It always comes down to skills.
When marketers talk about what’s holding them back – skills. When the demand generation engine is stuck in neutral – skills. When the CMO is unimpressed – skills.
B2B marketing is changing. And lots of modern marketing departments lack the fundamental skills they need to keep and drive real demand. And many of these skills may not be top of mind.
Here are the 5 must-have skills that B2B marketing departments need to build a demand generation machine.
1. Content Marketing
To generate leads and revenue, you need to offer something. That means content. This could be in-house created content, licensed content, videos, demos, webinars – whatever the medium, conversion happens when you give something of value. Marketing needs to be a publisher and the marketers need to be authors.
2. Funnel Mindedness
Even if your job isn’t demand generation, the entire marketing team must live and breathe the funnel. The only way every member of the team can impact leads, opportunities and revenue is if they are intimately with the dynamics of your funnel.
3. Social Media
Not everyone on your team needs to be admin of your Facebook page or tweet from the corporate handle. But marketers should develop their personal brands. By doing so they can serve as ambassadors to your customer community, and amplify your messaging.
I don’t care if you work in PR, product marketing or demand generation – everything we do in marketing can, and should, be measured. Marketers should be held accountable for developing a reporting cadence and creating a set of measurements that make sense for your business. Knowing what everyone is held accountable for will encourage collaboration.
It’s not going away. We need to embrace it. Even if you’re not a marketing automation pro or a web analytics guru, chances are your job requires technological know-how. These systems can be huge enablers so marketers need to stop being afraid of them!
But don’t take our word for it. Participate in the Demand Generation Skills Gap survey and get a first look at the survey results. Eloqua, Focus, the Marketing Automation Institute and Bulldog Solutions will explore how companies staff the demand generation function and the critical skills that are missing in many marketing departments. Together we can start closing the skills gap.