Recap: Map Value Creation for Greater Customer Relationship Intelligence


Below is the video recap of the talk by Linda Sharp. While the slides are not captured in the video itself, a separate slide deck is given below. You can flip the slides in sync with how the talk sequenced them.

The slide deck for this presentation is available here.

You may want to open it in a separate window and follow along as the video progresses.

Recap: Roundtable: Struggling with Content Chaos?


Amidst surprisingly warm weather during the early stages of fall, B2B marketers from an array of the world’s top B2B tech brands, B2B startups, consultants and like minded marketing peers in the Bay Area, convened for a much welcomed, intimate and interactive Happy Hour event.

This was the 7th consecutive sold out Happy Hour Roundtable since the launch of the series in April 2016.

Jamie Mendez, Director Channel Marketing at IBM’s PartnerWorld and Nicole Sommerfeld, VP at TDA Group, an IBM Content agency, led a lively discussion around, “Conducting a Choir”.  In other words, they shared their secrets for creating a successful digital venue for varying constituents to speak to and engage their channel partners.  Their success is measurable with YOY traffic growth of 50% and average time spent on page of over a minute.

Some key takeaways that arose from the group discussion:

  • voices must be genuine
  • you can’t set it and forget it
  • the philosophies are scalable to large and small organizations alike.

Networking before and after the session with wine served by a certified sommelier and artisan appetizers continue to draw in a fun and engaged group.

And surprise giveaways from companies like Plantronics make for even more fun.

Don’t miss out on the last Happy Hour Roundtable of 2017 on November 14h!  For more information and to register…click here.

An attendee’s perspective on NorCal BMA roundtables


Did you know that we started our new and improved series of roundtables back in April of this year, and we have had a string of SEVEN straight sold-out engagements?

If you have missed this experience, it's not too late to plan for our next one on November 14.

In the meantime, we caught up with Helene Eichler, a regular at most of our events, and picked her brain on what makes our roundtables tick. Here's her take on it...

The marketing tech stack of tomorrow


Marketing spend on technology is growing faster than any other department and predicted to soon surpass even the IT department's spend. There's no profession where technology is having a more profound impact on performance than Marketing. What worked 5 years isn't working today. And what's working today, won't work tomorrow.

Technology has become as much of a marketing differentiator as your product and message. Whether it's CRM, content management, marketing automation, ABM, app dev, or analytics - if you're not leading when it comes to technology, you're going to get left behind.

Come join us for an exciting discussion where Kaushik Patel of ThoughtSpot will dive into some of the latest marketing technologies on the market and offer advice on how to get the most out of them.

Read more

Data-driven media strategies and How to make sense of the noise


Today’s data-driven marketing solutions promise increased efficiency and fewer wasted media dollars. Learn how tech marketers are identifying and engaging their audiences through digital media, how they make sense of the increasingly crowded ad-tech vendor landscape, and how they vet and gauge the effectiveness of these solutions.

Topics to include:
     Behavioral data
     Customer Journey
     And other topics

The setting

This is part of our roundtable series with a happy hour setting. Registration covers one drink ticket and appetizers.

There is ample time to network both before and after the presentation and discussion.

Conveniently located in the historic Mountain View Caltrain station with ample free parking nearby.

We've had sell-out crowds for the past seven roundtable events, and expect the same this time. Don't miss out, make sure you secure your seat!

Save the date, November 14, and register to attend the roundtable before you're left with no space!

Data-driven media strategies &
How to make sense of the noise

by James Miller,
Louise Crawford, &
Kristine Go

Monday, November 14, 2016 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (PST)

Savvy Cellar Wine Bar & Wine Shop,
750 W Evelyn Ave, Mountain View, CA

Secure Your Seat Now!



James Miller is Senior Vice President of Business Development at DWA.

James has been working with B2B and B2C technology marketers for 20 years. At DWA, he consults his clients on inbound and outbound marketing and marketing technology to help marketing leaders navigate and excel in today's fast moving, hyper competitive environment.

James holds a BA in Philosophy from the College of William and Mary.

louisecrawford-136x136Louise Crawford
 is Senior Director of Demand Generation at Silver Peak.

With over twenty years of industry experience, Louise overseas new customer acquisition including digital marketing, events, campaigns and communications. She is also responsible for operations and global field marketing.

Prior to Silver Peak she ran channel marketing for the Dell Software Group, driving campaigns and programs as well the integration of multiple acquisition channels exceeding $1.2B of revenue. Louise joined Dell from the SonicWALL acquisition where she ran worldwide marketing for six years.

kristinego-136x136Kristine Go
 is a Marketing Manager at NetApp managing Paid Media and Search.

At NetApp, Kristine is chartered to drive demand by leveraging data intelligence and strategic publisher relationships globally.

Previous to NetApp, Kristine started her career agency side at MediaSmith, one of the top B2B Media agencies in San Francisco. There she worked to service a number of clients ranging from consumer to tech B2B. From assistant media planner to supervisor, Kristine advanced her skills and eventually made the transition to client side where she resides currently.


