The #1 question B2B marketers should ask | Sam Kuehnle, Refine Labs

What’s the one marketing trend that you wholeheartedly disagree with?

I know it’s played out. But it’s the obsession with attribution, it kills me. But it’s bigger than just attribution. For me, it goes back to just what I call common sense marketing.

So when you stop being a marketer, when you stop being an exec, when you stop being, whatever you are for two minutes, and you think about the last time that you made a business purchase, how did you go about it? How did you learn about the brand or product?

To me, it’s less about this channel or that channel, or what percent gets attributed in reporting, but more about focusing on how do humans buy.

How do you show up in each of the places that are a part of that journey, and whether or not you can attribute credit to it or not, like, don’t get so caught up in that, that you stopped showing up in those places, because, well “It’s not showing up in multitouch attribution, or it’s not showing up in lead gen.”

But when you hear from people or when you think about it, that’s why I say just use that little bit of common sense marketing to bring it all together.

If you could talk to all B2B revenue leaders in the world for 1 minute, what would you say?

But there’s not gonna be one silver bullet programme that magically generates all of the pipeline, all the revenue that you need to achieve your goals. It’s the stacking of multiple programmes that are working together over time.

So what we’ll often see is people think they’re switching to demand gen, they’re like: “Oh, we’re gonna start running ungated ads, we’re going to focus on high-intent keywords only,” and think that that’s the secret to running the demand generation programme.

But the reality is, it’s one part of many.

So I mean, if you want to know how your LinkedIn ads are going to work better from a brand standpoint, like when they’ve been seeing the individuals from your company constantly popping up in their feed and sharing value and insight to them.

Like if you want to know how your search is going to work better well, maybe they heard your CEO on a few podcasts recently that they’ve been following. And then they search your company, when they hear them talk about something that their product or company solves.

It’s a pain that they’ve been feeling for the past six months, but they didn’t even know a solution existed for it.

So the companies that are getting ahead are really those that are adding value to others for free or not getting caught up in one specific like area that’s going to drive business results as soon as the podcast episode goes live, or the post goes up on LinkedIn, but we’re looking at it is the aggregation, the sum of all these things working in tandem towards that stronger result.

I know I talk a lot about like fitness and health on Friday. So I always say because so many people can relate to this, like treat your company like it’s an exercise programme. It’s not one specific exercise, like a bicep curl or one specific session, but your Tuesday workout that gets you the results. But it’s the aggregation of all the exercises sticking to that programme day in and day out, that gets you to where you want to be.

What’s the most important character trait that helps you succeed in your career? Why?

So it says one that was interesting the way I came to it, but ultimately, the having an insatiable desire to succeed. So I’ll tell a little story about like how I got to this.

So I first heard the phrase from my wife’s grandfather. So he was a VP of Marketing at IBM way back in their heyday. And we were talking about high performers.

So he told me about how much money they spent on various IQ, EQ, I mean, you name it any type of assessment. And they had applicants, current employees, take them.

And then they wanted to try to see are there any connections between, you know, things that are they’re surfacing and assessment and what we view is their, their output for the company.

They spent over two years working on this, and they had nothing. So he looked at his organisation, he looked at the top performers, who were the solid performers, who were those who struggled. And then he said, it just hit me like a pile of bricks, had nothing to do with how booksmart the person was, how emotionally intelligent the person was any of those.

But he said that it really sat within the individuals themselves and their personal desire to want to be successful. And so the way that he explained that, to me was when you have that drive, what it does is it forces you to constantly be open to learning. It really makes you lose your ego.

I mean, you’re going to be wrong a lot. It pushes yourself to do what you need to do, even when you don’t want to do it. And it makes you uncomfortable as you continue to stretch yourself to learn new skills to take on new opportunities.

So all of those will lead you to success, but it’s a long game like everything else I always talked about.

It’s worth it in the end, but it stems from the internal self so you know, is it nurture? Is it nature? Is it whatever?

I think a lot of it just has to do with your approach to what you want to get out of your day-to-day job and where you see yourself going.

Start speaking on podcasts

Find out if speaking on podcasts as a guest is the right strategy for your B2B brand.