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Influencer Interview Series: How Top Marketers Shop for Father’s Day

Looking for ideas on what to get someone this Father’s Day? Then you came to the right place. The Callbox team recently reached out to a number of top marketing influencers and asked how they choose the perfect Father’s Day gifts. We rounded up their answers in this blog post, and we guarantee you can’t go wrong with the shopping tips they shared.

But besides giving out practical gift-buying suggestions, their responses also gave us a ton of insights on a crucial thing in B2B marketing: understanding what our audience really wants and being able to deliver on these expectations.

Whether it’s mapping content to relevant buyer personas, tailoring your messaging strategy to different segments, or adapting your value proposition to a new target market, most of the things we do as marketers simply boil down to figuring out how to best delight potential customers—which is a lot like picking the perfect Father’s Day present.

So, don’t worry if you haven’t yet started shopping for Father’s Day. Use this influencer roundup as your handy gift-buying guide:

 

Pam Moore (The Marketing Nutz)

Photo of Pam Moore with Quote

Pam Moore, CEO at social media training and consulting agency The Marketing Nutz, suggests finding two or three things that your dad, husband, or grandpa loves to do as a Father’s Day present. I totally agree with this, since I really think experiences make people happier than material gifts.

Keep it super simple. Think of what they love to eat, drink and do. Pick one or two or three. Here’s an example… buy them a new 32 oz Yeti cup at Sports Authority. While there pick up a gift card for them to use on their favorite sport or hobby. Then, take them out to eat and talk about all the things they are going to eat, drink and do the next year! You’ll be amazed what a fun day your dad, hubby, son or grandpa has!

 

Mike Allton (The Social Media Hat)

Photo of Mike Allton with quote

Mike Allton is the founder of The Social Media Hat, a full-service digital marketing agency, and brand evangelist at Agorapulse. Mike makes an excellent point when he says presents that involve “time spent” tend to be the best Father’s Day gifts. Again, experiences make us way happier than objects ever could, and that’s a scientific fact.

I find that the best gifts, particularly for parents, are ones that incorporate the gift of time spent.

It’s fine to buy them an item that they need or want, but that relational gift is usually so much more valuable, particularly as we get older and tend to have less time to spend with our parents.

Why not give them a dinner out with you or a trip to the park or a game night? Think of something they love to do and then incorporate yourself into that plan.

 

Timothy Hughes (Digital Leadership Associates)

Photo of Timothy Hughes with quote

Social selling expert Tim Hughes gives a very touching answer to our influencer roundup. He wants to take his parents out to once again experience an activity they both love when they were still young.

My father is 87 has a dementia and lives in a home. He tells us that he has totally lost all memory but for some strange reason he can still recall his love of classical music. He and my mum were big fans of the Proms, they used to go when they were courting and before they had my brother and myself. I would love to take both my parents to see the Last Night of the Proms one more time.

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Sue Zimmerman (The Insta Expert)

Photo of Sue Zimmerman with quote

Sue Zimmerman helps women entrepreneurs achieve digital marketing success through visual storytelling using Instagram. Sue shares a very short but very sweet answer. At the end of the day, it’s how much dads value something that makes it a perfect gift.

I think about what he wants and needs then I buy it – this year I got him a subscription to Amazon Prime

 

Joe Pulizzi (Content Marketing Institute)

Photo of Joe Pulizzi with quote

As one of the towering figures in marketing today, Joe Pulizzi certainly knows a thing or two about delivering what people want. That’s why his story about choosing the perfect gifts for both his dad and step-dad is simply priceless. His main takeaway for delighting dads: find something that will take them back to the good ole days.

My dad is easy to buy for. He’s like me and loves bourbon. Elijah Craig Small Batch to be exact. But my step-father is a different animal. A few years ago I was pondering what to get him and I remembered he used to have a huge vinyl record collection and a big stereo. Vinyl had made a bit of a comeback and the nostalgia of yesteryear was compelling. So I jumped online and ordered him a Crosby portable case record player and went down to the used record store to buy him 5-6 albums I knew he used to have. You would have thought I bought him front row tickets to Hendrix. He loved it.

So, think about something your Dad used to do that he doesn’t do anymore. And find something that will take him back to the good ole days.

 

Robert Katai (Bannersnack)

Photo of Robert Katai with quote

Here’s a very interesting response from Robert Katai, digital marketer and content strategist at Bannersnack. Robert’s answer is certainly something we can all learn from. That’s why we saved it for last.

My insight is this: time is the most important piece today. That’s why on Father’s Day I’m recommending to everybody to give their time: time to listen, time to ask, time to just stay together and create memories from this important present.

