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b2b demand generation

Top Tips for Building a B2B Demand Generation Strategy

By B2B Marketing Strategy, Blender B2B Marketing Blogs

Are your B2B lead generation efforts feeling a bit…underwhelming?  Maybe your pipeline is sputtering, or the leads you do get just aren’t ready to buy. You are not alone. For innovative B2B companies or those with complex selling environments, traditional lead generation tactics often fall short. Sometimes the market doesn’t even know it needs what you’re selling. They haven’t discovered the problem, or they don’t understand the potential of your groundbreaking solution. Or, they simply don’t know about YOUR brand. That’s where b2b demand generation comes in.

Demand generation isn’t just about filling your sales funnel – it’s about priming the market, educating your audience, and positioning yourself as the go-to authority before they even start looking for solutions. Let’s explore the difference between lead generation and demand generation, reveal when demand gen is the missing piece of your puzzle, and share actionable tips to build a strategy that makes your market crave what you have to offer.

Understand the B2B Demand Generation Landscape 

Yes, you need leads. But what happens when your target audience doesn’t even realize they have a problem, much less that your innovative product or service is the solution? That’s where demand generation steps in, filling a crucial gap that traditional lead generation can’t reach.

At its core, demand generation is the art and science of creating a desire for your offerings. It’s about sparking curiosity, educating potential customers, and ultimately, building a market that’s hungry for your solutions. This strategic approach involves a multi-faceted effort, focusing on increasing awareness, fostering understanding, and ultimately stimulating desire for your product or service.

Demand generation is distinct from lead generation, which targets prospects who are already aware of their problem and actively seeking solutions. Demand generation begins upstream, cultivating interest and educating the market before they even enter the traditional sales funnel. This is especially crucial for innovative B2B companies whose products or services may be entirely new concepts to the market.

“Demand generation is generating interest in the idea of your brand… before you ever sell them on your product or service. This means focusing on building brand awareness, educating the market about their pain points, and positioning yourself as the trusted authority long before a sales conversation even begins.” – Daisy McCarty, Fractional CMO and Cohost of The Marketing Blender Show

Know Your Ideal Customer

Before you can generate demand, you need to understand who you’re generating it for. This goes far beyond basic demographics like industry or company size. To truly ignite demand, you need to step into the shoes of your ideal customers and understand their world. This means creating in-depth buyer personas that delve into their psychographics – their motivations, pain points, aspirations, and decision-making processes.

What are their biggest challenges or their hopes and dreams at work? What sources do they trust for information? Who influences their purchasing decisions? By understanding these nuances, you can craft messaging and content that speaks directly to their needs and desires, making your demand generation efforts far more effective.

Tip: Don’t rely on guesswork or broad assumptions. Conduct thorough research through interviews, surveys, and social listening to gain a deep understanding of your target audience. The more granular your understanding, the more laser-focused your demand generation campaigns can be.

For instance, if your ideal customer is a CTO struggling to keep up with technological advancements, your demand generation content could focus on the risks of falling behind the competition, the benefits of embracing new solutions, and how your product specifically addresses their pain points. By tailoring your message to their specific needs, you’ll capture their attention and establish yourself as a trusted partner in their journey towards a solution.

Map the Pre-Buyer Journey

Demand generation isn’t about bombarding your audience with sales pitches right out of the gate.  It’s a strategic process that guides potential customers through a journey of awareness and discovery, ultimately leading them to a point where they’re ready to engage with your sales team.

Think of it as a map with several key stages:

  • Problem Recognition: The prospect realizes they have a challenge or pain point.
  • Solution Exploration: They start researching potential solutions and learning about the options available.
  • Vendor Consideration: They narrow down their choices and evaluate specific vendors, including you.

Tip: Create a visual map of this pre-buyer journey, outlining the different stages and identifying the types of content and messaging that resonate at each point. This will help you create a targeted demand-generation strategy that meets your prospects where they are and guides them toward your solution.

For example, at the problem recognition stage, your content might focus on raising awareness of the issue, providing data and insights to highlight its impact, and offering educational resources to help prospects understand the root causes. As they move into solution exploration, you can shift your focus to showcasing your expertise, thought leadership, and the unique value proposition of your product or service.

What motivates B2B buyers? See our list here.

Compelling Content: The Fuel of B2B Demand Generation Marketing

Content is the lifeblood of any demand generation strategy. It’s the vehicle through which you educate your audience, spark their interest, and position your brand as the authority in your space. Your content needs to be compelling, informative, and tailored to your ideal customer’s needs at each stage of their awareness journey.

Consider these content types to fuel your demand generation engine:

  • Proprietary Research & Reports: Showcase your expertise by conducting original research and publishing insightful reports. Data-driven insights are highly valued by B2B audiences and can establish your brand as a thought leader.
  • Thought Leadership Articles & Blogs: Share your unique perspective on industry trends, challenges, and solutions. Offer valuable insights and practical advice that resonates with your target audience.
  • Engaging Social Media Posts: Spark conversations, share industry news, and interact with your audience on social platforms. Use visuals, polls, and questions to encourage engagement and build relationships. Read our blog on B2B social selling for tips.
  • Webinars & Videos: Provide in-depth educational content and demonstrate your product or service in action. Webinars offer a platform for live interaction and Q&A, further establishing your expertise.

“If you’re doing it well, your competitors’ demand generation efforts are actually just going to give you more visibility.” – Dacia Coffey, Blender CEO

By consistently creating high-quality content that addresses your audience’s needs, you not only educate and engage them but also set yourself apart from the competition.

Want to see trends in demand gen? See research and statistics here.

Leverage Multiple Channels for B2B Demand Generation

The B2B buyer’s journey isn’t linear. Your prospects might discover your brand through a thought leadership article, engage with you on LinkedIn, and then attend a webinar before finally reaching out to your sales team. That’s why a multi-channel demand generation strategy is crucial. By leveraging a variety of channels, you increase your reach, reinforce your message, and meet your audience where they’re most likely to engage.

Consider these channels for your B2B demand generation arsenal:

  • Social Media: LinkedIn, Twitter, and even industry-specific forums are prime locations for sharing thought leadership, engaging in conversations, and building relationships with potential customers.
  • Email Marketing: Targeted email campaigns can deliver valuable content directly to your prospects’ inboxes, nurturing them through the awareness journey.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Optimize your website and content for relevant keywords to ensure your brand appears in organic search results when prospects are researching solutions.
  • Paid Advertising: Use targeted ads on platforms like Google and LinkedIn to reach a wider audience and drive traffic to your website or landing pages.
  • Public Relations: Secure media coverage and speaking engagements to position your brand as a thought leader and gain credibility in your industry.
  • Industry Events and Trade Shows: Attend relevant events to network with potential customers, share your expertise, and generate leads. Go here for tips on not wasting money when you do trade shows.

