As the lazy long days of summer pass by, I start to anticipate the kids off to college and back to school and look forward to the busy fall season in the B2B tech world. A rising senior, my youngest daughter is getting ready to apply to a slew of colleges and as she packages up her best story for the Common App, I think about what it really means to aggregate all of your best accomplishments and why B2B companies have such a hard time doing this. A company’s story should communicate what it has done and where it is going, pure and simple. The sum is always better than the individual parts when positioning and claiming leadership. So why is it so hard for most companies to do this?
Probably because many businesses don’t take the time and resources to prioritize this effort, to step back and determine why they think they are as great as they may be. Incremental milestones put together can mean really big things when you step back and look at the bigger picture. So where should you as a tech marketer start?
Here’s some steps to take to harness in this process of packaging up your corporate gems and help build your company into an industry leader:
It’s All In The Numbers
Determine which metrics are most important to determine leadership in your specific business and to your customers. Is it the largest number of customers? Installations? Partners? Or is it outcomes? Most experienced? Cull your customer list and see which Fortune 500 institutions are on the list. Can you claim to be in the 3 of the top 10 banks? Maybe not but you get the point here.
Devote corporate resources to gathering this data. Yes, we are all going a million miles a minute but if you do not devote some of a person’s time to collecting this data and content initially and on an ongoing basis, it won’t happen.
What Is Everyone Else Saying About You?
Is your company included in key industry research reports? Did you win any corporate awards? Look through your past few years of accolades and see what common thread exists to create your award winning storyline. Include WHY you were chosen for these in your high-level story and the differentiation that exists. And communicate your position locally, globally and within any specific targeted industries.
Become a Leading Industry Resource
A part of industry leadership is positioning key employees as thought leaders that communicate that they company has expert knowledge in your particular industry. Sometimes it is the CEO; sometimes it is the CTO. It depends on the nature of your company. It is usually someone who can clearly articulate your company’s value, its vision for the future, and has interesting things to say about what customers are experiencing now and trends into 2016. Find this person and make sure you are getting he or she in the public on a regular basis, building your brand as a leading industry resource with commentary in speaking engagements and industry articles to stand out from the pack.
Actively Participate in Industry Organizations
Make sure you or someone from your company plays an active role in the top industry and regional associations, councils, and organizations. Your peer influence and involvement in furthering innovations in your particular industry go a long way in others seeing you as a real influencer as well as assist in fostering partnerships and other relationships.
Clear Vision for Success
Companies that become leaders are usually those that have a clear vision for success. Their vision is actionable and measurable, and they have often a laserlike, OCD fascination with achieving the goals to achieve this vision no matter what challenges arise. They learn mistakes, continually evolve and adapt.
So do you think you have the goods? Don't know where to start or don't have the internal resources to create and implement an ongoing leadership effort? Give us a call at 978-440-7032 to learn more about how Red Javelin's Industry Leadership program can help you achieve this goal.