Essential Reading for Start-ups, Scale ups and VCs
How to grow a Tech, SaaS or Service B2B using Digital Selling Techniques 2022
Find out how to steer YOUR business to success by:
- Realigning outdated strategies
- Implementing digital selling
- Reducing costs and increasing profitability
Learn what went wrong and how to adopt the most exciting new business development strategies to help you start up or scale up without having a major dependency on marketing automation software or cold-calling.
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Learn why so many businesses fail and change - FAST...
This is a controversial White Paper. It pushes back against a back-drop of almost complete dependency on marketing technology and a 'cookie-cutter' mentality that presupposes that because everyone is doing the same thing, everyone must be right?
Investors and directors need to start demanding that start-ups and established business who want or need financing, develop sustainable attraction and content marketing strategies that means they're not simply investing in the marketing automation companies!
03. The Sales Approach
04. The Marketing Approach
05. The Change that's Needed
I would say marketers are responsible for the demise of more businesses than anybody's ever, ever worked out. Your staff will not tell you what's going wrong or how to change, it's not in their interests to this video consultancy is the most significant and important information I believe you will ever hear.
The most important thing in business is to ensure longevity. What's happened recently and over the past ten years is having a massive negative effect on so many B2B businesses. The processes and strategies, tactics as well that are communicated within that industry, that marketing industry, they don't work.
If you go back ten years when marketing automation platforms came out. Everybody said it was the best they were the best thing since sliced bread and everybody bought into them. So you got Marquette, a well-equipped Pardot and a host of others there, the larger ones.
So you think, well, if all these organizations have bought into them, why? Why would I say something like? They don't work. You have to look at the logic on paper, it looks great in order to get somebody into your funnel.
You, you, you offer them something. They want it. And in return, there's an exchange. A transaction happens. They give you an email address and you give them some content. Sounds right. The trouble is, he's content, and he could as 1.1 element to it.
And secondly, why should they? Now, the trouble with transactional engagement is what else happens? Well, we know that everyone gets cold, cold. I don't like it and you don't like it. I know you don't. You will not take a cold call from anybody.
Nor will I. If we look at cold calling itself, it's a 200 to one shot. You have beady eyes and telesales people looking to try and connect with people that might be interested. And if they are, then they're told to send something or send me an email if they are marginally interested or not.
And the tele sales person or BD are their objective is to try and make an appointment which that person doesn't want. So it seems OK, but when you look at the content itself, how is it written? Who wrote it?
How do you know it's any good? What's the response to your prospects actually like it or not, if you ask them that these sorts of things don't happen? So this kind of look at some of the other factors here.
Over the past ten years and beyond, the rate of business failure has remained the same. About half a million businesses fail every year. So automation is not an impact on that. The average turnover per person per annum. Sub10 people is about is about 100 grand per person or 8880 grand per person per annum.
Up to about 5 million is 100. 100 grand per person per annum. And. Above 5 million, you're looking about well above 50 people, it's about 150 grand per person per annum. They're about varying scales. You think OK and Google to 1.2 million per person per annum?
They seem to have their ratios right? And so do many other companies. But I tend to be in the manufacturing will be to post as in myself, to B to C to consumers, and they sell to businesses. So you can see that there's a big issue here regarding ratios.
But you're marketing people are not telling you how to how to adapt or adjust or change those ratios. What happened is that because of marketing automation, the. Marketing leaders wanted a piece of the action. Salespeople were getting paid commission, marketing wanted a piece.
And so in order to get a piece of the action they were given, KPIs like white like salespeople were. And that's one of the problems, because you're giving KPIs to something that's emotional. And I think along the lines of if something can be measured, then you can manage it.
You have that with the salespeople. So I asked what people did they put marketing automation in, they managed to manage the clicks beforehand, they manage the effectiveness of social media banners and clicks and ads and so on.
And you measured that return on marketing investment. The rugby's. But. It's not changed anybody's income. More work. I mean, I've seen some of some of the. Recruitment. Job descriptions for marketing people. Staggering, absolutely staggering. You wouldn't dream of demanding that of anybody else in any other tournament of a company.
But the work that's expected of marketing people staggering. They can't do it. They don't do it. And that's the problem. So you go down this path of using marketing automation, but in order for it to work, you've got to pay Google.
