Splunking: impressive messaging all B2B marketers should aspire to.

While working on a recent B2B marketing project for a software client, I checked out Splunk, a provider of operational intelligence solutions. And I must say, I was totally blown away by their messaging. I can’t say that I’m a IT Director or CIO (their prospect I’m guessing), but I’ve gotta say, their approach is dead brilliant. In literally under 30 seconds, I completely get what they do technically on two important levels:

1. Emotional (‘Listen to Your Data – It’s Trying to Tell You Something’)

2. Intellectual (showing their awesome dashboard in the video)

That’s pretty impressive. Plus they support their claim with business case arguments, which are also backed up with impressive big brand case studies. If I were a director or C-level prospect, I’d be picking up the phone, I’d want to know more.

Am I being overly naive here, or should we all be taking a lesson from this? Splunk simply follows B2B marketing principles to the letter. In my 30-second first impression, they did not mention a single feature, only big picture benefits. They told me what they could do for me (benefits), not how they do it (features).

I’m offering this short post here today, only becuase  it’s rare to see such well-executed B2B communications such as Splunk. While I don’t give them huge kudos for their aesthetic design, the brand approach from a messaging standpoint was literally flawless. I know nothing about operational intelligence solutions, yet in less than a minute I can see what a cool solution Splunk offers.

That’s a principle all B2B marketer should aspire to.

Please, never over-think what you think people think.

overthinking-internet-marketing

It’s a common phenomenon among marketing folks: over-thinking, over-analyzing details based on personal preferences.

You’ve probably heard the phrase, ‘I don’t read junk mail’ or ‘I never go to sites like that’ or ‘I would never click on that.’ Well, the reality of whether you don’t read junk mail, or what your particular clicking preferences happen to be, are largely irrelevant when it comes to making strategic marketing choices. Successful strategies are built on facts, metrics and reliable consumer behavior data, not your personal preferences. Over-thinking strategic details based on how we feel consumers will respond can potentially waste thousands in ad spending, and cause major campaigns to crash and burn.

Welcome to the age of reason, and ROI.

Because the majority of advertising and marketing is conducted on the internet these days, pretty much all marketing is measurable, or can be tracked — marketing dollars spent to revenue generated. Every marketing initiative — email marketing, pay-per-click ads, social media, et al — can be tracked. If the media choice doesn’t perform, it gets the axe. Pure and simple.  So why would anyone make strategic decisions based on personal preferences?

Any strategic media choice, online or other, can and should evaluated on it’s potential merit. The media market has never offered more choices, and has never been more competitive. Yet some marketing folks commonly shy away from solid strategies based on numbers offering promising results and ROI because they ‘would never click on something like that.’

Newsflash: your personal preferences are irrelevant. Put more of your trust in numbers, and less on your gut.