Monday, 31 January 2011

16 Surprising Social Media Stats - Over the last few months, I’ve bookmarked and read hundreds of posts. And, ...
Google Luring College Recruits With Swag And Pizza - Google is holding a recruiting drive at Carniege Mellon Univers...
Getting More From Your Google Place Page - I write a fair amount about local search because it's an important topic ...
Google's 2010 Lobbying Expenses Reach $5.16M - Google fans may want to brace for another round of accusations about ...
Powerful Total Traffic and Automation software
Try for free: SEO tips custom-made for your site
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Android Becomes Best-Selling Smartphone, Serious iPad Challenger
Seven Tips for Onpage SEO
TweetAttacks Review – Twitter Software For Desktop
Best iPhone apps: coolest, best and latest revealed
Demand Media Announces Closing of IPO - Last week, Demand Media launched its initial public offering. Today, the com...
Papa John's Launches Online Super Bowl Pizza Giveway - Papa John's said today that people who place orders online on...
Homeland Security Wants Internet Kill Switch - Sen. Susan Collins, the Republican ranking member on the Homeland Sec...
The Secret Sauce to Sales and Marketing Alignment: Drive Revenue and Achieve Explosive Growth
Make More Sales Using Creative Saleswriting - Good Web copywriting can easily get visitors to take a specific action...
3 Reasons Your Website Marketing Will Grow Your Service Business
Meijer Launches Online Grocery Service - Retailer Meijer has introduced a new online grocery service called “M...
Information on Top Quality Cheap DVD Players
Google's Social Acquisitions - SayNow is the Latest Conquest
Social Media Used To Fuel Civil Unrest In Egypt (AccuraCast)
Popular Personalized New Vampire Book For Adults
SEO Mistakes for 2011 - It s 2 11. Are your SEO tactics stuck in 2 3 Google has moved on since then and so should...
No "Actors" for The Social Network - Awards season has been kind to The Social Network. At the Golden Globes, the fi...
Five ways to get links from fan sites (SEOmoz Daily SEO Blog)

Sunday, 30 January 2011

My Top 10 Most Useful Free Marketing Tools Of 2010 - At the end of the year, everyone is making lists and I thought ...
Quora Review: Too Confusing To Survive? - The question-and-answer space seems to be gathering some momentum despite ...
Android + Classic PlayStation Games? Sweet! - Sony has announced plans to bring classic PlayStation 1 games to Andro...
Keeping Your Digital Talent Pipeline Full - One of the huge issues you’re going to see play out starting this ...

Increase Your Efficiency by Using Multiple Web Browsers: SEO



Increase Your Efficiency by Using Multiple Web Browsers

Posted: 29 Jan 2011 02:32 PM PST

One of my favorite approaches to save time online is to use multiple web browsers for different purposes. It allows you to combine speed + reliability with also having quick access to tons of valuable tools & data.


I set up Firefox fully loaded with bookmarks and extensions (all our free & premium ones, User Agent Switcher, Web Developer, Greasemonkey, Roboform, Colorzilla), but realize that as a result it will often be a bit slower & crash more frequently. That is ok because I don't use it as my primary web browser, but as my primary SEO research browser with all our SEO tools installed. Other extensions like Web Developer and Greasemonkey make it an obvious choice to use it as your fully loaded research browser.

Google Chrome

I run Google Chrome bare to the bone, with 0 extensions installed. One time I tried to install Roboform on it, but that slowed it down as well, so I got rid of that and keep it bare. The benefit of having a minimalistic browser is that it is quite stable & fast. In this way I can open up 20 tabs from our forums at any given time without worrying about it causing a crash. What is better is how good Google is at allowing you to restore tabs if things do crash. Chrome is my forums + email browser & my general purpose browser for anything I don't have to login to access & a few of the sites I am typically logged into (like this 1).

And while Firefox is my normal research & testing browser, Chrome also has a nice feature where you can highlight & right click to inspect an element. It tells you exactly what css file the property is in, and you can double click on it, adjust the size/color/etc within Chrome to see what it changes.

