before. Unless you're having a trip to Mars or something about they've never heard before, getting customer's attention is almost impossible back in the 30s. Imagine how it is today. And the book is a classic in helping you create a unique selling position that will grab your customer's attention over and over again. And once you learned the methodology of Breakthrough Advertising, you can constantly do that for each and every product or service that you offer.
Views: 177 B2BNXT
Why We Decided to Focus on Webinars to Engage & Retain Customers | Katie Flanagan, Marketing Manager
KATIE FLANAGAN: I'm Katie Flanagan. I am Corporate Segment Marketing Manager at Mimeo, which is an on-demand content distribution platform. I got here from a background in creative writing and conference production that turned into a career in marketing. ... B2BNXT: What is a key lesson from this past year for B2B growth? KATIE FLANAGAN: One of the things I learned in the last year is how really important is to be aligned with Sales. We haven't necessarily changed our marketing tactics, but we have changed how we're organized, and how we communicate with Sales, and just literally we sit next to them now. I've made a big focus on having a better partnership with the Sales leaders and with the Sales people. It has had this huge impact on seeing them interact with our leads, and be more excited about the leads that we provide them, and then that helps lead to conversion. B2BNXT: What’s a common mistake companies make? KATIE FLANAGAN: I think a lot of companies and B2B marketers are focused on, "What is our product," and "What expertise do we have to bring to the table?" Where I've seen a lot of success reaching out to the community and saying, "We have a lot of customers that are in learning and development. We want to keep talking to learning and development. Who can we recruit from our customer base to talk about the things that learning and development people care about?" Just because we're starting the conversation, we're a part of it, and that helps us be a part of capturing information about them, and being able to start conversations, and just be a valued partner in the field. We've been doing our webinars series for three years. It's really fun now because I'm hearing, when I go to conferences, people recognize us because of our webinars. I'm hearing from Sales that people will pick up the phone, and they might not know who Mimeo is, but they know that we do webinars, and that we're a community that they can go to. B2BNXT: Why did you decide to focus on webinars? KATIE FLANAGAN:I came from a conference producer background, so that was just natural to me. Come up with a topic, find someone to speak on it, and produce that. I think it was instigated by webinars just being a known marketing channel to start conversations. My idea came after conversations about like, "Well, if we just do webinars about our product, is that really going to be engaging?" I think what we have seen is that by engaging on the topics that people are thinking about, and what they really care about ... Like no one really cares how to print a spiral-bound notebook, and we don't want them to care about how you print a spiral-bound notebook. We just want them to come to us when they need to print a spiral-bound notebook. So talking on the topics that they care about helps us stay front of mind. Last month we did a webinar on better training handouts, and how that increases the impact of your training. Next month we have one on tips for joining a new training team. Whether you are a manager about to have someone new, or if you're changing roles yourself, we've done things on measuring training. We've done things on the neuroscience behind training. We've done probably 30 topics at this point, but that's a little taste of it. I was just at a conference, B2BMX. One of the things that I got really excited about, and I did hear in several different sessions, was this focus on customer marketing. Because I think we in marketing tend to get really focused on like, "How do we get net new leads, and drive them down the funnel?" But it is also a business reality that keeping customers is way cheaper than getting new customers. So having a focus on marketing to your customers, and developing programs that are valuable to your customers, and help both of you find ways to expand your partnership, is something that we're going to focus on. I also think it is something that the industry in general is going to focus on. We have a whole team that is focused on those relationships. Well, that got established in the last year, so it's really interesting to be able to rely on that team and say, "What are your customers facing? What are the trends that you're hearing that we can use for our campaigns?" ... 🔷 Visit us here for more B2B marketing ideas: https://b2bnxt.com
Views: 2 B2BNXT
Brand Development Tips by Courtney Gray from Cerar & Malcolm
Patrick Charron: Well we're here with Courtney Gray from Cerar & Malcolm, a brand development agency. Why don't you tell us how you got started? Courtney Gray: I got started in brand development pretty much by accident, just a regular weekend and I'm out walking around my neighborhood. I run into this hat store that caught my eye. I go in there, started looking around and prior to this visit I hadn't even purchased a hat. I also had maybe a baseball cap. I saw this hat that I had to have so, I took it to the counter. Sure enough, at the register were the two owners who happened to make the hat and soon to find out they made all the hats in there. We started talking about the process of making the hat. Then we got more into it then my juices started flowing and I started thinking about how I could help them further their cause of getting people more interested in hats. Also, just helping them grow as a business. At the time, I was doing corporate merchandising so I had a professional background in it. Then we started just getting it to possibilities. I started creating a picture for who they could be and where they could go. A few minutes later, they hired me and that was my first client. I was working as their brand representative. Patrick Charron: Something you just said there where you started to make a picture for them to create that picture, I think that's important in branding is to have that vision, that idea of what can my company look like if I apply all these ideas, if I see that vision, what does that vision look like. Would you agree with that? Courtney Gray: I would and to contrast that so I've been doing this for about 10 years. That was almost a typical way of me getting a client by accident, seeing what they were doing and then just being able to really communicate what I saw in the product and what I thought I could do with it. Really, it all came down to me just talking but as I've grown as an agency and as a person, now, I take almost an opposite approach and that's more of listening. Now what I do is if I meet somebody, I start the conversation. I just listen intently into how they see their product and what they want to do. Then I'm able to just absorb that energy and that information and look at my past experiences as an entrepreneur, as a brand consultant and be able to help them just crystallize and bring to life what they have in their minds. It's a completely different way of doing it and I found that in the long term to be more effective. Patrick Charron: It makes a lot of sense so my next question was in fact, who's your ideal client today? We started with the hat store but if we go on your website we see that you work with a lot of startups, with a lot of entrepreneurs and I think what you were touching on is that. Is to allow them to paint their own picture and to just listen to what they have to say and then guide them in the right way. Does that make sense? Courtney Gray: Right. Right. Patrick Charron: Yeah. Courtney Gray: I would say our ideal clients or are entrepreneurs for a couple of reasons. First and foremost they tend to have a very strong belief in themselves, in their ability to produce productive and profitable outcomes and they also tend to have a strong belief in the work that they're doing. That makes all the difference no matter whether you're doing a design based project, coming up with some kind of strategy, developing a web experience, if the person or persons or organizations that you're working with have a really strong core belief in themselves and what they're doing, it makes just a big difference because they're able to put more into it. You're able to get more out of them and consequently deliver a better product for them. ...
