Newsletter | September 29, 2021

09.29.21 -- Plan Like There Are No Rules

  In This Issue:  



One of Zig Ziglar's many contributions to the business world and society are his seven steps for successful goal setting: identification, benefits, obstacles, skills, people, and timelines. They are great for personal goal setting but can also be used to help us create better marketing plans. However, I recommend a slight modification. 


Rather than focusing the “benefits” step on ourselves and our organization, what if we consider how our business goals would benefit our customers? Doing this in the early stages of developing our marketing plans helps us establish a trajectory for all our marketing activities including research, which products or services to promote, how to communicate their value to the buyer, and ad creation. 


When marketing communications deliver poor results and fail to engage target audiences, it is often because we didn’t include our customers in our plans beyond their connection to a revenue goal. That sounds so simple and clear, but our B2B marketing material rarely includes much understanding of the buyers it is intended to attract.  


In this edition of Follow Your Buyer, we unpack the art and science of planning with the buyer at the center. We hope you find it valuable.


By the way, does anyone else think that the Ted Lasso character may have been based on Zig Ziglar?



Perry Rearick

Chief Editor | Follow Your Buyer


  Exclusive Content From Follow Your Buyer  
Plan Like There Are No Rules

When asked, most organizations will describe their planning process like this-establish objectives, define supporting tasks, identify resources, set a timeline, determine how results will be measured, communicate the plan, and execute. When followed, this process will lead to reasonably good outcomes; however, most of us don’t really plan this way. What our planning processes lack is effective planning guidance that offers purpose, direction, and motivation.

Who Is Your Marketing Campaign Serving?

Your buyers purchase what they need to purchase when they need to purchase it (not when you decide to run a campaign). So why do B2B marketers structure almost everything they do around campaigns?

Why Your Content Creation Strategy Needs Buyer-Centric Research

Choosing the content themes that will best drive buyer engagement used to be an educated guessing game, but now it can be an exact science thanks to primary research.

B2B Marketing Around The Web
Refining A Strategy: A Missing Component In Most Strategic Planning Processes

Refining is the process of freeing something from impurities or unwanted material. For a strategy, the impurities or unwanted materials are the obstacles to consistent and effective execution and the impediments to improved results. Whether it be for a metal or some other material, refinement is a critical stage in turning raw materials into something available for practical use.

Though Marketers Wanted To Save On Cost, Better Features Drove 2021 Technology Replacements

This year when MARTECH launched their annual survey to help understand how the pandemic affected marketing technology purchases, they found more than half the respondents reported moving from one commercial platform to another. But at a time when budgets were tightened, it wasn’t primarily cost that drove these decisions. In the end, features trumped cost.


One More Thing...The SAF Strategy Model


Searching for tools to help us be better planners can lead to an overwhelming number of choices, and we quickly find ourselves lost in the outer limits of the internet.


When pitching ideas during a planning session, it is good to have a backstop. One tool that is simple and valuable in keeping the ball in play is the SAF Strategy Model, which stands for suitability, acceptability, and feasibility.  

  • Suitability—Will the idea help us achieve the outcomes we are seeking?
  • Acceptability—Can we live with the risks associated with the idea, and does it reflect the principles of our business?
  • Feasibility—Do we have the capabilities to implement the idea?

If you'd like to explore this concept more, I recommend The Oxford College of Marketing blog on the subject:  Using The SAF Strategy Model to Evaluate Strategic Options (