Internet Explorer

I also run IE9. It's purpose is to help give me a clean & pure localized view of search. It is set up to delete all cookies when it closes. I use it in conjunction with a VPN to compare how search results look in various parts of the world. It is another type of research, but it is not always-on the way that Firefox and Chrome are. Such a browser can also be handy for putting your computer in London for exclusive BBC content, or getting around other such geographic content-access limitations. I also have Roboform enabled on IE to allow me to log into client accounts easily if I want to ensure I keep those separate from my personal accounts.


I also have Opera installed & I use it for testing user permissions based issues. Some pages on our site here operate in a way that is far more sophisticated than they might look at a glance. Some pages may look different based on if you are not registered, logged in with a basic account, logged in with a premium account, or logged in as an administrator. When testing & tweaking that sort of stuff I can end up with 4 different browsers open. Over time after we get everything up and running I hope to improve further on this front, as we haven't done as much of the conditional permissions-based changes as I would like to do. But, first thing first, we need to get re-launched soon. ;)

And the final reason to have most modern browsers installed is to check out how your site looks in all of them. I would NEVER describe myself as a website design, but I am foolish enough to hack away at the CSS & HTML. Sometimes it works. Usually it doesn't. :)


Having all browsers available (well all of them except Safari) makes it easy to see if something works or not. That said, tools like Adobe Browser Lab and Browser Shots are a nice compliment to this approach. And we have Safari on my laptop, so if the design looks good elsewhere then generally it is typically good to go in Safari, so I check it last. If you use Safari as your primary browser LastPass is good.


Relaunches Are Harder Than Launches

Posted: 28 Jan 2011 09:31 PM PST

In the past I have highlighted how hype-driven hard launches often lead to hard landings. But what is even more challenging than launches is relaunches. Some relaunches are just flicking a switch, done mostly as a marketing gimmick. But those that are real changes are brutal, largely because you have already built up expectations in the past and have to manage expectations, even while everything is changing, and many things are not in your clear control. The more polished you become the worse you look when things go awry. :D

An Error of Confidence

In our member forums while using vBulletin 3 I became confident enough with upgrades that I did them myself even without a programmer standing by. Then I did the vBulletin 4 upgrade and it broke the templates & forced us to create a new design. vBulletin 4 has all sorts of bizarre variables in it and a lot of members were at first put off by the new design that vBulletin forced me into doing. There was almost an emotional visceral reaction amongst some members because we hate change that is forced upon us, especially if it feels arbitrary!

Based on that experience I decided that when we were going to upgrade Drupal and install a new member management software that it made sense for us to pause user accounts in case anything goes wrong. Lots has gone wrong with the update, so that turned out to be a good decision. Although at the same time it means I am spending well into 5 figures a month on upgrades and such while the site is producing no revenues.

I figured the no revenues part would encourage us to be as fast as possible, but Drupal 7 was a far more difficult change than vBulletin 4 was.

Guaranteed Broke

Whenever you do major upgrades will break. And it is virtually impossible to catch it all in advance. There are issues that happen with drop downs on certain browsers only when they are using certain operating systems with certain sized monitor, and all sorts of other technical fun stuff that doesn't appear until thousands of eyes have seen your website.

When you are new and obscure feedback comes in small bits and you keep getting incrementally better. But when everything changes you get hundreds of emails a day and it is nearly impossible to respond to them.

Did You Run Your Site Through a Geocities Generator?

We are trying our best to rush to fix stuff & get up to speed, but some issues that are even fine the day of an upgrade can appear crazy on day #2 due to how things interact. If we had our member's area accessible now, how would we really justify & explain end users seeing something like this...where bizarrely our designs merged:

Weird bugs like that can be difficult to troubleshoot, especially when they are intermittent. We have to fix those huge issues before we can even consider launching (and we mostly have already). But then there are other things that break in other ways that need fixed too.

