As we wrote last week, several of our customers were nominated for BtoB Magazine’s Top Digital Marketer award. On Thursday September 19, 2013 BtoB Magazine hosted a luncheon to honor the top 25 Digital Marketers and announce the Top Digital Marketer of the year. It was an opportunity to highlight the accomplishments of this talented and innovative group who are leveraging technology to transform their programs from an art to a science – and getting great results.
The event kicked off with a keynote from Charlene Li of the Altimeter Group who presented key findings from the eBook she co-wrote with Brian Solis, 7 Success Factors of Social Business Strategy. Her keynote set the tone for the event, emphasizing the critical role that technology, strategy, analytics and planning play in even the most creative campaigns.
The statistics she shared were surprising to many – and further emphasized how exceptional the award winners are compared to others who haven’t quite caught on to the new rules of B2B marketing. Overall, many companies have not connected their social strategy to their business goals, have not planned ahead and said that their executive team was not aligned to or informed about their social strategy.
The findings made crystal clear how important it is for next generation marketers to leverage analytics and create focused marketing plans that directly tie in to revenue. As obvious as those concepts seem to most of us now, the paths of execution are still somewhat undefined for many. When you consider that, the thought leadership of the honorees is even more impressive.
Attendees at the luncheon witnessed some of that thought leadership first hand in a panel discussion in which each of the top marketers had the opportunity to share their thoughts and plans for the coming year. Each had a unique vision for the types of technology they want to implement and advanced campaigns they’ll run. They had a deep understanding of their customers and a clear picture of how critical marketing’s role is within a company’s ecosystem. It was remarkable to see the level of clarity and deep knowledge each winner possessed.
As Demandbase CMO, Greg Ott, said when he presented Petra Neiger of Cisco (and a Demandbase customer) with the top digital marketer of the year award, “Two years ago I was giving talks on whether marketing innovation for B2B was an oxymoron.” Now, it’s clear that couldn’t be further from the case. Not only is it not an oxymoron, it’s an absolute necessity. We’re proud that so many of our customers are on the forefront of this revolution and we look forward to supporting their initiatives and successes in 2014!
By Rachel Balik