Tip: Don’t try to be everywhere at once. Start by experimenting with a few channels that align with your target audience’s preferences and where they spend their time online. Track your results and adjust your strategy based on what’s working best. The goal is to create a cohesive ecosystem where each channel reinforces the others, amplifying your message and maximizing your reach. 

Strategic Partnerships and Amplify Your Reach and Credibility

Two heads (or brands) are often better than one when it comes to demand generation. By forming strategic partnerships with other businesses, influencers, or industry experts, you can tap into their existing audience, credibility, and reach, accelerating your own demand generation efforts.

Consider these types of partnerships:

  • Influencer Collaborations: Partner with thought leaders and industry experts who have a strong following in your target market. Co-create content, host webinars together, or have them endorse your product or service to their audience.
  • Complementary Brand Partnerships: Team up with businesses that offer complementary products or services to your own. This allows you to cross-promote each other’s offerings to a wider audience and leverage each other’s strengths.
  • Industry Associations and Organizations: Collaborate with industry associations or organizations to gain access to their network, participate in events, and co-create content that reaches a larger audience.

Tip: When selecting partners, focus on those who share your target audience and brand values. This will ensure a natural fit and maximize the impact of your collaboration.

By strategically aligning with other businesses and influencers, you can expand your reach, tap into new markets, and establish your brand as a trusted authority in your industry. These partnerships can significantly accelerate your demand generation efforts and drive more qualified leads into your pipeline.

Measure and Optimize Demand Generation: B2B Data-Driven Path to Success

Demand generation isn’t a “set it and forget it” strategy. It requires continuous monitoring, analysis, and refinement to ensure you’re getting the most out of your efforts. By tracking key metrics, you can identify what’s working, what’s not, and where you can make improvements to drive better results.

Key Metrics to Track:

  • Website Traffic: Are your demand generation efforts driving more visitors to your website?
  • Engagement: How long are visitors staying on your site, and what content are they interacting with?
  • Lead Generation: How many leads are you capturing through your various channels?
  • Conversion Rates: What percentage of your leads are moving through the sales funnel and becoming customers?

Tip: Leverage analytics tools like Google Analytics and CRM platforms to track and analyze your data. Set up clear goals and benchmarks to measure your progress and identify areas for improvement.

B2B Demand Generation Starts Now…and Never Stops

Don’t start what you can’t finish. Evaluate your resources, timeline, and impact. This means being realistic about your expectations and having a clear plan for measuring and optimizing your demand generation strategy over time. Demand generation is a marathon, not a sprint. It requires a strategic, data-driven approach and a commitment to continuous improvement. But the rewards – a steady stream of qualified leads, increased brand authority, and a market primed for your offerings – are well worth the effort.

Ready to ignite demand for your B2B solutions? Schedule a discovery call with Blender today and let’s transform your marketing efforts into a powerful demand generation engine.

B2B professional services marketing

In B2B, Marketing Professional Services Is Different. Here’s How to Do It Right.

By B2B Marketing Strategy, Brand Messaging, Marketing for Small Businesses

In B2B marketing, professional services is an industry that requires a specialized approach. After all, you are often selling your “smarts” (expert knowledge that drives value in the service) instead of a tangible product. The marketing and sales environment for B2B professional services is a highly relationship-based nurturing and selling environment. You are asking people to buy something that they can’t necessarily put their hands on – and often something they aren’t really sure how to evaluate. The people you sell to must be able to trust that you know more than they do about your area of expertise. They need to know you are there to serve them over the long term. 

Why Is Marketing B2B Professional Services So Hard?

Professional services is a highly competitive field, and that competition doesn’t always come from the places you expect. Too often, consultants and other professional service providers find that they aren’t even going up against other professionals. They are competing with a “DIY” attitude and a complete misunderstanding of the true value they bring. 

Or, their target audience may be relying on lower cost resources to do a job that requires a high level of expertise. For example, a business owner might think they can just hire an accountant or controller when they really need a fractional Chief Financial Officer to help them with revenue growth strategy. 

If people don’t “get” the value of what you do, they won’t spend what you are worth. In fact, they won’t even pay attention to you or get on a discovery call. To overcome distraction and confusion, your messaging MUST be on point. You are selling VALUE. And value is defined by the customer. If you are a highly skilled consultant, your value proposition has to be on point, and pointed at the problem your customer believes they have.

“Don’t assume you can start with an advanced concept. You must meet people where they are and help them take one step at a time to first understand their real problem and THEN your ability to solve it.” – Daisy McCarty, CMO at The Marketing Blender

Want a deep dive from two Fractional CMOs with experience in Professional Services Marketing?

Watch this episode of The Marketing Blender Show now.

Deliver VALUE through Your B2B Professional Services Marketing

What can you do to stand out in terms of communicating value? There’s a huge difference between conceptually talking about value versus having a repeatable process with concrete deliverables. For example, at Blender we don’t just “help you determine positioning and what to say” with your marketing. We deliver a full brand message playbook with documented personas (including a deep dive on psychographics), your brand promise, brand character and attributes, mission/vision/values, and a fully developed messaging choreography that you can pull from for writing emails, creating social content, building sales decks, and much more. 

“A tool or asset is absolutely important and can truly be a differentiator for your marketing and sales process in action. It increases the perception of your professionalism and your expertise compared to your competitors.” – Dacia Coffey, Blender CEO

The beauty part is that many of the tangible tools and deliverables you create to help your current customers along their journey can ALSO be used as marketing assets to attract new customers. Figure out how you can use those assets to deliver value BEFORE the invoice, and you have a lead magnet that can be turned into a gold mine. Want to figure out what your first tool should be? Use SEO research to figure out what problem people THINK they have and that they are trying to solve while they are still in the DIY stage and starting to realize they need help.

Another pro tip for communicating value is with the quality of your branding.

Here’s an example of a B2B professional services brand we revamped for a client recently. 

b2b marketing professional services example

“We have consistently generated more, high quality leads since working with The Marketing Blender team than we ever experienced previously.” – Burt Copeland, CEO of New Life CFO 

What If Your Professional Services Are Commoditized?

There are some fields (like MSPs and MSSPs) where the landscape is very crowded and professional services are highly commoditized. Positioning and differentiation will make or break the brand messaging in this space. You need to have a unique point of view and perspective that you are bringing into the market, or there is no reason for prospects to anchor onto your brand and remember you vs. the competition. You will also benefit greatly from aligning with the values of your “tribe” and finding ways to connect emotionally rather than just trying to sell on price, convenience, or even quality.

Be very sure that you are saying something that is truly different from your competitors AND that the difference is something your customers care about. Check your messaging against what competitors are claiming. You can’t rely on common promises like “24/7 support” or “white glove service” or any of the other things that your competitors are also saying. 

What if you can’t establish a truly unique position because you just aren’t that different? You can still carve out some space for yourself if you hire the very best B2B professional services marketing specialists to help you capture opportunities through superior tactical execution. Your digital marketing must be on point and well-run for you to make any headway in a competitive, commoditized industry. Marketing to referral partners who can influence your buyers is also critical for professional services firms. 