A Laundry List of Issues

§ Post comment permalinks that add 30,000 pages of duplicate content to your site. (mostly fixed)

§ Updates that wipe out the ability to reply to a threaded comment on blog posts. (still need to fix)

§ Default sign-up page ugly & pretty version not posting to default. (still need to fix)

§ Users who desire our autoresponder still not getting it due to needing to test it again before having it send any emails. (still need to fix)

§ Integrating on-site social proof of value & activity like recent comments and member information. (still need to fix)

§ Redirect issues for certain login types. (mostly fixed)

§ Enable multiple product tiers & levels. (still need to fix)

§ Cookies issues based on old cookies before the CMS upgraded to the new system. (fixed for those who cleared cookies already, not for those who haven't)

§ Password reset emails don't send new passwords, but a one-time login link.

§ But some of those login links might be so long that they wrap and are broke by certain email clients.

§ Do you build a custom hack to try to fix that directly? or

§ Do you wait until you install your membership permissions management software and run everything through that? or

§ Do you convert your email module to send HTML emails? HTML emails which then requires a lot more testing because it might get stripped by some email clients. (Or, perhaps the email goes through, but the unsubscribe link is broken, which causes immediately a douchebag freetard to open up a support ticket with "lawsuit pending" as the title.)

That is only a partial list of items...there are literally about 100 more! And, as you can see from that last passwords issue, some corrections lead to additional issues. It is sorta like running up the side of a mountain carrying weights. :)

The challenging part of being a marketer, an SEO, and the guy who interacts with the customers is you deeply know how some things are flawed & that forces you to try to fix them as fast as possible. You can't just ignore the canonicalization issue that would be missed by most webmasters as you know the pain that leads to. :D

Brutal Pain

Even if you are pretty quick at fixing things, some will still blow for a bit. Complex systems are complex.

Not only will freetards complain, but you will get other forms of legitimate friction simply by virtue of being. Lots of eyes are on your errors. Once you have a well known website there is a lifeflow that goes through it 24 hours a day - if you are there or not. And if any of the common interactive paths are broken you will hear about it again and again and again. And again. :)

And yet, while you are trying to decide the best way to keep making things better you get emails that are condescendingly friendly. ;)

You guys have some very useful tools on this site and provide very useful seo information. Yet your site's user flow is surprisingly confounding and awkward. You guys strike me as practical internet marketers and I can't help but wonder why, if you were to upgrade anything on your site, you wouldn't have addressed your awkward user flow as opposed to spending time and money on some hipster faux web 2.0 window dressing. I know I'm not a paying customer...but I've always used this site for the keyword search tool and it has helped me drive traffic and increase eCPMs on my sites.
My guess is the type of people who use your site are not impressed by silly, day-glow,pastel makeovers and are more interested in useful seo data and information.

Nice. So they use us, make money from our work while paying us nothing, and yet they need to sling insults towards us while we publicly state that we are doing upgrades. Way to be a winner! If only everyone in the world was like them this site would disappear.

And they are completely wrong in suggesting that aesthetic doesn't matter. You can't quantify the losses without testing a different approach, but companies do not sink billions of Dollars into testing CPG packaging just for the fun of it. At a minimum a better looking site will increase trust. That leads to all sorts of other things like:

§ better perceived quality

§ lower perceived risk

§ higher conversion rates

§ being able to charge higher rates

§ higher visitor value

§ more media exposure

In many industries the winner is not who is well known within the industry, but rather who is safe and easy for outsiders to reference. Design is important for the same reason that domain names are. Either can yield an instance sense of credibility when done well & either can quickly take it away when done poorly.

And people who are new to an industry become the experts of tomorrow, so if they trust you more off the start then you build a self-reinforcing marketing channel. Whereas if you are not trusted you have to convince people to switch away from defaults after they already made their choice. And that is hard to do if they already passed you over once & your website is ugly.

And there is also the blunt straight talk feedback: "Your Products are bullshit."

I actually prefer the latter to the former because they don't insult your intellect by wrapping the insults in a passive-aggressive flowery packaging. (OK so I said a nice thing about him, so now I can REALLY insult him!!!)

