This was marketing brilliance this morning — and we hadn't even rolled up to the FutureM Boston conference yet. There they were, two awesome young musicians, a violinist and a cellist, banging out tunes so crisp, so beautiful, that even the smartphone and tablet-obsessed morning Boston commuters gave a look. One commuter even approached the duo in between songs and asked if they do weddings.
Just Play Your Music
We asked the musicians if this was some sort of social experiment — similar to what the Washington Post did. The Post won a Pulitzer after it disguised violinist virtuoso Joshua Bell in a subway station and took note of the ways people noticed — or ignored — his brilliant playing.
It wasn't. These guys in Boston just wanted to play. And that's what B2B marketers should do today — just play and get your awesome message in front of your audience.
The struggle for attendees at this week's Future M conference, though, is getting ahead of the digital disruption and being an effective disrupter. At the same time, as today's keynote speaker, Dharmesh Shah, CTO and co-founder of Hubspot, said, "100 percent of people" do not like being interrupted.
So how do digital marketers break through this noise effectively? The trick, as many have said this week in Boston, is creating something of value, just like our subway musicians did this morning.
And how do you create valuable content? That starts with having the right talent, Shah said today. In fact, he believes talent will be more important than technology. And that's coming from someone with an engineering background.
Get tomorrow's innovative marketers inside your organizations by, simply, being innovative yourself. Challenge your old ways, see what others are doing, and do it differently and better, he said.
B2B Marketers Need Mobile Mindset
To become innovative, B2B marketers must realize that even in their world, mobile is trending. It's not just B2C and consumer-driven, Shah said.
"The mistakes B2B companies make all the time is they think mobile is the thing that only happens in the B2C land," Shah said. "I think that’s a misguided way of looking at it."
Businesses in the B2B world are run by humans, remember, who are also struck by the mobile phenomenon.
"Ask yourself: How do people use mobile in our market?" Shah said. "What's even better than that is asking yourself how do you make your Website more responsive? And how do I make my organization responsive?"
Cutting Through Noise
Technologically, you have to be unique today. Email and search providers are smarter and better at cutting out your organizations from marketing messages if you have a poor past performance of being spammed, Shah said. Apps are being created with awesome capabilities of black-listing marketing messages on smartphones.
"How much they trust you impacts the delivery of the email you send," Shah said. Google, email and social providers and others are there to ensure the "probability of your message will be well-received."
It's something those subway musicians clearly understand — their message was well-received, unique, awesome and created something engaging. They disrupted people — but yet effectively because their product was super unique from most underground performers; it was great.
Theirs is a marketing message welcomed by the toughest of crowds — morning Boston commuters. If they were a marketing agency trying to get a message across, we'd have little doubt Google and others would welcome them, too.
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