B2B Beat: 33 Quotable Insights from MarketingProfs B2B Forum

October 25, 2015

ann handley

“I hate funnels, and I hate you if you like them.” That quote, by Avinash Kaushik, was one that stood out for us here at the B2B Beat during the MarketingProfs B2B Marketing Forum, which was held this past week in Boston.

But Kaushik had plenty of competition for quote of the week as you’ll see below. We’ve curated 33 quotes from the B2B Marketing Forum that cover all of the important B2B marketing topics of the day. Quotes on social media? On content marketing? On the power of story? Check, check, and check.

Read on and you’ll find quotes from some of the indispensable thought leaders in B2B marketing, such as Lee Odden, Ann Handley, and Joe Pulizzi. There are also some fascinating quotes from speakers outside of the B2B realm. For instance, MIT professor Sherry Turkle, author of "Reclaiming Conversation: The Role of Talk in our Digital Age,” spoke at the conference about her thought-provoking theory that our digital devices are eroding our ability to converse and empathize with each other. And Peter Sagal, host of Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me, lightened things up a bit with his talk, “The Art of Telling a Joke.”

In an ideal world, in a nod to Mr. Sagal's brilliantly funny talk, we’d insert a joke here, but we’ll leave the comedy to some of the professionals quoted below. Without further ado, here are 33 quotes that capture everything from the amusing to the illuminating from B2B Marketing Forum:

33 Illuminating Quotes from B2B Marketing Forum

“Being a maker is not accepting the world as it’s given.” – Ann Handley, Chief Content Officer, MarketingProfs

“I have to wait five minutes until you all get used to what I look like. … He doesn’t sound bald.” – Peter Sagal, Host of “Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me,” on how his appearance doesn’t match the vision of those who have only heard him on the radio

"I am paid to not be surprised about these things, but I was surprised." – Avinash Kaushik, Digital Marketing Evangelist, Google, on the rise of mobile advertising spending.

“If you’re the smartest one in the room, get out.” – You Mon Tsang, CEO, ChurnZero

“No great work of art has been created without a committee.” – Tim Washar, Writer/Producer, Cisco Systems (who was joking).

“Spend 20% of your time creating content and 80 percent distributing it.” – Heidi Cohen, Chief Content Officer, Actionable Marketing Guide

“Our product is a minor character in the story. Your customer is the hero of the story. … We are all the heroes of our own story. To think that I can step into your story and be the hero is both silly and arrogant. Think of this is when you’re putting together you’re marketing materials.” – Ron Ploof, Founder, TheStoryHow Institute

“I too hate the funnel. I don’t like the waterfall. I’ve never talk to a buyer who said, ‘I’m in the sales-accepted lead part of the purchase process.’” – Carlos Hidalgo, CEO, Annuitas

“The old B2B voice is dead. … There’s no excuse for boring B2B any more.” – Doug Kessler, Founder, Velocity Partners

“What risk must your customer hero accept? How much time do you spend thinking about the risk your customer must take to buy your product.” – Ploof

“This is the world’s greatest social media strategy: Entertain me. Inform me. Provide utility.” – Kaushik

"That’s not selling, that’s assault. That’s social assault.” – Hidalgo, describing many “social selling” approaches.

“Don’t hate the media become the media.” – Jason Miller, Group Manager-Content Marketing, LinkedIn, quoting Jello Biafra of the Dead Kennedys

“A lot of people got into marketing, because they wanted to avoid math – sorry.” – Christopher S. Penn, Vice President of Marketing Technology, Shift Communications

“Let’s be clear those aren’t leads, they’re names.” – Hidalgo, describing poorly run demand generation programs.

“Mojo doesn’t just ask for attention. It earns it.” – Kessler, describing marketing with mojo.

“Content marketing is a marathon, not a sprint.” – Joe Pulizzi, Founder, Content Marketing Institute

“LinkedIn Sponsored Updates – these are by far the most successful ad unit we have going on LinkedIn. By far. Love them.” – Janet Driscoll Miller, President-CEO, Marketing Mojo

“The first rule of jokes is every single joke is a story. Except puns. That’s why puns stuck.” – Sagal

“Content marketers should focus on subscriptions at a key metric, particularly email subscriptions.”  – Pulizzi

“Every order sold is a story waiting to be told.” – Bobby Lehew, Chief Branding Officer, Robyn

“Storytelling is a superpower. It ties directly into our being and we can learn how to do it.” – Ploof

“First, you build an audience through content, then you monetize it second. If you want to extract value from your audience you have to give them value first.” – Pulizzi

“Stories are like ragweed, they all come from the same root.” – Lehew

“Never underestimate the wisdom of your community.” – Lee Odden, CEO, TopRank Online Marketing

“Confidence is the magical ingredient in marketing: confidence that you know what you’re talking about, confidence that you know how to tell a story.” – Kessler

“B2B companies that blog regularly yield 67 percent more leads per month.” – Jeffrey L. Cohen, Director of Content Strategy, Oracle Marketing Cloud

“I fundamentally believe there is no better time to be a B2B marketer.” – Hidalgo

“Inbound marketing is like hanging out with your friends form high school all your life. You need to promote your own content (with outbound marketing).” – LinkedIn’s Miller

“The why (people would rather text than talk) is summed by an 18-year-old: ‘I’ll tell you what’s wrong with conversation it take place in real time and you can’t control what you’re going to say.’ That’s what’s wrong with conversation, but that’s also what’s right with conversation. It’s when we reveal ourselves to each other.” – Sherry Turkle, author of “Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age.”

“Eighty-nine percent of Americans say that in their last social interaction, they took our their phone right in the middle of the social interaction. Eighty-two percent said it decreased the quality of the conversation they were in, and they did it anyway.  This isn’t about teenagers. Eighty nine percent of us did this … I’m talking about a crisis in empathy, and I suggest we can cure it with conversation.” – Turkle

“Attention is the gateway drug of content marketing. If you don’t get attention, you don’t get to do anything else. Our first job and our hardest job is getting attention.” – Kessler

“You have a lot of bad writing to do before you do anything good. So get started.”  – Sagal

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