Renegade Wrapped: 2021 in Review
Curious about Drew’s top hits for 2021? Well, this is the episode for you. From the rocket growth of CMO Huddles (a community for B2B CMOs that share, care, and dare each other to greatness, if you didn’t know) to the release of Renegade Marketing, this year has been one for the books—filled with ups and downs and a whole lotta B2B marketing lessons.
Tune in for one of our special Drew-on-Drew episodes, where the Drews review 2021, covering top challenges CMOs are facing with recommendations for how to face them head-on. Key takeaways? 2022 should be the year to: Stick to your North Star. Lead by doing less, better. And take small bets that could become big bets.
What You’ll Learn in This Episode
- Why CMO Huddles rocks
- Drew’s top lessons learned from 2021
- Where B2B CMOs should focus in 2022
Renegade Marketers Unite, Episode 270 on YouTube
- Goodreads: Renegade Marketing reviews
- The Baer Facts newsletter by Jay Baer
- The Clear and Complete Guide to Account-Based Experience by Jon Miller
- Interviews featuring Drew and Renegade Marketing
- The Marketing Book Podcast (Hosted by Douglas Burdett): “Renegade Marketing” by Drew Neisser
- Marketing Today (Hosted by Alan Hart): The Value of Leading with Service with Author Drew Neisser
- Sales Enablement with Andy Paul: 12 Steps to Building Unbeatable B2B Brands, with Drew Neisser
- The Recipe (Hosted by The Abacus Agency): Building Better B2B Brands
- Rockstar CMO FM (Hosted by Ian Truscott): The Small Budgets, Renegade Drew Neisser, and a Cocktail of Choices with Robert Rose Episode
- CMO Alliance (Hosted by Will Whitham): Bye-bye to boring B2B branding
- DemandGen Radio (Hosted by David Lewis): The 4 Traits of Modern CMOs ft Drew Neisser
- The Experience Maker (Hosted by Dan Gingiss): How Build An Unbeatable B2B Brand With Renegade Marketing
- Renegade B2B Market Research case studies:
- Client: Conversica
- The Report: The New Sales and Marketing Divide: It’s Not What You Think
- Renegade Blog: “B2B Market Research to Scale Your ABM Efforts”
- Conversica webinar: “Nothing is Wrong With Your ABM Strategy, But Your Execution is Failing”
- Client: Conversica
- Client: Riskified
- The Report: A Crisis of Confidence
- Renegade Blog: “Enabling eConfidence for eCommerce with a B2B Market Research Study”
- Client: Riskified
- [0:26] Drew’s Best Part of 2021: CMO Huddles
- [4:40] What Makes a Great Huddler
- [5:32] Lessons Learned from Marketing CMO Huddles
- [8:57] Drew’s 2nd Best Thing of 2021: Renegade Marketing
- [14:24] Drew’s 3rd Best Thing of 2021: B2B Market Research
- [16:38] Drew’s Not-So-Best Thing of 2021
- [18:37] Top Challenges for CMOs in 2022: CMO Wellness
- [22:05] On the Future of Events and Doing Less, Better
- [25:44] Applying These Lessons to Employees and Customers
- [27:53] Places to Focus in 2022: ABM, MarTech, Experimentation
Transcript Highlights: Drew Neisser in conversation with… Drew Neisser (yes, again!)
[0:26] Drew’s Best Part of 2021: CMO Huddles“It's not about referrals, it's about continuing to add value so that they want to do referrals.” —@DrewNeisser on @CMOHuddles Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): Hello, Renegade Marketers!
Drew Neisser (guest): Oh my god, don’t tell me, Drew, this is another Drew-on-Drew episode.
Drew Neisser (host): Well, right you are.
Drew Neisser (guest): But it’s only been nine weeks since you did the last one.
Drew Neisser (host): I know. I know. But there’s a lot to talk about.
Drew Neisser (guest): Okay, promise me we’re not going to spend the whole time talking about the book.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay. I promise, but we might talk about the book just a little bit.
Drew Neisser (guest): Okay, fair enough.
