In the Oxford English Dictionary, the word inspiration is defined as “the process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.”
As B2B marketers working in unprecedented times, wouldn’t it be nice to be surrounded by inspiration to help us spur action, produce results, and make an impact? With organic traffic and conversions down for most industries due to COVID-19 and related business challenges, marketers are hard-pressed to adapt and overcome. Inspiration is certainly something we could all use to help us reach our goals.
So, if you’re looking for some B2B marketing inspiration, check out these 10 B2B marketers. They’re each doing inspiring things in a time where inspiration can be hard to find.
Meet 10 Inspiring B2B Marketers
As a CMO for a leading B2B technology company, Kirsten’s approach to today’s market is both thoughtful and inspirational. “At this moment in history and for the foreseeable future, a brand’s digital presence makes up the entirety of how it reaches customers,” Kirsten recently observed. “The customer journey and the user experience on our screens is quite literally everything,” she added. Her focus on Episerver’s digital presence will no doubt make a big difference.
Rishi Dave, CMO for Vonage, also highlights the immense need for conducting business online in the time of COVID-19. “While a great majority of the world’s daily life is disrupted, almost every organization is looking for ways to take their business online,” Rishi suggested. “It’s likely that we’ll look back in 10 years and recognize these few months in the Spring of 2020 as an inflection point,” he added. It’s clear that Rishi sees the global pandemic as a turning point for nearly all organizations and hopes it will inspire other B2B marketers to make the leap into a focus on digital experiences.
She’s the Chief Brand Officer at Deluxe, one of the most trusted information and technology services firms. But Amanda is also a top B2B marketer with an inspiring reminder for businesses and marketers trying to make it work in 2020. “You didn’t start your business from a place of weakness,” she says. “You started your business because you are strong and had something you wanted to bring the world.”
“You didn’t start your business from a place of weakness. You started your business because you are strong and had something you wanted to bring the world.” — Amanda Brinkman @amandakbrinkman Click To Tweet
Chief Marketing Officer, North America, Schneider Electric
From helping deliver care packages to low-income families impacted by COVID-19 and unrest in Hong Kong to hosting a new webinar series, Innovation Talks, to help their customers adapt to the COVID-19 era, Shonodeep Modak and Schneider Electric are doing plenty of inspiring things that are all data-informed. “You really have to understand how shoppers buy, shopper insights, how people decide what to buy at a Wal-Mart or go to the Quick Lube, the analytics around the demographics of cars and the interests of people and how you target them,” he advises.
“You really have to understand how shoppers buy, shopper insights, how people decide what to buy, the analytics around the demographics of cars and the interests of people and how you target them.” — Shonodeep Modak @SchneiderNA Click To Tweet
With a career starting in environmental work, it might surprise you to hear that Beverly Jackson is now the VP of Communication and Social at Activision Blizzard, one of the largest video game publishers and developers in the world. While her journey from environmentalist to social media maven is inspirational in its own right, she also has an inspiring take on the use of social media. “The great thing about social media is that it allows brands to create one-on-one relationships with their customers and prospects — not the marketers,” she says. “And the bottom line is: marketers should never get in the way of that relationship.”
Recently named as one of PR Week’s 2020 Women to Watch, Amisha Gandhi is a B2B marketing powerhouse. She’s especially skilled at leveraging influencer marketing to inspire her target audience and customers. “Working with influencers, to co-create content, delivers value and can inspire audiences to take action,” she suggests.
She’s one of Forbes’ 2019 World’s 50 Most Influential CMOs, and is sure to make the list again in 2020. Alicia Tillman has taken an inspirational approach as the Global CMO for SAP, doubling down on the customer experience. She says, “It’s all about the experience! Our new normal has pushed many to think outside the box and deliver unique, memorable experiences.”
Serving as the Head of Social Influencer Enablement for Adobe, a software company that has a home in almost every enterprise, Rani Mani has a unique view into how COVID-19 is impacting the future of work. Having helped Adobe with campaigns around the future of work, Rani gives some inspirational advice: “Staying relevant could mean reinventing and resetting multiple times in one’s career.”
Adam Singer is the CMO for a billion dollar fund with a variety of startups under his leadership. With such a diverse portfolio of startups, Adam and his team are introducing inspiring new products that serve a unique, clear need in the time of COVID. “Many schools will choose to have virtual classrooms this fall. We’re excited with all the initial interest in our portfolio company, Sococo* for Classrooms and have heard lots of great feedback from early testers.”
“Many schools will choose to have virtual classrooms this fall. We’re excited with all the initial interest in our portfolio company, @Sococo for Classrooms and have heard lots of great feedback from early testers.” @AdamSinger Click To Tweet
Working in healthcare, there has been a surge in demand for helpful content from B2B marketers like Amanda Todorovich. Amanda and the Cleveland Clinic have certainly answered the call with new webinars, blog posts, and more. On COVID-19 and healthcare marketing, she says, “Healthcare marketers need to drive forward with focus and new capabilities to achieve better business results within the reality of COVID-19. Now more than ever, marketing and communication executives are critical to redefining and communicating the future trajectory of healthcare brands.”
Inspiration Can Come From Anywhere
It’s true that inspiration is already all around us. But it’s not always easy to see. Give the above B2B marketers a follow to keep your feeds on LinkedIn, Twitter, and elsewhere filled with inspiring marketing campaigns, advice, and best practices.
Unsure how to market your organization during COVID-19? Read our CEO Lee Odden’s thoughts on marketing during a pandemic.
* SAP, Adobe, and Sococo are TopRank Marketing clients.