Learn 5 Steps to Creating a B2B Digital Marketing Strategy Here.

 

Match Your B2B Marketing Tactics to Your Growth Goals

Often, professional services clients don’t need a massive number of new customers to reach their revenue goals. This means, even if they are not targeting massive companies, they can benefit from using a high-touch, account based marketing (ABM) approach. ABM allows you to build a lot of trust fast, especially if you take the time to become a “social CEO” with a powerful viewpoint, a consistent online presence, and a loyal social following.

“In professional services, being a thought leader can be really important and social media is a wonderful place to leverage this. But this is not a place where you can just delegate to somebody and then never look at it. It needs to be you. It needs to be the people on your team. Humans believe humans.” – Dacia Coffey, Blender CEO

Sales and marketing alignment is critical for moving that handful of “right fit” clients through the sales pipeline when every deal matters. So is keeping marketing going for your existing clients. The lower the number of clients, the more losing a few of them will impact your ability to hit revenue targets. Be sure to allocate a portion of your marketing budget toward client retention and delight rather than focusing solely on new client acquisition. Low churn is good for your bottom line. 

AFTER Your B2B Professional Services Marketing Starts Working…You Need Talent Branding

Let’s say you are hitting those growth goals for your business. This usually means your professional services team is also growing. Since your brand relies on skilled and expert talent, your talent or employer brand needs to be an area that gets attention. Not being able to add to your team will stifle your growth no matter how many leads you are bringing in. Building a marketing pipeline to bring in more of your best people is a smart move and will keep you ahead of your competition. 

Learn more about culture, employer, and talent branding here.

 

Thinking about Hiring a Fractional CMO? Professional Services Companies Turn to Blender.

Our portfolio is filled with professional services companies because we KNOW how to market the value of our clients’ expertise. From nailing the brand messaging and identity to filling the pipeline with qualified, sales-ready leads, our fractional chief marketing officers help grow professional services firms every day. 

Want to talk with our CEO about whether The Marketing Blender is the right fit for your firm? Contact us now.

sales team doing b2b social selling

Our Top 10 B2B Social Selling Do’s and Don’ts

By B2B Social Media, Blender B2B Marketing Blogs

Ever felt like social media is just another time-waster when it comes to B2B sales? You’re not alone. Many businesses struggle to see tangible results from B2B social selling, leading to the belief that it’s simply not worth the investment. But what if you’re missing out on a powerful tool that could transform your sales pipeline? 

How B2B Sales Can Benefit from Social Selling

Social selling done right can be a game-changer for your B2B business. In fact, it can turn into an entire pipeline in its own right. Since virtually NONE of your competitors are doing this type of selling well, it gives you an uncontested avenue to carving out market share. Instead of spamming your connections with sales pitches or treating LinkedIn like a digital cold-calling platform, you can use it to build authentic relationships, provide value, and position yourself as a trusted advisor in your industry. 

What B2B Social Selling Is (and Isn’t)

Despite the name, social selling is not simply using social platforms as a channel to sell to people. This is a crucial distinction to understand because social selling is not about harassing your connections with sales pitches or using LinkedIn as a glorified cold-calling tool. It’s about fostering genuine relationships, providing value, and establishing yourself as a trusted resource within your industry. 

Think of it this way: in the real world, you wouldn’t walk up to a stranger at a networking event and immediately launch into a sales pitch. You’d introduce yourself, try to find common ground, and maybe exchange some valuable insights. Social selling follows the same principles. It’s about building rapport, engaging in meaningful conversations, and showing genuine interest in your connections.

Go here to learn how targeted B2B personas can help boost your sales.

When you prioritize building relationships over pushing products, you create a space where potential customers feel comfortable approaching you when they have a need. You become the person they think of when they’re facing a challenge that your product or service can solve. Social selling is about fostering trust over time, so when the moment is right, your prospects will naturally turn to you as the solution provider. 

“The selling happens naturally when you do it well. It’s not about forcing the sales conversation, but rather about nurturing connections and letting the opportunities arise at the buyer’s timing. This approach not only leads to more meaningful business relationships but also positions you as a thought leader in your industry.” – Daisy McCarty, Fractional CMO at The Marketing Blender

Hear from a B2B Social Selling Expert in the Video Below

Yes, Your Buyers ARE on Social Media

It’s a common misconception in the B2B world that decision-makers and influencers don’t engage on social platforms or that they rarely log into their profiles. However, the data tells a different story. Did you know that about 7 out of 10 LinkedIn users are on the app daily? See more stats here.

With a Sales Navigator account on LinkedIn, you can easily filter and identify key players in your target companies, and even see how recently they’ve been active on the platform. But it doesn’t stop there. Your potential buyers might be active on Twitter, commenting on industry blogs, or even sharing their thoughts on relevant YouTube videos.

The key is to identify where your ideal customers are spending their time online and tailor your social selling efforts accordingly. By meeting them where they are, you can build rapport and trust in a space that’s already familiar and comfortable to them. Remember, social selling is about building relationships, and that means engaging with your audience on the platforms they prefer.

5 Do’s of Social Selling for B2B

DO Incorporate Social Selling Daily: Consistency is key when it comes to building relationships on social media. Even if it’s just 15-30 minutes a day, make time to engage with your connections, share valuable content, and participate in relevant conversations. The more you show up, the more top-of-mind you’ll become.

DO Send Congratulations and Birthday Messages: These small gestures can go a long way in building rapport. A personalized message shows that you care about your connections on a human level and that you’re not just interested in them for their business potential.

DO Be Careful with Automation: While automation tools can be helpful, they can also be risky if not used thoughtfully. LinkedIn has cracked down on spammy behavior, so it’s important to use automation sparingly and always prioritize authentic engagement.

DO Make Social Selling Part of Your Overall Strategy: Don’t treat social selling as a separate initiative. Integrate it into your broader marketing and sales strategy. Share content from your company page, repost relevant articles, and participate in industry groups.

DO Align with Sales: Social selling is most effective when sales and marketing teams work together. Collaborate on content, share insights, and set clear goals and metrics to track your progress.

5 Don’ts of B2B Social Selling

Now that we’ve established the do’s, let’s explore some common pitfalls to avoid:

DON’T Connect and Pitch: As Daisy puts it, “Using a person’s DM or message inbox as a way to get in front of them with a sales pitch is the #1 most hated behavior on LinkedIn.” Build rapport first, offer value, and let the sales conversation happen organically.

DON’T Be a Pest: Social selling is about building relationships, not harassing your connections. Respect their time and boundaries. Don’t send multiple messages if they haven’t responded, and don’t bombard them with irrelevant content.

DON’T Waste People’s Time: Every interaction should provide value. Before you share an article or comment on a post, ask yourself if it’s something your audience would genuinely find interesting or helpful. If not, don’t clutter their feeds.

