Core is an industry newsletter with news, nuggets, and information on best practices in business-to-business marketing. With it, we share information vital to any organization looking to generate results and accelerate growth through intelligent strategy, branding, marketing and public relations.
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How to Right Size Your Messaging Approach
While many BtoB marketers understand the importance of creating “sticky” messaging that resonates with customers and prospects, they may feel they don’t have sufficient time to develop solid messaging because of a real or perceived need to rush to market. Even with adequate time and budget, others struggle to use a message approach that best suits their company’s need to communicate effectively and drive sales.
How to Give a Presentation in 9 Words
All communications professionals are called on to give presentations from time to time, and for many, the prospect can be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be hard. The secret to a great presentation can be summed up in nine simple words.
Together, We Did It: How Arketi Client Brickstream Broke Through at NRF
In November 2012, Brickstream, a developer of behavior intelligence solutions for environments where people shop, gather, work and play, asked Arketi Group to craft and execute a strategy to re-launch the 12-year-old company at the largest retail show in North America – NRF's Annual Convention & EXPO, otherwise known as "Retail's BIG Show."
CMOs Discuss What 2013 Holds for B2B Technology Marketing
The sixth annual Technology CMO Roundtable, presented by Arketi and our media partner PR News, buzzed with ideas, best practices, learnings, questions and – most importantly – actionable insights. With more than 50 marketing and PR executives at 14 roundtables, this was the largest such event to date. During the sometimes spirited conversations, five consistent themes emerged.
Eight Rewarding – and Awarding – PR and Marketing Tips
Recently, Arketi and clients earned 13 Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) awards at the 2012 PRSA|GA Phoenix Awards Celebration. Upon reflection, we’ve distilled eight learnings from our entries that may be of interest to BtoB marketers.
The Personal Path to Customer Connections
Earlier this year, International Data Corp. conducted its “2012 Buyer Experience Study,” in which the research firm polled nearly 200 BtoB technology buyers on the reasons why they buy. The survey asked respondents to rate how various information sources influence their technology purchase decisions. If the responses were to be summed up in a few words, they’d simply state that, “buyers need love too.”
Best of the B2B Marketing News Blog
Earlier this year, Arketi’s B2B Marketing News was named a best B2B blog of 2012 in The Best of BuyerZone series. BuyerZone applauded Arketi’s strong mix of knowledgeable contributors with diverse BtoB marketing and PR thinking. We’ve reflected on our favorite posts and rounded up six of our best.
Bulletproof Your Marketing Budget
As marketers, we’re all familiar with the adage “Half my advertising dollars are wasted – I just don’t know which half.” During the past decade, our CEOs and CFOs have given up worrying about which half it is – they’ve just slashed the marketing budget, and left you to figure out where to make the savings. And if you want more budget, you’d better have a bulletproof case for it.
Must-Haves for a Buyer-Centric BtoB Website
Arketi clients often ask us what features and functionality they should incorporate into their websites. Here's our top 10 must-haves for a buyer-centric BtoB site.
Stop Pitching. Start Listening.
Media relations is key to the overall success of your company’s marketing strategy, but if you’re like most companies, you’d like more success. We have a suggestion – Stop Pitching. Start Listening.
Summer Fling: Apps To Help You Get Away
These days, there is a mobile app for everything. While some enhance productivity and advance our professional endeavors, others are enjoyed purely for their entertainment value. Arketians and a few clients sound off on their favorite apps for this summer. Did any of your favorites make the cut? Check out the list of top apps!
Big Data: Big Opportunity or Big Headache?
Marketers have long dreamed of having accurate information about customers and prospects. Be careful what you wish for! With today’s social media, CRM, ERP and new tools for data collection, what was once a hard-to-find trickle of customer data has become a torrent. So has the dream become a nightmare?
From Buyers to Believers
We’ve all read articles on marketing and client service comparing the cost of keeping an existing customer to the cost of acquiring a new one. Across almost every industry, new customers cost more than old ones – so customer satisfaction, as a means to retention, is “job one” for most businesses.
Stop Selling. Start Listening.
As BtoB marketers, we’ve been bombarded with the mandate to drive ever more leads through email marketing, overwhelmed by the social media du jour, and enthralled by the promise of marketing automation... So much so that we've forgotten who's really at the center of the buying process: the buyer.
CMOs Discuss What 2012 Holds for Business-to-Business Technology Marketing
Some 60 marketing executives from leading technology companies across the Southeast gathered to discuss the current and state of marketing within the business-to-business technology sector – and prospects for 2012.
