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Daniel Rodgers

A lot of news that you will not see in the paper. A lot of technology that is coming out that will not see in the paper.

Social media and healthcare: how to prioritize what patients need

Social media and healthcare go hand in hand these days. More and more of the public are taking to social media for healthcare news Read more...

This post Social media and healthcare: how to prioritize what patients need originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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Social media silence: How to know when your brand should stay quiet

“Think of the end at the beginning, always.” That’s what my previous boss and mentor constantly asked of me. As a young social media Read more...

This post Social media silence: How to know when your brand should stay quiet originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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7 Work-Life Balance Tips (When Working Remotely)

Striking the perfect work-life balance isn’t easy. Fitting in loads of laundry between work sessions and virtual meetings… Never missing your kids’ school plays or soccer games… Cooking every night and …

7 Work-Life Balance Tips (When Working Remotely) Read More »

The post 7 Work-Life Balance Tips (When Working Remotely) appeared first on Smart Blogger.

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B2B Influencer Marketing Advice from 9 Top B2B Influencers

Human Figures Showing Influence Image

Human Figures Showing Influence Image

Top marketers understand the value of integrating influencer marketing into their marketing strategy. In fact, 55% of marketers believe they get better customers from influencer marketing according to an Influencer Marketing Hub survey. For B2B brands, influencer marketing is a way to partner with industry experts who can add value to the brand’s content.

As a brand, how can you provide mutual value and a great experience for the thought leaders you engage?

I went straight to some of my top sources to ask their thoughts on the best way for B2B brands to collaborate with them. What stood out to me, was the way their key points aligned with how a brand might develop a marketing strategy.

Let’s start with understanding who your audience is and who they follow. Most B2B brands have personas created for their customers. Now think about how you can mirror those customer personas to align with those authentic thought leaders who you're looking to engage with.

1 — Tim Crawford: Authenticity is Key

Tim Crawford

When I want to understand CIOs, I call Tim Crawford, CIO Strategic Advisor at AVOA, who has worked with nearly all of the top B2B tech brands. Tim asserts that by knowing the persona you are going after, you can ensure your messaging, and that the approach has authenticity. He also reminded me that opinion doesn’t replace experience, and Tim has plenty of valuable experience.

The value of authentic experience stands out to your audience. It is not merely opinion, but proven knowledge. “Consider the personas to target and leverage voices that bring authenticity to the messaging which will, in turn, build trust with customers,” Tim says.

[bctt tweet="“Consider the personas to target and leverage voices that bring authenticity to the messaging which will, in turn, build trust with customers.” — Tim Crawford @tcrawford" username="toprank"]

2 —Ramon Ray: Seek Influencer Excitement

Ramon Ray

Entrepreneur, keynote speaker, bestselling author and editor and founder of Smart Hustle Magazine Ramon Ray encourages brands to, “Look to work for influencers that are excited to work with you and your product or service.”

When it comes to excitement, Ramon’s comes shining through. In an interview we partnered with him on for Dell Outlet*, his smile and enthusiasm were felt even with just audio.

[bctt tweet="“Look to work for influencers that are excited to work with you and your product or service.” — Ramon Ray @ramonray" username="toprank"]

3 — Helen Yu: Let Your B2B Brand’s Values Shine

Helen Yu

What does your brand stand for? What value do you bring to your customers? “It is important for B2B brands to crystallize what their brands stand for, whom their target audiences are and how they would measure the success prior to engaging B2B influencers,” says Helen Yu of Tigon Advisory Corp. She advises finding influencers who represent the organization’s values and who can contribute to sustainable business growth.

Helen also encourages brands to share their value proposition with thought leaders to help them focus their efforts in the right direction for amplifying the brand’s vision.

[bctt tweet="“To make the engagement more productive, I recommend that brands think about how they would describe their value in 3 words. Influencers can then focus on how we deliver the work reflecting and amplifying their value.” — Helen Yu @YuHelenYu" username="toprank"]

You have a strategic marketing plan. Does that plan have influencer marketing as a tactic? If so, then be sure to include an engagement plan for any work with influencers. More than one influencer has told me stories of being asked to participate in an event — online or in person — only to find that there was not an actionable plan to bring the partnership to life, or if there was, it was delivered to the influencer at the last minute.