Expecting Friction

One of the online issues that I think is rarely talked about is the issue of user friction. Media plays up the benefits of success but rarely highlights the cost of it. A popular game developer launched a hugely successful game at 99 cents & was devastated by his success:

I'm angry at a small percentage of customers who actively work towards harming its success. I'm angry at the customers who send me nasty emails or reviews, threatening me with 'telling Apple to remove it' or rating it 1 star with a 'should be cheaper than free' remark because after paying the ridiculously exorbitant 99c, they found it didn't live up to expectations. The absolute worst is users who condescendingly 'try to help' by outlining every little thing they think is wrong with it.
The anger, the sense of entitlement, and the overriding theme that I owe them something for daring to take up any of their time is sickening.
I can see now why many companies provide rubbish support, and have a 'give us your money then piss off' attitude. They have no doubt learned the hard way how soul destroying taking pride in your products can be.

That is a big part of the reason I abandoned the ebook business model. I felt that if I kept the model much longer I was going to have to sacrifice the quality of the customer interaction & be more like the companies I grew to hate. Rather than living that way we move higher up and get a higher quality of customer. Another benefit of our current (or soon to be restored) model is that if people ask questions in a closed garden social setting almost nobody is comfortable acting like a troll. People generally won't write the stuff in a social setting that they would write in an email, especially if they are not fully anonymous and they know doing so is going to make them look like a jerk.

While we still have tons of things to fix, the first things we fixed were related to duplicate content (to simply avoid the pain) and some issues associated with the registration path. The ones that people are going to complain about most are generally the ones you need to fix first, because that ends up saving you time in the longrun.

But if you price too cheaply (but not at free) then it is hard to ignore any of the feedback, even when it is ugly. This is why you are better off having higher prices & only converting a small portion of your audience. The folks from MagneticCat left a good comment on the above blog post:

$0.99 is an unsustainable price point. Because, if you sell 1 million games, you make $700,000 BEFORE taxes. A nice amount of money, but you also get 1 million customers – the amount of people living in a huge city – that could potentially have some problems with your game. Maybe because their iPhone's accelerometer is broken, or because their headphone jack is not working anymore, or because there is an actual bug in your game.

We are only at about a half-million registered users & it is hard (20+ hour work days) to keep up when anything breaks. I can't imagine what it would be like to have a million PAYING customers. I think I would be sitting in the fetal position somewhere. ;)

That said, I am excited to get our site re-launched again and miss the daily water cooler nature of our forums. And based on the emails I am getting every day, so do many of our customers. Sorry for the delay guys!

Status Update

We have Drupal 7 installed on both parts of the site. We have 3 days of bug fixing left and testing our membership software (which will also take a couple days). We may try to do some of it concurrently & test our membership software Sunday or Monday & hope to have a recurring test & a cancellation test done by Tuesday evening for a soft launch to past subscribers. If that goes well then we would hope to do a full launch before the end of next week.



Saturday, 29 January 2011

Announcing the winners of the Kinect contest - When the Kinect launched, Adafruit Industries ran a contest for the f...
Search Week in Review for Jan. 29, 2011 - Here's a recap of this week's columns and news stories for the week of Jan...
D.C. Gets a Street View of New Anti-Google Video - Consumer Watchdog is at it again. In the new video "Mr. Schmidt G...
Information on Top Quality Cheap DVD Players
Google Edges Bing For Visual Attention - The top three paid positions on Google attract more visual attention than t...

Friday, 28 January 2011

New Auto Blog Rules - Many avid bloggers who have been blogging for years have realized that auto blogging isn't as ...
Kindle E-Books Turn Amazon's Page - The Amazon brand was given a serious boost with the launch of their Kindle e-rea...
Taco Bell Thinking Outside The Bun, Uses Social Media To Counter Class Action Lawsuit
Yahoo VP Leaving For Groupon - The company that's said to have turned down a $6 billion acquisition offer from Googl...
Google's War on Spam Begins: New Algorithm Live - Google's Matt Cutts today announced the launch of a new algorithm ...
Business Plan Software Packages: Which Are the Best? - he Answer May Surprise You More and more people are starting ...
New Android Logo Gets Internet Buzzing - What’s that buzzing you’re hearing? Are you surrounded by wasps...
Yandex Geo-targeted Ads in Maps, Search Results Open for Business
Twitter Teams Up With the NFL For Super Bowl 45 - If you’re having a hard time keeping up with all the NFL/Sup...
Algorithm change launched - I just wanted to give a quick update on one thing I mentioned in my search engine spam p...
New Google Acquisition Could Be A Key To Company's Social Battle
Orange Debuts Mobile Payments In U.K. (AccuraCast) - Share With Friends: | | | Internet - Seo News, World News, N...
Demand Media CEO: Google Not Talking About Us - Last week, Google's Matt Cutts put up a blog post talking about a sh...
5 Tips for Individuals to Help Companies Get More Out of LinkedIn
President Obama and Vice President Biden Using YouTube and Yahoo Answers
Facebook Gives Businesses More Security for Their Apps - Earlier this week, Facebook launched some new security feat...
Interlinking Your Sites - Whiteboard Friday (SEOmoz Daily SEO Blog)