Views: 13 B2BNXT
Media relations and Getting the company’s story out | Interview with PR Consultant Heath Fradkoff
B2BNXT: Who are you and what do you do? Heath Fradkoff: I run a PR marketing consultancy based in Brooklyn, New York called Ward 6 Marketing. At the end of the day, what I do is I help companies tell their stories and I create opportunities. If you want to a little bit more granular with it, a lot of it is heavy on media relations. So, I'm working every day with reporters and editors and folks in broadcast to help get my clients into those stories and make sure that they're part of the entire news landscape or their chunk of it anyway. I also help a lot with writing, with messaging, helping them really establishing figure out who their brand is. Because the messaging and the brand, part of it, is really at the core of everything that I do. If we don't know, collectively me and the client, if we don't know what that message is and what that story is, then we have a lot of work to do. B2BNXT: What’s the most important part of a strategy? Heath Fradkoff: The story is the most important part. If you don't have that, then you're really just going out to the media and saying, "Hey, we exist." Sometimes you can get away with that, sometimes just the mere fact of existing if you are an extremely new company, or an extremely new kind of product, or an extremely new industry, sometimes you can get away with that. But more often than not, you're running a business that has competition. You're running a business that might be great at what you do, but you're still building on a whole legacy of things that have already been in the marketplace for a long time. So the very first step, and probably the critical step is getting that story straight and figuring out what the messaging is, what differentiates you and what the media is going to really, pick up and what's going to resonate with them. B2BNXT: What’s your “Secret Sauce”? What makes you different? Heath Fradkoff: The secret sauce, it's going to sound funny, the secret sauce with me, largely is curiosity. The best people who do what I do are the ones who are intellectually curious, who want to learn and everything they can about their clients work, their products, their industry, what makes them tick, because it's from there that you build the best stories, right. It's not just looking at a one-page brief and saying, okay, I guess that's everything. It's really digging deep. It's really finding ways to become part of the team. And not just, who your day-to-day contact is, but it's another sales people, get to know the product people. Because they're the ones who know things that maybe not everybody else knows, and something that can make for a great story or a great piece of messaging. So I'd say curiosity is actually something that really, really helps me. I've never been one of those practitioners who has stuck in just a single industry. There is an advantage to spending a lot of time in an industry because you can develop specific contacts and you sort of know the larger landscape, but context change, people change beats all the time. One thing that has really helped me and that I think my clients tend to benefit from is the fact that, yes, I've done a lot of tech, I’ve done a lot of B2B but I've also worked for book authors. I've also worked for media outlets like the Associated Press and PBS. I've worked for consumer electronics clients, I've worked for enterprise. Knowing all of that you get a larger view of different kinds of media, what works, what doesn't. You can bring something from one industry that maybe folks aren't thinking about, but work very well in another industry. So between those two things, the curiosity and the ability to work across multiple different industries, I think that kind of makes me a little special. B2BNXT: How important is understanding the journey? Heath Fradkoff: The more entrenched you can become with a team, the more you're going to learn. If you get that institutional knowledge, that history of a product going from part A to part B, to the final product that the market sees, that can be really helpful. In fact, I know columnist who focus entirely on that journey. It's not just about this product because it exists. It's What did it take to get there? And yeah, I mean, you spend enough time with the old guard the, the sales folks who are on the floor of the trade shows, you hear their war stories, they're the ones who actually know what the problems are. They're the ones every day who are out somewhere at a conference and somebody taps them on the shoulder says, do you have a solution for this? Knowing the problem is halfway to being able to tell the story about why you are the solution. ...
Views: 6 B2BNXT
Marketing Communications Tips by B2B Media Specialist Kevin Arsham from MEDIACOM
- Who is your ideal client? - An ideal client is a company that is global, and well diversified in its business. What we do is maximize their presence by connecting them with multiple decision makers and opinion leaders in a variety of industries, such as healthcare, industrial manufacturing, energy, oil and gas. We also help clients become strategic advisors to their customers and provide added efficiency to become technology driven. - What's your 'Secret Sauce'? - Well I can't give all my secrets away, but I love what I do and I focus on creating media for the client as a platform for opportunity through story telling. Or placing innovative themes around the brand versus utilizing what's out there in the standard forum. So, for example, we had a client that had a strong safety offering to their product and another who wanted to be the number one technology company among companies that built American-made parts in the midwest. As a media planner, I made sure the brand was at the forefront of owning that story across the web and in content, both print and online. So with 30 years of experience in the business, my pool of knowledge allows me to recommend, I mean verbally or almost on the fly, any website or publication that targets a specific job title or industry. - What results do you get for your clients? - I would say leading the customer to identify with the client's business as synonymous with the industry itself. So, for example, when thinking of IOT, you think of Siemens first. Or when you need an advisory in technology company for building and automating a business, you think of EY. When you think of machinery operations and lubrication, Shell is at the forefront as a true business partner. So we can accomplish that by being in the right media, targeting the right business decision maker, at the right time. So, for example, if you need to reach plant engineers, you consider how communications planning might be developed at both a broad, corporate level and also at a level where your top of mind on the plant floor and engaging the plant engineer every time they pick up a trade journal or go online. - What strategy works best for your clients? - I'd say giving the client a voice as a business solutions provider and not just as a supplier. A building affinity towards the brand is also key. This is not only about demonstrating thought leadership but it's also about differentiating yourself by supplying a technology or a service that goes beyond the product itself and is communicated and accessible through both live and interactive media tools and events. - What does NOT work well? - Advertising that is reactive or scattered. Ad hoc or random ads that are placed without the support of an ongoing presence during the year. Also, unaudited media does not serve clients well. That type of media diminishes what is fundamental about trade media, the ability to quantify and verify who is being reached and their exact line of work. - How did you get your 1st client? - By selling TV spots. I walked into a company with a storyboard and tried to illustrate what their commercial would look like and then sell them on the idea. The goal was to hinge use of the ad with a package for buying spots on the local news channel. And you never forget your best big B2B client, which, for me, was the YKK zipper company. I had to speak about apparel and medical device media in front of a large international group of clients. - How do you win clients now? - We win clients with technology, systems planning that allows us to connect everything together from the flow of audience interaction between paid and owned media, to the way medias delivered over time. Technology that illustrates how investments in media pay back to the client. Central systems that collect and link all data in one place to make the process of buying media more efficient. These systems are very unique in what differentiates MediaCom from the competition. ...
Views: 30 B2BNXT
Public Relations Tips by Bob Geller from Fusion PR
I'm Bob Geller. I'm President of Fusion PR. We're a PR and digital communications firm, focusing on the technology sector. Primarily B2B customers and a broad range of technology areas, from finance, fin tech, ad tech, general enterprise, cyber security, block chain crypto currencies, many other types of technology, telecommunication and wireless. And, we primarily focus on the startup companies that are looking to get out there, establish themselves, launch and grow. PR spans many different channels these days. Think of all the ways we communicate. Think of how communications has changed. So we have several aspects. One is paid media, and you would think paid might be the province more of advertising, but in publications these days, increasingly we're using pay channels, meaning, if you pay to have an article run, you may have advertising, that can be considered to be PR. Earn media is getting back to the mainstay of PR: media relations, getting coverage in the media. And then there's own media, which is your own channels: your blog, your website. And shared media is what some would probably consider mostly social media: Linkedin, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. Those are are few of the examples of channels involved in PR these days. We pride ourselves in the fact that we're an agency comprised of geeks that can actually communicate, which may seem to be pretty typical, but it's not. You know, if you're in communications and focusing on highly-technology sectors, sadly, many agencies don't have that technology expertise. I'm a former engineer. The agency is built up of subject matter experts from different areas, as well as tech marketing folks. We pride ourselves in being able to walk the walk, talk the talk. I'd say, I mean that's probably the chief differentiator. But, it's also important these days to be very creative, proactive, and innovative in communications, because as you might imagine, it's a very noisy world these days, it's hard to get attention. You know, everyone is looking for that growth hack, that trick, the viral success. Unfortunately it's not so easy to plan those and order them up to make them happy, especially in the B2B arena. So, we find that, I mean it's great if you can have those things, you can have that viral success, whether it's a press release or some kind of video, find that amazing growth hack that kind of jump starts your success. More often than not though, it's a long campaign of being consistent, of using high-quality content, media outreach, combined with knowing where your customers are, and as I mentioned earlier, that's changing these days, where they find information. And then, developing content, whether it's news, whether it's case studies, whether it's articles, that appeal to the needs of your customers. That's a great question, and it's not always easy to know. I mean there's no substitute for direct contact with customers, primary information, whether it comes from the sales force or your experience in the field yourself. So it's kinda getting in the minds of the customer, and trying to understand where their field is at today and where they're going, what needs drive their buying cycle. What problems come up in implementations. And then, for example on a blog, one of the most popular types of posts is a blog that addresses their pain points of customers, pain points, in an educational way, not in a hard-selling way. And that encourages inbound to your website, and hopefully your registration, and hopefully a customer. The customer's in the driver's seat these days. They have so many choices when you think about it. They can change the channel. They can go to a different website. They're reading an article, they're distracted by their phone. So you're not competing just with your competitor's news. You're competing with baby pictures on Facebook. You're competing with the latest interruption. And you have to really be good and have content that really hits home. There's a couple I have in mind. One, is for a company that's a predictive analytics for insurance. Insurance is a field that typically has been a lagger in technology. We helped this company do a good job, as far as establishing themselves as thought leaders and innovators in that space, through primarily byline content. So there's a small number of publications in that sector, and we knew who they were, we made sure that the content was written to high standards, got placed consistently, and that combined with other tacks over time I think helped the company grow to the point where they were acquired by the giant in their space. ...
