Influencer Marketing in B2B (as in Back To Basics) With @markwschaefer

Influencer marketing is getting big. Here and there, a lot of noise is made about instagram influencers and suchlike. With sponsored posts reaching a €2,000 pricetag in France and up to £75,000 in the UK, “influence” is becoming big business indeed. Even though some marketeers are still wondering whether what they are doing is the right thing and besides some people are trying to abuse the system.

Less is known about B2B influence strategies and much can be learnt, including for the above-mentioned marketeers, from some of the very elaborate influence strategies developed for B2B and especially in the high-tech world. In B2B, it is hard to cheat. Influence is built upon business practice and knowledge, not on hearsay. B2B is also conducive to more long-term, in-depth strategies and ethics is key. This, in my mind is the cornerstone of any good influencer marketing strategy. To prove this point I have interviewed Mark Schaefer who recently co-authored a White Paper with Traackr’s Evy Wilkins entitled “The Rise of Influencer Marketing in B2B Technology”.

the rise of influencer marketing in B2B technoogy

In this interview recorded over Skype from Mark’s home in Tennessee, the famous blogger and author has covered all the most important aspects of influencer marketing and provided tips which, in my mind, are useful to all kinds of marketeers who want to get involved in similar projects, be they in B2B or B2C marketing.

I’ve got a few questions for you about a white paper you co-authored with Traackr, which is entitled “The Rise Of Influencer Marketing In B2b Technology”. Are technology companies ahead of the bunch?

As far as the people I talked to are concerned, they really are. In fact, it was quite inspirational to me. Because like you I’ve been working in the influencer space for a long time. I wrote an early book, maybe the first book on social influencer marketing that was published in 2012, so I’ve been keenly interested in this and I’ll tell you it was so inspiring to hear how sophisticated this has become and how integrated this has become into mainstream marketing strategies. This was a very energizing exercise for me. Read more

Digital Training: My Advice to Executives In the Middle of a Career Move

Digital training? But what the hell is digital in the first place?

digital training
GEM’s deputy director, Jean-François Fiorina, presenting on 07/04/2017 in front of my students. His master class was about his social media strategy for Grenoble Ecole de Management. After all, if the Boss can do it, students can do it too, can’t they?

Digital training in the information age seems pretty straightforward. And yet. The very definition of the digital domain is mind-boggling and fuzzy. Where does it start, where does it end? Also, choosing a digital training programme, like any other kind of training programme for that matter, in any area, implies that executive students spend quite a lot of time thinking about what they want to do in the future.

This is why I have written these few bullet points, in order to help them with their choice. As you may or may not know, I am programme director at Grenoble Ecole de Management (aka GEM, a leading European school) since I am in charge of the Advanced Masters in Digital Business Strategy which welcomes 40 students from various origins every year.

Approximately 30% of these are executive students. A lot of these executive students have questions and issues they are trying to solve through a digital training programme, which remains a means for them to put a stake in the ground and show both management and themselves that a career move is nigh. In this piece, I have put together some advice for them to ensure that they are choosing the right programme and to help them with their choice of career.

  • Number one advice is, above everything, to start focusing on your career move: an executive student’s focal point must be her/his career move. You have to avoid throwing everything away just because you are oping through a midlife crisis. In other words, the first thing I do when I interview executive students for my Masters is to check whether their motivation is positive and not negative. I understand that frustration at work can happen, and that execs may have enough of working with the same people. For somebody like me who has worked for more than 30 years, it’s not very difficult to imagine nor understand what’s behind the frustration. I have been there before. Yet, All negative motivation (I hate this!) must be turned into a positive one (here is what I want to do!). To put it in the words of Daniel Porot, think of your move as as runway and imagine you are landing and not just taking off. Landing is more important, it’s the end state that matters. As a recruiter if I do not understand where you will be landing I try to help candidates with their plan and if I still can’t understand what they want to achieve, I will try and evaluate a better solution with them. Obviously, digital training and digital in general must be part of the landing plan if one wants to join the masters.

