5 Characteristics of a Winning B2B Marketer

Winning B2B MarketerThere are a few characteristics that will help you not only survive, but thrive—regardless of any shifts in the changing marketing landscape.  Following are five key characteristics that will separate you, as a winning B2B marketer, from the has-beens and also-rans.


A Winning B2B Marketer Stops What is Hurting. The first road to improvement and setting the stage for success is to stop doing that which hurts you or which does not make a positive contribution. Remember that everything has an opportunity cost – is there something more productive that you could be doing? Take a sober assessment of your campaigns, strategies, programs, expenses, etc. and immediately stop:

  • Anything that does not have the support of senior management.
  • Lead generation programs that are not followed up by sales.
  • Campaigns that don’t reinforce your core message.
  • Expenses that don’t contribute to the overall objective.
  • Unnecessary reporting and analysis.
  • Working with people who are unreliable or unproductive.
  • Anything that is impeding your staff’s ability to complete their tasks efficiently.

A Winning B2B Marketer Plays to Win.  The fact is, there will be winners and there will be losers. Your place on the leader board will be determined not only by luck, what you do, or what industry you happen to be in, but by your attitude and expectations. You must believe that you have the right product or service, that it offers real benefits, and that you are promoting it to the right individuals. Keep in mind, however, that there is a difference between playing to win and playing “not to lose.” If you play “not to lose” it is almost guaranteed that you will not win.

A Winning B2B Marketer Demonstrates Laser Focus. We have a much better chance of achieving what we focus on if we get rid of the many distractions that deter us from our path. Spend all the time necessary to set your go-to-market strategy. But once you do so, do not easily give up. Focus and persistence will win the day more often than brilliance.

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A Winning B2B Marketer Flouts Conventional Wisdom. If you want to stand out from the crowd and achieve marketing success for your organization, it is vital to recognize the common fallacies that pervade the marketing profession. The most common myth: Marketing is always expensive. Truth: Spending more money is not always better. Many marketers overemphasize the upfront cost of an advertising program, such as the cost to reach a certain number of people, rather than the more important gauges that tell you if your program is profitable, such as cost per sale or cost per dollar of revenue.

A Winning B2B Marketer Does Whatever it Takes. In B2B marketing and sales, doing whatever it takes means that you do the tough upfront work to make sure you have a compelling value proposition. It means you research competitors, test models and strategies, gain intimate knowledge of your audience, and continually refine your processes. My only caveat to doing whatever it takes is that what you do must always be done with integrity and decency. Shortcuts that involve lying, cheating, or fundamentally comprising who you are may appear to be effective, but are harmful in the long-term. This willingness to do “whatever it takes” truly separates those who wish to be successful from those who are successful.

In Dennis Waitley’s words of wisdom, “Success is almost totally dependent upon drive and persistence. The extra energy required to make another effort or try another approach is the secret of winning.” These five characteristics will definitely be enhanced by your drive and persistence. To learn more about the five characteristics of a high-powered winning B2B marketer, download a free chapter from my new book, Winning B2B Marketing.

Christopher Ryan
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  • Michelle Harmon April 30, 2014   Reply →

    Point one is so essential to moving the wire and one that I think a lot of us often forget. Don’t be afraid to cut a bad program or strategy – the outcome is often improved efficiency, who doesn’t like that? Thanks for the post, great read, and I look forward to your book.

  • Patty Wittnebert Tomsky May 15, 2014   Reply →

    I especially enjoyed the discussion woven throughout about the cost of opportunity–too often marketers stay within the lines instead of examining what needs to change. The true enemy of the best is definitely “the good enough.” Thanks for reminding me today!

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