6 B2B SMB problems and how to fix them - no. 6 - lack of direction

(4-min read) The final problem in our series is usually told to us as "We're having trouble marketing our product (or service)". We understand. There are so many directions out there, it's difficult to know what path to go down, or where to spend your money. Yet, it's important to have a clear idea of where you're headed. If you don't want to get lost.

6 B2B SMB problems and how to fix them - no. 2: Lead quality

(5-min read) At Usher & Spur, we've identified six major problems B2B SMBs have. Over the next few weeks, we'll be covering these problems in no particular order in a series of posts. Today's problem is: "Our leads aren't high quality." In other words, you're not reaching people who are interested in buying your product or service in the near future.

Is your content missing your mark? Part 2 - the B2B buying committee

(7 1/2-min read)Studies are showing that there is a disconnect between what B2B customers are looking for in terms of information about your business and products (and those of your competitors) and what marketing is providing. The problem is they don't always agree on what it is customers are looking for. In this two-part series, we take a look at two studies that show disconnects, ponder what reasons are underlying the figures, and suggest how to adjust your trajectory.

Can you feel your customers' pains?

My father, a successful salesman, used to say, "If a potential customer contacts you, they want to buy. There might be a dozen reasons they end up not buying, but the desire is there." In B2B sales, most experts would agree that a major reason they don't buy is it's easier to do nothing. If what you offer can kill a pain they have, you stand a better chance of getting their attention. If you can convince them that pain is critical, you can move them through your pipeline.

5 reasons great content will help your sales

(2 1/2-min read) What do we mean when we talk about content enabling sales? This guest post for the Content Marketing Institute (lots of really great resources there) puts it in terms of the challenges faced by your sales people (field or internal) and how great content can help them do their job better.

How to map the customer journey

This extremely clear article from the Content Marketing Institute explains in terms everyone can relate to what we mean by "customer journey", and provides a template for creating one of your own. There are many articles that talk about customer journey mapping, but this one caught our eye because: 1) It admits that "there isn’t just one way to do it. You do it in the context of your project”; 2) Its approach is not based on the sales funnel, but "answers this question: What does this persona want to do?" i.e. what do they "want to accomplish as they interact with a brand?"

3 reasons you need to be customer-centric

(4-min read) Focusing on your customers sounds like a no-brainer. I mean, if you don't focus on your customers, what are you focusing on? Yet, at Usher & Spur, the biggest barrier to progress that we encounter from our clients is precisely a difficulty in viewing the customer as the focus or centre of their thinking. Such an approach has major impacts for sales and marketing, but also product design.