Views: 27 B2BNXT
Test your Marketing Plan | Channel Testing, Metrics, Funnel Models | Marketing Leader Dave Anderson
My name is Dave Anderson and I help technology companies to grow. Been a B2B marketer for most of my career. So I specialize in helping companies see where their opportunities are. I've worked primarily with tech throughout my career. Typically, maybe people pass the early start up stage where they're just starting to ramp up growth and they're trying to make their marketing efforts more effective. What differentiates you from competition? Yeah, one thing I think that differentiates is a real strategic approach to channel testing. So not coming in with preconceived ideas about your space or your industry and saying, "Hey, for this type of client, this is the channel that's going to win. Here's what you need to do." And sort of saying that in an interim meeting. And instead, I think what's really important is to have a good discovery process and learn what's unique about your company, the stage you're at, the resources you have to commit to growth. And then also what's unique about your space? Are there people out there creating killer content? Do competitors already have great SEO or not? And what are they not doing to grow that you can do well? How else do you help guide businesses forward? I worked with a company a while back that came to me and said, "Okay, well, what's the most important metric? What's the most important metric from all companies?" And I read a thing on this article and it says this is the metric. And so, I was able to engage and show that actually for you and for the stage of your lead funnel, ROI, for example, isn't the metric you start with. It's the metric we aspire to get to over the period of, say, six months. So in that case, we practiced our blocking and tackling, got good at lead acquisition, got good at finding and targeting more high quality leads. And then we were sort of able to pivot into those kinds of metrics the CEO had in mind from the beginning. How do you choose between quality and quantity? I have a thing that I'm about to put out, which is called The Lead Funnel Maturity Model. And it basically says that, yeah, in the early stage of a lead funnel, you're just starting something up. You're starting to spend money. You're starting to acquire leads and give them to salespeople. You're probably going to be in a quantity phase where the most important metrics are going to be quantity oriented. And then as you get good at the mechanics of how do we respond to these leads, how do we tag them, it's going to be very important to go through sort of a quality phase where regardless of what the taxonomy of leads in your organization, whether you have a thing called marketing qualified leads or sales qualified leads. Whatever it's called, the important thing is that you have some quality controls where you're saying, "Okay, are we getting more of the types that we need? Are we getting people in the right segments? Are we getting the right roles in the organization as leads?" And then you've reached sort of a quality phase. So yeah, it's really important to get good at both, but not necessarily at the same time. Your business needs to focus, your marketing effort needs to focus, and then also understand where it needs to mature to the next level and take on new metrics. What is your #1 tactic for driving growth? Number one tactic would be channel testing. So I could come in with hypotheses and say, "Here's how I think you're going to grow." But I think as part of that open minded perspective, we're going to want to test things against each other. And sometimes the great idea that the marketing consultant brings in might not be the winner. So one has to be open minded enough to say, "We're going to test these different things and find what works," and then really leverage those. So channel testing is key. That includes having more than one channel. Probably having several. Having geeky things like statistical significance. Make sure you have enough of certain types of results so you can draw conclusions and then focus your efforts. How do you test different channels? Yeah, I think it's important in the original test design to be looking and saying, "How many people do we need in this sale or in this segment in order for it to be significant? And how long is that going to take? Do we need to invest disproportionally in this one segment and how long is it going to take?" So it is important to, yeah, monitor what you're getting and maybe steering the investment so that your test can catch up in a certain segment. It's part of the plan that's presented. And a client can sign off on the plan, change the plan, but you have a phase up front where you're saying, "Here's what we're going to do. Here's why we're doing this approach. And it's to find the best results for you." And that includes investing a small amount of resources in some things that won't work so that later on you know the answers and you can put your resources in the right direction. ...
Views: 5 B2BNXT
Grow Your Business by Optimizing Your Sales Process || Ivy Impact Solutions
My name's Nick Lall. I'm the founder of Ivy Impact Solutions and basically what I do is I help professional service businesses and creative agencies scale up by outsourcing their sales process for them. So I'd say there are probably a few different ingredients that go in to the secret sauce. The first would be my team in Bangladesh. Without them I definitely would not be able to get the results that I do. A lot of people these days build lists using scrapers from LinkedIn or just by lists from databases but I found that having actual human beings is much better 'cause they're much more flexible, they can actually ... Let's say one of my client's is a travel company and they want to work with up and coming hotels, my team can actually read articles on hotels that are up and coming and then find the decision makers at those hotels and then find their contact information. Which is something that a a tool can't do at this point. The second ingredient that I think makes things go really well is that we're very data driven. So from the very first day we start working with a client we're testing the time of day the email gets sent out, the subject line, the call to action and also the type of person that we're emailing. So by doing this every day for ... after a month or so we have pretty good data on first of all who's most likely to respond and what they're most likely to respond to. And then once we have that we can scale up the volume and start emailing the right people with the right message at a much higher volume. We always use psychology in our emails and so there's a professor, his ... a psychology professor, his name is Robert Cialdini. He wrote a book called Psychological Principles of Influence and so there were six principles that pretty much every human being responds to and we always used to use ... We always try to use at least two of them in our emails. One of those principles is social proof. People tend to respond more to a person or an offer that has been validated by someone else they respect and so each email we try to have some element of social proof. So whether that's saying that some ... one of their competitors or someone they know has worked with us or a big name company that they've heard of works with us that's always ... that has to be included in the email, that's one of the most important elements. Another principle which he refers to as liking is just sort of building familiarity with people or having something in common with someone. So the way we do that is we try to find businesses that have something in common with our clients and reference that as soon as possible. So an example could be one of my clients, he went to Northwestern and he studied film there and he wanted to find other film businesses he could partner with. So what we did is we ... the first list we built we searched for other people who also graduated from Northwestern's film program and fit the ideal client that he was looking for. And then in the subject line we would write something about how this is coming from a fellow Northwestern alum. A lot of people when they're starting out with email outreaches they Google this and they find all these articles on email marketing and how you should do email marketing. And what they don't realize is that email marketing is not the same as email sales and so email marketing is what's used when you already have a list. Someone ... usually more for eCommerce or something like that and someone's given you their email address and then you want to keep them engaged by having catchy emails. Emails with questions in them, have a moment or something very clever and that actually doesn't really work for cold outreach, especially when you're doing business to business cold outreach. And so what we find that works best is it should look very professional, very boring actually, something that you would get from a colleague or client and you want to open it just in case you don't miss something important. And so it should be very simple, it should be something like invitation for first name, last name at company name. Or partnership inquiry or something that is very ... pretty vague, pretty simple, not catchy at all and just something you want to open just to make sure it's not something important. ...