Could your writing stand to lose a few pounds?
The holiday season is full of family, friends, fun and food. If you’re like us, that homemade pie was just too tempting to resist a slice… or two. Now, as the new year starts, we notice our waistlines seem a little fuller, our motivation kicks in, and we make resolutions to drop the added weight as fast as we can.
Season's Greetings from Arketi Group
As the year draws to a close, the Arketi team is taking a little time off to celebrate… at the South Pole! Please click here to explore the characters, goodies and surprises hidden in our winter wonderland.
Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season from all of us at Arketi Group.
Five Rewarding – and Awarding – PR and Marketing Tips
Earlier this month, Arketi and some of our clients earned four Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) awards at the 2010 PRSA|GA Phoenix Awards Celebration, and an International MarCom Gold Award from the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals.
Imagine Yourself the CEO to Craft Quotes with Impact
News release quotes are often the most underutilized communications tool at a PR pro’s disposal.
The Marketing Dream: Make it hard for them to leave
A recent article on a BtoB Marketing website titled “Facebook user satisfaction dips; could face user exodus,” reports that the online service’s customer satisfaction has hit an all-time low.
Is It Time to Say Good Bye?
As a BtoB marketer, I know what follows flies in the face of all that’s instinctive. But I think the time has come for all of us to face a very tough reality – some of our prospect relationships just aren’t working anymore. And it may be time to turn these prospects loose.
LinkedIn Ranks As Top Social Media Site For Business Journalists
Our 2011 Arketi Web Watch Survey: Inside BtoB Media Usage of Social Media is hot off the press and reveals business-to-business media continue to have a rich appetite for using social media tools.
All I Need to Know About Marketing Optimization I Learned In a Singles Bar
Optimization is a hot topic for BtoB marketers. Developing well-crafted, relevant and engaging emails, websites and landing pages will certainly help you get closer to the ultimate sale.
Making Email Newsletters Work Better
Like a stick of butter in a Paula Deen recipe, the email newsletter has become the mainstay of every BtoB marketer’s arsenal, the “of course” ingredient in the marketing mix.
Content Creator or Content Curator?
Now more than ever, content is king. In fact, 90 percent of BtoB organizations are now engaged in content marketing, according to a recent MarketingProfs survey. In addition, more than a quarter of a BtoB organization’s marketing budget this year will be spent on content marketing.
Mobile Apps for BtoB Tech Marketers
As the numbers of mobile device users continue to increase, so does the amount of people who rely on mobile apps on a regular basis. An entertaining article in Lexus magazine on the top mobile apps for Lexus owners, it got us thinking, “What are the top apps for BtoB technology marketers?”
CMOs Discuss What 2011 Holds for Business-to-Business Technology Marketers
As 2010 was coming to a close, Arketi Group hosted its fourth annual Atlanta High-Tech CMO Roundtable. More than 30 marketing and public relations executives from leading technology companies gathered to discuss the current and future state of marketing and PR in the business-to-business (BtoB) technology sector.
Santa meets social media - Have you been naughty or nice?
Making a list, checking it twice… it’s all so 2009. These days, what better way for Santa to find out who’s been naughty or nice than by asking our friends? Our social media friends, that is. And so, for your holiday entertainment, we present Arketi’s Naughty or Nice Notifier™ App for Facebook.
10 PR and Marketing Tips for BtoB Tech Companies
Earlier this month, Arketi and a number of our clients were honored to receive 10 Public Relations Society of America awards at the 2010 PRSA|GA Phoenix Awards Celebration. Given annually, The Phoenix Awards recognize excellence in Georgia’s PR community.
Don’t Miss a Media Opportunity at Your Next Tradeshow
any BtoB companies have leveraged tradeshows as a vehicle to meet potential prospects and reconnect with current customers. In the last few years trade shows have attracted smaller audiences, yet they remain a solid avenue for companies to reach and connect with key media outlets, bloggers and industry analysts.
The Role of Collateral In a Digital Age
Traditionally, marketers have used printed collateral to communicate key messages and build a consistent brand image among customers and prospects. Now that email and the web are our primary means of information exchange, there are new considerations for what we used to call “collateral.”
Building a Successful Speakers Bureau:
Getting Behind the Right Podium and Generating Results
Ever wanted to see the words “Industry Expert” in front of your name? In the quest for thought leadership, the speaker circuit can, if executed strategically, drive both brand awareness and lead generation. Here's how...
