This will be my last post in 2013, and I want to thank everyone who has spent some of his or her valuable time reading this blog. I hope that you have found the content here to be both thought-provoking and useful.
Thanks to analytics, I can see how many times each blog post has been viewed. I thought this would be an appropriate time to share which posts have been most widely read. This ranking is based on cumulative total reads, and therefore older posts obviously have a built-in advantage.
So, in case you missed any of them, here are our five most popular posts.
Use an Importance-Performance Matrix to Get Marketing and Sales Talking - This post explains how to use an importance-performance matrix to capture the degree of agreement or disagreement between marketing and sales regarding key demand generation activities. An importance-performance matrix won't tell you how to resolve conflicts between marketing and sales, but it will identify the issues you need to address.
Why Content Marketing is the Best Way to Build the Brand - Some respected marketing industry experts have argued that content marketing has made brand marketing or "building the brand" obsolete. This post argues that building the brand is still an essential marketing objective for B2B companies and that content marketing is now the best marketing tactic to use for branding. For another perspective on the importance of brand building, see Why B2B Branding Still Matters.
Why BANT No Longer Works for Qualifying Leads - One of the most widely-used methods for qualifying B2B sales leads is known by the acronym BANT, which stands for Budget-Authority-Need-Timeline. This post argues that BANT is no longer an effective way to qualify sales leads. In a later post - Rethinking the Value of BANT (It's Not as Outdated as Some Suggest) - I revisited this topic and argued that the BANT criteria can still be useful for qualifying leads if they are used at the right times to answer the right questions.
Stop Wasting Your Time on Superficial Personalization - For over two decades, experts have urged marketers to use personalized messages to boost the effectiveness of marketing communications. The most common way to personalize a marketing message is to include specific facts about the recipient in the message - what I call explicit personalization. This post discusses the findings of two research projects which demonstrate that explicit personalization alone has become an anemic tool for improving marketing effectiveness.
It's Time to Integrate Marketing and Sales - Marketing and sales "alignment" has been a hot topic among B2B marketing and sales professionals for some time. This post argues that it may be time to move beyond mere "alignment" and actually integrate the marketing and sales functions. In a later post - Four Key Ingredients in the Marketing/Sales Integration Recipe - I discussed four critical requirements for integrating marketing and sales.
Happy New Year, everyone!