B2B Reads: Brand Consistency, Discovery, and Closing the Loop


In addition to our Sunday App of the Week feature, we also summarize some of our favorite B2B sales & marketing posts from around the web each week. We’ll miss a ton of great stuff, so if you found something you think is worth sharing please add it to the comments below.

Your LinkedIn Network’s huge! Here’s Why That’s a Red Flag
Finding success with networking focuses on the well-tended relationships developed as you get there. A relationship is simply an understanding of knowing who someone is and what they do, however strong relationships and connections go deeper than this. LinkedIn is a tool used to manage online networks, but in order to take advantage of its purpose, it’s important to only connect with people that add value to your network. Thank you, Larry Robertson, for helping us understand the value of our network. 

3 Reasons Why Brand Consistency Matters
With today’s economic market, it’s important to understand your brand and keep it consistent. The biggest representative of your brand is your content and this article mentions the value of creating at least one piece of content per day to help achieve brand consistency. This is essential because consistency makes you memorable, branding fosters relationships with consumers, and consistent brands are more desirable. Thank you, May Habib, for teaching us why brand consistency matters and how to achieve this. 

The Expectation Effect: How Your Mindset Can Change Your World
David Robson is a science writer who specializes in the extremities of the human brain. Key insights from David’s new book, The Expectation Effect: How Your Mindset Can Change Your World, include how you don’t need to be deceived to benefit from placebos, turning unpleasant experiences to your advantage, you’re as fit as you think you are, how the worry of sleep loss is fueling the insomnia epidemic, and how your beliefs about aging can determine how long you live. Thank you, David Robson, for breaking down some key insights from your new book. 

Why We Micromanage (Even If We Don’t Want to)
Micromanagement is a common approach that may leaders use even though it’s not perceived as a positive quality and nobody enjoys it or wants it done to them, however there are many pressures to micromanaging. While there are many reasons that this occurs, micromanagement is ultimately in the eye of the beholder and everyone has a different perception of another’s leadership or working style. Delegation is one of the easiest and most effective ways to overcome any micromanagement tendencies. Thank you, Kevin Eikenberry, for providing insight as to why some leaders tend to micromanage and showing them how to overcome this. 

Storytelling in Business: How to Tell Engaging Stories
It’s highly important for leaders to utilize storytelling as a skill within engaging internal and external audiences. For a story to be truly engaging, it must be well-crafted and well-told. This article dives deeper into how to improve your performance as a storyteller with advice like using various creative resources, learning from others, reading aloud, allowing your authentic emotions to show, learning to use your voice as a music instrument, utilizing body language, and storytelling with your body. Thank you, Brain Moriarty, for giving us tips on how to be an engaging storyteller. 

Seven Pillars of B2B Brand Reputation Management
Brand reputation is a key element in your business’s success, especially with the advancement of digital media. This is specifically important for B2B companies because reputation drives business development and branding helps with differentiation. Channels for online reputation management include social media, SEO, outreach, customer reviews, and communication channels. Read further for tips on brand reputation management within this online environment. Thank you, Aleh Barysevich, for identifying the pillars of brand reputation management for B2B companies. 

The Digital Era is Marketing’s Era, and Marketing is Data
In today’s marketing industry, over 50% of businesses live online, therefore in order to survive, you must know how to virtually market. As the article states, the key to a successful strategy is marrying automation and the human experience. Elements to take into consideration when virtually marketing include focusing on the customer journey, aligning the audience intent, and valuable content as the ‘what’ in your marketing data. Thank you, Mollie Barnett, for sharing your ideas and insight on this topic. 

You Are Not Really Doing Discovery
The common foundation for discovery is for salespeople to identify the clients problem and its impact. However, this becomes repetitive overtime and is difficult to differentiate from competitors which limits discovery. This can be improved by helping your client discover, identifying the client’s outdated assumptions, understanding the environment, creating a paradigm shift, and learning how to make a decision. Thank you, Anthony Iannarino, for helping us understand how to overcome our discovery limitations. 

The Missing Key to a Productive and Engaged Team
Efficiency and optimization are common qualities people think of when identifying a productive and engaged team, but this really only works with machines, not human knowledge workers. Motivation is the differentiating factor of productivity for humans compared to machines. In order to be productive, humans need to be productive, relaxed, time to think, downtime, variety and growth, and feedback. Thank you, Kate Dames, for identifying the real missing keys to a productive and engaged team. 

Why Leaders Need to Close the Loop
Although some managers are great communicators, they often fall short on one element of closing the loop. While managers have no obligation to use every idea that is proposed to them, many forget to thank others for their suggestions. This term is often called “closing the loop” and holds importance as it communicates the decision and the reason for it, affirms the value of the person who made the suggestion, and lets them know their input is valued and will be sought out again. Thank you, John Baldoni, for highlighting this crucial quality that make others feel important and valued in the workplace.