Drew Neisser (host): Well, let’s start with something nice. It’s the holiday season. Why don’t you say what the best thing that’s happened to you this year from a business standpoint goes?
Drew Neisser (guest): Hey, thank you for asking. You know, it’s easy. That one is CMO Huddles.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, great. I know you talk about huddles a lot on the show. But what’s the story?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, when we started the year, January 1st, 2021, we had 30 subscribers.
Drew Neisser (host): How many do you have now?
Drew Neisser (guest): When we hit January 1st, 2022, we will be crossing 100 subscribers.
Drew Neisser (host): Wow, that’s pretty impressive growth. I mean, I don’t know what your expectations were. But that sounds really good. That’s like three times the number, right?
Drew Neisser (guest): Yeah. So let me just tell you that this is the coolest, most gratifying work of my career. It’s also the most purposeful work of my career.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that’s nice and good for you. Hey, congratulations. But let’s break down. Because some folks have asked, “So what do you think is making CMO Huddles grow?” I mean, this is brand, and you must have marketing and all those other good things that you advise other clients about. So, what’s making CMO Huddles work?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, there’s a lot of goodness on a lot of fronts. But if we talk about, first, having a North Star and a purpose, I can really tell you that our idea of share, care, dare, and bringing together a community of elite CMOs to share, care, and dare each other to greatness is really quite profound and we think about that a lot.
And I would say that we have a very simple litmus test for everything we do. That doesn’t matter whether it’s marketing or customer experience. We ask the question: Is it good for the huddler?
Drew Neisser (host): Huddler, I’m assuming, is a subscriber.
Drew Neisser (guest): Absolutely.
Drew Neisser (host): So, what you’re saying is, your business is customer-centric.
Drew Neisser (guest): Yeah, it is. And it’s nice to practice what you preach. But I have to say that a lot of this goes—I credit—we have an advisory board of six amazing CMOs. I think in our advisory meeting, I think it was in January of the year, I presented the numbers and things were good.
I said, “But you know, it bothers me that we’re not getting the kind of referrals that we were looking for. I thought we would be getting more.”
One of the CMOs said, “Well, you’re focused on the wrong thing. It’s not about referrals, it’s about continuing to add value so that they want to do referrals.”
Drew Neisser (host): Oh, that kind of makes sense. That was kind of a no-duh moment, right?
Drew Neisser (guest): It was, but it really helped us because then, again, if you think about your business and say, “How can I add value? What can we do to add value?” We really thought about that a lot and continue to add value.
At the beginning of the year, we might have done one bonus huddle every three or four months. Now we do one pretty much every month. We are much more focused in terms of the experience that we provide every single month and making sure that things like one-on-ones happen in the first two months.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, okay. That’s cool. That’s nice. What else?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, a community, when you’re building a community—here’s a shocker. You really have to vet very carefully. Not everyone is a huddler. Not everyone will be good.
[4:40] What Makes a Great Huddler“We are all looking to be better at what we do, and we can probably do it better if we share and care about each other's performances.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): So, what makes a great huddler?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, it starts with curiosity. I mean, if you’re incurious, if you’ve been doing this a really, really long time and you think you have all the answers and just don’t need or care about peer input, then clearly CMO Huddles is not right.
Drew Neisser (host): Is that it? They just need to be curious?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I think the notion—it helps if they can embrace the notion of share, care, and dare. That we are all looking to be better at what we do, and we can probably do it better if we share and care about each other’s performances.
Drew Neisser (host): Sounds pretty idealistic.
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, look, it’s an amazing group of people and all I know is that every time I am on a huddle, I learned something, and I am thrilled that I get to be the person that brings these people together.
[5:32] Lessons Learned from Marketing CMO Huddles“If everything is about adding value and your marketing is about adding value, then this North Star of ‘Is it good for the CMO?’ really keeps us anchored.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): Anything else that you’re doing? What about marketing at CMO Huddles? What are the lessons that you learned there?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, this, again, is not surprising, but I have to say, if we’re building something called—think of it as community as a service. It’s almost like software as a service. And what works really well in software as a service? A free offer. A way to try before you buy. A trial period. And we have a guest pass. Not only will we send you a guest pass, but we’ll let you check out our Slack channel, and even see a copy of the notes.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that’s pretty good. And then the process of converting. What do you just do? Tell them all the good things about huddles?