4 — Tamara McCleary: Focus & Specificity

Tamara McCleary

Keynote speaker and Thulium CEO Tamara McCleary recommends that you “Have a plan for your influencers. Do you know what you want your influencers to do? Do you have a clear strategy for utilizing them? One of the biggest mistakes organizations make when bringing in influencers is a lack of focus and specificity.”

[bctt tweet="“One of the biggest mistakes organizations make when bringing in influencers is a lack of focus and specificity.” — Tamara McCleary @TamaraMcCleary" username="toprank"]

5 — Ian Moyse: Empowering Influencers

Ian Moyse

Ian Moyse, cloud social influencer for a range of global brands commented, “Come to an influencer with a clear brief and clear budget offering. Brief them and provide good supporting info and links to empower them to do a good job for you. Provide them imagery, #hashtags, and @handles upfront to use. Where possible create images for the influencer such as quote cards with their photo, and share and engage with the influencers content from your corporate brand account, and encourage your staff to do the same.”

[bctt tweet="“Brief influencers and provide good supporting information to empower them to do a good job for you.” — Ian Moyse @imoyse" username="toprank"]

6 — Michael Fisher, Jr.: Better Communication Avoids Confusion

Michael Fisher

Michael Fisher, Jr., senior systems analyst at Whitcraft Group, cyber security consultant and technology evangelist, confirms good communication is key.

“My one top tip would be overall good communication around the program, which may include meetings, PowerPoint slides and a schedule. Without good communication [the partnership] may lead to confusion and overall less productivity,” says Michael.

[bctt tweet="“My one top tip would be overall good communication around the program. Without good communication the partnership may lead to confusion and overall less productivity.” — Michael Fisher, Jr. @Fisher85M" username="toprank"]

7 —Dan Gingiss: Give Audiences the Answers they Crave

Dan Gingiss

Chief Experience Officer at The Experience Maker LLC and CX thought leader Dan Gingiss encourages brands to engage influencers to elevate their customer experience.

“By giving influencers the platform to engage with your audience, you can facilitate great customer experiences by providing the answers your audience craves,” Dan shared.

Influencers allow you to add credibility to your brand’s point of view (POV), move prospects down the purchase funnel, and support customers in successfully deploying your product or service — all in a way that builds community and facilitates open conversations.

It’s important to keep in mind who you’re engaging and consider their primary business goals. “Remember that influencers are often solopreneurs who are trying to build or grow their own business. So while they may be willing to help you grow your business too, ultimately they have to do what's right for their own business first. Their personal brand is their livelihood, so be careful asking for the moon and offering nothing in return,” said Dan.

He reminds B2B brands that “The best influencer programs highlight an authentic relationship between the influencer and the brand, and the best way to accomplish that is to ensure a mutually beneficial program.”

[bctt tweet="“The best influencer programs highlight an authentic relationship between the influencer and the brand, and the best way to accomplish that is to ensure a mutually beneficial program.” — Dan Ginigiss @dgingiss" username="toprank"]

8 — Shonali Burke: Be Prepared & Specific

Shonali Burke

How you approach an influencer can set the tone for the relationship. As someone who has been on both sides of the table as a consultant looking to engage influencers and as a sought-after thought leader on digital strategy, brand elevation and analytics, Shonali Burke, President and CEO of Shonali Burke Burke Consulting, Inc. shared a great messaging tip.  “If, as a brand, you're looking to work with influencers, you will almost always get a response if, in your very first communication, you lead with a very specific ask, which shows at least equal benefit to them as to you,” she advises.

Shonali expands on such an approach, “This shows that a) you've done your research; and b) that you really understand what 'influencer' marketing is about. Simply asking for a call or meeting 'to introduce ourselves to you' is unlikely to work; (that's what the internet is for). But if you have a really specific ask, e.g. you think they'd be a great potential speaker, etc., you're almost guaranteed to get a response — as opposed to... crickets.”

