How B2B Companies Can Refresh Their Marketing


It’s that time of year again! Spring is beginning to bloom, prompting us all to reach for the  “refresh” button on both our personal and professional home pages. After a year of learning and growth from our successes and failures, now is the time to regroup and refocus our efforts. What better way to initiate this process other than an annual marketing refresh? It’s time to change with the seasons!

Aside from the restlessness of Spring, how do you know it might be time for a marketing refresh for your B2B company? Declining or plateaued rates of white paper downloads, social media engagement, and webinar signups are all telltale signs that it’s time to reevaluate your approach to client engagement. 

In this article, we will outline specific strategies to include within your marketing refresh that can lead to successful client engagement and clear brand representation.

(Re)Examine your Audience

It’s important to remember that your client base consists of living, thinking, and changing beings, rather than a stagnant population you can define in only general terms. Your initial evaluation and definition of your client base may have started out as something that is wholly different than the reality of people you now serve. This is why it is vital to your company’s success to reevaluate your audience every 3-5 years. 

Great methods to reevaluate your audience include the following:

  • Conduct customer interviews
  • Interview your sales teams
  • Conduct thorough buyer research

Mind your Messaging House

There are two important elements to updating your marketing messaging: core messaging and a brand guide. Your company’s core messaging includes how you talk about your company; your brand guide encompasses all elements of how your company looks to others—fonts, colors, logos, etc.

An important note on updating your company’s look: it’s important to stay current with aesthetic trends and to ensure that the way your company looks accurately reflects your messaging; however, it is important to try and only change the company aesthetic every 3-5 years. Changing the look of your company too often makes it nearly impossible for your branding to become synonymous with your name.

Reuse and Repurpose

Recycling and repurposing is an important part of Spring cleaning! Just because you are revamping your content does not mean you have to abandon all the content you’ve previously published. After all, research has shown that SEO can take time to “mature.”

We recommend that you spend some dedicated time and resources strategically updating old blog and social media posts. Be certain to study new keyword rankings and incorporate them into your content to improve search algorithm ranks. Additionally, it is worth the time and effort to spend time link building—replacing old links with more relevant and current information. This will prove to your potential clients that you are abreast of the most current industry technology and trends.

Create a Current Value Proposition

Every B2B company needs an easy and effective way to quickly communicate why they would greatly benefit a potential client. A value proposition is a marketing content tool used to quickly win over your clients. Research shows that, on average, you have seven seconds to make an impression that will seal the deal with a new client. 

A successful value proposition will include the following:

  • Clear communication of specific results your company can provide
  • Explains how your company differs (and improves upon) the competition 
  • Can be read and understood in about seven seconds

While crafting your company’s value proposition, consider what sets you apart in the industry. Use the information you have previously gathered from customer interviews; consider their complaints and qualms with competition and how you worked to alleviate these concerns.

Refreshing your marketing strategy might seem like an overwhelming project, but we are here to guide you through the process, and dare we say, make it fun? You have put a lot of heart and passion into your business, let’s work together to make certain that this is obvious to your audience.

Are you planning a marketing refresh for your business? Contact Green Apple Strategy today to schedule a consultation.

5 Books to Read When Looking for Your “Why” in Marketing

Discovering your why when marketing your business should always be step one. It’s the foundation upon which you can build your entire brand—because people don’t create a business without a reason. They create a business because they are passionate about providing something to their audience or solving a problem.  This is especially important for your marketing strategy because when you fully understand what drives you and your company, you can explain it to others. Marketing is primarily storytelling, and you need a story to share with your audience. So, when you’re discovering your why, especially as you inform your marketing direction, where do you start? If you’re a bibliophile, we recommend these five books to find the true drive behind your company’s efforts.

