tools matter. Since most of what we do in the B2B world revolves around thought leadership and media relations, it's easy to lose sight of the resources we can use to amplify our messages, gain more traction in the marketplace and generate inbound leads. I have a few favorites, which don't cost much at all (most of them are free). Let's take a look at my five faves:
1. The phone: maybe it makes me seem a little old school, but I do love the phone. For years, when working with internal experts, I've operated by a strict process: (a) when email is easy, call instead and (b) when a call is easy, make it a face-to-face visit. People respond to this. When you need content, approvals or just someone on your side, your relationship will be stronger. Pick up the phone. Stop by. It works.
2. HootSuite: when you need to push out social media marketing content fast and don't have much budget for anything fancy, it's hard to beat HootSuite. I've been a user since around 2009, and I haven't looked back.
3. Hubspot: so, you have some budget? You need to generate some leads? Hubspot is, without a doubt, the answer. For email remarketing, lead management, social media marketing integration and blogging, I've found Hubspot to be incredibly effective. If your job is to generate, track and nurture new business opportunities, you need to check it out.
4. Corporate blog: whether it's WordPress, Blogger or Hubspot's native tool, I can't - I won't - live without a corporate blog. The ability to pump out content on demand and use it as fodder for other social media platforms, not to mention direct outreach (by your sales force) is just too powerful to ignore. Blog content creates traffic, which creates opportunity to get people into your funnel. I've been using corporate blogs since 2005, and I still think they are absolutely incredible.
5. LinkedIn: I know it has a much smaller user base than Twitter and Facebook, but the results are much greater. In a number of sectors, I've found that LinkedIn generates better and higher quality traffic than the other social media platforms. In fact, I usually do better on LinkedIn than on Facebook and Twitter combined!
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