Views: 54 B2BNXT
Outbound Marketing: Grow your business with Cold Email Outreach by Sahdev Thakur
Sahdev Thakur, Business Growth Consultant I work with software development and support firms, and basically helping them build lead generation engine. What that means is automating cold outreach. These companies are companies who offer a customized software development solution to larger organizations and enterprises. So, most of these companies that I work with, they specialize into Microsoft, or let's say, Oracle and so on, and they go into these enterprise and they do various customization work for these companies. So, the company that I work with now, so they specialize into travel and travel solutions. They go into big travel companies and help them customize solutions for them. If we see what's happening, we all agree on importance of online marketing and digital marketing, and having that strong digital presence. But, still we all need to do cold outreach. In B2B, what we have seen is if we don't have large pool of people to contact with, so even the customers that I work with my clients, they have target of 500 to 2,000 maybe target clients or customers. So, how do you go about it? And that is not that people gonna just search on Google and just come in, and start conversation with you. Yes, that is important, but again, what happens is you need to have a cold outreach process in place. And customers that I work with, I help them increase that efficiency by at least 50% of their cold lead generation practice or engine. I think number one thing that works is emails. So, foot down, you need to have a proper cold outreach strategy for emails. And there are tools which allows you to do that. So, it's not just putting hundred contacts together and just blasting all that together. There is a madness to that matter and there is a system that you do that. You strike and you analyze. If you see the sales job is now combination of marketing and sales. You need to be more analytical, you need to think of what's happening to those emails, where they are going, who's opening, who's not opening, and start refining and fine-tuning that whole approach. Okay, so what I help companies do is build this lead generation engine and automating when I say that, so it's combination of tools, it's not just one tool. One of the tools that I really like is Reply.io, and what that does is that it allows you to configure various emails at various stages, but what I've seen is that you really need to pay attention to the subject line, and the content of course. But, subject line is the first thing that people are gonna either open or not open your email. And if you don't get that right, your open rate is not gonna be much. But once they open, of course the content doesn't need to be full page, two page. It has to be just very small, couple of lines and talking straight to the point. Subject lines that has worked best for me is when I try, is the same just saying quick hello, hyphen, saying what that solution is about. So, if it is about, let's say, video production or something, so it would be 'hello, hyphen, B2B video production service' or 'introduction', or 'intro, hyphen, B2B video'. Just combination of that what exactly service is that needs to resonate through that. And yes, you can try to confuse people by saying hello or just something like that, and you will see much more open rate, but the response won't be much there, and people will hitting spam and all that, in which you don't really want to do. Now, going into the email, what you want is yes, you want to introduce yourselves and your 'Hi, I'm this' and this is what I do, and just quickly one line, short line that what is that you do and how it has helped your customers. So, because the people that you're contacting, you have already researched those contacts and you're contacting these people and if you can give some reference point of similar customers who you have worked with, that helps. So, for example, that if it is a retail company that you have helped in past, you can say that recent client that we helped, this is what has happened to them or this much progress they have made. That really helps, but keeping it very short as big as the text should not move away from the mobile screen, because people are not always gonna be in front of laptop. They're gonna be mostly on their phones, they're gonna quickly check and they either delete it or keep it. What I have seen with my customers or clients, what they do is, they invest heavily into databases and they invest into tools, scraping tools. And they do a mass outreach through that. But my strategy is very simple. The idea is to invest your time everyday, and find those ten to twenty targeted contacts and put it into the system that I helped design, we'll talk about that. And that will give you consistent result. ...
Views: 108 B2BNXT
B2B Growth Hacking Ideas from "B2B Growth NYC" meetup
This is the video recording of the full event from the inaugural "B2B Growth NYC" meetup. Some great insights from: Forrest Leighton (VP at MakerBot), Eric Fischgrund (founder of FischTank PR), Scott Swanson (founder of Totib Growth), and Patrick Charron (Business Development at Board Studios). https://boardstudios.com
Views: 11 B2BNXT
Marketing communications planning and executive thought leadership tips | Interview – Jeremy Woolf
I'm Jeremy Woolf. I run a consulting firm. My background is in public relations and communications. I've spent the past 26 years in public relations, looking more broadly at communications techniques beyond media relations in social, digital, influencer relations, and so on. I've done that through working for PR agencies, mainly with technology firms like IBM, Sysco, Xerox, Microsoft. More recently, as I've said, I've started my own firm, and I've got a couple of clients I'm supporting today. I have a simple approach to communications planning and thinking. It really comes down to three questions: What do you want to say? Who do you want to say it to? What do you want them to do with that information? I apply that, at its most basic level, to almost any communications challenge I have, because often people say ... Years ago, I had someone say, "I need a Facebook page." You would say, "Well, why?" They would say, "Well, because my competitor has one." That wasn't a good reason. That wasn't a valid reason to go down that path. They'd actually forgotten to ask themselves those questions. From my point of view, I start with that basic level of consultancy, then look at things like research-based planning. You try to establish what's different in the market about the brand, the product, or the service. Develop a strategy based on whatever insight you derive from research, and then look at the tactics that will support that strategy, and then the measures that show those tactics are actually working. That's the core process that I apply to communications. I'll give you one example. I had a financial services company that I worked with for several years, and they had a challenge. Their challenge was they have many partners throughout the United States and around the world that use traditional marketing techniques, so it was media relations, it was ad buys, and so on. But they were struggling in social, because they knew social, in particular LinkedIn and Twitter, were important channels for their audiences, but their time-poor partners were busy doing accounting services and audit services and so on. They didn't have time. They came to me and my agency, and said, "Well, okay. What are we going to do to improve this?" We developed, using those three steps, a response. Built a strategy, partnered with a software vendor who built us a communications platform, and then we built very good content, because we're really trying to solve two problems. One is the executives don't have the time, and they don't know what to say. So we're building a content platform, we created lots of social content for them, and then trained them how to use the apps, so they could actually push it out to audiences. It was a great way to get them engaged. By the end of the program, we had around 6,000 people using the app on a regular basis. About a quarter of them said that they had had feedback directly from clients, from prospects, and also had business leads directly attributed to the program. It was a great way, using that three-step approach, to figure out the problem, look at the appropriate strategic solution, and then develop the appropriate response, and then, obviously, manage that process. I would say at the very beginning. Again, I mean, there are new companies starting all the time. I think, if you define PR ... Let's go back one step. If you define PR as simply "media relations," then you're missing what public relations is actually about. I mean, PR as a discipline is a strategic communications discipline. It's designed to build strong relationships between organizations and the publics that they serve. If you start from that mindset, if you're a small company ... Let's say you're a startup with a really good idea, working out of a WeWork, and you want funding. Okay, you've got a public that you want to reach. That public might be venture capitalists. You need to talk to a PR agency about how to construct a message that's appropriate. What are the appropriate techniques to reach that audience? Then, how can we measure our ability to do that? Don't just jump in and say, "I need a media relations program." Because quite frankly, you probably don't need a media relations program at that stage. As the company grows, you start to broaden your audiences you want to reach, and then broaden your communications techniques accordingly. It's funny, because it's hard to generalize across my discipline, which is now, again, it's paid, owned, earned, and social, so it's covering a whole bunch of different techniques. For B2B, typically, it's a longer sale. It's an 18-month sale ... This is technology, which is the background I have. ...