1. Robots Make Bad Fundraisers: How Nonprofits Can Maintain the Heart in the Digital Age

For the nonprofit organizations that live on fundraising, your why is essential. People give their time and their money because they feel good about where those resources are going, and they want to make a difference. By discovering the heart of your organization and telling that story in the strongest way possible, you can insight passion in others and boost your fundraising goals.  In Steven Shattuck’s book, Robots Make Bad Fundraisers: How Nonprofits Can Maintain the Heart in the Digital Age, he ventures to answer an important question: Has technology actually gotten in the way of building a personal connection with our supporters? He would argue that, yes, the more digital our world becomes, the less our hearts are in it, and the further we stray from our purpose. We rely on these technologies to fuel our growth, but, in reality, they are allowing us to lose focus, and we aren’t telling the passionate story of purpose these organizations were founded on. This nonprofit-focused marketing book actually has an interesting lesson to teach us all, even in the for-profit sector—how to keep the donors you have, inspire new donors to give, and maintain your team members’ sanity.

2. Brand Storytelling: Put Customers at the Heart of Your Brand Story

A business’s purpose always circles back around to the most important person: the customer. We build these businesses because we want to help our audience overcome a challenge or feel a certain way. It’s only right, then, that we keep our customer at the heart of the brand story. Miri Rodriguez’s book, Brand Storytelling: Put Customers at the Heart of Your Brand Story, helps us do just that.  Rodriguez guides the reader to use storytelling to trigger the emotions that humans are driven by. She explains how to analyze, pull apart, and rebuild your brand’s story in a way that focuses the business as the “sidekick,” putting the control in the customer’s hands, allowing them to be the key influencer.

3. This is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn To See

“Great marketers don’t use consumers to solve their company’s problem; they use marketing to solve other people’s problems,” says Seth Goldin, Author of This is Marketing: You Can’t Be Seen Until You Learn To See. This book description could stop here, as that’s the perfect way to describe what it means to discover the reason behind why you do what you do.  Goldin draws upon his many years in marketing to explain how marketers can make the world a better place through powerful marketing elements: empathy, generosity, and emotional labor. He walks the reader through identifying their viable audience, drawing on the signals to position their offering, building trust, telling a meaningful story, and giving people what they need to achieve their goals. At the end of the day, that’s what it’s all about. Right?

4. Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen

Does your message matter if your audience isn’t listening? In his book Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen, author Donald Miller shares his method for connecting with customers—helping them understand the benefits of using a brand’s products, ideas, or services. By simplifying your brand message, your audience will grasp it more quickly and be motivated to move forward. Miller helps readers do this through seven universal story points that all humans respond to.  When building our messages, we must keep our messages clear and engaging. And where does that message begin? You guessed it: your why. Your understanding of your purpose allows you to build a clear message. Miller can help you get there.

5. Marketing: A Love Story: How to Matter to Your Customers

We search for our why because we want to matter to our customers. That moment when you think, “I have this great service. Why is no one taking advantage of it?” It’s because you know how great it is, and your audience doesn’t. In her book, Marketing: A Love Story: How to Matter to Your Customers, Bernadette Jiwa explains that we “have no shortage of ideas, but we struggle to tell the story of how they are going to be useful in the world.” We couldn’t agree more. By posing a series of thought-provoking questions, Jiwa helps the reader dive into what about their brand will resonate and how to craft a message that will matter Are you looking to take your marketing to the next level? Contact Green Apple Strategy today to schedule a consultation.

10 Marketing Questions to Answer Before Launching a Product or Service


Dreaming up a new idea for your business can be an exciting and rewarding process. You are about to offer your audience something they need or want, and so you’re helping people while growing your company. But, we can get swept away into dreaming about our ideas sometimes, can’t we? In all the excitement, we can lose track of the reality of a launch. 

We want to help you think through how you can launch your new products or services in the most timely, cost-effective, and successful way. Here are ten marketing questions to answer before launching a product or service. 

1. Does it align with my company’s goals? 

When we add elements to our company’s repertoire, it’s crucial to ensure that they align with the vision we have for our brand. Because no matter how small, each product or service says something about your business—and could very well change the trajectory of your brand’s growth. So, it’s first and foremost important that you choose your additions wisely. Picture your business in two to five years. Does this product or service still fit into that picture? 

