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BY DESIGN MARKETING BLOGS: THE CURRENT STATE OF AFFAIRS

There has been a dramatic uptick in ultra-generic marketing blog posts in the ByDesign space, both by SAP and by Partners. Take quick glance at the ‘Featured Content’ for some great examples.

The typical ultra-generic ByDesign Marketing blog typically goes something like this:

  • Partner describes some generic business problem, siting various sources and studies. This usually occupies 90% of the blog’s content.
  • Next, Partner mentions ByDesign and that it contains a feature that will help alleviate this business problem. The feature itself is not described…merely its existence.
  • Finally, Partner promotes themselves as a ByDesign provider.

Here is a fictional example of the above template:

“Small business face challenges with limited resources and increasing complexity in their supply chain and vendor relationships. In fact, blah blah study states that most small to medium business process X number of invoices, with a limited accounting staff.

Typically not having an IT organization, these companies can use a platform such as SAP Business ByDesign to process invoices easily in the cloud, enabling on-demand access to key vendor relationship data.

To learn more about how SAP Business ByDesign can help your business thrive, contact blah blah person at blah blah company for more information”

Until now, I’ve taken a pessimistic approach to these types of blog posts, slamming/flaming them, and therefore making my passion for excellence appear to be childish lack of self-control. So in short, I have been a part of the problem, not the solution. It’s a new year, so I’m going to take a new approach: help, rather than criticize. (Note: I reserve the right to criticize.)

So how can partners provide more compelling marketing content, that may actually generate some leads, opportunities, and deals? I humbly offer my opinion below:

HOW TO MARKET BYDESIGN IN YOUR BLOG

Continue to highlight business problems, but demonstrate the value that ByDesign can bring to solve this problem in a way that is better than the competition.

Rather than gloss over the existence of a feature, describe the feature in a way that excites a prospect. Will ByDesign revolutionize your Order-to-Cash process? Will ByDesign provide business insight you’ve been missing for years?

Make sure to emphasize why ByDesign is better than every other system that contains the feature you’ve described as existing in the system, because every system also contains this feature. Here are some highlights to get you going:

  • ByDesign is a fully integrated platform that allows you to view the life-cycle of sales, projects, customers, financial health, etc., in an unprecedented fashion, using a customizable, and cutting edge analytics engine.
  • Have a special business requirement? SAP ByDesign has a developer ecosystem that can meet your needs and fill your gaps.
  • With ByDesign’s open platform, you have the opportunity to automate and streamline common business processes like never before.
  • The ByDesign community is full of passionate individuals with wonderful ideas for improving the platform. These ideas are regularly reviewed and implemented by SAP and its Partner Community. The community is engaging and collaborative, so you’ll never feel like you’re ‘on an island’ and always have many paths to support.
  • The ByDesign user experience is the best in the business for a full business suite, with constant innovation and improvements being made.
  • ByDesign brings your business to the next level with on-demand access from anywhere in the world, robust security and user management, and the decades of business process expertise of SAP, all built in.
  • Not ready to bring all your processes to the cloud? ByDesign offers a simple subscription model that allows you to implement more and more functionality at your convenience, with no additional cost.

These are just a few core benefits that I would emphasize in a marketing blog post.  Describe generic scenarios and expect no response. Demonstrate unique value and get results.

With all the push to ‘Step Up to the Cloud,” it’s time to also “Step Up your Marketing Blog Posts.”

Follow me on Twitter @JudsonOnDemand.

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5 Comments

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  1. Jonathan Becher

    Judson, this is good advice for all products, not just Business ByDesign.  I might add that partners should consider doing more showing, and less telling.  By that, I mean the following:

    1. Show how someone would solve a business problem.

    Demo functionality that addresses (at least part of) the business problem you described.This doesn’t have to be a professionally produced video. 

    2. Show a customer who has had the problem solved

    Nothing works as well as a peer explaining how you, the partner, solved their business problem.

    And remember, good marketing is about creating a two-way dialog. Ending a blog post with a question is a good way to encourage the conversation.

    What do you think?

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    1. Judson Wickham Post author

      Jonathan, this is the exact methodology we use in our pre-sales process, and it’s been very effective. I don’t see why it couldn’t be extended to marketing.

      Seeing is believing.

      (Also I just realized I should have ended my own post with a question, but the point of this one was really just to help the community/partners)

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  2. Jarret Pazahanick

    Hi Judson

    Good job with this article and something to consider is that not everyone is interested in putting in the effort or has the expertise to write a comprehensive, well researched and thought out blog as that can take some serious time even if you are an expert in a specific area. We see dozens of examples daily in the forums of folks that dont even take the time to search Google or SAP Help before asking a question yet are doing “consulting” work and being seen as a source of knowledge by customers.

    As Jonathan mention good marketing is about two-way dialog and the best way to start that conversation is by providing the reader some value. I hope your blog inspires people in the SCN community while writing their next blog.

    Jarret

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  3. Sina Moatamed

    Judson,

    I’m sorry I arrived late to this post.  I think you are touching on a real sore spot for a lot of marketing efforts.

    We lose value in why we are in the business, in the first place. Marketing that tells me what you do, does not inspire trust.  Judson your point about finding common cause and energy for going to work is the difference between a company that gets it and one that does not.  One that is engaged in a larger purpose and happens to make a profit, or is just trying to sell you something.

    Telling someone “Not ready to bring all your processes to the cloud? ByDesign offers a simple subscription model that allows you to implement more and more functionality at your convenience, with no additional cost.”, is a partner of the customer’s purpose.

    Cloud services have democratized access to some powerful business capabilities.  Companies and departments are finally able to mold a set of tools that meets their needs.  These same customers want people who can enable their success.  The line between software and great consulting is gone.

    Businesses want capability roadmaps, not spec sheets  Those days for IT sales are over.

    Great points Judson!

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