DON’T Forget Your Targeting: Social selling is most effective when you’re focused on the right audience. Take the time to identify your ideal customers and tailor your content and interactions to their specific interests and needs.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you’ll create a more positive experience for your connections, build stronger relationships, and ultimately increase your chances of converting them into customers.

Mastery Requires a Shift in Mindset

It’s about leading with a servant’s heart and prioritizing genuine connection over quick sales. By focusing on building authentic relationships, offering consistent value, and aligning with your sales team, you’ll unlock the full potential of social media as a powerful sales tool to engage customers. Remember, social selling is a marathon, not a sprint, requiring time, effort, and a genuine desire to build relationships. But when done right, the rewards are immense. So, start incorporating these do’s and don’ts into your strategy today and watch your connections transform into loyal customers.

Ready to supercharge your social selling efforts and see real results? Blender’s fractional CMOs can help. With our expertise and proven strategies, we can guide you through the intricacies of social selling and help you build a powerful online presence that drives business growth. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to revolutionize your sales approach. Schedule a discovery call with Blender today and take the first step towards social selling success.

b2b industrial marketing

How to Make Your B2B Industrial Marketing REALLY Work

By B2B Marketing Strategy, Blender B2B Marketing Blogs

From mining and transportation to construction and manufacturing industries, industrial companies have high-ticket sales and LONG sales cycles with many stakeholders. This complexity makes it easy to have a sales-centric mindset and focus on closing the next big deal instead of on how to fill the pipeline long term. But industrial product and service companies can ONLY remain competitive through economic ups and downs if they take a big picture view and build a B2B industrial marketing strategy that includes the most effective tactics. 

As a bonus, branding and marketing actually helps accelerate the sales pipeline and close deals faster!

Strong Branding Is the Cornerstone of Industrial B2B Marketing

Brand identity, awareness, visibility, and reputation are all critical to survival in the revenue cycles of a typical industrial products or services company. Even in challenging times, brand should be a key area of investment. Consider this: your sales team may be unable to make much progress in the “bust” times that impact your customers’ ability to buy industrial products. But you want to make sure

 YOUR brand is the one they remember when the money starts flowing again. Your brand should make a consistent and lasting impression so it builds trust and is the obvious choice to consider in the buying process. Brand building primes your buyers to choose YOU instead of the competition. It also allows you to compete on trust instead of just price.

b2b industrial marketing example

Here’s an example of B2B industrial marketing for one of our clients.

What should Your B2B Industrial Marketing Brand Look Like?

In one word: SIGNIFICANT. The amazing thing about industrial companies is that they are usually building or creating things that can be represented really well in a visual way. After all, companies like yours are doing important things in the overall market for your customers and the people they serve. You are literally keeping the wheels of industry turning. 

The mind believes what the eyes see, so your brand identity should be striking. When your brand makes a powerful and positive impression, this creates a positive expectation about what your brand will deliver. This helps attract your customers and also your future employees. 

From our CEO, Dacia Coffey,

“The humanity and realism in industrial environments can be so stunningly beautiful. The photography can be incredibly cool and it can really resonate with core values to communicate about the way an organization specializes in serving your customers.”

Marketing B2B Industrial Products and Services During the Good Times

Boom times in the economy and specific industries can make it seem like the gravy train will never end. It is easy to think you have your pipeline all sorted out when things are easy. However, this is not the time to slack off on industrial B2B marketing. It’s the time to double down and focus on investing in and building REPEATABLE marketing processes. This means you need to explore WHY you are winning so you can keep doing those things on purpose when the purse strings tighten again in the future. 

You should also focus on perfecting your systems to make the most of the good times by maximizing the effectiveness of the sales team and their processes. This is all about data. That means your CRM needs to be helping you track the real length of your sales cycle (hint: it’s probably longer than you think). It should also be helping you systemize and automate as much of the buyer journey as possible. 

Making everything in your marketing system work is doable, but it is complex. That’s why there are very few B2B industrial marketing agencies out there doing what we do here at Blender!

Don’t Let Competitors Outmaneuver You 

Here’s a scary thought: When times are good for you, they are good for your competitors too.

  • What if your competitors are actually growing faster than you? 
  • What if they are using the boom times to grow and innovate and prepare to outpace you? 
  • What if an alternative outside your competitor pool is coming into play and you aren’t aware of it?

These are all very good reasons to invest more in market intelligence to know the emerging threats and stay ahead of competitors in developing what customers will want to buy next.

Want more insights from the experts in our B2B industrial marketing firm? Watch our recent podcast episode about “5 Tips for B2B Industrial Marketing” on YouTube.

What About Marketing Industrial B2B Products and Service During a Downturn?

Again, this is the time to keep your brand piping hot and top of mind for your target market. Don’t assume that your brand reputation and your brand visibility are the same thing. Just because your customers say good things about you doesn’t mean that the market at large knows your brand position – or even that you exist. Word of mouth is fantastic, but it is not repeatable, scalable, and systematic. That means it should NOT be the only lever you are pulling to get your brand known. Be prepared to spend on brand visibility even when no one is in a buying cycle. 

From Dacia Coffey, CEO of our industrial B2B marketing agency:

“Your brand reputation should extend beyond the relationship your sales people have with their contacts. You need true brand authority and the correct market perception if you want long-term viability and scalability.” 

What about the segment of your market that does know who you are but doesn’t yet have the budget to make a purchase? Make sure you are continuing to help them solve problems and make progress even if it’s just with knowledge resources and tools. 

This is also when you want to focus on building out rapid lead generation and sales activation campaigns that you can rapidly switch on and optimize when things start turning around. That way you can ramp up quickly to capitalize on revenue opportunities and profitability as soon as the deal pipeline opens up again.

Know the TRUTH about Your Customers and Competitors

Often, when our industrial marketing firm starts working with a new client, our digital audit reveals competitors they didn’t even know they had. They might assume they are up against a handful of companies that they have routinely competed with over the past 40 years. But a look at the online landscape, especially around keywords they want to be found for online, tells a different story. 

It isn’t unusual for us to identify half a dozen previously unnoticed competitors that have high visibility online (where many purchasers go to research and select vendors). They may also have competition that “owning” the narrative on one or more social media platforms. You can’t afford not to know who these people are and how their brand positioning and messaging is shaping the minds of your prospective buyers. Since the mind of your buyer is where competition really happens, the digital landscape where they are being influenced is something you need to know in detail.

That brings us to our final point: Know Your Buyers. Not just their demographics, but their psychographics. How they do research, how they make decisions, their emotional triggers, what they care about, and who they trust. Then, you need to put the RIGHT message in front of them everywhere they go. This messaging has to be choreographed based on where they are in the buyer journey. This is how we define what you say when so it sinks in and helps buyers progress through their journey faster. 

Want to Supercharge Your B2B Industrial Marketing?

Our fractions Chief Marketing Officers are well-versed in helping industrial companies improve their revenue, reputation, and resilience. If you want help from a B2B industrial marketing agency with over a decade of experience, contact Blender today.