5 Elements of an Effective BtoB Video
Over the past year, the use of video marketing has rapidly increased. Researchers have found that half of Internet users watch videos at least weekly and three-quarters watch professionally-produced online videos regularly. Once considered complex and expensive, video is rapidly finding its way into the BtoB marketing mix. So this edition of Core centers on the five elements of effective BtoB video.
So make way to start a Revolution…
Using a content management system (CMS) makes it much easier to update web content, by enabling non-technical authors to submit, edit or change content without knowledge of HTML. Today, open-source CMS systems like MODx are increasingly popular. Recently, Charles, one of Arketi’s digital designers, joined a group of developers, designers and web jockeys at the MODxpo 2010 in Dallas. He captured his thoughts about the conference, which drew more than 1,000 web professionals, to discuss the hottest and most advanced CMS.
Recapturing unfulfilled opportunities
How often has your Marketing or PR team cultivated a lead that failed to produce a sale? And, how does your company address that lead? We have found that a large number of companies allow unfulfilled leads to fall into a great abyss, never to be contacted again. At Arketi, we recommend applying the principals of nurture marketing to recapture unfulfilled sales through strategic communications and continual outreach.
Is your marketing content strategy still one-dimensional?
This year, BtoB companies will invest as much as one-third of their total marketing budgets in developing content to fuel lead nurturing activities. Unfortunately, for many, this investment will not pay off as planned in increased visibility, lead capture or better bottom-line results. What’s missing is an overall, well-thought-out and comprehensive content strategy. Or what we like to call it: 3D Content Mapping.
Three Common Mistakes in Business Writing
Content is still king. According to Arketi Group’s survey of high-tech marketing executives, content has become the marketing fuel for companies seeking to gain market share and accelerate growth. Marketers are planning to spend significantly more on their content marketing efforts in 2010—according to a recent study—and this growing emphasis on content will place a premium on effective business writing.
CMOs Discuss What 2010 Holds For Business-to-Business Technology Marketers
More than twenty marketing executives from leading technology companies throughout the Southeast gathered to share their thoughts on the state of B2B marketing in Arketi’s third annual Atlanta High-Tech CMO Roundtable. The proceedings from the event are featured in Arketi’s latest white paper, The Outlook for Business-to-Business Technology Marketing in 2010.
Happy Holidays from Arketi
The entire Arketi team wishes you a wonderful holiday season and an opportunity-filled 2010. As 2009 draws to a close, we invite you to try your luck at the Santa Chimney Challenge and see what the North Pole elves are up to.
Video a must-have for compelling BtoB engagement
Once considered complex a nd expensive, video is rapidly finding its way into the BtoB marketing mix. Given video’s ability to drive engagement with customers and prospects, it has emerged as a must-have tool for savvy marketers seeking a competitive edge. Video’s popularity among BtoB marketers is set to grow in the coming year so now is the time to start embracing the medium.
Is postal mail more effective than e-mail?
Email marketing has matured to such an extent that many marketers have entirely dropped postal mail from their arsenal. But is that the right decision? This was the question posed in a recent issue of DMNews’ popular “Gloves Off” point-counterpoint column, and Arketi Principal and Creative Director Rory Carlton gamely took up the challenge of making the case that postal mail remains relevant in an electronic world.
Webinars: A BtoB Marketing Win-Win
Belt tightening has caused B2B executives to retool their marketing campaigns in the recession. Coupled with a shift in the media landscape, more B2B marketers are putting their dollars online. Webinars are a great tool for generating leads, of course, but they can do much more: such as building thought leadership, and nurturing leads between a website inquiry and an in-person meeting during the sales cycle. When developing a B2B webinar, there are a number of important components to consider.
Avoiding Common Media Relations Missteps
Every year or so, we’ll read a high-profile editor’s blog or reporter’s column that dismisses all things public relations and classifies media strategists as anything but strategic. While we shrug off the unfair blanket criticism and equate it to a reporter having a “bad hair day,” there are commonsense rules we can glean from these rants to employ in our media relations outreach.
The value of loyalty marketing in a down economy
A high-value loyalty marketing program is one strategy that can help you engage with – and reward – your loyal and near-loyal customers, while putting you in a better position to grow your business. In this issue of Core, we discuss tips and best practices to help you create your an effective loyalty marketing program.
Automate or Die! Part II
Last month, we described the principles of marketing automation solutions. This Core offers five specific recommendations for how business-to-business companies can use marketing automation solutions to find, nurture and convert leads more effectively – five proven tactics to help optimize your marketing automation solution to support the Sales team and deliver more qualified leads.