Thursday, 27 January 2011

Egypt Shuts Down Internet, SMS - Two days after blocking Twitter, and a day after reports that Facebook and Google w...
Schmidt on 'False' Media Speculation, Google vs. Facebook Obsession
Amazon Q4 Earnings: Sales Up 36% to Nearly $13 Billion - Amazon has announced its financial results for its fourth q...
Hitwise: LivingSocial Gaining Ground On Groupon - A single high-profile deal has done wonders for LivingSocial's pop...
U.K. Debates Google Monopoly, Search Neutrality - Introducing first, in the "we need search neutrality because Googl...
10 Jobs Where Hiring Will Serge in 2011 - I found this article to be quite interesting.what job grabs the #1 spot?? ...
FTC Orders Scareware Scammers To Pay $8 Million - The Federal Trade Commission has ordered an operator of an online ...
How to Get Your Favourite Film Stars Autograph - Author: LydiaEveryone has their favourite film or tv star but not a...
Google Blacklists Some Piracy Terms in Instant, Autocomplete
Facebook Tests Groupon Killer (AccuraCast) - Share With Friends: | | | Internet - Seo News, World News, News Feed...
eBay Aims To Improve Display Advertising - eBay said today it has hired Triad Retail Media to sell and manage all on...
Facebook Will Never Let You See Who's Viewed Your Profile - If you use Facebook, there's a good chance you've encoun...
How Social Media Changed Small Business Marketing - Davanti Digital Media, a full-service digital marketing agency s...
The Silly Quora Debate - Over the past month or so there’s been an escalating amount of hype and discussion ab...

5 Reasons to Leverage LinkedIn To Increase Your B2B Prospects


5 Reasons to Leverage LinkedIn To Increase Your B2B Prospects

5 Reasons to Leverage LinkedIn To Increase Your B2B Prospects

Posted: 26 Jan 2011 09:58 AM PST

by Maria Pergolino

B2B prospecting with LinkedIn

B2B marketing boils down to one all-important fact: It's all about creating relationships. Today's demand generation has created a long cycle in online lead nurturing.  From first click to sealing the deal, trust and rapport are critical to the sales process.

The influence of social media is a cornerstone to opening the door to new leads and bolstering existing ones.  When you leverage the power of a positive reputation, you build your prospects' confidence. Colleagues and customers who can vouch for your quality of service and be a source of leads expand your credibility, too. LinkedIn is an ideal platform for developing and maintaining business relationships.

Check out these five reasons why LinkedIn should be a permanent part of your lead generation strategies:

1. A LinkedIn Company Page showcases your business brand

On LinkedIn over 50,000 products and services are showcased on company pages and that number is growing rapidly.

Millions of LinkedIn members follow over a million companies.  The site offers a range of capabilities for companies to gauge how prospects perceive their brand and is constantly adding new ways for businesses to reach out to potential customers.

2. LinkedIn users feel confident with recommendations

Remember the truth that trust and credibility are key to lead generation?  Build a link in the comfort chain by providing credible recommendations. They're confidence-boosters for your company's brand. Have satisfied customers provide testimonials, and illuminate these endorsements.  When you provide this information first and foremost, prospects get reinforcement regarding the quality of your products or service.

