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Almost Timely News: MarketingProfs B2B Forum Takeaways (2022-10-16) :: View in Browser

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Almost Timely News: MarketingProfs B2B Forum Takeaways (2022-10-16)

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What’s On My Mind: My Takeaways from MarketingProfs B2B Forum 2022

One of my favorite events of the year, MarketingProfs B2B Forum, has come and gone. After almost 3 years of virtual only, this year’s event was a hybrid of online and in-person, and I made it in person. Wednesday started off an 8-hour workshop with my partner and CEO, Katie Robbert, on measurement strategy. Thursday, I delivered a talk on private social media communities, and Friday Katie and I did a fireside chat about management and leadership in marketing.

But those weren’t the highlights of B2B Forum for me. The highlights were, and always are, the little bits and pieces I picked up along the way that were useful and that I’m incorporating into my own marketing. Let’s dig into a few.

Michael Barber’s session on email marketing analytics was riveting. Algorithmically, I was aware that things like “mark as spam” were substantially damaging to your sender reputation. That’s been the case for years. And lots of folks know that Apple’s Mail Privacy Protection and GMail’s pre-fetch routines have basically ruined open rate as a useful metric. That leaves clickthrough rate as one of the more useful metrics.

However, Michael introduced a new concept to me that he says is profoundly powerful for email reputation – reply rate. The number of people who reply to an email can dramatically improve your sender reputation. This makes logical sense; there’s no real way to determine if an email is an interpersonal communication or a transactional message. But real emails from real people – we reply to those. Thus it stands to reason that if a user replies to our email marketing, that behavior is detectable and could improve our reputation.

How do we increase our reply rate? By asking our audiences to reply to our emails, of course – and then actually checking those replies and doing something with them. You’ll see a small change in this newsletter as a result – and a reminder that yes, you can reply to this and I’ll answer if it’s needed.

Ashley Faus‘ session on thought leadership presented a useful framework for determining how strong someone is as a thought leader. Her four components are credibility/authority, profile/recognition, prolific, and depth of ideas. For credibility, how often you’re asked to cite sources versus how often you’re cited as a source indicates your level of credibility – that was a useful measurement for that pillar of thought leadership.

The one that I thought encapsulated most of the problems with “thought leadership” today is depth of ideas. Most people who are positioning themselves as thought leaders aren’t bringing any new, deep ideas to the table. They’re bringing recycled tropes at best, hoping that people will be distracted or gullible enough to believe that basic truisms are deep thoughts. Anyone can buy a social media following. Anyone can publish a lot of crap. But having deep thoughts and being recognized for them? That’s difficult and a good way to evaluate whether someone is a real thought leader or not.

My definition of thought leader remains unchanged: your thinking (your ideas) should change how I lead.

Tony Gnau’s B2B video production on a shoestring budget was a fun session, but one question near the end has me rethinking how I’m going to make videos entirely. An audience member asked his take on intros and outros, and he said he strongly dislikes intros. We have seconds to make an impression when it comes to video, and even a short intro gives a viewer a chance to be bored and click away.

That blew my mind. I’ve never put video intros on the Almost Timely videos, but I have intros on You Ask, I Answer as well as Mind Readings. Yet many of my favorite YouTube channels have zero intros on their content. I’m thinking about simply not using them any more on those videos, to jump right into the content as Tony recommended. What do you think? Should I chop the leading 10-15 seconds and just jump right in?

Finally, I sat down at one of the early morning breakfast roundtables with Andy Crestodina. There’d been a mystery I didn’t understand in my Google Search Console data – my impressions (appearances in search) keep going up (yay!) but my clicks are either flat or slightly declining. Andy took one look and said, “almost certainly Google is just keeping more your clicks for itself”. Well, that was the answer I’d been trying to find for a couple of months now. Then we got onto the topic of “striking distance” pages – pages that are ALMOST on page 1 of search results (pages with position 11+) and how to identify them for optimization purposes.

After a couple of minutes of discussion, I popped my laptop open, fired up R Studio, and started to write code for the concept he was discussing and that he does manually. It turns out that automating at least part of the process is fairly straightforward, but there are some additional tweaks we can add to make it more powerful, like prioritizing those pages based on the total potential audience or identifying semantic search terms for those pages to help beef up the content. I have no idea if the code will go anywhere, but I love the concept and I’m going to develop it further.

MarketingProfs B2B Forum is one of those events that’s business-focused but yet feels like a homecoming that you’d actually want to attend. I’m sad that this year’s event is over and already looking forward to next year.

What event do you attend that has the same feel? Hit reply and let me know.

Got a Question? Hit Reply

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ICYMI: In Case You Missed it

Besides the new Google Analytics 4 course I’m relentlessly promoting (sorry not sorry), I would recommend the piece on identity marketing: what it is, why it matters, and how dangerous it can be.

Skill Up With Classes

These are just a few of the classes I have available over at the Trust Insights website that you can take.



Get Back to Work!

Folks who post jobs in the free Analytics for Marketers Slack community may have those jobs shared here, too. If you’re looking for work, check out these five most recent open positions, and check out the Slack group for the comprehensive list.

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What I’m Reading: Your Stuff

Let’s look at the most interesting content from around the web on topics you care about, some of which you might have even written.

Social Media Marketing

Media and Content

SEO, Google, and Paid Media

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Tools, Machine Learning, and AI

Analytics, Stats, and Data Science

All Things IBM

Dealer’s Choice : Random Stuff

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Events I’ll Be At

Here’s where I’m speaking and attending. Say hi if you’re at an event also:

  • Heapcon, November 2022, Belgrade, Serbia

Events marked with a physical location may become virtual if conditions and safety warrant it.

If you’re an event organizer, let me help your event shine. Visit my speaking page for more details.

Can’t be at an event? Stop by my private Slack group instead, Analytics for Marketers.

How to Stay in Touch

Let’s make sure we’re connected in the places it suits you best. Here’s where you can find different content:

Required Disclosures

Events with links have purchased sponsorships in this newsletter and as a result, I receive direct financial compensation for promoting them.

Advertisements in this newsletter have paid to be promoted, and as a result, I receive direct financial compensation for promoting them.

My company, Trust Insights, maintains business partnerships with companies including, but not limited to, IBM, Cisco Systems, Amazon, Talkwalker, MarketingProfs, MarketMuse, Agorapulse, Hubspot, Informa, Demandbase, The Marketing AI Institute, and others. While links shared from partners are not explicit endorsements, nor do they directly financially benefit Trust Insights, a commercial relationship exists for which Trust Insights may receive indirect financial benefit, and thus I may receive indirect financial benefit from them as well.

Thank You!

Thanks for subscribing and reading this far. I appreciate it. As always, thank you for your support, your attention, and your kindness.

See you next week,

Christopher S. Penn

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