So you've done two things. You've stopped people from being able to find your content. By hiding it behind an email phone and then to get people to find it, you pay Google for them to come and for them to find it based upon the auction price that you're prepared to pay per click.
So if you've been enough, then you might you might get them. But then you've got the other postal stuff, which is once they click on a banner, what's your landing page like? Do they like it? Is it clear enough?
And then, of course, you want their inside leg measurement for them to download your document, which you don't know if it's any good or not. The trouble is the only people I say, the only people, the best people to confirm whether or not your piece of content is any good is Google.
You've just hidden it from Google, because not if your customers can't see Google. And so it becomes a flawed process. Or you want to do with the salespeople, one salespeople want as many people as possible to know what it is.
Your company sells so they can go and sell it to them, hiding it behind an email for. Bad news for them. Because it restricts your exposure, and that's the reality of what's going on now, is most businesses in the B2B space have had their exposure severely restricted.
Because of marketers. Oh, the irony. And sales and of course, these people talk about this and this this this issue between sales and marketing, the friction between sales and marketing, marketing, people say it's not our problem. Salespeople can't sell.
And the salespeople say exactly the same going back the other way. So. There's a fundamental problem. And it's been made worse because of lockdowns. You have a situation where your prospects don't want to talk to you. And the flip side is you can't talk to them anyway, because you can't connect with them.
They're working from home. People won't give out their mobiles, you can't email them because they can just delete it like they did before. They won't take your phone calls. They they didn't do that before either. So now most businesses are left high and dry.
So once there was a bit of a survival mode called furlough, when that disappears. We're getting back to the nitty gritty, which is you're either moving forward or moving backwards, you're grabbing or dying. one of the other. And that's what makes this message, this disinformation one is, is to give you this information.
For you to consider it. Then to understand, I'll come onto that in a minute. Then come on to the next part, which is OK, now we can see where it's gone wrong and who's responsible for it. The marketing recruitment companies know.
The positions that they appoint marketers in. We'll get churned in eight months. The average tenure for a CMO. Senior marketing people is eight months in the UK and in the states. So you're paying top dollar, top pounds. For senior marketing personnel, they come on board, get fired.
And the reason they get fired. two reasons. They come on. I promise the Earth. They tell you that they're going to set your world light and you're going to be flying. And you realize they don't and you get rid of them.
And the reason it's 18 months, they come in three months to get their feet under the desk. A year to implement their plan. Or lessen by bearing in mind 18 months is an average, so some are and some are a bit more but a year to implement their plan in three months to get a new job.
It's 18 months in times of recession. first department to get hammered marketing. People that make the biggest noise about marketing, recruitment and marketing jobs. The market is saying all the companies that are most successful, they do that they increase their marketing during a recession, really.
So what I'm saying is that business owners. Instinctively know there's a problem. And that's why they take a hit. So there you go, you've got you've got a fundamental problem, you've got marketing automation that has decimated so many businesses.
Where is it now? It doesn't work for businesses now because you can't connect with it. It wasn't working beforehand. And every attempt that you did make, if people looked at your website, people using platforms like lead forensics, which can analyse people's IP addresses and match IP addresses, telephone numbers and company names, and provide you with that information
so you can go and talk with them again. But because that's all that's on offer. Demand Gen Legion marketing, automation and all associated digital marketing. Is failing a Photoshop quite a long time ago, but it's getting worse by the port by the month and now in this COVID lockdown scenario.
Businesses is just failing left, right and centre. Sadly. Is there a way out, yes, there is. And that's the next part of what I'm going to talk about. So where do we start, where's the best place to start?
Well. It's content, and there's a reason for this. People engage your content, we know that everybody knows that. But it's all well and good talking about content, but what type of content? The first stage and I call this kind of secondary content, we'll get onto primary and product in a minute, but your secondary content?
If you can't phone in and directly connect with people, how are you going to do it? Well, you've got a database, you're using Salesforce, probably. So what you do is you invite them, you invite them to watch your weekly live show.
You create a. Schedule. And you invite them to look to look at your schedule. This is what we've got planned for the next six weeks, come join us. Come and join us anonymously, because that's what people want to do.
They want to tell you who they are. I just want to pitch up and have a look. Don't like what they’re saying. Well, this is interesting. Not seen this before. Get them on live streaming. You can do it with an iPhone.
