Growth Insights for CEOs

Why Executives Should Develop Visible Experts within Their Firm

Posted by The Chief Outsider

Regardless of your industry, your firm can likely identify with goals like: 

  • Generate more leads,
  • Increase revenue and
  • Boost brand recognition.

Many of your marketing efforts are likely designed to achieve those goals or similar measurements of success. But there’s one approach that firms often overlook that can achieve all of these goals—and more. This approach is thought leadership marketing and the development of Visible Experts. These experts are the professionals who give keynote addresses at industry conferences, write the defining book in your field and have established themselves as the go-to authorities.

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Not Another Conference! How to Make Your Next Corporate Event a Must-Attend

Posted by Slade Kobran

I recently attended a conference – the topic and location have been redacted to protect the guilty – and came away with a few observations:

  • I should have known it was going to be a struggle to stay awake by the ponderous description in the program.
  • The dark glasses were great for helping me sneak in a little extra sleep, but the snoring gave me away.
  • There was disappointment on the faces of the session organizers at no questions during the Q&A, but what did they expect after a 60 minute soliloquy?

After shaking myself awake, I pondered what it takes to make a conference both informative AND engaging.

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7 Benchmarking Questions To Consider When Establishing a Marketing Budget

Posted by Richard Browne

What’s the Right Size for Your Marketing Budget? 

One of the first questions clients ask is what the appropriate spend or budget should be for marketing. The quick answer is a target of between 3 and 8 percent of a company’s overall sales – with 5 percent often cited as the norm based upon a review of a range of benchmarking and peer group studies.

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Dos and Don’ts of Marketing Automation

Posted by Andrea Levine

Marketing automation is a powerful tool with the ability to greatly increase your conversions. However, in order for marketing automation to be effective, there are certain do’s and don’ts that you should understand, including how it fits into the larger context of your business. Based on information collected from experts in the marketing field, let’s look at the specific do’s and don’ts for marketing automation

"Marketing automation plays a key role in the customer/client acquisition process as it automates lead scoring, routing of qualified leads, nurturing those that are not ready to buy, and greater transparency into prospect/customer behavior on its own. It is important that a CMO and his/her team understand that marketing automation, as with any technology solution, is an enabler to their business strategy vs. a strategy on its own. Read the full article here.

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Are You Committing Marketing Malpractice? 4 Ways That CEOs Miss the Marketing Mark

Posted by Clay Spitz

A prospective client recently reached out to me, having found me by searching for fractional chief marketing officers on the Internet. This C-suite executive, who shall remain nameless, dispensed with formalities and said, “I am interviewing 15 marketing firms, and I’d like a list of things that we could do for $20,000.”

After I took a beat to absorb his “unique” approach, I responded as any ethical Chief Marketing Officer should – calmly explaining that there are many, many steps required before we could even begin to develop a budget to spend those $20,000 hard-earned marketing dollars – things like identifying goals, objectives, priorities and the like.

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Why Millennial Talent Seems to Be Always Looking for the Next Best Thing

Posted by The Chief Outsider

Every generation seems destined to be the most misunderstood generation. This was true for Baby Boomers, Gen X and is especially applicable when attempting to understand the motivations and values of the Millennial generation (also referred to as Gen Y). We’ve likely read about how Millennials grew up on technology and are dependent upon it. We could easily argue with them about their worldviews. While Millennials may be cast as the most misunderstood generation, they’re quickly becoming the most studied and researched generation. Yet despite all the insights we’ve gained, it’s interesting that most Baby Boomers infer they simply don’t understand a Millennial’s perspective on life and work.

On the surface, Millennials may come across as being irresponsible, entitled, disengaged, arrogant, idealistic and overly confident. While some of these may be appropriate, from a practical perspective, Millennials tend to be competent, bright and highly focused. The chasm between the generations being, Millennials hold a significantly different worldview about life, their careers and what they expect from their employers.

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PR – Your Secret Weapon

Posted by Karen Hayward

"Public Relations is uniquely able to close the marketing credibility gap."

That is why it is the secret weapon of integrated marketing."

Public relations is particularly effective for building brand equity. It has the power to heighten brand awareness, brand loyalty, perceived quality and other brand associations that differentiate your brand from other products.

“Public Relations delivers brand credibility that advertising can’t provide,” said Susan Lehman, president of Rockpoint Public Relations. “Well-done PR programs utilize proof points and third-party references that confirm and elevate brand equity, enabling companies to validate key messages, value propositions and customer ROI.”

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8 Marketing Multipliers to Spring Forward with this Fall!

Posted by Barbara Fowler

Marketing has changed...and will move at an even more rapid pace in the future, so check out these tips to improve your marketing muscle! 

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Strong CEO Confidence Hampered by Talent Shortfall; 3 Ways to Fill Gap

Posted by Pete Hayes

Vistage CEO Confidence Index is Steady and Strong
Last quarter, and every quarter since 2003, Vistage International – the leading firm of Peer Advisory Board Groups for CEOs – fielded a survey of its CEO membership on their attitudes and perceptions around the prospects of growth. Dr. Richard Curtin of the University of Michigan analyzes the periodic study. As a business leader you may find it worth watching. Heck, look how predictive these attitudes are to changes in US GDP?


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Aligning Your Stars

Posted by Karen Hayward

The Recipe for Revenue Success: Sales and Marketing Alignment

As someone who loves to cook, today I am sharing a tried and true recipe for a successful lead generation program. I marvel at the fact that CEOs continue to be disappointed by their marketing outcomes. In fact, 70 percent cite that Marketing isn’t delivering for them as expected. Art Saxby, Chief Outsiders CEO, has expertly covered the difference between Sales and Marketing in his recent blog so we have clarity between the two functions and expectations.

This standout recipe calls for Marketing and Sales to be in perfect harmony. To achieve this requires collaboration and agreement on a number of definitions, targets and metrics—and leadership from the CEO. I was recently speaking to a highly experienced, top industry performing Sales Representative who told me, “I never got a decent lead from a marketing team EVER – I had to develop all of my own opportunities. Yes, I got dozens of business cards – but they weren’t close to what I would consider a lead.” This is a fairly common theme I often hear from sales executives. The marketing team delivered against their “Lead targets,” which were the names scanned off suspects walking by the company booth at a trade show. So what’s the solution? Fundamental Marketing and Sales leader dialogue and agreement is the difference between success and failure. Marketing needs to be seamlessly filling the top part of any sales funnel and Sales needs to be executing the follow-up engagement.

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