Views: 3 B2BNXT
The power of Video Explainers & Video Content Marketing | BoardStudios.com
Patrick Charron: Why don't you tell us more about Board Studios, and what we're up to? KP: Sure, so Board Studios was founded about seven years ago, and we're a boutique company based out of New York, where we specialize in video explainers and video content marketing. We've been doing that for seven years. We've done almost 2,000 explainer videos so far. We write all the scritps ourselves. We're a one stop shop. White glove service. We try to take care of clients, and we're a super reliable, always on budget. We always come up with the best solutions for them, the best strategies for them to use video and grow their business. Patrick Charron: What do you think is the special sauce for board studios? How do you think it's different in terms of offering video content marketing solutions than some of the competition? KP: There are two things that really differentiate us and that's why companies are coming to us back for more and more work. One is we're business first, so primarily video studios are started by animators and videographers who aren't necessarily too much into the business aspect of things. We are business first, so we bring a lot of entrepreneurship, marketing and business backgrounds at the top level of the company, so when somebody comes and works with us we really get their business, and that makes a huge difference. Because imagine many people have told us, they may go to Upwork, Fiverr, they may work with other agencies, and when they work with somebody who doesn't understand their business, it takes a lot of their time to explain it and then they're much more involved in script writing. At the end you end up with something that's not, they're not super excited about. It's not exactly what they wanted, and they don't know if it's going to work. That also goes on the creative side. If they don't get what you do, they're not going to be able to get into it, and really explain it effectively. So we spend a lot of time to dig deep into the business. All the details that you think that should be there, we try to make them get in there in the right way. There are ways we study the psychology of persuasion. We study a lot of the science behind explaining, and we try to bring that into the videos, which I'm pretty sure none of the other explainer companies do that, but it's also something that you don't see. It's not something that we can advertise and explain all these things. It's not something that you see black and white. It's not like a price. Somebody may say we have a lower price, and it's very difficult to compete with that, however, one thing that many companies don't understand that they figure out afterwards, is that because of our business background we try to come up with processes to make everything much more cost effective. That's a huge difference. So you may say, "Okay, you bring all this value. You must be more expensive." Actually we're much cheaper than many of the freelancers because we have figured out very streamline processes. Just to give you an example of that, over the past seven years we've worked with more than 50 animators. Now when you work with an animator to do a motion graphics animation, for example, it may take them, for the same video, it may take one animator one day, it may take another animator seven days. So the animator who is cheaper on a per hour basis it may take seven days. As a total, he may have to charge you five, $6,000, whereas animator I'm working with, he's happy with $1,000 because it's a day rate. So immediately our costs are much lower and we transfer that to our clients. So the fact that we're much more business driven means that we are not captive to a very specific creative approach. We try to find the best approach, and the best creative to execute that. Now another big difference is a studio. We have a full time video production studio. Nobody else I know does that, and the reason they don't do that is because it's very expensive. You need to drive capacity utilization up. You need to bring a lot of people to make sense, because we have a lot of fixed costs, but we take that gamble because we think video is the future, and video content marketing is the future for many companies growth. If you try Paydad's, SEO blogging, all that stuff it works to a certain extent, but everybody's doing the same thing. So the more competition, the more companies are coming there, the more expensive it becomes, a little less effective. The ROI is going down. Video is something that everyone has fallen behind the curve. There are very few companies that are doing it very well, and these are the experts who are in YouTube and LinkedIn, and you see them all the time, and they grow their awareness, the engagement, and they start selling. They say that video is the number one tool that brings business for them right now. It's not even VSEO companies. They say we do video because that works best. ...
Views: 9 B2BNXT
A Customer Acquisition Model that works really well - The 3 basic components
How entrepreneur Alex Winter built a Customer Acquisition Model for his company, Placemeter. Alex Winter is a Technology entrepreneur and Image Recognition expert. He has founded and co-founded several companies, among them Placemeter, the urban intelligence platform that helps quantify movement in our cities, at scale. It was acquired by Netgear in December 2016 after raising three rounds of venture capital. Currently Alex is leading the Computer Vision and Machine Learning team for Arlo at Netgear. He also dedicates a portion of his time to mentoring startups at Techstars NYC and IoT, Zeroth.ai, and with several venture capital funds. Interview: In this video Alex shares with us how he built a Customer Acquisition Model for his company, Placemeter. Alex Winter: "My second company Placemeter was selling to small businesses mostly. We built a customer acquisition machine basically that worked really well. We are really excited about it. There are really three components." The 3 basic components of Alex’s Customer Acquisition Model. 1. Online Ads Alex Winter: "The first one was online ads, mostly no google ads. We had somebody full time optimizing the keywords, optimizing the frequency, the budget. By doing that we could divide the acquisition cost by just optimizing. Having somebody on that all the time. That was the first and it worked together with the second component: content." 2. Content Alex Winter: "Content is very important. We had five different channels: blog posts, we had of course twitter, Facebook account. And we had different kinds of contents we were posting. Some of them were fun, with tidbits of data that are interesting for anybody. Some of them more focused on specific applications around transportation or urban planning and things like that. Those are also a big part of our acquisition machine in the intent that ads and content go together, they nurture each other. We made sure we put in things every week or we also have a very tech channel where we will post interesting things on computer vision. That was probably the most successful one." 3. Events Alex Winter: "Then we had events. We went to events a lot. Very targeted, specific events. After each event of course we created content and then we leveraged that at our presence online with more targeted or slightly different ads. So, the three really work together and it's a living animal basically, you have to feed it and change it all the time right, understand, you know adapt it to what's happening in the world."