You don't need to. I mean, I'm surrounded by equipment here, but you don't need a whiskey. But the point is understanding the logic behind it, because if the previous infrastructure. Was and is failing. Then you have to gradually move on to something different.
So the first part of it is your secondary content, news and live streaming and invite them your primary content, your secretary primary and just here. Just yeah, just here. This diagram this infographic shows there's general secondary primary and product general information is how it got in a copy.
Someone got a a gold star as a member of staff or something happened, it was relevant to a supplier and it's between you and the supplier. This information isn't actually even of any interest to prospects. So that's general just mentioned about your secondary content, secondary and.
Type content and then your primary as your primary content is your how to. How do you use your products? How do you implement your products, what are the case studies of the products, information that people are genuinely interested in?
And that's where your primary content comes into play. And one of the one of the key things about primary content is the construction of it. I've seen just hundreds, hundreds and hundreds of companies. They content on their website, on their articles, their blogs consists of a few paragraphs.
Like I was saying at the beginning about the beginning of this series. Google are the people that determine whether you have good content or not. The way they do that, this. This information I've got up now, this is a typical structure that Google demand.
And the reason I say they demand it is because. Google, understand what people read. Google understand how long people read for because they've got all the analytics information, so they know what it is, how long they read, how long they get, that you are able to maintain their engagement.
And so your articles. To constitute a good document should be between two and 6000 words long. Have bullet points, bullet lists, number lists, graphics, detailed graphics within it, as in small infographics, embedded video. And a sequence of h, they call it H1, H2, H3, but these are titles like a large titles next, what next lies down, next size down. But the importance of these it tells Google what is the actual name of the the the article itself and what are the subheadings? And that tells Google how you've constructed and formatted the layout of that document.
And there is a grammar check and not just a spell checker, but a method that says this information can be understood by twelve year, so therefore it can be assimilated quickly. So that's your primary content and that logic, as we've got here.
You know, I can put up a video. I can put up an infographic which you've seen. We can look at secondary B-roll and it can be pictures of London or something like that which you can cut away. That's what engaging information looks like as far as video is concerned.
But the same thought process has to go into how you produce your written articles. And finally, I say, finally, you move on to product, you've seen product videos, you've seen people presenting or demonstrating products, your own and other people's.
And that information needs to be shown on video as well. All of this leads to that ultimate desire, which is a call to action, which is they contact you, they tell you, we we've seen what you've written, we've seen what you've presented, we like what you've done.
If they're going to be spending tens of thousands of pounds with you, they have every right to understand how you think. And the only way you can present to someone. Or to give them any indication about how you think.
He's by writing and by doing video and by doing live streams and motoring podcasts. Podcast in myself. More decision makers listen to podcasts than other types of people. In B2B. And we're kind of at a point where it's like, say, these aren't options anymore.
These are absolute necessities. And there is an absolutely fundamental reason for this is that overall the process is cheaper. More cost effective and more profitable than what you've been doing over the past five or ten years. And that's, you know, you've got to be you've got to go some and to be able to justify what for?
For me to justify what I've just said or anybody else. But it's true. You have to understand the communications mechanics. To flip your business to start making it profitable again, and it can be done irrespective of COVID, irrespective of lockdowns.
But more to the point, irrespective of marketing automation, because it is not the answer. Now, the other point about all of this is if you follow this, the strategy. Strategy works 24-7. It works 365. She was one of the big problems is that when businesses start, they will stop in the same fashion the same way and you'll
understand what I'm saying. When I started it was 1987, it was going to start a company. We would call and them we were knocking on doors, we were doing all that kind of stuff, all that kind of stuff.
The barrier to entry to market was easy. There wasn't a barrier. They didn't do it. But things are changed. And so each iteration each kind of reinvention of oneself kind of always got that in the back of your mind thinking well could always revert to cold calling, you know, we can always go back to that, can't
we always whether you're knocking on doors or people, still do we get? But doesn't work, we know it doesn't work. It's not cost effective, but it wasn't so much the cold calling that was the issue. It was. Have you got a really good product?
And that was that was key. You know, your mom says I love the product there. It's great. Not good enough. So if we look at the way businesses start now, they go right, we're going to start a business, we'll get some money, we get some investment and away we go.
