Unlock Your Potential

Full Potential B2B Marketing

The beginning of a new year is always a great time to evaluate the results of the previous year and plan for more success in the coming year. All of us want to achieve our full potential, for both ourselves and our organizations. Yet, many of us don’t reach even a fraction of what we can achieve from a marketing standpoint. So what is “full potential marketing” and how do you make it part of your organizational DNA? Having been an aggressive practitioner of B2B marketing and sales for over two decades, I think I can add some perspective.

I define full potential marketing as “combining all of the available resources (people, programs, budget, technology, content and processes) in such a manner as to achieve the best possible results in terms of awareness, lead generation, and revenue attainment.” We all have limits on the quantity and quality of our resources, and this is why your company has a different potential than others in the marketplace.  Your objective, both personally and professionally, should be to get the most productivity you can, given your own assets, liabilities, strengths and weaknesses.

I’ve competed against some very large companies in my career, including the likes of IBM, Microsoft, Oracle and Salesforce.com. I was always amused when a sales manager said something like, “How come IBM is doing this and we can’t”? or “How come Oracle is ahead of us in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant?”. The fact that our competitors had budgets 10-20 times larger did not seem to dawn on these individuals. Nor did the fact that we were doing far better relative to the size of our resources. Remember, the point is to achieve the full potential of your company, not the other company’s.

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So how do you step out from the crowd and be a full potential B2B marketer?  Here are six suggestions:

  1. Have a clearly defined set of objectives that require significant effort to achieve – otherwise known as stretch goals.
  2. Step out of your comfort zone.  Winners are not complacent, and they are willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done.
  3. Continue upgrading your team members until you are working with people who are talented and have a strong desire to win.
  4. Speaking of team members, make sure you are fully aligned with your sales counterparts. Marketing and sales alignment is one of the most important factors to power revenue growth.
  5. Learn from experts and follow their advice. One place to start is with my latest book, The B2B Revenue Growth Playbook.  How to Create an Unstoppable Marketing Machine (authored by yours truly). You can get a copy at Amazon or download a free PDF here.
  6. Stop settling for less than your best. For most of us (including me) it is our own actions and self-imposed limitations that prevent us from success, not the marketplace, competitors, and so forth. This is a tough lesson to embrace, but if you do, it can change your personal and business life for the better.

When I was VP of Marketing at a fast-growing software company, our CEO gave his executive team a small paperweight with the inscription “What would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail.” Many years later, I still have this reminder on my desk. Asking yourself this question is a good place to start in your quest to achieve your own brand of full potential marketing.

Best of success for a productive and prosperous year!



Christopher Ryan
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