Conducting Market Research for Better Visibility

This part goes hand-in-hand with building your Buyer Persona to guarantee that your marketing efforts are bringing in real Visibility. You always want to be ahead of the game by knowing everything about your ideal customers. Doing that requires meticulous research.   Collecting Data through Research It’s okay if you don’t have any data yet. You can still make educated guesses. These activities that Moz outlines (that we summarize below) help get you started or expand your current efforts. Be sure to do a mix of research types for the most expansive, accurate, and precise data. Don’t limit yourself to 1 source.   Qualitative Research This has a smaller sample size, and allows teams to identify customer needs. Affinity mapping. A very common method, but mostly based on assumptions. It goes something like this: 1) Gather assumptions of customer needs. What are their goals, activities, problems, and frustrations? (5-30 minutes) 2)

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How to Develop a Buyer Persona for Engagement & Profit

So you’ve identified your core clients as either businesses (B2B) or consumers (B2C). The next step to establish the right Visibility is building a few concrete buyer personas for better engagement and more profit.   What are Buyer Personas? A semi-fictional profile of your ideal customers based on relevant data and market segmentation to help guide business efforts. A lot of departments use them and they do a whole lot of work in smart business decision making. Personas are a more narrowed and specific definition of a segment. To get even more particular, there are 2 types of personas: an audience and a buyer. An audience wants to consume content merely for educational and entertainment benefits. A buyer wants to absorb content that helps with their decisions about a transaction.   Why should I care about Buyer Personas? Google cares. They take data and use their own market segmentation algorithm, which

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Businesses vs. Consumers as Core Clients

You’re taking the initial step to getting to know your customers. Great! The first part of the Visibility process in the VAIRCG method is knowing whether you are a B2B or B2C company. When it comes down to your clients, who are you seeking – businesses or consumers? Although the methodology and process of approaching, nurturing, and satisfying B2B and B2C clients are dangerously similar, there are notable differences to keep in mind.   B2B (BUSINESS) B2C (CONSUMER) Decision-Making Process & Buying Cycle Generally longer and requires more time to cultivate relationships Expect multiple phone calls, presentations, meetings, etc. Cater to long-term business goals Generally shorter and focuses on impulse buys Purchases are usually made to address immediate needs Stakeholders More decision makers (think executives and chiefs) Tailor to every stakeholder – or as many as you can – to garner their approval   1 or 2 (possibly more); refers specifically

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6 Steps to Engagement Marketing: the VAIRCG Method

When it comes to engagement marketing, there’s nothing more powerful than building relationships. It’s about making sure customers know you care about them every step of the way. Then they’ll want to give you money. Here’s our abridged Engagement Framework in 6 steps.   Step 1: Visibility WHAT? Get noticed. Not to just anyone, but the right ones. Break through the noise. HOW? This is all about Persona Development by 1) creating your personas, 2) finding where they visit, and 3) knowing what they’re looking for. Use persona, customer, and market data. You want to reach your target audience and capture the people who want to know about you. Personas. Personas. Did I say personas? The Tools Buyer personas Attribution model KPI’s Inbound & Outbound marketing Step 2: Attraction WHAT? The first customer interaction. The first acknowledgement you exist. You want your personas to take more than 3 seconds to look

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Content Marketing and George Orwell’s 6 Rules to Effective Writing

Modern marketing requires the creation of excellent content. It has become one of the key components for success in many organizations. There are so many metrics to grade the “success” of content. Here are just a few: Open rates Bounce rates Click through Engagement rates The one we rarely hear about is the actual process of content creation. George Orwell’s Six Rules to Effective Writing lays out a clear foundation to ensure your content is exceptional. Those six rules? Read on. 1. Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print. Most of us are guilty of doing this in our blogs and emails (myself included). Metaphors such as the “sales funnel” are so commonly used in marketing that it doesn’t trigger any sort of emotional response from people. Spend some time creating your take on the sales process. Chances are

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Why You Need an Engagement Marketing Eco-System

There are so many reasons why marketers fall behind on the whole “technology” game plan. Let me name a few: “We don’t have a budget for tech implementations.” “We don’t have the money to hire a specialist.” “We don’t have the resources.” “We don’t need any of that!” You get the picture. These are all totally valid reasons, but marketers are failing to see the “technical debt” that they dig themselves into. People hate change: it’s unfamiliar, daunting, and scary. They want to remain running “as they’ve always been” to avoid internal chaos and disruption from introducing new marketing technology. The problem? Every day spent debating on whether to take the plunge into new marketing software (Marketo, Hubspot, Salesforce, etc.) is an additional day that your competitors have to create better and more agile programs. That can be anything from a new inbound campaign, developing buyer personas, or writing valuable

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Let’s Talk about Content that Sells

  Hi again! Remember me? Last time, we touched the tip of the Engagement Marketing iceberg. The key takeaway: think about the customers from dawn to dusk, Sunday to Sunday. That means you want to create good content. You want to feed people with valuable content that will make their day-to-day life tremendously easier. Engage your audience with information that they want to read.   ▷ How to Write Engaging Content   Be Honest. Believe in the stuff you’re selling because it’ll help them do what they do. Talk to People. Aim for your buyer personas. The narrower the target, the better. Answer their question or problem. They might not even know they have one, so show them they do! Learn to English. It not only helps with clarity, but makes you look well-put together. You can add a little fun here and there, too. Tell a Story. Create strategic content narratives

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Jumping into Engagement Marketing with Silvia

Hi, I’m Silvia. I just started this marketing thing as an intern at Solomon. The vast world of Engagement Marketing seems confusing at first, so let me tell you what I do know. Think of a marketer as a friend who only wants what’s best for you. He’s (or she) your BFF from another world – the marketing world. And in that world is a set of principles that guides each marketer on how to drive revenue by being helpful, available, and insightfully in-tune with their audience.   So… marketing engagement… huh? Engagement marketing is a strategy. A plan – one that is all about the right people at the right time in all the right places for one goal: revenue. Then there are engagement marketing platforms that make the execution of the plan so much easier.   Successful engagement marketers work within a set of simple principles. The ABC’s

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How to Quiet a Noisy Inbox

From newsletters and advertisements to junk we didn’t sign up for, all of us have things hitting our inbox that we don’t want. Maybe it’s a newsletter you signed up for years ago that isn’t relevant. Or perhaps some company sold your name to someone else and they’re trying to get you to buy their newest product. Our lives have become noisy and complicated, and email is just another way to shout at us. But now you can fight back. There are services popping up that easily allow you to lower the volume and get your sanity back. Here’s a quick look at a few of them: provides a service where you can not only unsubscribe easily from things you don’t want, but also can create a daily digest with things you do want. The great thing about this is that you can see the content you want to

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Marketo iOS SDK First Impressions

One of the big initiatives that Marketo launched last week at Summit 2015 is Mobile Engagements. To coincide with that initiative, they have posted an iOS SDK onto their Github account to easily drop into your apps to collect usage data and interact with your users. There are some cool things you’ll be able to do with this technology. Imagine one of your customers has an appointment coming up that needs to be moved or cancelled. You send them an email but they don’t open it or respond. You can send them a notification letting them know that their appointment needs to be changed to make sure they aren’t going to show up to something that isn’t going to happen. That’s pretty cool, and a great way of treating your customers right. There are also lots of ways this can be abused. Even some of Marketo’s examples are clear ways

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