And they do that. And once they get the money and they get things moving, if they do get the investment or they invested themselves, once they get things moving, then we're going to get someone involved in marketing, really.
The reality of this needs to be before we invest a penny. We will confirm that we can market this business and that can be done even with paper. I derided paper clip earlier, but if you look at this type of stuff, you can say, right?
Well, a quick and fair use pay per click. If people click on it, we've probably got the makings of a good product. And that's that that's what doesn't happen. So now if we're looking at how do you communicate a digital message, the only way you can do that is by producing the content and getting it out there. And let the customers decide. And if it doesn't work, change it, if it doesn't work, change it. Keep changing it until it starts working. And that's all you can do, because there's no other option, there's no other alternative.
Oh, you could go on television, but most businesses haven't got the budget for TV, for television. But you have got a budget to do this digitally. And what's more important to understand is that if you do this digitally, you can you can be absolutely laser, totally laser targeted, laser focused on your vertical market.
You can decide on exactly who your target market is and produce content expressly for that target market and even for those individuals, this goes way beyond ABM. This is being focused on who they are, what they do, and inviting them to engage with you anonymously to begin with.
It's a game changer. So that's kind of the second part, so because of covered the first part. Why are we in this mess? The second part is, what is the content, what's available, what's the information, what needs to be done, what should it look like?
Everybody knows how to email someone. That's not the point. The point is is having your marketing people, you can still keep them on and having people that are genuine content creators. And this is where your salespeople come into their own, because they're the people that have made a living out of communicating face to face.
They're the ones that fronted your company. And there are people within your organization who are affable and communicative and fun to be with. Get them in front of the camera. So that's it, that's the that's the middle part of this, this the third part and final part is about how to structure your business for the long term
. I'll come to that in just a minute. Once you've made the decision to become a digital first business. You then have to look at the infrastructure, your own infrastructure. It's all well and good saying great, well, we'll look at doing this.
But the main point here is how do you structure a business if you're if you're driving all this content in this particular way? How and why should it work? The. Simplest way, I think, to present this or to communicate this is it's cheaper and requires less people.
Is more profitable. And he's less grief than anything that you've ever done before as a starting point. What I've got here is a new organizational chart. We start from left to right. first of all, we got technical.
Everything to do with the companies is supported by technical that your hardware or your software across the board, that's hardware and software for marketing as well, always supported by technical. And the reason being is because of the massive churn within marketing.
The technology that people use leaves with them with the expertise in that technology, with them, if they go, that's not good enough. The business must be in control and must be able to manage and support and train anybody that needs to be trained by staff that are looked after within the company.
So, it is a safeguard process and making sure that you are able to train people in the software. Whoever comes or goes. Secondly, we've got we of course, understand what marketing is, what marketing we're doing. But if you replace that person who would run marketing, replace the CMO and call them the editor in chief, for argument's sake
, the editor is the person that oversees the production of written content, video content, audio content and live content. You have. Presenters, researchers, reporters, copywriters, all these different people produce the content. The key thing about this is that. You can employ them full time or you can contract them.
To think about that, because at the end of the day, once you produce the information and it's been approved by whoever you decide to approve it, not just you but external parties, prospects, customers, suppliers and so on, different people that can say, Oh, I love that.
That's a great document and people that are looking to buy from you. So what do you think of this? Get them to really get their feedback. And then publish it and make it and promote it and so on.
So that's the point of doing this. So. So your middle tier, as you can see coaches going back to the editor in chief, you have a raft of people. All of which can be contracted. And finally, you have the revenue side of things.
Now, revenues obviously run by chief revenue officer. Within that, you've got presales, existing sales, post sales, customer support, customer success, installation training, maintenance queries, tech support, tech support for customers, the whole list. All of that. Has an impact on revenue, and therefore that comes under the chief revenue officer, but overseeing all of this, as you can see
right at the very top, is the chief growth officer. And it's based upon growing your business, making sure that tech and editorial and revenue is all taken care of. So you can see without, you know, it doesn't need a wholesale change immediately because it needs to be processed, but if you think about digital transformation and what that
means, yes, it's about engagement with your customers. Your customers are internal and external, your customers are your staff and your customers are are paying people. But the end of the day, it's the company needs to be in a position where it can communicate its message effectively.