Ordering Your Tickets is
Quick & Easy


James Miller, Louise Crawford, & Kristine Go on
Data-driven media strategy &
How to make sense of the noise

November 14, 2016, 6:00-8:00 PM
Savvy Cellar Wine Bar & Wine Shop
750 W Evelyn Avenue, Mountain View, CA


Shakespeare, Grapefruit, and B2B Content Marketing


Yes, I mean William Shakespeare. Several years ago as a struggling novelist, I went through the nearly 5,000 books in my library, acquired from my undergrad work in English Literature and passion for learning. I was looking for an overall pattern or structure to great literature that had withstood the test of time.

Also, a question was beckoning me: How do you tell a good story?

Let’s face it—most B2B content is not a page-turner. However, the overall structure of your content marketing strategy can leave leads begging for more.

As you know, our role as a marketer is to make shift happen whether that shift be a change in perception or qualified leads for sales. The goal of marketing is to create awareness, interest, consideration and demand (AICD)—and in that order.

Here’s how to make shift happen with B2B Content Marketing.

story-arcFirst, think of your overall content strategy as a play, novel or short story separated into three Acts. Act I should lead up to the climax, which occurs in Act II. Act III is the denouement and should resolve the conflict of the overall content story. In other words, solve the problem presented in Act I. Then, start plotting your strategy out according to the process of marketing mentioned above (AICD).

Second, it’s content assessment time. Ask yourself these questions: What content is on-hand? What content are competitors using? What is unique to your products or services and how can you leverage this for your organization’s benefit? What content can be created that will further sales or meet other content objectives?

Third, create and discuss ideas internally. Also, look for “pre-“ trends, which is more advantageous than only staying on top of trends in your industry. Informally present ideas to executives, peers, the BOD, engineering, sales, etc. Grab a glass of grapefruit juice and stop by a colleague’s office or workstation. Or, you could stalk them outside the restroom—your call.

Fourth, develop a 6-month plan. Map out the content deliverable, stakeholder, dates and the promotion strategy comprehensively.

Following the plan is the Fifth step. Dates may get pushed out but…just keep going. Content may change so have a backup plan. New content ideas will come up…plan on it and risk them if they’re logical and feasible. Ensure your Marcom peers remain diligent on metrics – response rate, CPC, CPL, etc. Always quantify the results weekly or bi-weekly and then share data unilaterally and bilaterally within the organization.

Six, keep the momentum going by planning for an additional month each month so that by month 6 of your original plan, you’ll have about 6 more months of content strategy ahead of you. Get new ideas from: competitors, customers, sales, engineering, marketing colleagues, founder/s, CEOs/Presidents, BOD members, investors, outside influencers (analysts, media, pundits, etc.), and your partner eco-system.

Lastly, repurpose your content. Why shouldn’t you? The entertainment industry does it all the time. First the short story or book, then the movie or television show and then the sequel to the movie or book, and then, what we have all been waiting for with bated breath… a daily calendar with pictures or excerpts. For example, “Day 263: The Grapefruit is an excellent detoxifier. Live large and eat a grapefruit today.” Seriously, repurposing content saves budget dollars and internal resources, including a precious one—your time.

As a recap, the content marketing strategy in a nutshell:

  • Think of your content strategy in three Acts and plot out according to AICD.
  • Assess your content and potential content.
  • Create and discuss ideas internally.
  • Develop a 6-month plan.
  • Follow the plan, prepared for contingencies and adaptation.
  • Keep the momentum going by planning an additional month every month, thereby having a 6-month plan at all times.
  • Bonus: Be ready to repurpose your used content.

Looking for examples? Look for my next blog post!

Recap: ANA/BMA Members-only Event


The New Era of B2B Marketing

If you were lucky enough to attend our members-only event at Microsoft, you were in for one the most provocative, inspiring and impactful line-up of thought-leaders and topics the BMA has ever had.

A bold statement? Yes. Hyperbolic? Not at all.

Over the course of the morning in Mountain View, the audience was treated to six amazing sessions from global leaders in B2B marketing.

Tom Stein, Chairman and Chief Client Officer at Stein IAS, got the day started with a powerful and forward looking keynote proclaiming that we are now in the era of "Post Modern Marketing."  In Stein’s keynote, “The Rise of the Feeling Machines” He noted that, “by its nature, Modern Marketing emphasizes “thinking machines” over “feeling machines that think.” So today, with Modern Marketing approaches fairly ubiquitous, what will define B2B’s “post-modern” era?” He provocatively stated that “as we enter the 'Post Modern' marketing era, it is not a rejection of Modern Marketing’s empiricism…it is much more a re-balancing. A carrying forward of the best of preceding eras into this new stage.”

Tom was followed by Milan Martin, President of Grey San Francisco, who echoed the Post Modern Marketing theme by showing the unique experiences Grey has created for brands such as Levis’ and Volvo. From jeans that prevent credit card scanners from reaching your wallet, to a reflective paint that is saving cyclists’ lives in London, Milan demonstrated how the brands that create differentiated experiences for their audiences are the ones that break through the noise of "modern marketing."

