Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Interview with David Meerman Scott

I had a chance to chat with David Meerman Scott recently on a wide variety of topics. As one of the leading thinkers on social media in a business environment, his ideas, examples, and perspectives are fantastic to hear.

In this interview, we talked about why B2B marketers are so hesitant to embrace “fun” as an element of their marketing, and why we need to think about selling to people, not amorphous businesses. As part of that transition, we need to focus on creating a steady flow of rich, interesting, shareable content. Once we do that, we will find our messages shared freely among thousands, or even hundreds of thousands of potential buyers.

See below for our conversation (if this does not load, please click here to see the full conversation with David Meerman Scott):

Interview with David Meerman Scott

Towards the end of the conversation, DM Scott also spoke about how to balance freely shared content with the need for a flow of qualified leads for our sales teams. When it’s okay to ask for information, and when it is less likely to work. I hope you enjoyed watching the conversation and got as much out of it as I did.

For more insights from David Meerman Scott, see his blog at or follow him on Twitter (@dmscott).
Many of the topics on this blog are discussed in more detail in my book Digital Body Language
In my day job, I am with Eloqua, the marketing automation software used by the worlds best marketers
Come talk with me or one of my colleagues at a live event, or join in on a webinar


Tom C said...

Great reminder that advertising and marketing resources drive sales. People buy from people. B2B becomes more human with marketing strategies that speak to the buyer and not the business target.

Unknown said...

I checked out his keynote too...great stuff...thanks for this post.

Especially his point about giving content away without asking for "something" is a great example of a "norm" that begs to be revisited. Which brings me to my topic that I wanted to run by you...

I find the idea of "lifecycle traceability" very compelling because I saw this evolution happen first in supply chain (order-to-cash) and then in product lifecycle management (design-source-make-sell-service-dispose.) So I've been thinking like an engineer to figure out how to do the same for the contact-to-contract lifecycle...

But in listening to DM Scott, I realized that we need to balance the need for traceability and "process control" against this whole concept of "permissibility" (for lack of a better word.)

So, it is technologically possible to have traceability in the entire contact-to-contract timeline, but there is this "permissibility point" - and BEFORE that point, traceability is anonymous (but still useful), and AFTER that point, traceability becomes personalized...

...and made me realize this is an important consideration for the Marketing Performance Management framework, i.e., each stage is going to differ in terms of how you measure the KPIs.

And you know, there is a parallel in supply chain - we call these "push-pull" points. For example, when you buy a loaf of bread, a baker isn't automatically making another loaf to replace it. The bakery does batches and PUSHES them out...the grocery store sells and PULLS inventory every day. Push vs. pull are very very different supply chain strategies...and the distribution center becomes the "fulcrum" to manage and optimize the flow. So it could be the same with this "permissibility point" in the demand chain.

Its just a concept ... but with data, analysis, validation, etc., it could have implications for demand gen strategy (at least in B2B.)

Steve Lawson said...

Hi Steve -

I loved this interview. I hope you don't mind, but I grabbed a one minute insert and posted it on my blog with full credit to David and to you, with a link back to your blog to see the entire video.

Thanks for posting this great interview!

Unknown said...


I just saw your interview with David Meerman Scott. I got a lot out of it. Thanks for posting.

One of his suggestions is to make the white papers downloadable for free, without having to register or give up your email in order to get the content. I'm very interested in Eloqua's whitepapers, but still have to register to get them. Any word on trying David's suggestions?

He talked about making marketing fun, or funny, as well. I'm a big believer in that. The mere fact that I'm selling to a business does not mandate that I be boring! I actually used humor -- poking fun at MSFT, modeling my content after an iconic Dylan video, talking about Benioff's beard -- in a video that got me entree into Dreamforce! It got a lot of views, and you can view it here:

My point is that you can be a little edgy and funny and it goes a long way!

Keep up the good work.

Sam Featherstone

Steven Woods said...

good point - it's funny you mention it. Lots of internal conversations are happening on exactly what balance we'd want to strike there...

Love the video, well done!


Kurt Stoll said...

I agree that gating content can have a negative impact on "share-ability," but I would be interested to know at what point that DM Scott believes that you do start gating or collecting information for content. I believe he mentioned gating for 2nd level offers, but I would like to hear him expand on that.