B2B Digital Marketing Strategy

5 Steps for Creating a B2B Digital Marketing Strategy

By B2B Digital Marketing, B2B Marketing Strategy, Blender B2B Marketing Blogs

A robust B2B digital marketing strategy can and WILL drive growth in revenue, reputation, and resilience for your business. But you have to know what’s important and what isn’t. Otherwise, you’ll get overwhelmed by ALL the options available for marketing online. These are our best tips for helping you focus on what matters. 

Understanding B2B Digital Marketing Strategies

Unlike B2C marketing, which focuses on reaching individual consumers who can often make an immediate decision, B2B marketing typically involves multiple decision makers, longer sales cycles, and higher price points. It requires building strong relationships with potential business clients, understanding their specific needs and pain points, and tailoring marketing strategies to address those concerns effectively.

Because B2B digital marketing involves targeting a specialized audience, it requires in-depth market research and the use of targeted messaging and content to engage and educate potential business customers. Sometimes, you need to influence multiple decision makers or a “buying committee” through your digital marketing if you want to drive conversions that result in revenue. 

Learn about B2B digital marketing strategies from our own expert, Ramsey Sanchez in this episode of The Marketing Blender Show.

Steps in Creating a Your Digital Marketing Strategy

#1 Identifying Your Target Audience

The first step towards building a successful B2B digital marketing strategy is identifying your target audience. Understand their needs, pain points, and decision-making processes. This knowledge forms the foundation of your digital marketing efforts. Go deeper than demographics and even firmographics. The psychographics of your audience is where you will find the levers that will move marketing forward. Even the most logical business decision has emotion at its core. From a digital perspective, you can research commonly searched problems or pain points to understand how to position your marketing and advertising.

#2 Setting Measurable Goals

What do you aim to achieve with your B2B digital marketing strategies? Whether it’s boosting brand awareness, generating leads, or improving conversion rates, setting clear and measurable goals is crucial. This allows you to aim your marketing budget and resources and solve the right problem. If no one knows about your brand, awareness is the top priority. If plenty of people visit your website, but you aren’t getting leads, then conversion should be the focus. 

#3 Choosing the Right Digital Marketing Channels

Not all digital marketing channels yield the same results. Select the ones that your target audience frequently uses. These could include LinkedIn, email marketing, content marketing, or SEO. Maybe you are targeting busy CEOs. They often listen to podcasts or YouTube videos. You cannot afford to be everywhere. Focus on going where your buyers go. If you aren’t sure where this is, it’s time to start interviewing your existing and potential customers to find out. 

#4 Creating Engaging Content

Content is king in digital marketing. Create engaging, relevant, and value-packed content that resonates with your audience. This can help position your business as a thought leader in your industry. Every touch point matters, so put the same attention into writing great ad copy as you would into a blog or a social media post. Today, it’s popular to use AI to generate content. We find it is OK to use for helping create outlines, dig up research, and give you a starting point. However, you MUST add your own unique viewpoint and expertise. Remember that the goal is to help your audience make progress toward their goals. Everything you put in front of them with your B2B digital marketing content should aim at serving them.

#5 Implementing SEO Strategies

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a vital part of any B2B digital marketing strategy. It helps improve your website’s visibility on search engines, thereby increasing traffic and potential leads. It’s often ideal if you can focus your organic and paid keyword strategy on commercial or “bottom of the funnel” keywords that indicate your target audience is about to make a purchase decision. However, these are often the most expensive to bid on. This means you may need to look farther up in the funnel for how you can engage your audience while they are still learning about their problem. That’s a great way to help them start trusting YOU to be the one who helps them solve it. 

Bear in mind that organic SEO is usually a long-term strategy that helps fill top of funnel (awareness and nurture). Paid is often targeted at direct lead generation. Set your expectations around timelines and outcomes accordingly.

Go here for tips on creating a winning digital marketing plan.

How to Start Tracking Your Digital Marketing Efforts

Every digital marketing tool has its own reporting and analytics that you will eventually learn to use, but where do you actually start? Always begin with Google Analytics and get your tracking set up for your website. If your web development or hosting company set this up for you, they should help you get access. That way, you get more insight into your user base, the people that are finding you on your website or on Google or Bing. You might need some coaching to figure out what a user is, how to use a behavior map where you can track how users go from one page to the next. That’s OK. It’s worth the time to learn. Being able to see and interpret this data will help you optimize the digital journey.

For more advanced businesses, the path forward is setting up a CRM such as Sharpspring or HubSpot. There are many CRMs out there that help with that attribution and tracking. They can also help you with everything from managing email outreach  and social to tracking lead flow and viewing your entire marketing/sales pipeline. You should also connect your ads to your CRM so these tools can communicate with each other and drive automated optimization. Your CRM reporting tools are gold for helping you make informed decisions.

Your pipeline does not start the first time you have a conversation with a sales rep. It starts when these prospective buyers start researching you. So if you can’t answer how many people are visiting your website and how long are they staying on your website and what are the most important pages, you are missing out on a huge opportunity. If you layer in more advanced tracking, how are they finding your website, what keywords, what pathways are leading them, you are really establishing pipeline management. 

But you shouldn’t just look at the data in the system. Have real conversations with your team. If leads are coming in, Sales and Marketing NEED to talk. Were those good leads? Is the sales team being accountable and working the leads? What was the outcome? How can this insight be used to improve marketing?

5 Additional Elements of a Successful B2B Digital Marketing Strategy

In the world of B2B digital marketing, several key elements contribute to a successful strategy. These elements play a significant role in attracting and engaging potential clients and driving business growth. Let’s explore some of these crucial components:

  • Strong Brand Identity: Developing a strong brand identity helps differentiate your business and builds recognition, trust, and loyalty among clients. From a digital marketing perspective, you want to surround your prospective buyers with your brand wherever they go online. Familiarity engenders trust and primes them to buy from you.
  • Multi-channel Approach: Utilizing multiple channels such as paid advertising, organic SEO, social media, and email helps you build a strong ecosystem with your B2B digital marketing.
  • Lead Generation and Nurturing: Implementing effective lead generation strategies and nurturing those leads through targeted campaigns are crucial for converting prospects into customers. B2B companies that fail to follow up consistently with the leads in their pipeline are missing out on most of the revenue potential they have paid good marketing dollars to generate.
  • Personalization: Customizing marketing messages based on individual preferences and behaviors enhances customer experience and fosters stronger connections. This can mean creating targeted campaigns for different audiences, segmenting your email list, or even using automation tools to create a curated website experience.
  • Data-driven Insights: Leveraging analytics and data-driven insights enables informed decision-making and optimization of marketing campaigns for better results. With your B2B digital marketing, identify the metrics that actually matter for each tactic. For example, impressions actually are important for brand awareness in B2B. But if you aren’t also getting conversion actions like form fills, you are likely missing a puzzle piece in the journey from awareness to consideration.