Automate or Die! Part 1
Every day, dozens, hundreds, even thousands of prospective customers are searching for solutions that your company can provide. Smart businesses have figured out how to identify those prospects; rank them based on how likely they are to buy, and how soon; engage them with content that’s relevant to their stage in the buying cycle; and nurture them as they move through the cycle – all in an efficient, cost-effective, automated process.
Crisis communications planning in a BtoB world
Crises occur every day. And although the universe of customers in the BtoB world is often significantly smaller than in the consumer realm, we believe BtoB communications professionals should increase their crisis planning efforts and have a protocol in place in the event of an incident.
Web 2.0 - what is it and how much does it matter for a BtoB site?
Opinions differ on what (if anything) "Web 2.0" actually means. And as a business-to-business marketer, you may be asking yourself how relevant Web 2.0 is to your site? The 2.0 sites that spring to mind first are mostly BtoC. But we believe BtoB can benefit, too...
CMOs Speak on What 2009 Holds For High-Tech Business to Business Marketers
Arketi Group’s second annual Atlanta High-Tech CMO Roundtable provided valuable insight into the current and future state of marketing within the business-to-business and technology sectors.
Two Peas in a Pod: Positioning and Segmentation
If you’ve spent much time in technology companies, you know high-level messaging can be tricky. You have complex, multi-dimensional products. You want to be sure your competitors aren’t saying anything about their products that you don’t say. And you must tailor your messages to multiple buyers.
Happy Holidays from Arketi
The entire Arketi team wishes you a blessed holiday season and a prosperous 2009. As 2008 takes its final curtain call, take a peak to view the magical Arketi Christmas tree and gifts!
Can’t Sales and Marketing just get along?
If you’ve worked in a number of marketing organizations, you have probably experienced some that had a great relationship with the sales force, and some that didn’t. What is the difference? Why can’t Sales and Marketing just get along?
The Role of Color in Marketing
Sure, color is important if you’re marketing fashion, cars or even candy, but in a B2B market? B2B buyers are all purely rational decision-makers, aren’t they? So just how important is color? Since color is something people react to instinctively, typically without deliberation, it is a powerful tool for creating an immediate impression. That’s why color can be a great differentiator, even in a B2B environment.
The Importance of Repositioning
Arketi Group recently interviewed Ajay Murthy, vice president of global marketing at Convergys Corporation, about his company’s recent repositioning. When Murthy joined Convergys, it had recently embarked on the creation of a new vision to better articulate the value the company brings to the markets it serves. Following more than a decade of growth and numerous acquisitions, Convergys had become a company with varied and seemingly unrelated lines of business. Murthy recognized it was time to develop brand positioning that tied the company’s collective expertise and experience together.
Arketi Group Shares its Not So Common Desktop Favorites
We polled Arketi Group team members this month to learn more about their Internet surfing habits. From copywriting and design tips to PR and marketing sites, these not so common online resources are useful or just down right fun.
Taking Thought Leadership by the Horns
Business-to-business technology companies often face two combined hurdles: how to generate content for marketing and sales and how to increase leads for the sales team. This article offers an approach to overcoming both hurdles.
10 Must Haves for an Effective Website
In this edition of Core we explore ten must haves to ensure your website delivers maximum impact. This issue focuses on topics like search engine presence, target audience, messaging, website content and effective calls-to-action, to name just a few. Go on, give it a read, you might learn something new!
A Special Invitation From Arketi Group
Arketi Group is excited to share with you that – for the first time – BtoB magazine is bringing its popular B2B NetMarketing Breakfast Series to Atlanta. In addition, we are proud to say that three of the expert panelist at this event are Arketi clients. We know this is going to be an exciting, stimulating and thought-provoking event that B2B marketers will not want to miss. Information on the event and how you can register is in B2B’s announcement below. We hope you will consider attending – several members of the Arketi team will be there. See you there!
Understanding Industry Analysts and What They Bring to Technology Companies
When correctly engaged, analysts can play a major role in successfully bringing a product or solution to the marketplace. Analysts can help technology companies better understand complex markets, avoid costly mistakes, pinpoint competitive threats and evolve offerings to better match buyers' requirements.
Arketi recently spoke with Micky Long, research director in the Strategic Service Management Practice at the Aberdeen Group. He shared with us some industry insight for companies interested in building a successful industry analyst relations program.
So You’ve Created a Blog, Now What?
New media is all the rage for marketers these days, so for those just starting out on this digital endeavor, how can you optimize your blog? What blogging tools work best to drive traffic to your site? Arketi Group provides you with the tricks of the trade. From blogrolling to RSS, to social bookmarking and Technorati, you will be well on your way.
