Drawing on his experience in revitalizing B2B brands, Paul Stoddart, marketing director at software company Epicor, shares three tips for successful brand transformation.
When I started at Epicor about a year ago, the organization was undergoing a transformation. Our CEO, Steve Murphy, had joined the company a few years earlier and was behind some exciting changes.
We had a solid foundation as our customers loved our technology and our business was growing. Even with these benefits, evolving an established brand and implementing change for growth can be tricky.
It was this challenge that brought me to Epicor: the opportunity to create a transformative marketing organization for a company with 50 years of heritage that is focused on orienting our customers to the future.
It’s not an easy task, and marketers need to get used to being disruptive and assertive to drive the transformation, all in a way that gets the organization where it wants to be, even if it means challenging it. a comfortable status quo.
If you’re on a similar journey, here are the top things I’ve learned from my decades of experience revitalizing B2B brands.
Accept the ambiguity
It is a human instinct to be risk averse. Getting an organization through transformation is a challenge, but change is where we see growth in ourselves and in our business. Many great results in my career are the result of change, which is why I am ready to be the person who drives change for the benefit of an entire organization. As a visionary leader, don’t be afraid to be challenged and stand firm when you have the right data and insights to support a new direction for your business.
Focus on the individual
Marketers need to deeply understand the customer. For CMOs, this means updating the B2B playbook. People are not businesses, they are individuals who have a job, and they each have an individual buyer status. B2i is the new playbook for marketers, where everything is customer and prospect driven and ensures you are meeting their needs. Each brand must connect on a personal level with decision makers to create affinities.
Know your customer as an individual, then convert that intelligence into messages that take them on a journey of understanding. Use simple, jargon-free language and talk to customers about their personal needs, not what you think your product can do for them. In today’s world, we seek kindness and meaningful support from brands more than ever. Building trust means speaking in a way that everyone understands.
Elevate the team
As a CMO, my role is to create an unparalleled sense of belonging for our brand that our internal and external community wakes up in the morning with enthusiasm to be a part, be it the CEO, an intern, a prospect or a client.
I strive to raise the bar, I am ready to be different and defy convention. Yet over the course of my career, I have realized that creating a lasting brand is about uplifting the people who live and breathe it every day.