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  • Michael Kerman

Jump-starting the Marketing Engine

A friend of mine recently shared with me that his company re-organized and now, he "owns Marketing too!" despite never having any formal marketing training. He was looking for some ideas on how to improve their marketing results. Of course, I spent considerable time talking about:

 How lead generation has changed

The role of the buyer’s journey as it relates to lead generation

Lead generation and the interaction with Sales

The MarTech stack and its implications on lead generation

After all of this, he thanked me but reiterated his original request in a more direct manner… “can you give me some easy things that work”.  So, I put my self in his position and came up with some thoughts:


Include a CTA in your emails.  Probably the simplest way to drive both awareness as well as prospecting is to include a call-to-action in your email signature. Whether it is to register for a conference, visit a new landing page, read an important press release or download a new whitepaper, a compelling (as perceived by the prospect) CTA can do wonders in a relatively short-term.

Trigger emails. According to a 2017 study by Yes Lifecycle Marketing, trigger emails made up just under 7 percent of total campaigns in Q1, yet they generated almost 5 times the click rate, almost double the open rate, and almost triple the CTO rate of business-as-usual (BAU) emails. Thanks to improved marketing automation, you can easily program your systems to send context-specific, personalized emails when customers:

Come to your website

Register for your website

Complete their first purchase

Haven’t visited your website in _____ days/weeks/months

Create content for re-use.  Many marketing teams struggle to keep up with creating the mountain of content required to guide and support the buyer’s journey. One way to handle this is to create content with a plan.  For example, schedule and videotape a 15-20 minute interview with your CEO or another subject matter expert (SME) in your company. Besides posting the video, you can:

Extract the audio and create a podcast

Break the video into 5 or 6 short (2-3minute) videos for YouTube or Facebook

Convert audio to text and use for an eBook or whitepaper

Extract a compelling piece of the audio for a blog post

Create an on-demand webinar

Come to your website

Come to your website

Answer questions on QuoraQuora is a rapidly-growing platform for connecting people in with questions to users with unique insights and quality answers. This is another way to extend your value proposition, reinforce thought leadership and subtly drive prospects to your website.


Interview your Buyers.  Whether you do it in-house or use a 3rd-party firm like Egress Solutions, interviewing your buyers (regardless of whether you won or lost the deal) can be yield tremendous insight into your messaging, value proposition and content:

How did they find you?

What did they search on?

What steps did they take?

What content did they read?

Who were their trusted advisors?

What was it about your message (or your competitor’s) that resonated with them OR alienated them?  

Share (giveaway) useful, pragmatic tools or information.  Everyone has some interesting data or some homegrown tools that they’ve collected or created that could be of value to someone else.  Sharing this useful content is a great way to reinforce thought leadership and the collaborative approach you have with your partners and customers.

Create Interactive Content.  Online quizzes, assessment or profile tools, calculators or similar content can be used to engage the prospect and encourage them to spend more time on your page/site.  Together with livechat (or now, chatbots), interactive content can help increase both the quantity and quality of leads coming in through your website.


Capturing the buyer’s attention (doesn’t matter whether it’s B2C or B2B) is getting harder and harder. Text has given way to graphics which has given way to videos.

Create Teaser Videos.  We’ve all seen these in our personal life…”The 5 Foods you should never eat” video... before they share their “secret”, they walk you through their “story” and end up with some type of call-to-action or purchase option (the same way all Disney tours and attractions end in the gift shop!).   Also, consider the use of whiteboard videos (example shown to the right) these can be a great way of creating a less-formal, engaging way of telling complex stories

Create Web Documentaries.  As a former colleague of mine pointed out in her recent LinkedIn post, well-designed “web documentaries” can be the ultimate in telling your story in an interactive, engaging manner. This format gives the user the maximum level of control as they navigate your story’s “landscape”.

While I'm sure my friend's head hurt more after our conversation than before, he was very appreciative of these (relatively) quick ways to improve his company's marketing and drive greater results.

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