 

Conclusion:

I hope that helped narrow down your shopping list. It’s not easy to find the perfect gift for the dads you know, but sometimes all it takes is letting them experience something they really enjoy.

 

Happy Father’s Day to everyone in the marketing world!

 

Author Bio:

Rebecca Matias

Rebecca Matias is a Business Development Manager at Callbox. She is a proactive marketer who is willing to share her passion, leadership principles and craft in marketing. Follow Rebecca on Twitter and Facebook.

Marketing Renaissance: 6 (Old-School) B2B Trends Making a Comeback

Spring has sprung. You can feel it in the air. It’s the season of rebirth and renewal. Out with old and in with the new, right?

Well, sometimes, it’s actually the other way around. Some of the latest trends in B2B marketing today have actually been in use since anyone can remember, but had gotten sidelined and are now seeing a strong renaissance. We’ll take a look at six of these trends in this post.

Also, I’d like to share a very interesting response from our Easter influencer outreach, since I think it’s closely related to today’s topic and worth mentioning here.

A couple of weeks ago, I went around asking marketing influencers:

“If you could bring back or revive a past trend, activity, or practice that got lost in the Digital Age, what would it be and why?”

Jason Keath, CEO at Social Fresh Conference, gave a very insightful response, which I’ll point to below.

Anyway, here are six old-school trends making a comeback in B2B marketing today.

 

1. Direct Mail

I remember back in the late aughts how a lot of folks in marketing proclaimed that direct mail was dead, allegedly killed by email. Flash forward several years later, and we see something very surprising.

Not only does direct mail continue to be alive and well, it’s actually becoming a more important marketing channel, especially as people continue to feel overwhelmed with the amount of email and social media messages they regularly get.

Why is direct mail now making a comeback? A lot of it boils down to technology. It’s now easier to personalize and segment mailing campaigns using CRM tools, while it’s also much simpler to track direct mail campaign performance with analytics.

 

2. Print Marketing

The rise and fall (and revival) of print marketing also mirror direct mail’s trajectory. In 2007, snail mail catalogue deliveries peaked at 19.6 billion. In 2016, this dropped by more than 50% to 9.6 billion deliveries.

While this looks alarming, savvy marketers actually see this drop as an opportunity to leverage a less crowded channel. As digital content continues its explosive growth, prospects also increasingly experience content fatigue.

Plus, with the help of today’s digital marketing tools and technology, print marketing wields a significant impact on buying behavior:

  • 69% of consumers consult a printed catalogue before making an online purchase.
  • Print marketing recipients view print materials for an average of 30 minutes.
  • Catalogues drive an average of 2.5 purchases.

Print marketing initiatives like catalogues, postcards, and mailers are crucial parts of multi-channel marketing programs. This is why I completely agree with Jason Keath’s answer to our Easter-themed influencer outreach question:

“Postcards. They are the Tweets of their day. Short letters that are easy to compose and send. But they can mean so much for sending your love to friends and family while you travel.

The mail we receive today is so full of junk. It’s nice to see a letter or a postcard from someone who took the time to write something down, but a stamp, and send you some old fashioned snail mail.”

In fact, 50% of postcard recipients say that postcard marketing makes them feel more valued and creates a more authentic relationship.

 

3. Soundless Videos

Okay, so this isn’t exactly a past marketing trend, but it’s a very old (think early 1900s) production format that’s gaining traction among marketers today.

Soundless videos make sense because audiences are simply fed up with the interruptive noise of auto-play videos. According to multiple publishers, around 85% of Facebook video views take place on mute. Even Google Chrome has updated its settings to enable auto-play only for muted or soundless video ads.

If you’re not yet making them part of your video content portfolio, silent videos are definitely worth a try. To make the most of soundless videos, apply best practices like powerful visual messaging and closed captioning.

 

4. Cold Emails

In just a few short years after direct mail had been declared dead, some marketers also said the same thing about email. This has been thoroughly debunked countless times, but still continues to pop up time and again.

Cold emails, in particular, bore the brunt of this email-is-dead onslaught that, until recently, most sources simply advised against sending out cold emails altogether.

The fact is, cold emails are an essential element of the entire B2B marketing process. That’s because:

  • They help you reach decision makers where they actually spend most of their time—their inbox.
  • Cold emails are one-on-one, targeted, and personalized—which are qualities you don’t easily find in other digital channels.
  • They enable you to improve both quantity and quality of touches.

It’s these things that make cold emails an indispensable tactic in trending marketing strategies like ABM.