Common Pitfalls to Avoid

  • Failing to track outcomes appropriately
  • Pivoting too slowly in the face of data insights
  • Paying attention to ALL the data instead of figuring out what really matters
  • Forgetting to continuously optimize the digital funnel
  • Not following up to nurture leads
  • Ignoring what the competition is doing
  • Using the wrong tools and tactics to reach your specific audience
  • Not being mobile friendly

Many companies are also failing to leverage all the different kinds of B2B marketing assets (paid, owned, earned and shared). Here’s where to go to learn about the 4 types of B2B digital marketing assets.

The Future of Digital Marketing for B2B Companies

Emerging trends like AI, machine learning, and voice search are shaping the future of B2B digital marketing. Staying ahead of these trends can give your business a competitive edge. A well-planned B2B digital marketing strategy can help your business reach its goals, build strong relationships, and stay ahead in the competitive digital landscape. Always remember to keep your customers at the heart of all your marketing efforts. By implementing our tips for creating a B2B digital marketing strategy, you will have a head start on achieving your marketing goals and driving your business forward. 

Want to have Blender run your digital marketing to maximize your ROI? Talk with us today.

Fractional CMO Services

What Should Fractional CMO Services Include?

By Fractional CMO, Outsourced CMO

Fractional CMO services should include strategy and planning, brand messaging and positioning, budgeting, tracking, reporting, and managing execution across all marketing resources (internal team,  freelancers, agencies, and the marketing tech stack). These are the typical accountabilities for a Chief Marketing Officer. 

  • Building Strategy 
  • Managing Execution 
  • Tracking and Optimization
  • Growing the Ecosystem 
  • Maturing MarTech

Building a Marketing Strategy, Plan, and Roadmap

Creating an effective B2B marketing plan requires a thorough understanding of all opportunities and prioritization of those that will have the highest impact short term and long term. Every item that ends up on a marketing plan should align with business goals to drive profitable revenue, improve brand reputation, and strengthen business resilience. This requires a deep dive into the business model including current and potential opportunities with existing customers, current prospects in the pipeline, and future prospects that fit your ideal customer profile (ICP) or buyer persona. 

Strategy also includes market research to analyze your industry, current and emerging competitors, and any changes in customer needs, preferences, and behaviors. By identifying market trends early, your CMO can help you uncover and capture opportunities to seize competitive advantage and drive growth.

Your fractional CMO should develop a strategic plan that includes a roadmap outlining marketing activities over the next 3-6 months along with the KPIs that will be used to measure success. These tasks should be prioritized based on urgency, impact, ease, and resources. Your CMO should also align budget and spend with these priorities so that you can maximize marketing ROI.

Brand Development Is Included in Fractional CMO Services

Brand development is a key component of any marketing strategy, and it should be a major focus of any fractional CMO’s services. This involves defining or refining elements such as:

  • Brand Positioning
  • Brand Differentiation
  • Brand Identity
  • Brand Messaging
  • Brand Character

And much more.

Your fractional CMO should help you create a strong and consistent brand that resonates with your target customers as well as your current and future employees. They will guide you in communicating your brand’s truth, values, and personality. They should also have strategies in place for managing your brand’s reputation, both online and offline.

Wondering if an outsourced CMO can REALLY get to know your business? Find the truth here.

Fractional CMO Services Include Managing Resources & Execution of Marketing Tactics

From project management to overseeing external resources and developing marketing team members, a fractional CMO uplevels your results across the board. A good CMO proactively works with your 3rd party agencies and freelancers to ensure you are getting the most for your marketing dollar. This includes ensuring they have access to and adhere to all brand guidelines, have a full understanding of how their results are being measured, and negotiating to get the greatest value for your marketing dollar.

With your internal team, a CMO should be managing project workload for each member and making sure everyone is able to make the best and highest use of their time. Your fractional CMO can also help with the interviewing, hiring, onboarding, and training process for new marketing hires. Mentoring existing marketing team members and helping them uplevel their skills is another important fractional CMO service. 

From a project management perspective, a fractional CMO is accountable for managing the team to hit deadlines. They should also help with developing processes that make future projects more streamlined by identifying and helping the team document repeatable systems and frameworks.

Tracking and Optimizing Marketing Efforts/Outcomes

A Fractional CMO should begin with an audit to uncover areas of risk and opportunity. This can include:

Backend/Technical SEO Audit – How is your website performing and what needs to be improved?

Organic SEO Audit – What search terms are you being found for and what terms should you target to rank higher and get found more often?

PPC (Paid Ads) Audit – What keywords are your competitors bidding on? What keywords should you run ads for to gain more visibility and drive more traffic?

Social Media Audit – How is your brand perceived on social? What is your competitive landscape and how can you better connect with your audience and build a “tribe”? 

Your fractional CMO will also provide regular performance analysis and reporting. This means tracking key performance indicators (KPIs), analyzing the return on investment (ROI) of your marketing initiatives, and providing regular reports on your marketing performance including what to start, stop, and change, how you stack up against the competition, and how you are tracking toward goals. 

Typical tracking often includes metrics from the following sources:

  • Visibility and web traffic trends from Google Analytics 
  • Search behaviors from Google Search Console
  • Marketing pipeline health and Marketing/Sales alignment from your CRM 
  • Nurture health based on email performance data from your ESP
  • Social presence including reach, engagement, and market sentiment from LinkedIn, YouTube, and other platforms
  • SEO rankings from tools like SEMRush or UberSuggest

This fractional CMO service is critical as it allows you to understand the effectiveness of your marketing strategies and make informed decisions. Your Chief Marketing Officer should provide clear, concise, and comprehensive reports that give you insights into what’s working, what’s not, and what can be improved. Don’t get lost in the details. Remember that your CMO will be accessing potentially hundreds of points of data and distilling this into those that are decision-making criteria for leadership.

Still on the fence? Here’s why you should hire a fractional CMO.

Growing Your Marketing Ecosystem for Brand Awareness & Lead Generation

Your Fractional CMO should understand the latest digital marketing trends and tools, and know how to leverage them to reach your target audience across multiple platforms. The guideline is “Go where your buyers go.”  The CMO should direct their creative and digital team to develop and deploy engaging content, build a strong online presence, and use data-driven strategies to optimize your digital marketing efforts to improve awareness, increase brand authority, and generate leads.

Examples of what should be included in a Digital Marketing Strategy are diverse and can significantly enhance the online footprint of a business. Here are a few:

  • SEO: Implementing keyword research to understand what potential customers are searching for and optimizing website content to rank higher in search engine results.
  • Content Marketing: Creating valuable, relevant content tailored to address the needs and questions of the target audience, such as blog posts, whitepapers, and infographics.
  • Social Media Marketing: Developing a social media calendar and engaging with the audience through regular posts, stories, and interactive sessions across various platforms like LinkedIn and YouTube.
  • Email Marketing: Crafting personalized email campaigns with segmented lists to target different groups within the audience, ensuring content relevance, and fostering customer relationships.
  • Paid Advertising: Using platforms like Google Ads or social media advertising to generate immediate visibility for key campaigns or promotions, with carefully tailored targeting to reach the desired customer demographics.