2. What problem does it solve for my audience? 

The primary reason to build a new product or service is to solve an issue for your audience. Does this idea address a common pain point for your customers? If the answer is yes, you may have just come across your next big seller! If not, you may need to return to the drawing board.

3. How can I build strategic messaging around it? 

Once you have your golden idea that aligns with your brand and solves a pain point for your customer, you’re ready to craft messaging. This is an involved process, but every second is worth it in the end. You can use your answer to question two, “What problem does it solve for my audience?” to inform this process. Once you have the answer to that question, you can begin building your messaging strategy. 

Identify the key messages that you’re sending to your audience and hone in on what your tone will sound like. In general, you’ll use this time to map out how you will communicate your offering to your customers so that they will not only understand it but will then want to take action. 

4. Which platforms should I use to announce the launch? 

Using your messaging strategy, you will send your messaging to customers on the most appropriate platforms. Take a moment to review your analytics for different channels to decide where it will be effective to spend your most effort. You should not ignore the platforms that aren’t performing quite as well, but this step will help you choose your priorities.

A few platforms to consider are:

  • Email marketing
  • Blog articles
  • Social media
  • The local and national media (i.e., press releases)
  • Paid advertising 

For tactics that haven’t performed well in the past, maybe this is your chance to redesign your strategy to build your audience before your launch. 

5. Have I updated my website and social media profiles? 

Launching a new element of your business is a wonderful opportunity to review your website and social media profiles. Whether it’s updating website headers and social media profile graphics or description content, you’ll want to ensure that these channels are updated to reflect the most current and accurate information about your brand. You can also take this chance to boost your website’s visibility by reviewing your SEO practices. If your site is a local brick and mortar, optimize it for “near me” searches. Otherwise, focus on overall SEO, which is a powerful tactic, no matter what type of business you have. 

6. Which customers of my audience will be most interested in this? 

By identifying which customers will be most interested in this new product, you can again position your priorities. Identify where this customer spends their most time, what they care about, and how you can speak to their pain points. Customer profiles are a useful tool when exploring your customers’ wants, needs, and habits. With this information under your belt, you can build targeted messaging for the customers who are dying to have your product or use your service. 

7. How will I continue the product or service’s success following the launch? 

Marketing is an ongoing effort. So, it’s essential that you plan for success not only as you prepare for launch but also for as long as your business is in operation. You can follow proactive marketing principles to monitor the success of your marketing campaigns continually. All the while, you must find new and creative ways to keep your current customers interested and entice prospective customers.  

8. Are my marketing and sales teams aligned on the launch details? 

At Green Apple, we often discuss sales and marketing alignment with our clients. Your launch’s success will largely depend on the streamlined communication in your business, so your sales and marketing teams must be telling the same story. When their message is aligned, your customers know what to expect and view your business as one trusted, unified front.

9. What services should I invest in for the highest return on investment? 

Your return on investment depends on the efforts that go into your launch and the effectiveness of those efforts. But, it’s important to realize that you can’t do it all. You can, of course, but professionals who specialize in those efforts may be able to do them better, faster, and cheaper than you can. For example, you may spend twice the resources to build something internally that an outsourced partner could do in half the time while delivering a much more professional and effective product. Take a second to consider what your team is not fully equipped to handle and identify the best partners to work with to fill those gaps. 

10. How do I market the new product or service to my employees? 

A massively important element of marketing that many companies overlook is internal marketing. It’s just as crucial that you market to your employees as you do to your customers. When your employees fully understand your business and are excited about what you’re selling, they will be more excited to share that with others to help your customers succeed. Your employees are your most valuable asset, so ensure that you spend a great deal of time supporting their knowledge about and overall satisfaction with your brand.  

Do you need help building a robust and effective marketing strategy for your brand’s product or service launch? We can help. Contact Green Apple Strategy today to schedule a consultation.