[bctt tweet="“If, as a brand, you're looking to work with influencers, you will almost always get a response if, in your very first communication, you lead with a very specific ask, which shows at least equal benefit to them as to you.” @shonali" username="toprank"]

Of course you measure the success of your campaigns. But have you thought of sharing that with your partners? “If you're not sure what to do, ask. Many influencers have years of experience in serving the needs of B2B brands,” says Ramon.

Ramon invites B2B brands to “Know what your measure of success is and share this with the influencer.”

[bctt tweet="“Know what your measure of success is and share this with the influencer.” — Ramon Ray @ramonray" username="toprank"]

While it can be easy to do a flashy one-time campaign, B2B brands with the most success build brand awareness with a community of influencers who they trust and build strong relationships with over time. Tamara McCleary advises, “Think long-term. It’s important to look at an influencer program as a long-term relationship-building program. A long-term program will allow your brand to create true brand advocates, powerful brand evangelists, and raving fans.”

[bctt tweet="“A long-term influencer program will allow your brand to create true brand advocates, powerful brand evangelists, and raving fans.” — Tamara McCleary @TamaraMcCleary" username="toprank"]

9 — Lee Odden: Ongoing Influence

Lee Odden

The TopRank Marketing blog has a new Always On Influence series exploring lasting relationships with influencers. These lasting relationships can be a foundation to grow in the years ahead.

[bctt tweet="“Relationships take time and that means influencer engagement is an ongoing effort, not just when influencers are needed to provide content or promotion.” — Lee Odden, TopRank Marketing CEO @leeodden" username="toprank"]

B2B Influencer Relations Tips

I’m not an influencer, but I have learned the best way to work with anyone is to have a conversation with them upfront. Then keep the conversation going to drive the best collaboration and create successful outcomes for your brand.

I appreciate the candor and openness of these amazing leaders, who continue to allow me to have an ongoing conversation with them.

Remember these key tips top B2B thought leaders shared for building successful relationships and campaigns:

  • Be Authentic
  • Align influencers with your audience personas
  • Find influencers who are excited to work with your brand
  • Share your brand values and value proposition
  • Have a specific ask upfront
  • Have a plan and brief the influencers
  • Create great experiences
  • Share how you want to measure success
  • Build a lasting relationship

Are you ready to take the leap to the next level of influencer marketing? Learn more about always on influencer marketing or contact us today.

* Dell Outlet is a TopRank Marketing client.

The post B2B Influencer Marketing Advice from 9 Top B2B Influencers appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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Five easy ways to make your social media more inclusive

A version of this article was previously published on LinkedIn. For most, enjoying and using social media is a relatively hassle-free experience. Many of Read more...

This post Five easy ways to make your social media more inclusive originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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17+ Top Virtual Marketing Conferences for Summer 2020 & Beyond

Smiling Woman at Computer Image

Smiling Woman at Computer Image

Virtual marketing conferences offer a wealth of benefits to marketers looking to learn and increase brand awareness, and in the current crisis they represent the only event opportunities for marketers.

How do you go about finding events that match your business and B2B marketing needs, however?

With in-person marketing events not likely until well into 2021, more virtual events than ever taking place, making it harder than ever to find the ones that can best help build your business, expand your communication opportunities, and offer the most relevant new industry education from top marketing industry experts.

MarTech Today Chart

Marketers are getting more out of virtual events, too — with 75 percent in a recent survey saying they were satisfied with their virtual event experiences. Online events also hold their own unique advantages.

"Bringing events online has its downsides, naturally — there’s no substitute for personally meeting and interacting with all the valuable contacts attending a conference — but there are some key advantages," Amanda Bulat, senior content marketing manager at LinkedIn Sales & Marketing Solutions recently observed.

"Virtual events are easier for people to attend (with no geographic restrictions), less resource-intensive to host, and can make it easier to capture lead gen info," she added.