3. LinkedIn helps you survey the scene

LinkedIn's most potent advantage is the connections feature, which lets you see the network of your personal connections. In addition to viewing the connections of direct contacts, search the data banks for prospects using LinkedIn's people search, where results show connections to your network. This can be a great source of prospects especially if your network is willing to make introductions. Advanced search capabilities target through keywords, industry, company and relationship to your network.

4. LinkedIn opens doors by increasing your connections

As you watch your network of connections grow, get active in using them to meet more prospects. It's most effective to directly communicate with your network members but you can also use LinkedIn's "Get introduced" wizard to initiate contact.

A connection can vouch for your expertise, and share confidence in the quality of your product or service.  Take care to know how current your network connection's is with your prospect. If they haven't spoken to your prospect in a long time, or they're not well acquainted, see if there are others within your network that may have a stronger tie.  A sales lead is always stronger when a relationship backs it up.

5. Viewing LinkedIn profiles can refine your sales message

Nothing improves a sales pitch more than incorporating commonalities and shared experiences.  Read your prospect's LinkedIn profile to find information that can strengthen your bond. You can learn a lot about a person's personality by reading their recommendations, too.  If you know someone who recommended your prospect, be sure to bring up the connection.

By leveraging the notion of relationships and credibility, you can boost your marketing efforts in ways that will generate solid results.  Insert this type of tool into your strategy and watch your lead generation process grow.

To learn more about lead generation in 2011 and it impacts your revenue cycle, subscribe to the Modern B2B marketing Blog RSS feed or follow Marketo on Twitter.

5 Reasons to Leverage LinkedIn To Increase Your B2B Prospects was posted at Modern B2B Marketing - Marketo Best Practices Blog. |



Fantastic new vampire books such as Blood Lust are lining up on the bookstore shelves.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

6 Verticals See Triple-Digit Growth in Mobile Advertising - Millennial Media has released its latest monthly SMART r...
Why Won't Google Use My META Description? (SEOmoz Daily SEO Blog)
Seven Tips for Onpage SEO - When it comes to onpage SEO, it's estimated that Google checks up to 200 onpage SEO para...
Using Google Latitude For Business - Using Google Latitude is and should be a personal thing – only to be used...
New Twitter Feature Shows Mutual Connections for Users - Twitter has launched a new feature accessible at
Click Fraud Falls in Q4 2010 - The overall click fraud rate for Q4 2010 fell to 19.1 percent, down from 22.3 percent...
Browsers Building ‘Do Not Track’ Functionality (AccuraCast) - Share With Friends: | | | Internet - Seo News, Worl...
Another "Evil" Eric Schmidt Video From Consumer Watchdog - Consumer Watchdog is at it again. The group has been crit...
So Much Great New Stuff (On-Page Tool, More Accurate Rankings and a Linkscape Update!) (SEOmoz Daily SEO Blog)
Will Local B2B Be the Next Web Trend? - Most of you would probably agree that local is one of the biggest trends on ...
Egypt: The Revolution Will Not Be Socialized; People: Yes It Will
Choose Your Own Adventure with Personalized Books
How Search Engines Work : A Case Study Of Google - Search Engines, especially Google have evolved technologically (a...
How To Discover A Free Web Site Traffic Counter - If you're looking for a free web site traffic counter, you really ...
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Google To Buy Sentiment Analysis Engine, fflick - Google has started a process of acquiring sentiment analysis start...
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Affordable Usability Testing - Yesterday I described the first two steps to usability testing that you can afford ev...
What I Did Right When I First Started Online - Following my discussion on the Internet Marketing Mistakes I Made Wh...

