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Tag Archive: focus

B2B marketing tip #51: Prune your programs

B2B Marketing Tip of the WeekGardeners know that periodic trimming promotes lush and fruitful growth. The same techniques apply to marketing. At least once a year, review your activities. Sunset or reconfigure those that require the most effort but produce the fewest returns. Freeing up resources leaves room to improve efficiency, expand effective programs or test new techniques.

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B2B marketing tip #27: Establish your boundaries

B2B Marketing Tip of the WeekCorporate marketing can easily evolve into a 24/7 commitment—if we allow it. Take control. Carve out your strategic “think” time and the all-important non-work time—then stick to it.

Block lunch hours on your calendar—then leave the building. Instruct team members when it is/is not appropriate to contact you after hours, then support decisions they make in your absence.

And, when you do burn the midnight oil, save your emails in your Drafts folder to send during business hours the next day; don’t broadcast your willingness to work overtime.

Follow the B2B Marketing “Tip of the Week” every Monday for a short, practical recommendation to improve your marketing effectiveness. Looking for suggestions in a specific area? Tweet me your request @ThinkSpringMktg or contact me.

Before the A-ha moment? The Oh sh*t moment

Five ways to overcome the fear of failure that often accompanies a big idea

As an entrepreneur, there are many things that wake me in the middle of the night with that sinking feeling of despair in the pit of my stomach: Have I paid my payroll taxes? Did I scope the last project correctly? Will I land the next new client?

Few, however, are as universal as the fear of failure that seems to accompany every new strategic project.

So, it was heartening to hear from my colleague Sarah that I’m not alone in this rollercoaster combination of excitement and dread. Sarah aptly describes this as the “Oh sh*t” moment, as in, “Oh sh*t, I’m not going to make it on this one.”

Big projects = big emotion

We find it most often in the first half of a large engagement, such as helping a client develop a new value proposition, researching a marketing plan, or trying to diagnose the issues that hold back a marketing organization. Between us, we share decades of marketing experience and confidence in our abilities—yet we still struggle with how to push through the gut-level dread that a big project often generates.

Fortunately, the “Oh sh*t” moment eventually gives way to the all-important “A-ha” moment of enlightenment. Yet to get there requires patience, persistence, trust and for me, a good stash of chocolate and caffeine.

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B2B marketing tip #24: Change of venue, please!

B2B Marketing Tip of the WeekWe all know one: the coworker, boss or client who just can’t be parted from their email or laptop long enough to fully hear and digest your proposal.

Try an unconventional meeting approach to achieve their undivided attention. Suggest a “walk and talk” around the parking lot, or lunch at a restaurant where wireless or cell service is limited. Then, use this valuable time wisely to deliver your message.

If all else fails, be diplomatic but direct and bring up the issue next time it occurs.

Follow the B2B Marketing “Tip of the Week” every Monday for a short, practical recommendation to improve your marketing effectiveness. Looking for suggestions in a specific area? Tweet me your request @ThinkSpringMktg or contact me.

 

B2B marketing tip #14: Tally your productivity

B2B Marketing Tip of the WeekTrack your time and activities for two weeks, then use this information to improve efficiency, better forecast your availability for future projects, or to justify additional resources. Note where urgent requests and administrative tasks prevent you from accomplishing more strategic activities.

List your major activities in a spreadsheet, such as “Plan fall tradeshow,” “Generate monthly leads report,” or “Route newsletter copy for review.” Log your time against these activities in 15-minute intervals. Avoid broad categories like “Miscellaneous” or “Meetings.”

Check out the Springboard blog every Monday for the B2B Marketing “Tip of the Week” — a short, practical recommendation to improve your marketing effectiveness. Looking for suggestions in a specific area? Tweet me your request @ThinkSpringMktg or contact me.

B2B marketing tip #8: Schedule inspiration

B2B Marketing Tip of the WeekStrategy drives effective marketing, but a hectic day of meetings, emails, calls and projects leaves no time for new thinking or rejuvenating your inner creative. Block out time every month for big-picture ideas and strategic planning. Use a conference room or offsite space to make uninterrupted progress.

Check out the Springboard blog every Monday for the B2B Marketing “Tip of the Week” — a short, practical recommendation to improve your marketing effectiveness. Looking for suggestions in a specific area? Tweet me your request @ThinkSpringMktg or contact me.

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