Don’t just “show up” at a conference. Be prepared!

April 17th, 2018

be preparedI’m attending a conference in 2 months. Here’s what I’m doing now to be prepared.

I’ll be attending Greenbook’s IIeX 2018 NA Conference in Atlanta this June. It’s one of my favorite industry events. Like many, I’m attending to expand my knowledge, but also to network – and hopefully initiate relationships with some potential clients. And even though it’s two months away, I’m preparing now to have a successful event. Here’s how…

Continue Reading…

8 ‘Excuses’ for Not Embracing Sales and Marketing… and What to Do About It

April 10th, 2018

During the time I’ve been in this industry, I have often said that, “Market Research is an industry that does not embrace sales and marketing.” And in 12+ years, no one has ever disagreed with me about that.

To be fair, certain segments – tech providers and panel companies, for example – have done a better job of making sales and marketing an integral part of their organizations. But one of the core segments of the industry – market research agencies and consultants – uhhh… not so much!

And when I chat with the leaders of these agencies about their lack of sales and marketing activity, they always respond with some sort of reason. Make that, some sort of “excuse.” So, for each of these excuses, I want share a new way to think about it.

Continue Reading…

For Sales & Marketing Success: Finish What You Start

March 27th, 2018

One of the first questions I ask during an initial exploratory call with a prospective client is, “What kind of marketing and sales are you doing now?” And I generally get the kind of answers you’d expect…

  • “We blog once or twice a month.”
  • “We network at conferences.”
  • “We send out a monthly e-newsletter.”
  • “We’re all on LinkedIn.”

And so on.

And it all sounds pretty good on the surface, but once I dig a little deeper, I find that even though many of these firms have taken the first step… they rarely finish what they start. For example…

Continue Reading…

Stop Using Content Marketing to Sell

March 20th, 2018

I’ve been a subscriber to INC. magazine for years. I take away a nugget or two from every issue. In this most recent March/April issue, I started to read an article about a concept called the “active office.” It looked interesting.

The article began with what appeared to be an interview with the CEO of VariDesk, a manufacturer of sit/stand workstations. As I read further, I realized it wasn’t an article, but a well-written sales pitch and ‘advertorial.’ At the top of the page was the tiny header, “Branded Content.” And right next to the article was a full-page VariDesk ad.

It really angered me (both VariDesk and INC.)… trying to hide their advertising under the guise of editorial content, even designing the page so that it looked like a standard article. Now, whenever I read any article in any magazine, I look for the “Branded Content” header at the top of the page. Kind of sad, huh?

It was the perfect example of a lesson we share with all of our clients and emphasize during conference presentations…  Stop using content marketing to sell!

Continue Reading…

8 Ways to Get Marketing and Sales to Work Together

March 13th, 2018

marketing and salesThe Marketing and Sales functions are two parts of the same engine – the business development engine – and yet, in too many organizations, they operate in very distinct silos, each pointing fingers at one another for not working as a team and, ultimately, blaming each other when revenue goals are not hit.

But when Marketing and Sales work in unison, each supporting one another and taking advantage of what the other has to offer, both functions can achieve new levels of success. Here are 8 proven ways to get these two critical functions to work together…

Continue Reading…

Customer Service Excellence: A Real-World Lesson

March 6th, 2018

customer service I had a memorable customer service experience last week… from a company I didn’t think was capable of it.

Our firm’s email is based on the Gmail platform. On Friday, I received my monthly email invoice from Google and noticed what I thought was a discrepancy. So, I decided to send an email to Google Support to see if they could provide an answer.

I sent an email using their support system and within a couple of minutes, received the robo-response, “This is an automated email from Google Cloud Support. Case #15164139 has been created or updated.” Kinda what I thought would happen… maybe I’ll hear back from the goliath in 3 or 4 days.

And here’s where the story gets interesting. Scratch that… here’s where the story gets remarkable!

Continue Reading…

It’s Time for Revised Thinking: The New Marketing Funnel

February 20th, 2018

Guest post by: Whitney Duprey, Marketing Account Manager, Harpeth Marketing

I’ve never really liked the “Marketing Funnel”. There, I said it. My name is Whitney, I’m a marketer, and I don’t like the marketing funnel.

Wow, it feels good to get that off my chest!

Now, let me clarify. I think that the marketing funnel, in its current iteration, does a good job of depicting and helping marketers visualize the sales process and how a lead becomes a customer. You have leads coming in at the top of the funnel, and as they progress through the buyer’s journey, some “fall out” and decide not to purchase with you, while others make it to the end of the funnel and then become customers (yay!).

Continue Reading…

Do you celebrate your successes?

February 14th, 2018

I went to a party last night. It was the one-year anniversary of the opening of a small business – the place where I get my hair cut. Lots of food & beverages, nice decorations, live music (it is Nashville, after all). It was great!

And it got me to thinking… do we (as businesses and business owners) do enough celebrating of our important moments? Do we recognize our employees and their achievements? Do we boast (a little) about our successes?

Think about all the things we have to celebrate as businesses…

Continue Reading…

We'd love to chat