Each of these strategies should be integrated into a comprehensive digital marketing plan that aligns with the brand’s overall objectives and encourages growth and engagement in the digital space.

Maturing The Marketing Technology Stack for Automation & Efficiency

One of the fastest ways your fractional CMO services will deliver ROI is by helping you realign your MarTech stack around what you actually need. There is often unnecessary spend in this area that can be immediately switched off. As an example, you might have old social media management tools that have been replaced with new, native functionality on social platforms.

Your CMO will also help you maximize ROI on the technology you do keep and help you determine the next solutions to add. As an example, the CRM is one of the most common areas for overinvestment and underutilization. By activating features from automation to analytics, you can rapidly improve your marketing.

Explore Our Strategic Fractional CMO Services

Fractional CMO capabilities can be much more extensive than those listed above. At Blender, our CMO services can also include:

  • Sales & Marketing Alignment
  • Pipeline Acceleration
  • Customer Retention Strategy
  • Comprehensive Brand Experience Development
  • “Big Idea” Innovation and Blue Ocean Strategy
  • Merger & Acquisition Strategic Support
  • Mission, Vision, and Values Alignment
  • Marketing Team Leadership & Mentorship
  • Board and Investor Communications
  • Employee and Internal Communications
  • Learning & Development Asset Creation
  • Employer Branding, Talent Branding and Culture Branding/Messaging

In addition, our fractional marketing team can fill any gaps in your current marketing department. This include branding, creative, digital marketing, social, copywriting, email marketing, and much more.

Are you ready to find out what an experienced fractional CMO can do for your business?

Contact Blender today.

b2b manufacturing marketing strategy

B2B Manufacturing Marketing Strategy: Beyond the Tradition of Trade Shows

By B2B Marketing Strategy, Blender B2B Marketing Blogs

The emphasis on a digital-first B2B manufacturing marketing strategy has become crystal-clear. As in-person sales became less viable, the need to transition to a more robust, digital-centric approach became urgent. In this discussion, we’ll delve into effective strategies that can transform the B2B manufacturing marketing landscape and ensure a steady flow of high-quality leads.

Rethinking Trade Shows for Your B2B Manufacturing Marketing Strategy

Trade shows have been the cornerstone of a traditional B2B manufacturing marketing strategy, prized for their networking and deal-making potential. Yet, their steep costs and modest ROI present clear downsides. B2B manufacturing companies are now recognizing that without a meticulous strategy before, during, and after the show, they lose out on maximizing opportunities. Pivoting to digital marketing strategies provides a precision-focused and cost-effective alternative that can enhance global outreach and optimize resource allocation.

Unleashing Digital Strategies in B2B Manufacturing Marketing

A solid B2B manufacturing marketing strategy leverages the power of digital channels to penetrate markets and engage audiences more effectively. By utilizing real-time tracking and data-driven decision-making, manufacturing companies can gain a competitive advantage that traditional strategies often lack. Digital methods not only provide the agility and reach necessary for success, but they also offer opportunities for targeted marketing, personalized communication, and seamless customer experiences. With the ability to adapt quickly to changing market demands and consumer preferences, manufacturing companies can truly thrive in today’s rapidly evolving business landscape.

Want an even deeper dive into the best practices for B2B manufacturing marketing? Catch this episode of The Marketing Blender Show.

Maximizing PPC in Your Manufacturing Marketing Strategy

Incorporating PPC (Pay-Per-Click) advertising into your B2B manufacturing marketing strategy can be highly effective. By leveraging platforms like Google AdWords and LinkedIn, you have the opportunity to generate leads rapidly. Take Bison IP as an example. This manufacturing leader understands the importance of strategically bidding on targeted keywords that potential customers are actively searching for. By doing so, they position their offerings in front of an audience with high intent, resulting in improved conversion rates. With the right approach to PPC advertising, your B2B manufacturing business can also achieve remarkable growth and success.

Harnessing Display Advertising and Retargeting

Integrating display advertising into your B2B manufacturing marketing is a powerful way to ensure your brand remains visible to your target demographic. By utilizing retargeting techniques, you can reconnect with potential clients who have previously engaged with your website. This not only reinforces your brand’s presence in their minds but also increases the likelihood of conversion. With an expanded reach and enhanced brand recognition, your marketing efforts can drive more impactful results and ultimately contribute to the growth of your business.

LinkedIn Social Selling for B2B Manufacturing

Leverage the extensive network of LinkedIn to develop a robust B2B manufacturing marketing strategy. Cultivate meaningful relationships and foster inbound inquiries, ultimately resulting in organic lead generation. Concentrate on creating valuable and insightful content that not only establishes your company as an industry authority but also engages your target audience and drives business growth.

Optimizing Websites for Manufacturing

The ability of your website to convert visitors is crucial for your B2B manufacturing marketing strategy. To optimize this, consider incorporating engaging features such as compelling video content. Not only can this enhance your SEO rankings, but it also captures the attention of potential clients. Additionally, interactive elements like chatbots can be utilized to engage with prospects promptly and provide them with the necessary information they seek. By implementing these strategies, you can maximize the effectiveness of your website in attracting and converting leads.

Speaking Engagements for B2B Manufacturing

Secure speaking slots at industry events to assert your position as a thought leader. By sharing your expertise and insights with a targeted audience, you can establish yourself as a trusted authority in your field. This strategic approach complements your B2B manufacturing marketing strategy, enhancing your visibility and credibility among key stakeholders. Even in the digital age, the power of in-person engagement cannot be underestimated. So seize the opportunity to connect with industry peers, build valuable relationships, and showcase your knowledge to drive success in your business.

Leveraging Co-Promotion in Your B2B Manufacturing Marketing Plan

Embrace co-promotion to extend your B2B manufacturing marketing strategy’s reach. This tactic allows you to access new audiences and reinforce your standing by associating with respected industry peers.

In summary, adapting your B2B manufacturing marketing strategy for the digital era is not just about damage control—it’s a strategic move towards a more resilient and scalable business model. By integrating digital marketing methodologies and selectively incorporating traditional practices, B2B manufacturing companies can craft a dynamic approach to lead generation and sustainable growth. Contact us at The Marketing Blender to learn more about how we can help you achieve success in your business.

fractional CMO agency

How to Select a Fractional CMO Agency for B2B

By B2B Marketing Strategy, Blender B2B Marketing Blogs, Fractional CMO, Outsourced CMO

The complexity of business-to-business sales and marketing can make it hard to find a marketing agency or Chief Marketing Officer with the right experience to help you hit your revenue targets. Here is our guide for how to select a fractional CMO agency if you run a B2B company.

It’s Time to Contact a Fractional CMO Agency When…

Here are a few key indicators that your organization should look for a fractional Chief Marketing Officer.