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Understanding Web Advertising - More money is wasted on advertising than any other business function. That is not to...
Brazilian Musician Tom Jobim Honored With Google Doodle - The Google doodlers were busy today - Australia Day, a tri...
Trust and the Importance of Repetition - It's that time of year again that we can look forward to the Edelman Trust ...
Yahoo Beats Q4 Estimates, But Held Back By Forecast - The fourth quarter of 2010 could have gone much worse for Yaho...
Life's A Beach In Australia According To Google - January 26th is Australia Day and a day of celebration for Austral...
The Hurdles of "Do Not Track" - This week saw announcements from both  Mozilla and Google about browser me...
The Best Free Apps For The iPhone & iPad
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So, You Have One Of The Best iphoneapps - Now What?
Want to Work at Google? Company Plans to Hire More than 6,000
Facebook Launches New Ad Unit – Sponsored Stories (AccuraCast)
The Ovavo UK search engine app, iPhone and iPod Touch, search three UK classifieds; Jobs, Homes and Shopping
iPhone app - a fully interactive car buying experience from searching for used cars to booking a service.
Amazon Launches Bulk Email-Sending Service - Amazon said today it is launching a bulk email-sending service for busi...
New Social Media Tool Helps Businesses Manage Facebook Pages
Google Proves Social Credentials In Honoring Saucy Poet Robert Burns
The Social Network Receives 8 Academy Award Nominations - The Academy Awards nominations list has just been released...

Leveraging the “Virtuous Cycle” to Drive Outsized Revenue Performance



Leveraging the "Virtuous Cycle" to Drive Outsized Revenue Performance

Link to Marketo B2B Marketing and Sales Blogs

Leveraging the "Virtuous Cycle" to Drive Outsized Revenue Performance

Posted: 24 Jan 2011 10:08 AM PST

by Phil Fernandez

dreamstime_4867822 (2)

Just this past week I heard an NPR/MarketWatch piece on how the nation's surprisingly robust retail sales data were causing economists to believe that the much hoped for "virtuous cycle" was finally starting to kick in. A virtuous cycle is a complex of events that reinforces itself through a feedback loop that eventually creates positive results (a "vicious circle" is essentially the same thing, but on the negative side).

Confirming that this virtuous cycle might actually be real, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke recently commented that he saw more signs that this "self-sustaining recovery" may be taking hold.

The NPR story caught my attention because I have been talking a lot about how igniting a virtuous cycle is actually a key requirement for sparking a revenue revolution in a corporation.  In my 1:1 conversations about the huge opportunity to transform the sales and marketing model to drive outsized revenue growth, I often get the question: "That's great, but how do I get started."

The Revenue Growth "Journey"

All too often, companies think that to get started on the revenue growth journey, they need to make big, bold changes – reorganizing, rolling out new comp plans, or implementing major strategic initiatives.  All of these may, in fact, occur as part of your revenue revolution.

But, the power of small improvements – and numbers – is a pretty amazing phenomenon in economics and business. This is especially true if you analyze them through the lens of the emerging virtuous cycle that is now starting to jumpstart the US economic recovery. For example: New hiring in a Ohio specialty steel mill puts more money in local folks' pockets, which helps to grow business at a local coffee shop, causing them to hire a recent high school graduate as a new barrista. And so it goes…

This same cycle repeats itself thousands of times across the entire economy, and before we know it, things look a lot better.

The Virtuous "Revenue Cycle"

The same cycle applies to transforming revenue creation in the corporate environment.  Marketing needs to acquire, nurture, and identify ONE great lead. That quality lead is then passed on to a hotshot sales person at just the right moment, enabling her to close a great deal in record time, which results in her earning an unexpectedly large commission check.

Sales people love to share their success stories.  If that successful sales person tells her co-workers about the "awesome marketing lead that let me exceed my number last month," her colleagues are going to listen.  They're going to be a little more open next time marketing comes a calling with the new leads.  They're going to tell their boss about it.  And pretty soon the sales director is going to be saying, "We need more of those quality leads from marketing.  Lot's more leads."

Due to the rising sales results, the marketing team gets more budget to invest in expanding lead management programs, which spurs the virtuous "revenue cycle." Pretty soon, everyone in sales is getting better (more "ready to buy") leads from marketing.  The best sales reps figure out that if they spend their time on those leads from marketing (rather than on cold calling), they make more money. And if sales people are making more money from more efficient revenue generating activities, the whole company makes more money. The savings from the increased sales efficiency and productivity drops right to the company's bottom line, propelling its success and ability to expand.