Views: 5 B2BNXT
SEO Marketing Tips by Tom Casano - Grow your business with results driven SEO
Konstantinos: Tom, thanks for joining us. Can you tell us a little more about what you guys do? Tom: Yeah, we help clients and websites to get more organic traffic from Google to their website to acquire more customers, get more leads. And this is SEO. This is search engine optimization to help them get more traffic and more customers for the business. Konstantinos: Okay. And there are a lot of SEO companies out there. What makes you special? Why should they work with you? Tom: Yeah. Our business and our agency is really focused on the most important ranking factors. There are three that'll drive most of the results. Those are link building, content and optimization, technical SEO. And so our business is actually structured with those departments so we can really focus on driving results and driving impact for clients who are actually getting more traffic and growing the revenue. Konstantinos: Okay. And can you tell me, can you give me a sense of what kind of results you're getting with some of your clients? Tom: Yeah. Some of our clients organic traffic might grow anywhere between 20% to 500%. It really depends on where the business is currently, where they're coming from, what the opportunities are. Some businesses that are starting at the bottom, page 10. Some businesses are already far along in terms of having a back link to their site. Konstantinos: Okay. So let's say for our business Board Studios, I'm starting on page 10. What kind of results can I expect and how long would that take? Tom: SEO really takes time. It's not the kind of thing where within a matter of weeks or a month or two years, you're seeing impressive results. But long term, there's a lot of ROI, especially when you're getting people coming to the site every month for a long period of time on end. So we really do want to look at some of the most important ranking factors in Google's algorithm, content, keyword research, link building and then once you get there, if you're on page one or if you're in the top few positions, you're getting a lot more clicks, a lot more traffic of the people who potentially could be your customers. Konstantinos: Okay. And what do you see works best for your clients? Tom: Yeah, the things that work best are creating amazing content that's really in depth, long form guides doing keyword research and really going very far in terms of trying to understand what are people searching on Google that we need to create content for. And then again, getting authoritative and trustworthy back links to the site because those are indicators of Google that you're a trustworthy website and company and Google should be ranking you higher in the search results. Konstantinos: So it's doing your research than creating the content and then getting the back links. Do you guys do all three? Tom: Yep. We do basically everything that needs to be done for SEO, for search engine optimization to get your ranking higher. We do all those things. Konstantinos: Okay. And you do it primarily for B2B, B2C clients or industries? Tom: Yeah. So we're specializing a little more in SAS companies, ecommerce, B2B and service based businesses. Certainly with B2B companies, they have a higher ticket price point for their services and their products. So there's a lot more roi there. If you're selling little $3 widgets to consumers there's not as much ROI for the investment you're going to make into your SEO. Konstantinos: And what recommendation would you have for SAS companies? How do they, where do they get started? Is it put more guides out there, create more blog content, how long should it be? What would be the first thing you should do? Tom: Yeah, the first thing you really want to do is do your keyword research and do it really hard. And so you want to look at the keywords that your competitors are ranking for. You want to take all the data from if you're doing any paid search campaigns through Google Ads or anything like that. You want to see what keywords you're already ranking for. Maybe you're already on page two for some important keywords. You want to collect all of that data together. You want to then organize it so that you can see what are the opportunities that you want to focus on. What are the kinds of keywords that your potential customers might be looking for you for and then what are the less competitive keywords that you could be ranking for? Once you really have a handle on that and you have a plan around that, then you can start saying okay, we need to create a 1000 word blog post on this keyword, on this topic so that people can find us and we could rank for this keyword. ...
Views: 17 B2BNXT
Successful Pitch Decks | Interview - Leslie Morales President & CFO of Launch Module Media
My name is Leslie Morales. I'm the president and CFO of Launch Module Media. I'm also a certified High Performance Life Coach through the High Performance Institute. Let me tell you a little bit about Launch Module Media and what we do. Launch Module Media is a premiere media marketing and presentations agency. We're a global company based in New York with over 11 years of independent consulting and agency services experience. Our main focus is in creating pitchbooks and presentations that are custom-branded by a team of seasoned writers, developers, and designers to be visually engaging, to accelerate deal flow, and to set your company and your investment opportunity apart from the competition. Our clients win funding. Launch Module primarily serves financial intuitions, startups, and other companies that are looking to work with industry experts in the development, design, and writing of presentations and marketing collateral including rebranding and videos. We provide guidance at the highest level across many different industries. Launch Module has an insider’s view of what's needed in a winning pitch deck. We use leading edge strategies and modern streamline presentations that stand out from the competition, and our marketing deliverables drive improved audience engagement, investor traction, and sales growth. The Launch Module team has logged over 30,000 hours of designing, branding, and creating story-driven visuals to top Wall Street, financial, consumer package goods, advertising, media, pharmaceutical, and IT companies. The secret's in the sauce. Launch Module clients have raised and sold over $2 billion since 2009. Launch Module Media is a full-service marketing agency. We specialize in creating high-end presentations and finding key differentiators for rebranding for our clients. Our clients raise capital, increase sales, and we improve their company's messaging. We've worked with over 600 satisfied clients. We find that the "less is more approach" is what works best, not just for our clients, but also for the investor audience. This means careful content creation, which includes editing of marketing assets to create the most refined, compelling, and streamlined messaging. Clients often don't understand the power of having an experienced and dynamic agency like Launch Module Media. We, one, develop. We, two, design, and three, we craft their presentations, their marketing collateral, and their videos. One of the other main issues is that many individuals and companies believe that they can do their own PowerPoint presentations, and they can, but they won't be able to produce anything close to the level of quality that our team can with well over 30,000 hours of design and production experience and training in financial centers like that of Goldman Sachs. Finally, the financial investment for the top-of-the-line marketing support materials pays for itself. There's no comparison to what the lay person does and what we do as marketing and design professionals. The biggest opportunity for our clients is in expanding and diversifying sources of venture capital and also investment opportunities and then for them to present their value propositions at the highest level to potential investors and buyers. Now, on the flip side, the biggest opportunity for Launch Module is created by emerging markets, markets like cannabis, cryptocurrency, driverless cars, AI. We're positioning ourselves at the leading edge of new industries in that way. We can assist our clients with the resources to either raise capital, build sales, or sell products. We're experts in our ability to take complex information and data and then convert that into a story-driven visual, copy that is both effective and persuasive, that's directing, to the point, both visually and narratively. What we found is that companies lack the ability to create a statement of purpose and then to develop and design presentations that clearly demonstrate these things, projected growth and profits, the investment opportunity they offer, enrollment and engagement of the prospective investor or buyer to want to learn more and want to jump on board. The other thing is that we often find the company, when left to their own devices, is either swimming in too much information that overwhelms the potential investor and buy or they don't have the pertinent information that is most important to investors and buyers so that they can make an educated decision either to move forward or to pass on the opportunity. ... Contact Info: Launch Module Media [email protected] High Performance Coaching [email protected] Let's schedul [email protected]
Views: 2 B2BNXT
Public Relations and Communications Tips by Tiffany Guarnaccia from Kite Hill PR