  • You are a sales-led organization that has hit a revenue plateau
  • You have a marketing manager or director in house, but no one in the C-level role to set strategy
  • You have tried working with traditional marketing agencies with mixed or disappointing results
  • You are poised for growth but face challenges have no systematic lead generation working to drive sales
  • You have challenges with budgeting for marketing or knowing how to get ROI for your spend

Understanding the Role of a Fractional CMO

A Fractional CMO is a marketing leader who offers extensive marketing expertise to companies on a part-time, outsourced basis. This arrangement provides businesses access to high-level marketing expertise, without the commitment, expense, or risks of hiring and onboarding a full-time executive in-house. 

In a B2B context, a fractional CMO is responsible for helping create and implement strategies to drive business growth and health. 

Here’s what that looks like when your CMO is doing a great job for you:

Revenue – You are landing more near-term, larger, or recurring deals and cultivating long-tail opportunities

Reputation – Your brand is known for the right things by more of your target audience of decision-makers 

Resilience – You have more stability in future pipeline, lead generation ecosystem, opportunity for next big innovation collaboration

These Are Some of the Accountabilities for a Fractional CMO

  • Building Marketing Strategy (Including Tactics, Priorities, Budget, and Timelines)
  • Managing Execution of Marketing Tactics and Resources
  • Tracking and Optimizing Marketing Efforts/Outcomes
  • Growing Marketing Ecosystem for Brand Awareness & Lead Generation
  • Maturing Marketing Technology Stack for Automation and Efficiency

What Is a Fractional CMO?

Assessing the Experience & Expertise of a Fractional CMO Company

Experience and expertise are crucial when it comes to choosing a Fractional CMO agency. You want an agency that has a proven track record in B2B marketing, with a deep understanding of its nuances and complexities. Ask potential agencies about their previous work, the results they’ve achieved, and the strategies they used. 

One interesting fact is that it doesn’t matter as much as you might think whether a CMO has experience in YOUR specific industry or niche. It matters more that they know how to use B2B marketing to drive results across a variety of industries. This means they KNOW the fundamentals and can easily pick up on the nuances of your business. It also means they won’t just be rinsing and repeating what all of your competitors are doing because they bring a broader perspective to the table.

Learn more about how well an outsourced CMO can REALLY know your business

What Should a Fractional CMO Engagement Look Like?

A well-run fractional CMO agency will have standardized frameworks and processes that are used for onboarding all new clients. This is a simple example of what a roadmap might look like over the first 3-6 months of your engagement from building a B2B marketing plan to accelerating execution.

EXAMPLE ROADMAP

  • Deep Dive Buyer Personas 
  • Define Brand Truth and Build Messaging Choreography
  • Explore Full Marketing/Sales Landscape and Opportunities
  • Build Strategic Marketing Plan
  • Validate Plan in Alignment with Revenue Goals
  • Determine Budget and Resource Requirements
  • Build Execution Roadmap and Onboard Creative/Digital Team 
  • Launch Top Priority Marketing Initiatives 
  • Build Scorecard to Track Outcomes
  • Begin Brand Building Activities for Near and Long-term Growth
  • Capture Immediate Revenue Opportunities with Sales Activation
  • Develop Marketing/Sales Alignment
  • Initiate Marketing Automation
  • Track, Optimize, and Create Reporting around Marketing Efforts
  • Investigate and Improve MarTech Stack (e.g., CRM usage)
  • Mature the Marketing Effort for Repeatability and Scalability
  • Continue Ideation for Fresh Opportunities

Understanding the CMO Agency’s Approach to B2B Marketing

Every agency has its unique approach to marketing. Some might focus on digital strategies, while others may excel at traditional marketing methods. Some might be data-driven, while others might prioritize creativity and storytelling. Your Fractional CMO should have experience across the range of marketing tactics that are most effective for reaching your target market.

It’s essential that the agency’s approach aligns with your business goals, target market, and brand identity. Ask potential agencies to explain their methodologies, and how they tailor their strategies to meet the specific needs and challenges of each client.

Evaluating the Cost and Value of the Service

Hiring a Fractional CMO agency is an investment, and you want to ensure you’re getting good value for your money. Find out what the agency’s services include, and compare this against their fees. Also, consider the potential return on investment. An agency that can deliver strong results and drive significant growth is worth a higher investment. Also, consider how long they can stay with your organization. A good fractional CMO will continue providing value long term.

Factors to Look at in the Cost of a Fractional CMO Agency

  • Transparent Fee Structure: Ensure the CMO agency provides a clear breakdown of costs, including any additional expenses that could arise during the partnership. Flat rate monthly arrangements that cover a bucket of hours to be used for strategy, research, team oversight, and execution on key deliverables make it easy for the CMO to allocate their time wisely month to month.
  • Flexible Payment Models: Check if the agency offers different payment models that align with your business cash flow and risk preferences. For example, having a package that is the same amount of money each month can help you manage your budget more effectively. You might want to sign up for a 3-6 month initial engagement before signing an annual agreement. Or, you might choose for a longer-term option if it brings the total cost down.
  • Scope of Services Offered: Confirm the breadth of services included in the cost— from digital marketing to strategic planning and execution. The more comprehensive the services, the higher the potential value (but only if the services are aligned with the marketing problems you need to solve).
  • ROI and Performance Metrics: Investigate the agency’s track record for generating return on investment for their clients. High-value agencies will have strong case studies and metrics that demonstrate their impact. For example, you may look at # of MQLs and SQLs generated, YoY revenue increases, and the impact on brand visibility and reputation.
  • Expertise and Specialty: Higher fees are sometimes justified if the agency possesses rare expertise or specializes in high-impact areas of marketing that promise better results for your specific industry. For example, few B2B CMOs have experience with true Marketing/Sales alignment. This is a significant value add for most B2B companies.
  • Long-Term Strategic Value: Consider not only immediate gains but also the long-term strategic value that an experienced Fractional CMO can bring to your brand and market position. For example, an experienced CMO can help you find ways to attract investors, attract key talent, or improve the valuation of your business for a profitable exit.

See typical fractional CMO rates here.

Checking Agency References and Reviews

It is always appropriate to ask to speak with an agency’s past and current clients. Ask for references, and take the time to contact them. Inquire about their experiences working with the CMO provided by the agency, the results they saw, and any challenges they encountered. 

Online reviews can also provide valuable insights. Look for patterns in the feedback – consistent praise or criticism can give you a good idea of the agency’s strengths and weaknesses. LinkedIn recommendations are another place to look for insight into a specific fractional CMO from a B2B marketing agency.

Are We the Right Fractional CMO Agency for Your B2B Business?

Fractional CMO Agency

Our Team of Fractional CMOs Has Decades of B2B Marketing Experience

At The Marketing Blender, we have been helping B2B companies build and execute EFFECTIVE strategies for over a decade. Our fractional CMOs are hand-picked for their ability to drive results for B2B companies and equipped with Blender’s proprietary and proven systems to enhance your business revenue, reputation, and resilience. 

Contact us today to inquire about hiring a fractional CMO for your business.