Expanding on our previous listing of "8 Virtual SEO Conferences for B2B Marketers," for summer 2020 and beyond we've gathered together a collection of some of the top virtual marketing events, and we're happy to present the list here, in chronological order.

Virtual Marketing Conferences For Summer 2020 & Beyond

Adobe Experience Makers Live — #ExperienceMakersLive
When: July 22-23, 2020
Theme: Digital Experiences
About: Adobe* Experience Makers Live is focused on creating long-term business success through inclusive digital experiences, featuring speakers including author Dr. Brené Brown, Microsoft's Shelley Bransten, Forrester's Joana de Quintanilha, and Adobe's Marissa Dacay.

ContentTECH Summit — #ContentTECH
When: August 10-12, 2020
Theme: Content Marketing
About: ContentTECH Summit explores the ever-increasing importance of content marketing to create, manage, deliver and scale enterprise content and provide customers with better digital experiences, and features top speakers such as Mastercard Worldwide's Wendy Richardson, author Alan Zweibel, and our own CEO Lee Odden.

Digital Summit At Home — #DSatHome
When: August 11-13, 2020
Theme: Digital Marketing
About: Digital Summit At Home examines digital marketing in over 30 virtual sessions, and features top speakers such as author Seth Godin, LinkedIn's* Ty Heath, and our own senior director of digital strategy Ashley Zeckman.

IABC MN Convergence Summit — #IABCMN
When: August 12-13, 2020
Theme: Business Communications
About: IABC MN Convergence Summit weaves together business and academic experts to learn how to overcome today's business communication challenges and explore how to build reputation, connect with audiences, and influence stakeholders, and features speakers such as Best Buy's Andy Gorski, Deluxe Corporation's Devon Block, along with our CEO Lee Odden who will present "In Search of Trust: How Authentic Content Drives Customer Experience."

INBOUND 2020 — #INBOUND2020
When: September 22-23, 2020
Theme: Marketing & Sales
About: INBOUND 2020 presents some of the biggest names and brightest minds in sales and marketing and other industries, and offers speakers from firms including Intuit, HubSpot and others.

AI Summit Silicon Valley — #AISummit
When: September 30-October 1, 2020
Theme: Artificial Intelligence (AI)
About: The Virtual AI Summit Silicon Valley 2020 presents all things artificial intelligence for business marketers, and includes leading speakers from Google, Lyft, Boeing, Lenovo and more.

2020 B2B Next Conference & Exhibition — #B2BNext
When: September 29-30, 2020
Theme: Marketing & Sales
About: The 2020 B2B Next Conference & Exhibition explores the digital-first B2B economy with a focus on collaboration in eCommerce, and features top speakers including Grainger CEO D.G. Macpherson, Graybar CEO Kathy Mazzarella, RBC Capital Markets' Marketing Manager Mark Mahaney and others.

Advertising Week Virtual — #AW2020
When: September 29-October 8, 2020
Theme: Marketing & Sales
About: Advertising Week Virtual serves as a worldwide gathering of marketing, advertising, technology and brand professionals, offering major speakers including Google VP of Marketing, EMEA Yonca Dervisoglu, SNAP VP of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Baroness Oona King, Interpublic Group CEO Michael Roth and others, for eight days and six global markets filled with unlimited ideas.

Fast Co. Innovation Festival — #FCFestival
When: October 5-9, 2020
Theme: Innovation
About: The Fast Co. Innovation Festival offers business inspiration by leaders making a difference through technology and creativity, with a powerful slate of global speakers to be announced.

MarTech — #MarTechConf
When: October 6-8, 2020
Theme: MarTech
About: Martech Conference focuses on actionable tactics in marketing technology for solving marketing problems, with top speakers to be announced.

Content Marketing World — #CMWorld
When: October 13-16, 2020
Theme: Content Marketing
About: Content Marketing World conference and expo explores the best in content marketing to grow your business and inspire your audience, featuring top speakers including Beverly Jackson of Activision Blizzard, Jay Baer of Convince & Convert, MJ DePalma of Microsoft Advertising, and others.