Drew Neisser (guest): We do. But really, again, if every communication is about adding value—because we really understand the one thing CMOs don’t have is more time—if everything is about adding value, and your marketing is about adding value, then again, this North Star of “Is it good for the CMO?” really keeps us anchored.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, cool. Anything else you want to talk about there?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I will say one of the things that is nice is—and this is tricky and I really feel the pain. We’re trying to do it as well as our clients is, you know, attribution modeling. We know many of the sources for huddlers and it’s nice to have a pipeline.
But I will tell you that even within that—and we know where they’ll come from a podcast or come from LinkedIn or they’ll come from a social outreach. There is still probably 20 or 30% where it could have been any combination of things.
And this is why I think it’s so important that we as marketers don’t just focus on first touch attribution, or we’ll call them marketing qualified leads. The role that marketing plays in all of this on a multi-touch program can reinforce that sometimes it’s not just about getting the lead, but it’s about nursing the lead through. And if they see that a fellow CMO that they respect to sharing something from CMO Huddles, that adds and makes it a lot easier for us to convert.
Drew Neisser (host): That sounds like a really good story. What’s on the docket for 2022 for huddles?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I’ll say it here. I like to share our goals and keep them public. Our goal is to get from 100 to 200 as we expand, but also keep the intimacy that we have in our monthly huddles. And we’re beta testing right now B2C huddles. My buddy Alan Hart is heading that up.
That’s an exciting opportunity, again, all with there’s a niche that we’re fulfilling, there’s a need that we’re fulfilling, and can we do it in a way… I like to call it a force multiplier.
This is so really important, I think, as you think about your service business is: The time that they spend with huddles, does it deliver 3x, 6x return in terms of ideas?
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that’s a lot on huddles. That’s very cool. Thank you for that.
[8:57] Drew’s 2nd Best Thing of 2021: Renegade Marketing“I do try to follow the rules that I suggest for my guests. One, listen to a lot of their episodes. Really listen to the questions. Be in the moment. Try to be pithy.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): What’s the second-best thing that happened to you in 2021?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, thank you for asking. There’s this thing, this book, Renegade Marketing, and yeah, I said I might talk about the book.
Drew Neisser (host): So first of all, what took you so long to get this book? I mean, your first book came out in 2015 and it’s like 2021 towards the tail end?
Drew Neisser (guest): Yeah, well, there’s this thing called the pandemic and all these other things called life but I will say that—and I’ve told the story a lot on the podcast. I’m glad the timing of the book happened when it did.
I would have hated for this to have come out before the pandemic because the pandemic did change a lot. I had to rewrite a lot of the book. The steps didn’t change but some of the things did. I’m grateful that it took this long, but more importantly I’m grateful that it’s a work that we get some nice reviews about.
Drew Neisser (host): Oh really? Pray tell.
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, first shout out to Steve Sarner, who is the [VP Ad Sales & Program Management] at Goodreads who put the book Renegade Marketing on his top five books for 2021. He didn’t even qualify it on fiction or nonfiction, so that’s pretty cool.
Drew Neisser (host): Anything else?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, here’s one that might make you laugh. I want to make sure I quote this right. So Jay Baer, the famous Jay Baer has a newsletter where he reviews books. And shortly after Renegade Marketing launched, Jay featured the book, and here’s what he said. He said, “Drew Neisser is one of the strongest B2B marketing thinkers in the world.”
Drew Neisser (host): Wait, seriously? Did he really say in the world?
Drew Neisser (guest): Yeah, he did. And I have to say that my wife and I—well, I don’t know. I don’t take myself too seriously on this one.
Drew Neisser (host): I should say not I don’t even know how your head fits through the door after someone says something like that.