This visual guide reveals the 15 best-kept B2B email secrets to win prospects’ hearts

 

5. Phone Outreach

Since the dawn of digital marketing, outbound telemarketing hasn’t really enjoyed a stellar reputation. Together with traditional channels like direct mail and print marketing, it was one of the first marketing tactics to be labeled “obsolete” by naysayers.

In recent years, however, more and more marketers are starting to embrace phone outreach and its new role in the multi-channel marketing mix. Telemarketing enables a two-way conversation between people, which is what you need to:

  • Collecting sales intelligence and profiling prospects
  • Nurturing and qualifying leads
  • Reinforcing and responding to touches made in other channels
  • Converting leads and closing deals

I think phone outreach will always have a place in marketing. You can track or message prospects all day but, when it’s all said and done, you still need to pick up the phone and talk to a person.

Get your FREE ABM Telemarketing Scripts for Cold-calling Key Prospects.

 

6. Marketing’s CX Role

On a more strategic level, the marketing trend that’s also seeing a resurgence is our role as marketers in driving customer experience (CX). Forrester calls this the “B2B Marketing Renaissance”, and it’s something to smile about.

For too long now, we marketers have taken almost a hands-off approach at CX. We’ve traditionally had very little interaction with customers that marketing teams have nearly zero impact on the CX process.

Now that buyers are following a self-directed, nonlinear path to purchase, marketers are becoming more involved in the revenue generation process and the customer life cycle.

We’re no longer just suppliers of leads. We’re now sources of revenue and customer advocacy. That’s a change I’m really looking forward to.

 

Conclusion:

These are “old” trends that are making a comeback. If you ask me, I think these are all welcomed changes. It’s about time.

I hope you had a great Easter!

 

Influencer Interview Series: What Top Marketers Are Thankful For

It’s a great time to be a B2B marketer. Although the way that things are evolving can be worrying at times, the fact remains that the changing marketing landscape also brings with it real opportunities and improvements, not just risks and challenges.

Even if around 65% of B2B marketers today feel more stressed-out than ever (with 53% reporting having too much on their plate), there’s plenty of reasons that make marketers feel really thankful:

These are, of course, what we’re collectively grateful for as B2B marketers. The Callbox team also wanted to know the specific things that marketers genuinely appreciate as individuals.

So, in honor of Thanksgiving, we reach out to top B2B marketers and ask them about developments in their professional and personal lives that they believe their future selves will be thankful for. Here’s what they shared:

 

Tim Hughes

Timothy Hughes Quote

Tim Hughes, CEO and founder of the world’s top social media management consultancy Digital Leadership Associates, weighs in with his thoughts on how his team is helping shape a better marketing future for all of us.

For Tim, leading a passionate group of experts that proactively contribute to how marketing moves forward is the biggest thing he’s thankful for:


Here at Digital Leadership Associates social-experts.net we (and our global reseller network) put out a unique piece of content every day; the whole team know and understand they need to contribute.

Why? Because it creates us 3 pieces of inbound every day. We as a social business, don’t do any outbound, no advertising, no cold calling, no unsolicited emails and we run no events.

I’m thankful to “Team DLA” now and I know (based on the fact that interruption and broadcast Marketing is broken) we will all be thankful for this in the future.


Mobile-First Indexing: What It Means for SEO and How to Prepare (feat. Timothy Hughes of Digital Leadership Associates) (Blog Thumbnail)

Make your website ready for Google mobile-first indexing with practical tips and ideas from a number of experts, including first-hand insights from Timothy Hughes of Digital Leadership Associates.

 

Jan Gordon

Jan Gordon

As the founder of marketing resource platform Curatti and a top content marketing influencer, Jan Gordon adds some pretty interesting points to our Thanksgiving roundup.

Most of the things that make Jan thankful lie outside of business, which many of you will probably agree with—especially once you let her concluding remark sink in.


The things I will always be most grateful for are good health, love, family, friends and nature’s beauty. Nothing in business can come close. Everything else in life is just a bonus.


Influencer Interview Series: Mom Was Right (Blog Thumbnail)

We’ve interviewed a number of marketing influencers to find out how their mother’s wise words and guiding hand have shaped the kind of marketer they are today.

 

Reginald Chan

Reginald Chan

Reginald Chan is a leading online marketing expert that helps marketers optimize engagement and conversions. As an avid blogger and SEO enthusiast, he offers up a stimulating take on our Thanksgiving question.

Reginald says that it’s the chance to try hard and do his best that his future self will thank him for later. As we sit back and relax for Thanksgiving, Reginald’s thoughts on hard work serve as great points to ponder on:


Work even harder now! As the saying goes, “work hard now to enjoy the fruits later!”

Don’t live life regretting things you didn’t do or could do better. So always try hard and try harder!

