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By Randy Mitchell   What are your go-to resources for the latest B2B marketing trends?   Popular options include HubSpot, Digiday, Forbes, the ANA and LinkedIn. But those industry experts only represent the top level of available insights. If you truly want to dive deeply into emerging B2B marketing trends, there is a data deluge just waiting to wash away a few hours of your day.   For the sake of brevity and your busy schedule, I’m proposing an entirely different approach to trendspotting. Let’s call it: “B2B marketing trends among friends.”   That title is appropriate because the driving forces behind these particular trends are our clients and contacts, and all of the topics we’ll cover are

By Randy Mitchell   It can crush budgets, trample timelines and smash strategies.   It has a nasty habit of monopolizing planning meetings, status calls and your lunch hour.   It packs about 13,000 pounds of angst, and it just landed squarely on your shoulders.   What is it? The marketing elephant in the room.   Every B2B marketer has one. I’m talking about the massive program that gets assigned to you as coworkers sigh audibly and avoid your glance. From that day forward, your pachyderm of a project will follow you around the office, onto the bus, and sometimes, it even comes home with you.   Maybe your elephant is a social media program. It can be a beast to develop

By Randy Mitchell   First, a painful confession.   Seven years ago I was a hater. For a number of reasons, I simply could not take social media seriously, especially when it came to B2B marketing.   That cautious thinking seemed to make sound business sense at the time. Our agency accounts were global companies. We worked with top-level decision makers that had ironclad objectives. They needed to grow market share, not followers.   In short, ROMI was the mantra and every campaign demanded tangible results.   If I had actually dared to suggest using social media to that C-Suite group, their first reaction would have been laughter. That would have been followed by this bottom line challenge: “If you’re really

by Kathryn Brill, Social Media and Content Marketing Specialist Is social media really valuable? How can you prove social media ROI? These questions are on the minds of many clients. Before they invest money in a social media program, companies want to know that it will deliver. But measuring social value can seem like a slippery business. It’s not as easily tied to sales or revenue as many other marketing programs. Connecting the dots on social engagement and business benefits is complicated. And not everyone agrees on what makes for strong social media performance. Most of us have an instinct that social media is part of a great marketing strategy. But how

by Kathryn Brill, Social Media and Content Marketing Specialist Are you burnt out on B2B social media? It seems like marketers are becoming increasingly disillusioned with social media, and wondering what purpose it truly serves their business. And who could blame them? Many marketers were sold on social with grand promises—millions of followers, thousands of leads—only to discover that the reality was much different. The powerful influence that social media has on B2C brands was tempting, but social doesn’t always produce the same results when it comes to B2B. In addition, social media itself has been overrun by bots and fake followers, mired in data scandals, and ruled by algorithms that

Foodservice is much more than an industry or an occupation. It’s a culture, a passion and a lifestyle for operators and decision makers. Foodservice is also a very insular world. Operators frequently consult each other, their customers and trusted sales representatives before making important purchase decisions. But that structure is changing, and the perfect example is the evolving relationship between social media and food industry decision makers. To truly understand the new dynamic between social media and food industry purchase decisions, a new food industry research study consulted operators about their buyer’s journey and what influences them along the way. The “Media Consumption Behaviors and the Decision-Making Journey of Foodservice Operators” Study

Is Google+ dead? As far as social media networks go, it’s never been as robust or popular as Facebook or Twitter, so some people have been asking this question for a while. But this time, there might be some truth to the reports that Google+ is on its last legs. Google has made some changes to Google+ over the past year that should affect your B2B social media strategy and change the way you use the social network. Over the past year, Google has taken many steps to distance itself from the network. The main champion of Google+, Vic Gundotra, resigned in 2014, and his successor, Bradley Horowitz, announced that he

So you’ve created your B2B social media marketing strategy—you know what you want to say in your posts, how you want to connect with your audience, and what content you plan to share. You’re on your way to a strong social media presence. But have you thought about what time of day is the best to post? Or how many characters your posts should be? These things may seem small, but paying attention to them can elevate your social media presence and demonstrate a mastery of the space that signals your expertise to your audience. Here are four simple things to add to your B2B social media strategy: Post at

The “big three” of B2B social media marketing—Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn—are well established and the ways they can boost your marketing are well documented. Almost every B2B marketer understands why it’s important to maintain a presence and have a strategy for those sites. But many B2B marketers shy away from another of the most popular forms of social media: Instagram. Whether they perceive it as a site for teens only, believe their company would have nothing to share, or worry that its popularity is a fad, “Instagram for B2B” is often ignored as a possible strategy. While Instagram isn’t for every company, there are plenty of reasons to make it part

Twitter is what you make of it. It can be a great place to interact with others in your industry and a consistent source of leads and news—or it can be a confusing mess of irrelevant information and spam. Having a good B2B Twitter strategy in place will help you make the most of your social media experience. There are two parts to a good Twitter strategy: maximizing interaction, especially with industry influencers, and minimizing spam. Maximizing Interaction It can be tough to put the “social” in “social media” as a B2B company. So many people are talking, and it’s hard to hear them all, let alone respond. Here are a few