ANA 2020 Masters of Marketing Conference — #ANA
When: October 21-23, 2020
Theme: B2B Marketing
The Association of National Advertisers's 2020 ANA Masters of Marketing Conference is set to examine brand marketing practices related to digital and social, and to help brands and businesses navigate these difficult times and drive sustained success, with a lineup of speakers to be announced.

B2B Sales and Marketing Exchange — #B2BSMX
When: October 26-28, 2020
Theme: Marketing & Sales
About: B2B Sales and Marketing Exchange Online Experience brings together thought leaders in ABM, revenue marketing and demand generation, including top speakers to be announced.

Sitecore Symposium 2020 — #SitecoreSYM
When: October 26-28, 2020
Theme: Marketing Automation
About: B2B marketers looking to explore the marketing automation landscape can attend Sitecore Symposium 2020 and learn the next generation of strategies and tactics, with a lineup of major speakers to be announced.

Brand ManageCamp — #BMC2020
When: October 27-29, 2020
Theme: Brand Management
About: Brand ManageCamp's conference explores the insights, tools, strategy and leadership inspiration to drive new brand growth, featuring a lineup a speakers including Joe Pulizzi of the Content Marketing Institute, author Shep Hyken, author Carla Johnson, and others.

MarketingProfs B2B Forum — #MPB2B
When:November 3-6, 2020
Theme: B2B Marketing
About: At MarketingProfs B2B Forum top leaders, innovators, and people who make things happen gather to share their secrets to success, with a stellar lineup of speakers to be including keynotes by author David Meerman Scott, author April Dunford, and writer and comedian Sarah Cooper.

Dreamforce 2020 — #DF20
When: November 9-12, 2020
Theme: Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
About: Dreamforce brings together the Salesforce community of thought leaders and industry pioneers for education and inspiration, and with over 2,700 sessions its one of the latest business conferences. Look for speakers to be announced in the lead-up to the event, and also check out Dreamforce's virtual Leading Through Change series.

Gear Up Your 2020 Virtual Marketing Events

via GIPHY

We hope you've found a number of new and exciting virtual events to attend on our list to make the most of the rest of 2020, and that the learning you'll experience from either these virtual conferences or the many others available will help you achieve new levels of B2B marketing success this year and beyond.

If you're also considering hosting a virtual event of your own, check out "Boost Your Virtual Event By Taking These Actions Before, During, and After," by Kylee Lessard, associate product marketing manager of LinkedIn Pages & Elevate at LinkedIn.

At TopRank Marketing we've explored the power of events both virtual and in-person for B2B marketers, especially those who incorporate influencer marketing, in a number of articles, and here are five to help you get the most from your virtual 2020 marketing events:

* Adobe and LinkedIn are TopRank Marketing clients.

The post 17+ Top Virtual Marketing Conferences for Summer 2020 & Beyond appeared first on Online Marketing Blog - TopRank®.

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How to Get More Organic LinkedIn Exposure for Your Content

Want to get your content in front of more people on LinkedIn without using ads? Looking for tips to increase the chances LinkedIn will show your organic content in the feed? In this article, you’ll learn how to improve exposure for organic content on LinkedIn. #1: Build Your LinkedIn Network Around Your Topical Expertise The […]

The post How to Get More Organic LinkedIn Exposure for Your Content appeared first on Social Media Examiner | Social Media Marketing.

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How to Create Irresistible Facebook Landing Pages (Examples)

Want your next Facebook campaign to make a serious impression? Pair your ads with dedicated landing pages and turn more social traffic into conversions.

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Sales Pages: High-Converting Tips & 5 Can’t-Miss Examples

What is a sales page, exactly? We share our technique for creating landing pages that turn more ad traffic into customers.

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How to create a culture of recognition on your team 

It’s no secret that social media professionals wear more than one hat. From content creation, community management, customer service, strategy development, copywriting, data analysis Read more...

This post How to create a culture of recognition on your team  originally appeared on Sprout Social.

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