As I hope this scenario illustrates, a virtuous "revenue cycle" can start small, but move surprisingly quickly to a breakout level that leads to a revenue revolution!

Let's hope that Sarah's Coffee Shop in Toledo hires that new barrista. Even small changes like that can catalyze a powerful virtuous cycle that can lead to significant growth and improvement in the US economy, and in your own company, too.

Leveraging the "Virtuous Cycle" to Drive Outsized Revenue Performance was posted at Modern B2B Marketing - Marketo Best Practices Blog. |


Search Engine Marketing Recommendations: The way to Manage Your Online Reputation
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Google to Improve Social Search with fflick Acquisition? - TechCrunch is reporting that Google is in the process of ...
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Monday, 24 January 2011

Trip Advisor Having Hard Time Getting Reviews Off Google Places
Submitting To Article Aggregators Now Wasted Link Building? - Okay when Matt Cutts speaks the search industry listen...
Facebook Credits To Become Universal Currency On Site - A currency - whether real or virtual - is only as good as th...
Visualize Your LinkedIn Influence with InMaps - LinkedIn has launched a new LinkedIn Labs product called InMaps, whi...
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Saturday, 22 January 2011

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A+ Marketing Automation Case Studies: Nurture and Deliver More Leads to Sales plus 1 more


A+ Marketing Automation Case Studies: Nurture and Deliver More Leads to Sales plus 1 more

Link to Marketo B2B Marketing and Sales Blogs

A+ Marketing Automation Case Studies: Nurture and Deliver More Leads to Sales

Posted: 18 Jan 2011 11:44 AM PST

by Katie Byrnes

DF youtube

While Dreamforce has come and gone, the best practices we learned still stick in our minds. Right? You mean you didn't remember everything? Not to worry. Salesforce has graciously captured all the presentations from Dreamforce and re-purposed them on YouTube.

In this session, A+ Marketing Automation Case Studies: Nurture and Deliver More Leads to Sales, Jon Miller, VP of Marketing at Marketo, explains what marketing automation is, why lead nurturing and lead scoring is essential to business, and also provides us with two case studies of companies that leverage these tools to create marketing and sales alignment, and increase sales leads and ROI.

Jeff Serlin, Director of Global Sales  Operations at Emptoris, kindly shared his company case study on  how marketing automation enabled his organization to gain:

§ Complete real-time visibility: Sales knows exactly how prospects are engaging with them.

§ Lead scoring (not as a black hole): Sales believes the scoring because they can see the details.

§ A manageable process: Follow-up is more specific and appropriate in both timing and approach.

§ Reporting and analytics: Optimize programs and better demonstrate revenue impact.

§ Complete control: Easy deployment and administration. They now own their process.

To learn more, watch the video below:

A+ Marketing Automation Case Studies: Nurture and Deliver More Leads to Sales was posted at Modern B2B Marketing - Marketo Best Practices Blog. |

Achieving Predictable Revenue: Case Studies in Improving Sales Effectiveness

Posted: 18 Jan 2011 11:43 AM PST

by Katie Byrnes

DF Video Bill

Dreamforce has been over for a few weeks now, and many are trying their best to implement the best practices they learned in the many sessions they attended.  Just in case you need a refresher, you can watch the 2010 sessions on-demand via YouTube, or check out one of Marketo's own sessions below.

In this sales session, Achieving Predictable Revenue: Case Studies in Improving Sales Effectiveness, Bill Binch, SVP of Sales at Marketo, and a panel of sales professionals tackle the following objectives: creating a high-velocity revenue engine, unleashing sales productivity and the death of cold calling.

More companies are feeling the pressure to be more effective and companies that have access to prioritized leads outperform those that don't. Jim McLoughlin, SVP of Sales at Appirio, shared with the audience his version of the Secret Sauce to Sales Success which he defined as the trust between the marketing and sales functions. This trust includes the ability to create a repeatable sales process and structure that is completely agreed upon and well-document between the two functions, starting from campaigns to lead generation and process.

To learn more, watch the video below.

Achieving Predictable Revenue: Case Studies in Improving Sales Effectiveness was posted at Modern B2B Marketing - Marketo Best Practices Blog. |