I'm Tiffany Guarnaccia. I'm the founder of Kite Hill PR and Communications week. So I got my start about 15 years ago really when the ad tech industry was just coming onto the scene in New York and changing in a big way doing PR and marketing for ad tech companies. And from there I moved over to a few PR agencies here in New York City and always had a taste for tech PR and how it was really changing and evolving. I spent some time in the music industry really during some pivotal years working at eMusic and LimeWire just as Spotify was coming onto the scene. And unfortunately, for LimeWire, I did take them through a lot of crisis communications against the major record labels, which, as you know, during crisis communications you need to be on your A game and the outcome can be interesting and oftentimes disruptive. From there, I spent some time in the media industry working at the Huffington Post. So I had the opportunity to work directly underneath Ariana Huffington. She's still very much a role model to me and gave me the inspiration to then found my own company and go deeper into the core categories that I had always been in my career from ad tech, to media, and marketing and really look at how an agency like Kite Hill could really represent the future of PR. Kite Hill PR is a specialist agency. So we work deeply within the advertising media and marketing industries. One core part of the advertising industry is, of course, ad tech and mark tech. A lot of those companies are the ones that are powering all the ads you might see on the internet hoping to create a more personalized experience. It's a really interesting category because there's a lot of impact with data, with GDPR, and new regulations as to how companies can reach consumers. It's been a great opportunity to tell those stories on behalf of the technology companies because we're at a time where consumers are demanding a more personalized experience. They want a connection and the companies behind those ads really need to be able to tell the right story, at the right place, at the right time. But, of course, it's not only about advertising but the clients we work with at Kite Hill and a part of our specialization do go into the publishing industry. So that could be Buzzfeed has been one of our clients, trusted media brands, Future, advertising media, and of course, entertainment is another category with a background in the music industry with working with major record labels such as BMG. You'll notice a common thread that all of those industries are very much in a time of disruption. The future, I'd say, of advertising and media have always been in question as they continue to evolve. And that's what's really exciting about working at Kite Hill and in a specialist agency is that we get to tell the story of a company today but really help them look towards the future to help their executives be thought leaders, to shape a story that tells how the company will continue to evolve. It's those core areas that we work with day to day, but we also work with a lot of emerging tech companies and tech startups in categories that impact many other industries like cyber security and artificial intelligence. It's not only the specialization that makes Kite Hill different, but we also know that a lot of B2B companies and B2B technology companies are looking for something that's beyond traditional earned media. That's a part of what we do day to day. But that's only one small part of telling a company's story. If you're going to be investing in PR and if you're a B2B technology company that's looking to really make an impact and connect with your core audiences, you have to look towards other channels and think about a fully integrated communications approach. The way that I've translated that into growing our business model has been to create three separate divisions. Kite Hill PR is at our core. That's traditional earned media. Working with the press to very much get a company's brand in the headlines. But we also have the Kite Hill Content Studio where we're looking at exciting mediums to tell a story. So visual, video, audio, podcast. A lot of these are crucial. And that's all done through the Kite Hill Content Studio along with longer form content like data and white papers. Press love numbers, but so do your potential clients. If you're a leading B2B company, you might want to think about how you can package up research and insights to really deliver back the right quality content to your audience. ...
Views: 13 B2BNXT
M&A Management and Virtual Data Room | Interview - Kison Patel CEO & Founder of DealRoom.net
I'm Kison Patel, I'm CEO and founder of DealRoom (dealroom.net). We are a project management software for managing mergers and acquisitions. Our goal is to make M&A more collaborative and people focused. My previous career, I was an M&A advisor, I ran a boutique M&A practice in Chicago. During that experience, I dealt firsthand with a lot of the inefficiencies and challenges of M&A, knew there could be better technology solutions, just having a deep interest in technology. From there I'd create some in-house solutions for our company. But it wasn't till later, during the recession, when I got more involved with other tech ventures and got exposed to the way engineers were solving some of their information management problems that even surfaced additional ideas, that I wanted to bring to our industry. So in 2012, we set out and created DealRoom, essentially as project management software. Seeing that there's a trend happening with a variety of industries that are adopting project management tools and thought that we should get ahead of the curve and start creating solutions because even today, the billion-dollar deals are still managed on Excel and there's a lot of problems with that. We compete with a lot of legacy providers, there are the ones that originally took physical data rooms, where you had a room full of banker boxes and maybe there's a security guard or it's in a law office. And you had to physically go on site, something about the good old days and they transformed that into more of a digital platform in terms of having the storage online. So even transforming that, they would actually go to your office, scan your documents for you, put them on servers and the servers were expensive back then. So 20 years later, now everything is Cloud based, there's quite a few vendors, it's become a lot more cost effective. We do compete with a lot of the legacy, virtual data room providers and then there's a handful of project management tools for M&A. I would say they're really focused or very much focused on integration and specifically as an internal tool. I think for us, we found our crossroads as a balance between both of them, where we do the data management, plus we're taking a multi-party approach in the project management. So really managing a transaction through the life cycle, but not just as one party, with all the participants involved, the buyers, the sellers, the attorneys, the consultants. And really giving a venue for everybody to collaborate and work together on and taking away from the old model, whether using Excel sheets to manage all the tasks, the requests that happen in the transaction. Email is the main form of communication and then having that virtual data room as a storage for the documents, which essentially is like a Dropbox with some additional compliance and security functionality to it. But these tools are all disconnected which created a lot more complexity in terms of managing your process. I think the deeper, underlying differentiator for us, is our understanding the problem. For us, we spend a lot of time with our customers and get very deep rooted in terms of working with them to develop solutions. And at times it's not purely the technology, a lot of times if you look holistically at the way companies approach M&A, their bigger and sometimes not obvious challenge is just their project management approach and methodology. So over the past few years, we've been emphasizing Agile in terms of seeing the benefits and impact it's made in the software industry, transforming their approach from Waterfall into Agile and being able to respond to changes that happen during your projects, which was always a big challenge with software development because once you start creating your requirement plan, start developing it, have your engineers working on it, change course, it's going to cost you a lot. It's going to cost you time and there's going to be resistance because nobody wants to be associated with those. And if you don't comply, then you're going to end up building a garbage product. So, with Agile, they're able to; we've just seen it, it's making better quality products, it's making it a lot more cost effective and just seeing a lot better technology coming out as a result of it. Large corporations are even transitioning to more of an Agile approach, we see the same challenges with M&A. When you're doing an M&A deal, you may model out a company and see that it makes sense financially, on paper. But when you pursue the deal and start doing diligence, you're constantly acquiring new information. And that process, you're going to come across things, you're going to come across some findings where you're going to have to prioritize and respond to it. So, there's always a fluctuation of priorities throughout an M&A process and it intensifies as you go to the integration phase, where it becomes even more critical that you have a plan in place. ...