The momentum kept going with Shawn Ottenbreit, Senior Director of Marketing Performance at HP Enterprise, who is showing how brands and marketers can and should elevate their data and analytics game in the Post Modern Era. Importantly, he discussed the relationship between finance and marketing to drive performance. Shawn, a former finance exec, provided a real personal and prescriptive account of how optimally these relations should function.

Stein, Martin and Ottenbreit were then brought onto the stage for a panel Q&A moderated by the Editorial Director of B2B Marketing USA, Tequia Burt.

The great content didn’t stop there. John Dering, Director of ABM Technology & Strategy for Demandbase took the audience through optimally aligning your marketing and sales organization to drive account based marketing (ABM) performance. John took the audience through a robust ABM framework and used his own company as a case study. Gotta deeply respect a company that uses its own products and platforms. And, more importantly, gets great results.

Capping off the packed day was a joint presentation from Brock Wells, US Social Command Center Lead at Microsoft, Sean Gibbons, Social Media Program Manager and Ryan Hodgson, Vice President of Integrated Marketing from Yesler. The trio showed us how brands should be behaving and engaging on social media. With real-time listening and, more importantly, content, Yesler showed how they are powering Microsoft’s social center for key products. As impressive as their results, was the well-structured workflow they put in place to enable the program to work efficiently while listening to millions of conversations.

Many thanks to the people who made this a fantastic event - our speakers, attendees and sponsors and the team working behind the scenes to make sure the event ran smoothly.

Roundtable: Struggling with Content Chaos?


One day in 2012, Jamie Mendez, Director of Channel Marketing at IBM PartnerWorld, decided that her problems with partner engagement needed a modern solution. She approached IBM's longtime agency-partner, the TDA group, to craft this solution.

What was the problem?

IBM needed a way to have various executives across multiple business units, with diverse voices of their own, engage its channel partners with a unified, consistent style of presentations. The resulting concert should blend the disparate voices into singing to the same tune, namely the consistent style and voice.

Sounds familiar?

This problem is not unique to IBM. Many other organizations, large and small, face this challenge. Perhaps yours does too.

What ensued from the 2012 brainstorming is the launch of a blog in 2013 and accolades and awards in each of the following years, 2014-2016, for this solution.

Reader engagement is plentiful. Praises for the design ("The new design is terrific. Very clean, easy to read...Kudos to the PartnerWorld team!" -Libby Beemer; "...modern, slick & readable. Excellent!" -Anthony Mathenge), content ("Nicely articulated! " -Swati Moran; "Thank you for sharing the link to the IBM Digital Marketplace. That’s a very helpful online resource." -David H. Deans), and the overall program ("Great Program - Can drive fast growth for our Channel Partners." -Marc Beachler) are abundant.

Come and hear how IBM PartnerWorld created a unified strategy with the help of TDA Group, to showcase an array of executive voices, engage the channel and fuel social networks – while also winning awards along the way that speak to B2B editorial and design excellence.

Jamie Mendez of IBM and Nicole Sommerfeld of TDA double team as featured speakers for this roundtable where they will talk about their joint project and lead the ensuing discussion.

In this session Jamie and Nicole will cover:

  • How to create a content forum where you can showcase a diverse array of individual voices while still maintaining overall cohesion and unity
  • A real-world, award-winning working example of a content forum that is driving results
  • Best practices and tips to take your blog to the next level
  • How to measure success for this type of initiative

Some lessons learned from content streams other than IBM PartnerWorld may sneak into the discussions as well!

The best part is that you can shape the session with your own incisive comments and questions.

The setting

This is part of our roundtable series with a happy hour setting. Registration covers one drink ticket and appetizers.

There is ample time to network both before and after the presentation and discussion.

Conveniently located in the historic Mountain View Caltrain station with ample free parking nearby.

We've had sell-out crowds for the past six roundtable events, and expect the same this time. Don't miss out, make sure you secure your seat!

Save the date, October 17, and register to attend the roundtable before you're left with no space!

Struggling with Content Chaos?

by Jamie Mendez & Nicole Sommerfeld

Monday, October 17, 2016 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (PST)

Savvy Cellar Wine Bar & Wine Shop,
750 W Evelyn Ave, Mountain View, CA

Secure Your Seat Now!


Jamie Mendez

Jamie Mendez has global responsibility for IBM’s PartnerWorld and channel program infrastructure initiatives.

PartnerWorld is the program management system framework for guiding IBM Business Partner relationships including the membership program, web portal, communications, education and events.

In her role, Jamie is responsible for supporting the PartnerWorld community of more than 160,000 Business Partners around the world who contribute nearly $15B in IBM revenue.

Nicole SommerfeldNicole Sommerfeld oversees the account development and marketing team at TDA. She leads the effort to build upon and expand TDA client relationships and programs, while helping TDA’s clients adopt best practices and optimize marketing programs.

Prior to joining TDA, Nicole held marketing, product management, and corporate development roles with leading Internet and telecommunications companies.


Ordering Your Tickets is
Quick & Easy


Jamie Mendez & Nicole Sommerfeld on
Struggling with Content Chaos?
October 17, 2016, 6:00-8:00 PM
Savvy Cellar Wine Bar & Wine Shop
750 W Evelyn Avenue, Mountain View, CA