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, you’re right. Anyway, thank you, Jay. It was a very kind thing to say. And whether it’s true or not, it’s just lovely to see it in print.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, so let’s talk about how you marketed the book and how’s that going? I know you were on a lot of podcasts. How was that?
Drew Neisser (guest): I was. I’ve been on, I don’t know, I think 20 different podcasts. It’s very different being a host and a guest. I do try to be sympathetic. I do try to follow the rules that I suggest for my guests. One, listen to a lot of their episodes. Really listen to the questions. Be in the moment. Try to be pithy. And leave time because the show is often about the host, not the guest.
Drew Neisser (host): Were there any shows that stand out that you felt particularly good about or bad about?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I will tell you this. There was one show that I really lost sleep over.
Drew Neisser (host): Wait, what do you mean?
Drew Neisser (guest): No, literally. So, Douglas Burdett has a show called The Marketing Book podcast. I started listening to this show and I listened to about 10 episodes with really smart authors on really well-written books and people that I respect. The more I listened, the more I panicked, because I thought, “Oh, my god, do I have anything fresh to say?
Drew Neisser (host): So what did you do?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I kept listening to episodes. And then I actually took the four hours and I reread my book from start to finish, which was a good exercise to begin with.
Drew Neisser (host): What did you figure out from there?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I figured out, actually, there’s some pretty good stuff in my book, and that there’s some things that are whitespace relative to the other 10 shows that I’d listened to.
Drew Neisser (host): So how to go with Douglas?
Drew Neisser (guest): Oh, he’s a pussycat. I mean, he really is a very nice guy and he does his homework and he makes the show fun to be on. So it was a treat. I’m grateful to him. And it’s nice, one of the things that he does that’s so cool is he encourages his audience to contact the person, the author, and several of his folks have, and that’s kind of cool.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, what else? What else is going in with the book? Anything that didn’t work out as well as you would like?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I will tell you this. One of the hardest things—the most important thing is getting a lot of reviews and I had set a review goal of 100.
Drew Neisser (host): So, how’s that going?
Drew Neisser (guest): Not so good, actually. I’ve got 31 out of 100.
Drew Neisser (host): Whoa, you’re like 1/3 of quota. What’s the problem?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, people are busy, and I understand it, and it’s hard. I will tell you that I’ve written a lot of reviews of a lot of books in the last month because it’s a quid pro quo. If you want more reviews, you’ve got to write more reviews. I will say that, anybody who’s listening to this show, I am more than happy to send you a copy of my book, either the e-book or the hardcopy, if you will commit to writing a review.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that’s a nice offer. Great.
[14:24] Drew’s 3rd Best Thing of 2021: B2B Market Research“There really is an art to crafting the questionnaire in a way that's valid, that will hold up to the scrutiny of a professional researcher or someone who's got a Ph.D. in that.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): What do you got? Let’s move on from the book. Let’s talk about maybe the third best thing that happened this year.
Drew Neisser (guest): So I think the third best thing that happened this year was, Renegade really started focusing on these market research projects. We’ll just call them press-worthy or newsworthy research projects. One that really stands out is one we did with Conversica and in their world and some of the things that we learned about the future of ABM. We’re just really good at this.
Drew Neisser (host): So what’s the challenge with those? I mean, there are a lot of market research firms out there, so what’s the niche that you’re fulfilling?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, as we’ve done a lot of these now—Riskified and Appian and WorkForce and, oh gosh, HUMAN Security—there really is an art to crafting the questionnaire in a way that’s valid, that will hold up to the scrutiny of a professional researcher or someone who’s got a Ph.D. in that.
So you have to craft the questionnaire—that’s really important so it’s a legitimate work. You have to field it. And then you have to read the results and find the story within the results that is newsworthy, that is enlightening, that will help move the conversation along.
Drew Neisser (host): How’d that go?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, we just did it a lot. And it just keeps going. It’s really a fun thing. And with Conversica, not only did we do the research and write up the report and design it, but they asked me to host the webinar in which we presented it.
So anyway, it was just a very cool program and they’re continuing to find ways of taking advantage of this research as an asset to help educate their customers. And if you think about—going back to the book when I talk about selling through service—well, research is one of the ways that you do that.