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7 Video Marketing Insights To Get You Noticed

Video marketing is incredibly powerful. Don’t believe me? I promise you, by the end of this post you will be converted. Not only that, you’ll be inspired to start creating your own branded video, regardless of budget. In this article, we’re going to look at different types of video that can be used for marketing purposes, as well as what techniques you can use to optimize them and improve engagement with your audience.

If you’re in ecommerce and are investing in content, or have a brand website, you should also have a video content strategy. There are lots of considerations to take into account when creating your brand’s video content. In this post we’ll discuss format, purpose, creation, representation, distribution – and importantly, how to optimize for the best ROI.

7 video insights to get you noticed

Tried and tested video styles that convert

Video should be entertaining, emotional and memorable, and when it’s all three, it can turn your marketing strategy into something remarkable.

Take a look at some examples of video marketing that have worked wonders for brands and converted customers:

Facebook – Explains and tells a story

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Finding my way around the information superhighway – best wishes for 2017

Not many of you might remember the information superhighway. I do, this is how I found my way around business.

From the information superhighway to Visionary Marketing

From a business perspective, 2016 has been an eventful year, to say the least. In fact, the past few years have been very busy. Three years to the day I was working on my computer and on my blog preparing to launch my new company. New isn’t the right term. Visionary Marketing was created in 1995. Out of frustration and seeing how managers were being downsized regardless of their abilities. I then decided to use this new tool one called the Internet (in those days people referred to it as the information superhighway) to sell my wares.

information Superhighway - the early version of Visionary Marketing
The 1997 version of Visionary Marketing, then part of the information superhighway (image, courtesy of the superb Archive.org Webiste)

As I tried to post my CV online and quickly realised that nothing good would happen if I continued to do that, I turned the website around, changed its content and theme to match that of a 100 page report I had written and rebranded it to match the name of the report. Half a year later, I bought a domain name and attached it to the Website.

Information superhighway and best wishes
The Visionary Marketing team wishes you a Merry Christmas and a happy new year

The site may have changed platforms a few times but it has always been there to support my work. I used it to do research, to publish my work, to network, and evangelise. Eventually, I never had to search for a job anymore. People started to call me. I wasn’t fired from Unisys. In actual fact it went the other round, I resigned twice. Once to leave France and get back to Britain. But they wouldn’t let me go and I got an expat package instead. Even though that was deemed impossible at the time. The Website had made me visible and desirable. I went on updating it. And I resigned a second time to join Capgemini for whom I worked in Lebanon and China and France.

I went on updating my website. It got me another job outside of Capgemini and I joined Orange (France Telecom as it was called at the time). The Website got me that job and I never ceased to update it. In 2004 an Orange colleague advised me to move to blogs. I didn’t suppress the Website but went on to build blogs – this blog is one of them – on top of the Website. I was right not to do away with the site, that was visionary too.

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Social Selling at the heart of Facebook Marketplace

Welcome to the Internet : the land of Marketplaces ! We all know Amazon marketplace, Asos Marketplace, or many other platforms dedicated to peer-to-peer selling. For a lot of people, the Internet is the best place to sell products (new or vintage) to other people. It’s as easy as 1,2,3 ; just find a popular platform like Craigslist or Leboncoin for our french readers, and post the most convincing image (sometimes even adding some filters to beautify it), with a short description and a price tag. And wait.. until someone makes the move. To try and boost the sale of an old couch, people share their posts on social media. Who knows, maybe one of our Facebook friends has a cousin who needs a vintage couch, right? Now Facebook, that social network we use ‘all day everyday’ is launching its own Marketplace. In this article, we’ll go through the basics of that new Facebook feature.

Don’t hesitate to give us your opinion.

Selling your old couch? Photo by Mia Tawilé
Selling your old couch?
Photo by Mia Tawilé

Facebook Marketplace: All about social selling

First things first. For those of you who do not know what social selling is (not everyone is a geek), let me explain it briefly. Social selling is the process of making the best out of your social media platform, to find potential clients to target, communicate with them, build trust and credibility. All this is done, of course, to end up with a sale.

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