Marketers need to lead the way

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The year 2009 is one in which we will all be challenged to drive more leads, more results, and do it more efficiently. You are now much more adept at being accountable, proving marketing worth, brand-building and driving customers to the pipeline than marketers were in the 2001 recession.


Speaking of leads, for the first time in this year’s guide, we’ve included a list of lead management software vendors (page 26).

As a marketer, you now need to be part of a fully integrated multichannel team that tries new strategies, tactics and technologies; you no longer duplicate last year’s plan, you implement and experiment. Most importantly, you are a leading voice behind change in your organization.

Sometimes a fresh vision from a new partner, or just an objective outside view, can help us improve our marketing activities. Outside partners and vendors often bring us new ideas that have worked for others.

We know that everyone has different needs, but we also know that if you are in the b-to-b marketing world, you need partners who are familiar with b-to-b markets, who know your needs and how your customers react. These partners will also know what messages engage these audiences, what media they use and what language they speak.

Thinking of hiring a new ad agency? Look at our lists of 100 b-to-b agencies (page 7), interactive agencies (page 13) and direct agencies (page 14). Every one of these companies really understands b-to-b.

Need to find a list manager or rent a list? Our top list managers list (page 18) features 36 companies with a b-to-b focus.

Need to ramp up your e-mail programs with a first-rate delivery and analytics firm? See our list of e-mail resources (page 24), which includes some of the best vendors to be found.

Want to improve the optimization of your Web site or drive more traffic through search engines? See the list of search engine marketing companies (page 23).

Need to improve your event marketing? See our list of event marketing services companies (page 29), event designers and producers (page 34) and virtual event providers (page 36). Need to pick a new convention city? See our list of the largest convention venues in the country (page 37).

Over and over, the lists in this year’s Marketers Resource Guide will help you find companies to help you engage your customers and energize your marketing.

Also, don’t miss two of our most popular annual features: the Media Power 50 (page 38) and Who’s Who in B-to-B (page 46), which highlight the media outlets and people that are leading the charge in the b-to-b world.

I hope you and your organization push the edge, engage and energize your marketing in 2008.

Bob Felsenthal is VP-publisher of BtoB and BtoB’s Media Business. He can be reached at [email protected].

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