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Written by Lisa Shepherd
on April 04, 2016

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We know the best advice comes from real world experience so we collected insights from marketing experts on LinkedIn’s CMO Network.  We asked them,

"I'm looking for your top tips to help B2B companies develop a clear and actionable strategic marketing roadmap for 2016. What have you learned in the last year (or over your career) that you think is essential to the development of an effective marketing plan? Specific or general tips welcome. Thanks for sharing your expertise.”

Their lessons and suggestions are compiled in our latest whitepaper, “Strategic Marketing Planning for B2B Companies- Lessons from 65 CMOs” where we grouped their advice into 10 lessons.

The most important piece of advice, remember your customer, is the core of every marketing plan.  Many companies get so wrapped up in their own business and revenue objectives that they forget to ask customers about business challenges, pain points and goals – or to validate new ideas or products.

One of our favourite strategies to remember the customer is to build ideal personas. These should be at the core of every marketing plan.   Customer personas guide how you go-to-market, including what features and benefits you promote, the content you create, the topic, the tone, frequency and as well as how you communicate.     

A tactic we find invaluable for learning more about target personas are customer focus groups.  These provide critical insights into customers and prospects, helping you to build personas that are authentic to your business.

Here are some quotes from our esteemed marketers around customer focus.

“Do your homework. The first goal is to understand your customer with thorough research and the development of buyer personas. It's the first step in building your strategy.”

“Talk to your customers. Find out what matters to them and how to better engage.”

“Understanding how the brand is perceived by the target market, and knowing what it takes to get your prospects to act are critical criteria that must be researched and developed before creation of a strategy.”

“Know your customer’s desires and necessities. Listen to them. Develop some special value to your customer. Focus on their satisfaction.”

These marketers embrace something that is critical to success-customer focus.   Learn what else they embrace!    Download our whitepaper now.

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