Bulldog wearing a sweater and 2021 sunglasses image.

Why write jokes about marketing? 

Why write, to be specific, 101 jokes about marketing over the last five years?

I came to marketing from the comedy world, and was genuinely surprised back then at how little personality there was in B2B content. Back in 2015, people were still asking whether B2B marketing could be funny — whether it would torpedo a serious brand to come out with humorous content.

Now we’ve finally admitted that B2B buyers like to laugh just like everyone else. And we’re seeing that humor can be a powerful way to bring people together. Used the right way, it can illustrate the shared human experiences that unite us all, showing that our trials and triumphs make us more alike than we are different.

Will this post serve to remind marketers of the universal nature of the human condition?

It will not.

But it will hopefully give you Read more

Smiling business man sitting with four robots image.

Never underestimate the corporate world’s ability to take something that should be intuitive, and make it weird by overthinking it.

Case in point: We used to say, “B2B doesn’t have to be boring.” Which indicates that for a long time, folks truly believed that B2B did have to be boring — that B2B buyers were a unique species of creature that operated without emotion and wanted the driest content possible.

Now we’re talking about how we need to “humanize” B2B content.  And doesn’t that sound like some kind of filter you run your content through after you make it? I picture something that looks like a fax machine, where you load the content in the top, and push a big red button marked “HUMANIZE.”

“We’re ready to ship that blog post, Johnson — wait! Don’t forget to humanize it!”

Now, I get that B2B brands are dealing with Read more

Traits of the Best B2B Content Marketers

My favorite part of playing a sports video game is the “Create a Player” function. It gives me the opportunity to set realism aside and dream up the most legendary, dominant athletic specimen imaginable. On the basketball court, no real-life point guard would be able to match up against “Dimes McGee,” my customized 7-foot-10 wunderkind with 99 ratings for shooting, passing, ball-handling, speed, and defense. Talk about optimization!

What if you could “create a player” in B2B content marketing? Which attributes would you want to max out in order to fabricate the most successful practitioner possible? It’s a fun and interesting question to contemplate, in large part because the answers now are different than even a few years ago.

Which traits and characteristics define the most effective B2B content marketers in 2021?

Optimized: 5 Traits of the Best B2B Content Marketers

Certain requisite skills, such as being creative and a … Read more

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Last year I finished up my fifth full year as a B2B marketer. A lot has changed in that half decade.

When I started, there was a growing movement: “B2B marketing doesn’t have to be boring.” 

Now we’ve finally moved on to, “B2B marketing can’t afford to be boring.” We’ve finally acknowledged that B2B buyers are people — they want useful information, they want to be entertained, and they’re just as bored by corporate-speak-laden white papers as everyone else.

To our credit, I think marketers already knew this. We just had to convince the rest of the organization. 

For the most part,  we marketers have more leeway to choose the best way to reach our audience. And, of course, with that freedom comes responsibility. 

How do we hit the sweet spot of what our audience wants to hear, and what our brand is trying to get across? How do we Read more

Woman Jumping Over Pitfalls Image

It’s been almost 40 years since Pitfall!, the classic side-scrolling platformer for the original Atari, was first released. David Crane’s creation went on to become one of the first console video game hits, selling more than 4 million copies, and is now remembered as an influential breakthrough for the medium.

Why did Pitfall! gain such rampant popularity? Because it was realistic and relatable!

I’m not talking about the pixelated 2D graphics or exotic jungle setting. I’m talking about the basic premise of problem-solving. The game is full of traps, hazards, and challenges, but there’s always a way around them. “Oh hey, a giant pit full of alligators. How will I get to the other side? Perhaps by grabbing hold of that swinging vine…”

via Gfycat

Today’s B2B content marketers may feel like they’re navigating a landscape filled with pitfalls — dangers or difficulties that are easily encountered but not … Read more