Growth Insights for CEOs

The Three Levels of Listening: Deeper Insights for More Enduring and Effective Sales and Marketing Strategies

Posted by Deborah Fell

No matter how many shiny new products and services emerge every year in an industry, there will always be a few established brand giants waiting at the top of the Mountain of Customer Loyalty, waiting to force the weaker ones into submission.

Read More

Don’t Be a One-Hit Wonder: How to Be a Business Growth Rock Star

Posted by Gary Fassak

OK, quick question: When was the last time you heard the tune, “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart” by Kiki Dee? Or, how about “Disco Duck” by Rick Dees and his Cast of Idiots? Probably not lately, or even in the last decade. That’s because these two songs are among the many sad tunes known as “one hit wonders” – songs and musicians that had their moment of glory – vaulting to the top of the music charts, then vanishing, forever.

Read More

Keeping it Real: The Next Four of 10 Reasons Why Your SWOT is Really a SWAG

Posted by Paul Sparrow

Let’s keep it real: While myriad technology-driven changes have garnered much of our strategy-related attention and interest over the last several years, the need to evaluate an organization’s fundamental strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats is more important than ever.

Read More

What Does a Fractional CMO Cost?

Posted by Pete Hayes

A Broad Spectrum of Fractional CMOs Ensures a Range of Fee Levels

More CEOs are hiring fractional executives to bring expertise to their management teams, but are they really affordable? And how should a CEO evaluate their value and the quality of work they deliver? These are really good questions! After all, there’s a wide range of skills, seniority and experience from marketing consultants, agencies and firms that call themselves fractional or outsourced CMOs. So, as you’d expect, there’s a wide range of price points from these sources. But to get started, let’s put these into a few oversimplified categories:

  • Single Shingle” Marketing Consultants
  • “Loose Confederations” of Brokered Marketing Consultants
  • “Professionals” who are Part of a Firm
    • Senior management from a marketing or advertising agency
    • Partners from an “Executives-as-a-Service” firm (such as Chief Outsiders)
    • Partners from a large consultancy (such as McKinsey & Co, Bain)
Read More

Unleashing your Creativity

Posted by Stijn Hendrikse

We are all creators in one way or another, from the artists to the code writers to the President of the United States. We all encounter problems to be solved, and how we go about solving them often takes a good dose of creativity. As entrepreneurs, creativity is demanded of us every day, and sometimes we just get zapped.

Read More

Let’s Get Real! Three of 10 Reasons Why Your SWOT is Really a SWAG

Posted by Paul Sparrow

I once experienced a recurring dream where I stood at the front of Mrs. Streebeck’s fifth grade class, completely unable to speak.

“Where is your homework, Mr. Sparrow?” the teacher asked.

The shame and guilt of being unprepared caused my throat to tighten and my vocal chords to freeze. It was horrifying. Never mind that in the nightmare I was also fully exposed—buck naked, as we say in the South—but that’s not the point. Even if tucked away in my subconscious, I’ve always been mortified of being unprepared. Most of you reading this post feel the same way – and that’s why you’re here.

Read More

What Can Tesla Teach Us About Customer-Focus?

Posted by Deborah Fell

I wouldn’t mind getting my hands on a Tesla. Sleek, fast, future-forward – and electric to boot – the unique combination of “smart” and sustainability features on the Model S, Model X, and Model 3 make the car company’s offerings so irresistible to buyers, that Elon Musk and his team have struggled to keep up with demand.

Read More

Maximize Your Manufacturing Capability: 7 Ongoing Considerations to Drive Marketing ROI

Posted by Simon Waldron

Kaizen is a Japanese philosophy that focuses on continual improvement throughout all aspects of life. Through a journey of seven steps, which includes identifying opportunities, developing an optimal solution for growth, and studying the results, the principals behind kaizen can act as sound structure to help your organization’s way to continuous process improvement – both in product manufacturing and product marketing, which in turn will lead to stronger profits and returns.

Read More

If Marketing “Leads,” Sales Will Follow: Achieving Alignment For Revenue Success

Posted by Chris Lundell

Travel with me, if you will, back to 2006. It was a time, in the corporate world, when the sales team had all of the power and most of the fun. Company credit card in hand, they would organize meetings at conferences, trade shows, meetings on the golf course, or at their favorite hospitality event. Pleasantries were exchanged, orders were placed – and business kept rolling forward.

Read More

How to Build a Go-to-Market Plan

Posted by Janet Brey

A CEO’s practical guide and marketing template for executing on growth strategies

This is Part 2 of a two-part series. Part 1 focused on the marketing plan.

The go-to-market (GTM) plan is a subset of the marketing plan and addresses how to execute on a specific growth strategy.  Every company, regardless of size, should have a marketing plan. A go-to-market plan is only needed if you are looking to expand into new markets, sell new products (services), or do both.

Read More