Break Sh! T – A Terminus Conference – brought together nine marketers to share one thing they would like any marketer to either stop or stop. The 15 minute sessions were all great and experts shared things in marketing that need to change if we are to deliver better customer experiences.
I’m not going to go through all of the sessions, although I think if you haven’t seen the conference you should watch the video series and watch them all (no registration required). But I’m going to talk about three of them, starting with …
Break the foundations and challenge the funnel
Andrew Davis listed many bad habits marketers need to break, including unsolicited LinkedIn pitches, cold email requests, pop-up email subscriptions, the word “engagement,” and personalization in the form of “Hey
Davis said one thing drives all of these bad habits that we really need to break is the basics – or as most of us understand – challenging the funnel.
What I didn’t know yet: the funnel concept was developed in 1898. I can only say: “Wow”. Davis said we’ve seen many different developments of the funnel model, but most have worked on the same pattern, which is that consumers buy in a linear model. What we all know is wrong.
He also said that everyone who sells ads loves the funnel, so stop buying ads.
Build your own model, Davis said, or see what others are building and model your funnel to work for your business. Davis developed his own funnel, but he didn’t share it in his presentation. Still, it’s worth a look (which I did at another event).
We’ve been talking about how to break the traditional lead funnel for a few years, maybe even longer. But so many marketers still follow it believing that it is the best approach. Why is it so hard to stop and do something else?
Because it once worked, and no one came up with the only magic bullet to replace it that companies want. It doesn’t really matter that customers have changed the way they buy products and services and that despite evolution, old models are still the safest way to go.
No more lively marketing
Katie Martel wants marketers to break wake washed marketing and become true ally. On her website, she explains woke wash marketing as: “The collision of marketing, advertising and PR with social movements such as feminism, LGTBQ + equality, racial justice, gun law, environmental protection and more – and the risk of branding.”
Think rainbows all over June or greenwashing to show the brand is environmentally friendly, or all of the black backgrounds that support Black Lives Matter (BLM).
Martel is working on a documentary on the subject. It’s about how marketers have a kick-start problem, leaning on social movements without really understanding what they’re doing or really committed to it.
On the one hand, this orientation is positive, she said. But if it’s our new normal, then we need a new set of rules that enables brands to become real allies. However, to become part of the solution one needs to take the time to understand the history of the movement and create real accountability goals around diversity and equity.
Martel is right: we all have a responsibility to stand up for human rights.
I think that’s tough for brands. It’s easier to take the short cut and pay lip service on critical social issues or try to stay out of it altogether. It’s a different thing to embody through everything the brand does and says internally and externally.
Stop thinking that B2B marketing is boring
I follow Carla Johnson because she makes you think about how you work and approach a marketing strategy. Her talk focused on changing the way we present ideas and drive real innovation in the organization.
Johnson said our bosses lead us to believe that in the B2B world, we can’t be creative. But the truth, she said, is that it’s not about the ideas we offer; It’s the way we set it up.
This is how we do it now: generate ideas and then pitch. And it’s wrong. Johnson said that we mistake an idea for a pitch, and that bad pitches kill great ideas. So we need to correct the pitch.
Here is the process she shared:
- Watch the world
- Distill wider patterns
- Connect and connect your work
- Break the cycle – pitch
Johnson stated that great pitches are not divined; they are subtle. It’s a nifty pitch that builds trust and dynamism.
She shared the example of how the Hectare company came up with Tudder, which is Tinder, but for cows. That’s a pretty innovative idea, and the pitch that brought it to life wasn’t boring.
I am thinking of a recent scenario in which I came up with the idea of an ABM program. It’s something that business has to do. And they said yes even though they didn’t understand ABM. And it doesn’t work. It doesn’t work because ABM is both an idea and a strategy. How it should work within an organization depends on that organization, its ideal customers, and the goals they are trying to achieve. It is time to take Johnson’s advice to heart and correct the pitch.
Part of this one day conference included the opportunity to vote for your favorite session. The winner received $ 10,000 for a charity of their choice. Unbounce’s Oli Gardener won for his session – which was by far the funniest. His talk focused on breaking the changing value proposition and how a high IQ design avoids confusion.
Other moderators were Jay Acunzo, Sangram Vajre, Tatiana Holifield, Rohit Bhargava, Zontee Hou; Everyone was talking about things that we as marketers need to step back and reconsider. Modern marketing is constantly changing, and that makes it very difficult to adapt. But if we don’t, we’ll pay the price.