This is the week that was: Looking ahead


01-Feb-2012 11:36:00
Back James Wood

Another round-up of the week in B2B marketing.

As the end of January looms, we have begun to forget what a new year’s resolution is and are looking confused as to why we signed up for that 24 month gym contract. With six months to go to the Olympic games, we look back at a week in which old Harry is getting more than a finger wagging for his money issues and the RBS big cheese, Mr Hester, enjoyed a near £million bonus.

In the world of B2B there has been a lot of short term future gazing, looking at how marketers are set up for the year to come and predicting the obstacles we are likely to come up against over the coming months, as well as the usual flow of great content for us to share.

Sales cycle shift of the week:

The sales cycle is the ultimate map for marketers to follow. If your activities hit the right people at the right time during their sales journey then you are on to a sure winner.  This week MarketingSherpa looked into the relationship between the average deal value size and the length of the sales cycle – showing that as we see the size of sale declining in B2B we  also see the length of the cycle shortens. What does this mean for your organisation, and does this mean sales and marketing need to work much closer together in the future?

Business saviour of the week:

This week Apple announced its highest ever profits in a quarter, with sales of the iPhone up 110% in the last year. While this is great news for the Steve Jobs dynasty, the competitors out their including the likes of RIM are not having such a good time of it. At one time you could turn and see a Blackberry device in the hand of any suited man or woman power walking the streets of London, although these are rapidly being replaced by a new set of shiny toys. Thorsten Heins, the COO turned CEO or RIM, however, thinks he may be the man to save the day. This week Mashable took a look at some strategies he may adopt – from narrowing the organisation's focus to pouring money into their apps. Is their hope yet for the former king of mobile?

Content tip of the week:

Where the last few years have been about the rise of the social network, here at Earnest we believe that 2012 will be the year of content – where the onus will be on driving your online marketing efforts with high value content shared by you and top influencers. We have talked before about visiting your content dungeon and blowing the dust off some great assets you have down there. Once you have unlocked it, Savvy B2B Marketing has its top 10 requirements to ensure the whole work reads it.

Top 10 of the week:

With marketers looking forward to the year ahead, there are a number of top 10 predictions being punted around. This week 'the marketer' gathered information from a number of experts to collate its top ten tips for better marketing in 2012, from data to mobile to sponsorship. We agree with point three though: “This year, the use of mobile enabled web, smartphone apps, video and webinars have been pinpointed as growth areas”. Mobile is certainly the one to look out for in 2012.

Social media disaster of the week:

It may not be B2B, but the lessons that can be learnt from McDonalds recent social media efforts are not ones to be missed. While trying to celebrate the good many farmers get from working with them, McDonalds began using #McDstories. Unfortunately for them however within hours the hash tag had been hijacked – with members of the public sharing their horror stories from fingers in chicken nuggets to deaths from diabetes. The lesson? While quirky social media campaigns may bring huge benefits for your brand, encouraging the consumers to give their open opinion comes with risk and as in this case the results can be hugely damaging. Pay caution, but don’t stop being inventive and pushing the boundaries.

Case study of the week:

With every campaign we run, we will share the process we went through, along with any lessons we have learnt along the way – to encourage discussion and allow others to learn from our mistakes. This week we give an overview of the recent global campaign we ran for Kaspersky. Take a look and let us know what you think.

Infographic of the week:

The social media lifecycle, from listening to interacting to measurement can be a long and complicated process. This infographic looks at the lifecycle of social media with some handing case studies chucked in the mixer.

So that was the week that was. Any gems we have missed? Let us know!

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