[16:38] Drew’s Not-So-Best Thing of 2021“If you're launching a new business like @CMOHuddles and you've got a book coming out, you may want not to take on yet another assignment.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): This is all very rosy Drew, but what didn’t work out? Because there’s got to be something you learned from those?
Drew Neisser (guest): Yeah, there was one. We had one rebranding assignment. A pretty exciting one initially where two companies were coming together and merging. Our job was to figure out what the combined story was.
We went from, literally in a period of two weeks where we were, “Oh my gosh, this is the greatest thinking. That that presentation was worth the entire cost of the engagement” to “The C-Suite has lost confidence in your ability to complete this program.”
Drew Neisser (host): Yikes, that must have hurt.
Drew Neisser (guest): It did. It did. I mean, I never want to be in that position where we are disappointing or leaving someone, you know, somehow or other not being able to deliver expectations. And I’m not—I’m sure the fault is entirely on us. Although I say that and at the same time, I know that it takes two to tango.
But I think the lesson that we learned on that one is, at least, if you’re launching a new business like CMO Huddles and you’ve got a book coming out, you may want not to take on yet another assignment. I think it’s quite possible we were simply stretched too much.
But it’s just interesting with the market research work that we do, there’s like a 95 to 99% satisfaction rate. It’s much harder to achieve that in other areas, which is why we’ve really doubled down on that this year and plan to moving forward.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that didn’t sound like fun. But it seems like you learn something from that.
[18:37] Top Challenges for CMOs in 2022: CMO Wellness“We don't need to do every single task that crosses our plate. We only need to do the things that will move the needle.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): CMOs are listening. Let’s talk a little bit about some of the things that you see them adjusting to. The challenges for them in 2022 and what we can start to think about for tackling these challenges.
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, the first thing I want to mention because this hits home personally is, I really think there’s a wellness crisis in the C-Suite right now. I’ve noticed it in huddles and a lot of the CMOs that I talk to. I mean, let’s just start with a basic question. Are you working more hours today than you were before the pandemic?
Drew Neisser (host): So why is that question so important?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, you’re not commuting; most of us aren’t commuting. So why are you working more hours? And after the you’ve asked the question, “Why are you working more hours?”, you say, “Are you really more productive? Or are you just putting in the hours?”
Drew Neisser (host): Well, what was the answer to that?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, most of them just, it became, it’s just easy to work many hours. I know this personally. I mean, I kiss my wife upstairs and say, “Hi, honey, I’m going to the office.” And then, you know, the next thing you know, it’s eight o’clock at night and I’ve worked a 12-hour day. And sometimes I’ll do that multiple days in a row. If I look at my own personal productivity, I can’t say that it’s necessarily grown. I will say that I’ve probably done a lot of tasks that I didn’t need to do, and I think that’s the point.
Drew Neisser (host): What’s the point?
Drew Neisser (guest): That we really have to think about wellness as part of our priority, and in order to get to wellness, we need to be thinking about prioritization and making sure that we don’t take on more tasks. It’s funny, in a huddle, one of the CMOs asked, “Hey, could you help me say no more?” I think that’s a valid question, but also one that we really need to get good at in 2022.
Drew Neisser (host): So why is that so important? Why do we need to say no?
Drew Neisser (guest): Because we don’t need to do every single task that crosses our plate. We only need to do the things that will move the needle. And everything else is just extra, right? So if we agree on the things that will move the needle, and we agree that everything else is nice to have, but not necessary, then we can take a lot of things off of our plate.
And also, we can live by a couple rules. One, if a boss or a peer adds something to the list, then something has to come off. Two, it is okay to say no. And three, only do—this is what leaders do. You only do the things that only you can do. I know I’ve said that on the show before, but it really is worth reminding.
If you look at your to-do list, and there are seven things on it that you can delegate, why aren’t you delegating them?
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, so why aren’t they delegating?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, some are smaller companies, and there are no virtual assistants or EAs.
