The Four Pillars of B2B Marketing Success

The Pareto Principle as Applied to B2B Marketing

According to our friends at Wikipedia, the Pareto principle (also known as the 80-20 rule and the law of the vital few) states that, for many events, roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. As I mentioned in an earlier post, Pareto observed that 80% of the peas in his garden came from 20% of the pods, and he went on to apply this formula to many other areas, including some that have more relevance to us B2B marketers. This caused me to ponder on the importance of understanding which 20% of the causes in B2B marketing and sales are responsible for 80% of the effects – or in marketing, the results.

What We Did:

To accomplish this, our team at Fusion Marketing Partners identified the major functions of a B2B marketing department and came up with 20. The next step was to rank these 20 functions in terms of their impact on results and finally, to ascertain whether the top four (20 percent) can influence 80% of the results? The last question is particularly tough to answer because, like it or not, there are parts of marketing that defy quantification (e.g. public relations, social media), even if you know they have a positive contribution.

What We Discovered:

The result of this effort is the Four Pillars of Unstoppable Marketing. We believe, and have shown through client results, that if you spend the majority of your time on these four important areas, you will receive much better results than an equivalent amount of time spent in all the other 16 areas. So (drum roll please….) the four areas of focus are:

Get My Complimentary eBook

brand assessmentBuilding Your Lead-to-Revenue (L2R) Machine

Download your complimentary copy to learn more about the 8 critical components of a L2R Machine for your business. » Free Download

  • Pillar One:  Compelling Brand Promise
  • Pillar Two:  Informative & Engaging Website
  • Pillar Three:  Effective Pull Marketing Strategy
  • Pillar Four:  Optimized Marketing and Sales Model

I will have much more to say about each of these pillars in the coming weeks.  In the meantime, you can listen to a six-minute overview of the four pillars at:

Technocrati reference: 69TVTWH9Y9SM

Follow me

You may also like


  • John Leavy June 16, 2010   Reply →

    Great post Chris…I’m looking forward to reading about the 20% you believe will make the most difference in our marketing campaigns. Things are tough this year…we need to put our money and resources where they’ll make the most difference.

  • LeeAnn Fleming June 16, 2010   Reply →

    Looking forward to the rest of the series; I expect it will be enlightening. So many marketers are still in the “shove the message at anyone who will listen” mode and ignoring the power of pull marketing to get to the exact segment who are looking for their product.

    Is this the beginning of your next book, Chris?

  • cryan June 16, 2010   Reply →

    Thanks for the comments John and Lee Ann. As to the question of whether the four pillars are the subject of the next book, I’m not sure about this, but we will be talking about this subject a lot in the coming weeks via video-casts, webinars and white papers.

  • Terry June 17, 2010   Reply →


    Excellent information and the video intro on the 4 pillars was also worth watching.

    I see how each individual pillar is vitally important, however they are also very much dependent on each other and build upon each other to form a successful online marketing program.

    One pillar without the other makes for an unproductive marketing outcome.

    I get it! I’m eager to see your next installment.

    Thanks again for share this quality information.


  • Nancy Reed June 17, 2010   Reply →

    Chris – I am looking forward to your future discussions on the Four Pillars. I really enjoyed your overview and want to hear the details. Companies are always seeking those magic bullets and/or strategies, which can propel their organizations forward, especially in difficult economic times. Your insights of where companies need to focus is timely.

Leave a comment