 

Jan Barbosa

Jan Barbosa

Brand ambassador and thought leader Jan Barbosa chimed in on our expert roundup with a thought-provoking answer that most modern B2B marketers can relate to.

That’s because the vast majority of today’s marketing professionals (53%) say they have too much to do and too little time to get things done. Jan mentions it’s actually time that he and his future self will be grateful about, and we couldn’t agree more:


TIME

After days of contemplation, I definitely think my future self will thank me for the gift of time. Time given to my parents to watch old Humphrey Bogart films over and over again on weekends, time listening to those close to me about those little big things that trouble or bless their daily routines, time to the ones about to depart, telling their stories so that they will be remembered.

Sometimes those precious pieces of time seem like a burden but end up being a blessing in disguise, like taking your wife to that concert you simply don’t want to go to, driving home a friend who had too much to drink or spending hours trying to help your son decide which college courses to take for the next semester.

In the end, my future self will thank me for all seconds that can’t ever be recovered, good and bad that served to change my life and those around me, because truly “time” is one of those few very precious gifts that keep on giving, even when we are no longer around.


Influencer Interview Series: Jan Barbosa Marries Content Marketing and PR (Blog Thumbnail)

Influencer Interview Series: Jan Barbosa talks about content marketing and PR

 

John White

John White

With his roles as CMO at Social Marketing Solutions and columnist for Inc. Magazine, John White clearly stands at the forefront of marketing today. But there’s one often-overlooked thing that John really appreciates.

After going through a serious illness, John says it’s good health that he feels most thankful for, not only for himself but also for his loved ones.


After a recent unexpected trip to the hospital for pancreatitis, I was humbled and once again reminded the importance of good health. I am most thankful to be feeling well again and for the health and prosperity of all my loved ones.

 

Mike Allton

Mike Allton

As Brand Evangelist for social media management tool Agorapulse, Mike Allton is keenly aware of the value of genuine connections with people.

That’s why he believes his future self will thank him for the time and effort he invests in building and growing relationships. Mike says he owes much of what he has accomplished by having the right people around him.


I believe that my future self will be even more thankful than I already am for the time I’ve spent developing relationships and forming mastermind groups.

My career – the dream job that I have now – is thanks in large part to the relationships that I started to build and foster many years ago. As I became aware of that fact this year, I’ve made an even greater effort to concentrate on developing that aspect of my life. I have formed mastermind groups of select peers that have been tremendously helpful, and have guided others to do the same.

Regardless of what business you’re in, there’s no substitute for having incredible people around you.


Influencer Interview Series: Mike Allton Wears The Social Media Hat (Blog Thumbnail)

Social Media Marketing isn’t new, but everybody makes it sound like it’s the coolest thing since the internet. One of the people whose calling card shouts social media marketing expert shares some valuable insights to us. Here’s Mike Allton of The Social Media Hat.

 

Kim Reynolds

Kim Reynolds

Kim is one of the leading thought leaders in the social media space today. She wears many hats including Marketing Manager for Social Media Examiner and an independent digital strategist. This puts her right in front of the biggest marketing trends.

No wonder that she thinks her future self will be grateful for augmented reality. As marketers, we’re already starting to see AR’s potential for enhancing engagement. Once this technology matures, it’s going to be an indispensable tool in our arsenal.


I think my future self will be thankful for augmented reality. Right now it is just a novelty of sorts, but in the future it will be integrated into every aspect of our lives. Language barriers can be crossed, information will be at our fingertips, all without even touching our phones.

 

Sarah Arrow

Sarah Arrow

Content Strategist Sarah Arrow adds an interesting and timely take to our Thanksgiving-themed expert roundup. Sarah’s role as a content marketing coach at Sarkeymedia.com gives her a unique vantage point for appreciating the value of customers in shaping marketing success.

As we all know, marketing continues to become more customer-centric and less brand- or product-centric. Marketers who understand this and act accordingly will be very grateful for taking this route.


I’m always grateful for the customers that bring me their content challenges to unravel. I’m truly blessed to work with such amazing people who make their customer’s world a better place with their products and services.

 
Conclusion: We all have a lot of things in our careers and personal life that may not mean much today, but will be the reasons for our gratefulness someday. Now, it’s your turn. What are some upcoming things that you think your future self will be thankful for?

From the Callbox team, we wish you a relaxing and meaningful Thanksgiving.


Author Bio:

Rebecca Matias

Rebecca Matias is a Business Development Manager at Callbox. She is a proactive marketer who is willing to share her passion, leadership principles and craft in marketing. Follow Rebecca on Twitter and Facebook.



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