Views: 11 B2BNXT
B2B Growth Hacking Ideas from "B2B Growth NYC" meetup | TRAILER
Soundbites from the 4 panelists at the inaugural "B2B Growth NYC" meetup. Great insights from Forrest Leighton (VP at MakerBot), Eric Fischgrund (founder of FischTank PR), Scott Swanson (founder of Totib Growth), and Patrick Charron (Business Development at Board Studios) https://boardstudios.com
Views: 6 B2BNXT
Marketing Tips for Small to Medium Businesses | Sarah Falcon, Marketing Consultant
Patrick: Why don't we start off by just asking if you can just introduce yourself, who you are, and what you've been up to? Sarah: Sure. I'm Sarah Falcon. I'm a marketing consultant based in Brooklyn. Patrick: Okay, and who do you work with primarily? Sarah: I work with a bunch of different companies. I have the luck of working with like small indie beauty brands, big industrial companies, and I've done some work with digital agencies. It's kind of all a range, all sort of focused on like brand-centric, customer-focused marketing. Patrick: Okay. How would you say you differentiate yourself a little bit from the competition? Sarah: It's a great time to be a marketer, like as you know, like the technology's gotten so much easier. Like doing a video now is so much better than it used to be. It's so much easier and so much less expensive, so there's a lot of marketing tools available. Everyone has an iPhone and can take a photo, or a smartphone and can take a photo, so a lot of tools have made marketing a lot easier. I kind of position myself as a creative pragmatist. I've done this for a while, and it's been about 15 years. I started like in 2004 where it was really sort of bare bones, and so I understand a lot of the technologies and I understand the strategies and how to make something interesting, specific to companies and pragmatic, doable, like this is something we can do tomorrow, this is something we can do in six months and next year, and that's really the position that I play in. Patrick: Yeah. Do you think that's ... it's a good thing and a bad thing, which is technology, in the sense that, yes, it's easier for people to do things, but because it's easier, they tend to want to do it themselves, and it doesn't necessarily mean they're going to do a good job of it, right? Someone can go online and build their own website, someone can use their phone and create their own video, but is that going to be good enough for them to get the results that they're looking for? Sarah: Yeah. Yeah, technology, I always think of it as like you need some space for a balance. There needs to be a strategic plan, and you need to sort of think ... like a website's a big deal. You need to select the platform, you need to have a strategy, you need to have it integrated with all the platforms that you're using, but there should be room to like play when the latest new chatbot comes out, so that you can see what happens, because we don't know yet. You know, I think it's easy to get very distracted because there's new technology every day, and so Pinterest comes out and everyone says like, "Pinterest is great for driving traffic to your website," but it might not be the traffic you need or the traffic you want. You can expend a lot of energy kind of playing in all spaces and trying all technologies, but without really focusing on what your own ecosystem is that creates the customer experience you want for your customers, then it's really easy to get distracted. Patrick: Yeah. I think people want to be everywhere, but sometimes being everywhere means you're not really going anywhere, right? Sarah: Right. Patrick: You're just going to be too focused on trying to be on every channel, when maybe there's only one channel that really is really relevant to what you do, where you're going to get the most out of that one channel, right? Sarah: Yeah. You know, there's value in depth and expertise, and also just resource management. It just takes ... you know, as we've all experienced, right, it takes a lot of energy to be on social media. It takes like a lot of mental and emotional energy, and it takes a lot of resourcing to do it really well. Figuring out like where you're going to play and have expertise I think actually can be really beneficial, especially for like smaller and medium-sized businesses. For big ones who have a lot of resources that can play in all these things, then it's a little bit different. If you're Gary Vaynerchuk and you want to push out to every channel at all times, and you have the people to do it, then you do that. ...
Views: 2 B2BNXT
Business Growth: Making Professional Services Agencies Scalable | bricolage.work
Erik Zambrano and Greg Battle from Bricolage. ERIK ZAMBRANO: We partner with professional service firms to help them on revenue and customer discovery. On the revenue side, a lot of these companies are used to word-of-mouth marketing, which translates into lumpy revenue. And on the customer side, a lot of their services have become commoditized over time, and there is no differentiation. So we're ultimately partnering with these companies to help on revenue and customer discovery, and we do have deep expertise and some repeat cycles working with tech innovation firms such as mobile app agencies, design thinking firms, and business model innovation firms as well. GREG BATTLE: The idea of revenue and customer discovery is actually two phrases that come from Steve Blank's book Four Steps to the Epiphany, when he's talking about how a lot of startups have to do these two things at the same time. For a lot of these smaller to mid-sized agencies, they're also startups. Even if they've been around for a long, long time, if they don't actually have a repeatable process of generating revenue, then you're still a startup. You're still trying to make that discovery. So if you're continually relying on referrals for your revenue, you're not actually building a true business. You're relying totally on word-of-mouth, which really may or may not scale. Most of the time it doesn't. For the last nine years we've been on a bull run, which is great for the economy. But the thing is that, when this bear cycle comes in and word-of-mouth dries up, a lot of these things, a lot of these businesses are actually gonna fall to the wayside because they don't have the ability, the sustainability, and they haven't built the right architecture to generate this type of revenue, to generate these type of leads. ERIK ZAMBRANO: And when that happens, these customers that they're hoping to get are gonna be a lot more ... They're gonna have a lot more scrutiny for these agencies, they're gonna be evaluating them on what their differentiation actually is. So if they're got three agencies that they're considering on the table, and there's really no differentiation among the three, it's a hard decision for them to make. Versus if one really shines and has a unique value proposition, and that differentiation really speaks to the client's problems, that agency is gonna be in a better position to win the business, but then also charge more premium rates and really start to develop expertise and history on solving that particular problem. So that's what we really mean by revenue and customer discovery. GREG BATTLE: The framework is a pyramid. A pyramid like this. It's split up in three sections. That top section of the pyramid speaks to the vision. This is the vision of a client, the vision of the agency. What is the vision? The vision is those immutable principles that characterize you and differentiate your company from any other company. And that could be along a number of factors. Your people, prior work, speaking engagements, thought leadership, whatever it could be. That usually stems from the founder of the agency. And then beneath that, the middle tier is going to be the goals. What are the ways that I can quantifiably express that vision? If you say, “I wanna be the number one IOT development firm that focuses on beacon technology as it relates to grocery stores.” Something along those lines. That's a very, very definitive thing. But I wanna be the number one. What ways can I define goals, quantitative goals, that express that vision? There can be a number of things. And then the bottom tier, the widest tier, of your pyramid is really the tactics. What are the ways, what are the experiments that we're going to go through together, collectively, to achieve those quantitative goals that express that vision? That's where a lot of the things that Erik and I come in and help you define, but we have to start from the top. We can't start doing experimentation unless we have goals. We need to have a target that we're actually going to shoot against, and that target has to be defined by what we believe is the essence, the immutable essence, of your company.
Views: 64 B2BNXT
Restaurant Online Marketing: 9 Tips Important for Your Restaurant’s Online Presence
Restaurant Website Features and Online Presence 🔷 Takeaways from this interview: 1. High quality design 2. revenue generating features, make more money from your website than you’re spending on it 3. make clear what you offer 4. use photos that really explain what you're doing and highlight those photos 5. put information in the right places where users look again 6. mobile friendly 7. get your website certified accessible (ADA, Americans with Disability Acts) 8. use a CMS designed specifically for restaurants, so there's no excess features 9. have control over your webpages and profiles on listing sites 🔷 Amin Makhani is a data-driven marketing leader. His first marketing hire was for Yext (NYSE:YEXT) and the company grew revenues from $5MM to$120MM. Amin also led acquisition strategy and execution for SMB to Enterprise. He is a full-funnel marketer: Awareness - Click - Lead - Opportunity - Transaction - Renewal - Referral. Currently Amin Makhani is the VP of Growth at BentoBox. BentoBox helps restaurants grow their business online through a connected suite of tools. Its platform offers thousands of restaurants worldwide an integrated web presence to connect with their guests and drive revenue online. 🔷 About BentoBox, what makes the company stand out: 1. Experience (working with 4000 companies all around the world) 2. High quality design websites that are in harmony with the brand 3. Revenue generating features on websites 4. CMS that is designed specifically for restaurants 5. Social media data control: BentoBox product LocalSync, syncs all of your information and pulls it in from Facebook, and Google, and Foursquare 6. Websites are certified accessible ---------------------------------------------------------------- 🔷 Visit us here for more B2B marketing ideas: https://b2bnxt.com
Views: 3 B2BNXT