And that's where the whole digital transformation comes into it into its own, especially with this. And this is all part and parcel of it. And so the the expectation that customers have is that they they want to dip in, they want to be engaged with you and know that you can support them for the long term.
And that's why it is critical that you're able to communicate your message in a in a method and in a format that they can dip in. Look at it, dip down, dip in and dip out. And ultimately, they say what they can say, right, well, we like how you think we like how you present, we like how
you have you've demonstrated how you support us, how you look after us for that, look after us for the long term. So we'll buy from you. You know, happy days. Waste salespeople. Well, work's been done. So the that the costs are typically incurred by a company, by a large sales team and commission being paid to them.
Let's go. So the company gets to keep more of the revenue. Yes, there's a shift to the people that need to do part of the editorial work under what used to be called marketing. But if you're looking at paying a commission or a bonus, who gets it.
Shared between the other everybody else because they've been part of the process selling bit after you've you know you if you engage them on a live show, you sent them information that they've watched customer stories. They've looked at how it works, how you install it, how you support it, how you deal with tech support, everything.
Who's done the sale? You have. Salesman doesn't need to go out there. And if he does, what might need one or two salespeople to look after the UK? But that's if someone really, really, really needs them to go and see them once one face to face.
So that's that's the, you know, once you allow this, this process, this restructuring to percolate and for you to think about it. The long term success of your company now depends on it. It must change. COVID has seen to that.
And that's what. I suppose you could say, I suppose, if you need help, call us. Any step of the way when it comes to video, think about this along this line, if you wanted Steven Spielberg to come and direct your videos, think fine, go and get Steven Spielberg cost you a few quid, but they do it.
But the key thing there's a difference between shooting a corporate video this is look at a massive building. Look, our enormous boardroom, which customers are not interested in, is a bit like pitching up somewhere in a Rolls-Royce and they see you pitching up in a Rolls Royce to go, well, I'm not going to buy from them. No, if they're smoking around a Rolls-Royce, the same applies to corporate videos. They're only really good for shareholders in certain cases and the like customers not interested. They want to see the whites of your eyes. They want to see your authenticity.
Our job, our role as entrepreneurs, you and I is to look at the situations that we are placed in. Look what we got and adjust and adapt. And that's what this is about. There's a problem with marketing that has been for a long time.
It's been exacerbated because of COVID and lockdowns and that process over the past nearly a year now. Has kind of has helped me better understand is better understand. Maybe not better understand, but become more determined. To not allow marketing automation technology to damage B2B any longer.
And by the way, I mean, I've made a point of saying about B2B works for B2C. It does. I use it if I see something, I like it, I know I can get a hold of it and read it.
And unfortunately, about seven times out of ten, the information is rubbish anyway. And so I had to go and unsubscribe almost immediately because they're just getting a deluge of emails. But thanks to GDPR, they have to have to not contact you.
So the same thing happens with B2B that people don't and they're not saying right, the information is no good. Unsubscribe. And that's what a lot of companies find have problems with people download the information than subscribers because the information was no good or you started sending them too many emails and so on, and the list
goes on. So. That's where we're at. I'm going to win this up now. There is no choice, I don't see there being any choice. And the fact that any business can make a change could make a start by just.
You know, you hold up a mobile phone and start recording life. I mean, it's quite staggering that the quality and technology that's available just not in the latest iPhones, but there's more to it. And there's another part to this in terms of office space.
The lockdown has forced everybody to work at home. Video and video production is still allowed. So more people are working from home, you've got more space at your office. Convert some of your space to a to studio usage per say.
And get you your gear set up and start using it. And that's what we recommend. And we can come in and help you set everything up and buy all the right gear and so on. But that's the point.
So that's it for me. Hope you like this. Hope you enjoyed this. It's a bit of a serious message. But then being a business is a serious matter. And if we want to stay in business. Then if you do what you've always done, you get what you've always got.
And this is about change and not change for change sake. But looking at this entrepreneurially and saying, right, we're going to nail this. The fight is on. Let's get out there and make it happen and be more effective and be and be more profitable.
We're not social services. We're not in business to fund people. We're in business to make money. And that's the reality of all of this. And no matter what gets thrown at us, we will go out there and make it happen and adapt and change it anyway.
That's it for me. I'll catch you in the next one bye for now.