Drew Neisser (host): Yeah, can’t you get a virtual assistant pretty cheap these days?
Drew Neisser (guest): Yes, you can. And if you don’t have an assistant, you are the assistant.
[22:05] On the Future of Events and Doing Less, Better“Where you're going to see CMOs finding competitive advantage is by doing less better.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): So yes, we have this wellness mindset. I get it, I get it. But let’s talk more tactically. What do CMOs—what are they seeing ahead? How’s the event world going to shape up?
Drew Neisser (guest): Fair enough. So, after a wellness mentality, it is clear that the next big thing is agility. I think a lot of CMOs are talking about planning quarter to quarter as opposed to annually.
I hate hearing that because it does mean that you’re going to be pivoting a lot. But the reason why that feels so important, this planning quarter to quarter instead of annually, is that we don’t know what’s going to happen with physical events. And without physical events, we are going to be juggling trying to get better at the digital things that we’re doing.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that’s interesting. Events may or may not happen, or they’re going to happen in some form or another. So, what’s the big deal about digital? And why do we need to think about that a little bit differently?
Drew Neisser (guest): So, what happened in 2021 is really interesting. CMOs are starting to see that most of the tactics that they are doing online, whether it is a newsletter or email or social or virtual events, their performance has started to drop. It’s clear that the world of digital fatigue is huge.
Drew Neisser (host): Is there a solution to that?
Drew Neisser (guest): I think there is. And I think where you’re going to see CMOs finding competitive advantage is by doing less better.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, say that again.
Drew Neisser (guest): Doing less better. Do you have 30 things that you’re doing? Maybe we only do 15, and those 15 you do better?
Drew Neisser (host): Could you be a little more specific?
Drew Neisser (guest): Sure. So, let’s talk about virtual events. A lot of folks are still planning to do webinars and events. And maybe you would have had one speaker that it was C quality or wasn’t world-class. Maybe you need to get up to a B or an A quality speaker that is really someone that people will turn out to.
Maybe you think about jazzing up the environment a little bit. We saw a wonderful, rather than just having Zoom, these guys used a virtual background that made it look like you were entering a conference. And it wasn’t that expensive.
If you’re going to do a smaller event, like a lot of folks had success with these 10-to-12-person virtual events with a whiskey tasting or a wine tasting or a cooking class. Maybe you need to have a better chef this year if you’re going to do it. Because those still work. People still do want to get together physically or virtually.
If you’re doing a blog post, maybe you need to have a better writer. Maybe that junior writer just isn’t good enough or maybe at least you need to interview somebody senior. Or maybe these need to be authored by the executive who really truly has the knowledge.
Now I know that that’s going to create all sorts of other problems, but the point here is, by doing less better, you’re taking a few projects off your plate, but you’re going to devote more energy so that when a prospect or customer looks at the work that you’re doing, you feel really good about it.
And you know that it’s adding value. I’m going to go back to what I said about CMO Huddles. Our North Star—is it good for the CMO? So, if you say, is this good for our customer?
[25:44] Applying These Lessons to Employees and Customers“You can never go wrong investing in your customers and making them look good.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): Interesting. And I know you started to talk about prospects, but I think you really meant employees and customers, right? Isn’t that what your book talks about?
Drew Neisser (guest): Okay, fair enough. Look, if we go back to the wellness point, you CMO, first and foremost priority is your employees and making sure you build the team and keep the team which is really hard and 2021. And sadly, it’s not going to get any easier in 2022.
So whatever wellness mindset you bring to yourself in terms of the hours that you take off, you know, claw back from work, how can you help your employees do that? Well, this is where we talk about prioritization and doing less, better.
If we tell our employees, we’ve got to do 100 things, they’re just going to try to get 100 things done. If we say we’re only going to do those things that we can do really well, there’s going to be more pride in what we do, and we’re not going to burn everybody out trying to do 100 freaking blog posts that are all mediocre.
So, employee wellness is going to be good. Making sure employees take their time off. This is a top priority, and I really hope that CMOs will take time to do this.
Drew Neisser (host): Okay, that’s employees, what about customers?