Arketi Group Moves to New Office to Accommodate Growth
Arketi Group has more than doubled its client roster, team and now office space. We’ve moved into new offices to meet the needs of the agency’s growing team and client roster. Arketi Group is now located in a nearly 4,500-square foot office at the Druid Chase business park in the Brookhaven area of Atlanta.
Happy Holidays from Arketi
From our team to yours, we wish you a blessed holiday season filled with laughter, joy and plenty of eggnog! As 2007 takes its final curtain call, take a peak to view the magical Arketi Christmas tree and gifts!
Crisis Communications... 8 Tips to Weather the Storm
Crises can happen at any time, and they often arise when you least expect them. Hypothetically, if a major crisis happened to your company in the next hour, would you be prepared? According to a recent survey by BtoB Magazine, 57 percent of companies do not have a crisis communications plan in place, yet 53 percent have experienced a crisis resulting in negative media coverage and decreased sales affecting their company’s bottom line. Clearly, there is a disconnect regarding the value of proactive crisis planning even if B2B marketing executives experienced a crisis first-hand.
Building a Community Relations Program
Recently we spoke with Brooks Robinson, CMO of Cbeyond, an Arketi client, about the importance of community relations and how Cbeyond launched its program, Cbeyond Community Connections™. Cbeyond, an IP-based managed services provider, developed a community relations program to help the company and its employees connect with and serve the community, while fostering personal growth. Brooks explained what it takes to create a great community relations program, how to keep it running successfully, and the benefits for both community and company.
The Name Game … the 9 basic steps for naming a company or product
If you’re a parent, you know both the joys and jitters attached to the naming of a child. Personally, we always thought that whole child-naming process was flawed. After all, how do you know he’ll be a "Henry" or she’ll be a "Hannah"? It makes more sense to us to have a "getting-to-know-you period" with a glimpse into the child’s personality and an inkling of who that child really is - and might become one day.
A Closer Look at the 3R’s of Marketing and PR
Let’s face it, the days of bottomless marketing budgets are long gone. Today, marketing executives have limited dollars and resources, but the pressure to get the same number, if not more, of leads for their sales teams is still there. So marketing execs must be smart about how they use their marketing investment and look for creative ways to get the leads they need. One guaranteed approach to help you get the maximum return out of your marketing campaigns is to follow the 3 R’s: reduce, reuse and refresh.
Differentiating Goals, Objectives, Strategies and Tactics
All too often, in today’s marketing world, the terms goal and objective or strategy and tactic are used as interchangeable ways of saying the same thing. Plainly put, they are not – and the resulting lack of precision can be problematic. This is more than a semantic issue. This lack of understanding can cripple a marketing plan or, worse, make it totally void of value.
High-Tech Research on a Low Tech Budget
When you give advice to management on messaging, campaigns and marketing programs, what type of feedback do you receive? Do people ask you to back up your claims with real-world examples? But when you recommend that research be conducted to validate your assumptions, are you told, “We don’t have enough money for that?” Many times, we marketers want to test our beliefs in the market but know we have tight budgets. However, even with a limited budget, there are a few research options available that can help you back up your claims.
Tips for Improving Demand Generation
We are often asked, "What can I do to improve my demand generation rate? How can I generate more leads?" While there are too many tips to share in one newsletter, here are four ideas to get you on the road to demand generation that works.
Understanding How Marketing Can Work With Other Departments
We are often asked what’s the best way for Marketing to work with … and not counter to … other departments – like Product Development, Product Management, and Sales. Many times it seems as if the line separating responsibilities is blurred. While each company has its own twist on what responsibilities fall to which department, here is a simple starting place to understand the typical role these four departments have in an organization and how they work together collectively.
Services Marketing for Technology Companies Workshop with Tech Guru Jeffrey Tarter
This must-attend event on October 11th, is for technology executives looking to increase revenue from current customers and attract prospects with a fast-growing, high-margin services portfolio.
Attracting Robots to Your Website
In the battle between those who maintain the search engines, and want them to rank sites objectively – and those who maintain the websites, and want them to give their sites higher rankings – the exact workings of the robots are a closely guarded secret. But some key features of robot behavior can be divined, and from these, some simple rules arise for making sites robot-friendly.
Messaging at its Core
We are often asked, what makes for a good message? How do I know it will work or resonate? How do I get started? While there are too many strategic messaging questions to answer in an email, this newsletter discusses four ideas to get you on the road to a message that works.