Most Business to Business Marketing Efforts Qualify as the Definition of Insanity

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Too many companies invest in marketing techniques such as advertising and trade shows that yield little or no qualified leads. Worse yet, they do it over and over again despite the fact that it doesnÂ?t work

According to Benjamin Franklin, the definition of insanity “is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” If true, then many companies engaged in business to business marketing fit the description because they continue to engage in the same tired techniques – namely costly advertising and trade shows – that yield the same poor results.

“One of the first questions we ask potential clients is ‘what other marketing techniques are you currently utilizing?’” says John W. Elliott, CEO of Power PR (http://www.powerpr.com), a marketing public relations firm. “It’s always the same answers: advertising and trade shows. Then we ask how many qualified leads they generate through these efforts and it’s always ‘not much.’”

“What’s remarkable is that the client will readily admit that it doesn’t work well, yet they continue to invest large sums of the business to business marketing budget – not to mention time and effort – into these non-viable approaches,” adds Elliott. “To me, this fits Franklin’s classic definition of insanity.”

Elliott is admittedly frustrated. The problem is so pervasive and ingrained that it is often difficult to convince the very same client with no results to consider an alternative marketing approach, such as marketing publicity, which has a proven track record of lead generation.

Marketing publicity is a hybrid of marketing and PR that involves promoting a product or service through the mass media. By writing feature articles, customer testimonials, and new product releases and getting it placed as editorial in consumer or trade publications (online and print), a marketing public relations firm can generate many published articles over time to build brand awareness and generate a large quantity of qualified leads.

The power behind marketing publicity is in its objective, third party endorsement. First, these articles are often laden with positive customer testimonials. Second, the fact that the publication has published the article as editorial is also a form of third party endorsement. These factors add up to a level of credibility that is difficult to achieve with other business to business marketing techniques.

“The ultimate goal of a business to business marketing publicity program is to drive in qualified leads that can be turned into sales,” says Elliott.

Although marketing publicity is hardly a secret on the marketing scene, this approach is often considered only after the “traditional” approaches mentioned above prove a failure over a long period of time. Yet a careful examination of documented results – both in terms of lead generation and company expansion - shows that marketing publicity works where these techniques fail.

“Listen, there are a lot of choices when it comes to business to business marketing,” says Elliott. “No one technique is perfect for every company. However, if traditional marketing techniques such as advertising and trade shows are costly and don’t generate qualified leads over time, then it doesn’t make sense to keep banging on the same door over and over again for the same poor results. That just doesn’t make sense.”

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Heather Metcalfe
POWER PR
310-787-1940
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