Drew Neisser (guest): I tell you customers were really the… you want to have a CMO’s eyes light up, talk to them about how 2020 and 2021 were all about customers and how a huge percent of revenue growth—in some cases 40 to 60% of revenue growth was simply about getting customers to use their product or service better and more of it to greater satisfaction.
You already were in the door; they just weren’t taking advantage of it to its fullest. I think that will continue in 2022. You can never go wrong investing in your customers and making them look good. You’re going to see more customer advisory boards and better customer advisory boards and you’re going to see more customer events and better customer events.
[27:53] Places to Focus in 2022: ABM, MarTech, Experimentation“It's a really good time to look at your budget and say, ‘Let's get 10 to 20% in there for experiments.’ They could be small bets that could become big bets.” —@DrewNeisser Click To Tweet
Drew Neisser (host): So that gets us to prospects. Let’s talk about, you know, what’s the story? Anything new in the world of prospect marketing?
Drew Neisser (guest): I think there’s a couple of things that—besides doing less better. ABM is not going away. I think we’re going to be thinking about ABM as an end-to-end experience. Jon Miller talked about that a lot in his book.
I think you’re going to see kind of an interesting thing happened with technology. You’re going to see a lot of pruning, because I think there’s some nervousness out there about 2022 in terms of, you know, where’s the economy going?
You’re gonna see some pruning. You’re gonna go through your 25 marketing automation apps or MarTech stack, and you could probably get rid of 5 or 10. And you’re going to do that based on, does everyone have an owner? Does that owner really get value out of it? Do you have enough staff to get the value you need out of that?
And so again—do less, better. I think that applies to the tech stack. Now, having maybe pruned five technologies, there are probably some new ones that could make a huge difference.
I think there’s a lot of interest in attribution, and tools like Bizible. I think there’s a lot of interest in AI and conversational AI. The Drifts and Conversicas of the world that can really help.
It’s not about a bot replacing a human; it’s about AI enhancing a human so that you get the right person on the phone for the right prospect to answer that question or get them to the right person that can really make sense.
Drew Neisser (host): So better use of technology. What else you got?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I don’t know if this is on every CMOs list for 2022, but if they’ve talked to me, it will be which is the last chapter of my book, which is Test to Triumph.
Once again, I think it’s a really good time to look at your budget and say, “Let’s get 10 to 20% in there for experiments.” They could be small bets that could become big bets. I love that. Small bets that become big bets.
It’s not just something that will have a modest impact. But if you’re going to test hybrid, for example, that’s a big bet trying to be a bigger bet. Maybe if you test hybrid, you do it on a small scale. Maybe you had a customer advisory board and you tried to do it that way before you test it on your big user conference.
Drew Neisser (host): Are there any other things that marketers should be testing?
Drew Neisser (guest): Well, I will say, you know, if everybody is spending all their money in digital, you may want to look outside of digital, particularly if you’re a brand that is trying… maybe you had a recent IPO and you’re trying to get the word out there beyond because now suddenly your target is not just potential customers.
It’s employees or potential employees, and it’s the investment community. It might be time to think about some strategic outdoor or so forth. So, I think there are some non-digital channels that may show up and surprise people.
I know Coupa has spent a fair amount of money on television. They were a World Series sponsor. That’s B2B. It’s a pure-play B2B brand advertising on baseball.
Drew Neisser (host): Alright, Drew, well, that was a lot in a not-so-short period of time. You got anything else for us?
Drew Neisser (guest): No, other than to tell you that it is always a treat to be able to talk with you and I’m so thrilled and grateful that you spend the time to listen to these episodes.
Drew Neisser (guest): If you enjoyed this show, I’d love it if you shared with a friend. Sharing is caring. Write a review about it on your favorite podcast channel.
Or, you know, give me a shout on LinkedIn. I’m easy to find. Drew Neisser on LinkedIn. Just tell me you enjoyed the episode and I’ll send you a free chapter of my book or something cool like that. Something.
Anyway, that’s it. Until next time, keep those Renegade Thinking Caps on and strong.