The Unmuted Marketer

Sounding Off on Real-Life B2B Marketing Mistakes, Missteps and Miracles

Debra Andrews

Debbie Andrews is an experienced strategist, integrated marketing mastermind, inbound and content marketing expert and sought-after speaker who helps B2B professional services firms throughout the U.S. become "marketing rock stars." She is founder and president of Marketri LLC, a full-service marketing firm that partners with a wide variety of clients to provide strategic marketing leadership, long-term outsourced marketing programs and content marketing strategic guidance that gets results and help their businesses grow. Debbie has more then 20 years of marketing and business development experience, including nearly a decade of working at "Big Four" accounting firms including Ernst & Young, PricewaterhouseCoopers, and the middle-market investment baking subsidiary of KPMG LLP, KPMG Corporate Finance. What excites Debbie most about marketing is discovering new ways to do more for her clients with less spend. We do this by leveraging the latest tools, technologies and marketing best practices to give our clients a competitive advantage and achieve a higher return on investment. Debbie earned an MBA in Marketing and a Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Maryland at College Park.
 
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Recent Posts

Tactical vs. Strategic Marketing Professionals: What’s the Difference and Why Should You Care?

by Debra Andrews on April 11, 2017

No Marketing Results. Marketing Staff Turnover. Wasting Valuable Time. Wasting Financial Resources. These are a few of the most important reasons why Presidents, Owners, Executives, and Partners need to care about understanding the difference between strategic marketing professionals and tactical marketing professionals.

If you’ve been spinning your wheels with marketing, maybe this blog post is your tow truck to better marketing outcomes.

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Topics: B2B Digital Marketing Strategy, B2B Marketing Challenges, B2B Marketing Plans, B2B Marketing Strategies, Marketing Departments, Strategic Marketing Consulting

5 Reasons Why Hiring a Marketing Consultant is Good for a New Website

by Debra Andrews on April 3, 2017

Picture $10,000 in cash. Then imagine walking to the nearest river, throwing it in, and watching it float away.

That's essentially what happened to a large construction company after hiring a New York agency to relaunch its website.

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Topics: B2B Digital Marketing Strategy, B2B Marketing Challenges, B2B Marketing Strategies, Strategic Marketing Consulting, Fractional CMO, B2B Marketing Best Practices

Running the Fly Route – My 2016 Fractional CMO Highlight Reel

by Debra Andrews on January 9, 2017

2016 was the fastest year ever, and I intentionally planned it that way. In football terms, I called one play exactly a year ago – the Fly Route. For those of you who don’t spend much of your fall and winter Sundays listening to Troy Aikman and Joe Buck, I’ll let Wikipedia describe this risky play:

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Topics: Fractional CMO

Are B2B Strategic Marketing Consultants Relics?

by Debra Andrews on November 10, 2016

"He’s such a relic!”

That’s what me and my never-catty (wink) girlfriends would say about jocks when they’d come back for homecoming and hit the party circuit with their “Natty Bohs,” acting just like they did when they ruled the school. You could tell they were clinging to the past, but their time had passed. 

So, what do washed-up jocks have in common with marketing?

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Topics: B2B Digital Marketing Strategy, B2B Marketing Plans, B2B Marketing Strategies, B2B Strategy, Strategic Marketing Consulting

The Secret to Earning a Higher ROI on your B2B Marketing

by Debra Andrews on October 10, 2016

Ready to learn how to secure a high return on your marketing dollars? Before I share the secret, we need to make a pact right now. Ready? Take a deep breath in, then let it go. Now say with conviction, “I will not fall prey to once and done marketing tactics.” Even if you are unsure about what I mean, trust me, say it, and read on.

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Topics: B2B Digital Marketing Strategy, B2B Marketing Plans, B2B Marketing Strategies, B2B Strategy, Fractional CMO

Take a Ride with a Fractional CMO (Part II)

by Debra Andrews on October 3, 2016

In Part I of my Fractional CMO series, I covered the basics of the model, and how it suits organizations with aggressive growth objectives that don’t need a six-figure, full-time CMO. (Hopefully I could make it clearer for you than my mom!)

In Part II, we’re going to examine more of what my work with clients looks like. Let’s take a look back at the last 60 days in my world as a Fractional CMO.

It goes pretty fast, so safety first and buckle up!

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Topics: Content Strategy Steps, B2B Marketing Strategies, Fractional CMO

Does Your B2B Company Stall in the Red Zone? Improve Your Proposals!

by Debra Andrews on September 6, 2016

Your website is modern and up-to-date; your brochure looks slick and has copy that pops.  Having quality collateral, whether electronic or print, is typically a priority for most B2B companies.  Marketing collateral is often used during the early stages of the sales cycle.  It is used to get prospects interested and move them along the funnel.  So once a buyer has been qualified, you’re in the Red Zone and in a great position to score a big ol’ touchdown, many – too many – B2B companies lose focus and drop the ball.  Instead of celebrating with a spike, they are left with another notch in the loss column asking Why?  Why?  Why? 

The Answer:  B2B companies get lazy with proposals and most of the time, quite frankly, they stink.

 

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Topics: B2B Marketing Strategies, B2B Strategy

Explaining the B2B Fractional CMO in Simple Terms – Part I

by Debra Andrews on July 26, 2016

I - Debra Marie Collins (my maiden name) - was a very pampered child.  Don’t get me wrong, I had a very middle class upbringing and wasn’t necessarily spoiled with material things.  I was spoiled with love that continues to this day, especially from my mom.  Some days, I work from her house just to spend precious extra time together.  And, almost always, I catch her bragging about me as a successful entrepreneur during her many daily phone calls with friends.  Then I hear, “Well, I don’t know what she does…  It’s strange.  She’s a piece of a marketer for companies or something like that.”

These moments make me realize that my role as a Fractional CMO for middle market B2B companies is unique, leaving not just my mom but even seasoned business owners and executives saying, “Huh?”  In a nutshell, Fractional CMOs are strategic marketing consultants with a twist.  In Part I of this two-part blog series, I’ll explain the difference between the widely recognized strategic marketing consultant and the largely unknown Fractional CMO.  In Part II, I’ll reveal the types of exciting projects and challenges I tackle in any given month as a Fractional CMO and the ongoing responsibilities I own on behalf of my clients when functioning in this capacity.

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Topics: B2B Marketing Strategies, Strategic Marketing Consulting, Fractional CMO

Don’t Start Your B2B Marketing Journey by Buying Marketing Automation

by Debra Andrews on July 18, 2016

 

You’ve probably heard about Inbound Marketing, a promising, digitally driven modern methodology that “pulls” leads into the sales funnel by attracting them with interesting and useful information.  No more interrupting prospects with cold calls.  No more once-and-done, overpriced ads.  Inbound Marketing sounds as refreshing and satisfying as a margarita on the rocks with salt after a long, hard day.  You’re ready to take a sip!  What aggressive, growth-minded company wouldn’t want to leverage modern marketing to gain qualified B2B buyers?  All you need to do is buy marketing automation / lead generation software to kick-start your efforts.  It’s a little pricey (usually between $7,500 - $20,000 + the cost of training), but you’re ready to commit because just one new customer will pay for the annual investment. 

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Topics: Content Strategy Steps, B2B Marketing Strategies

Are You Making Your B2B Marketing Professional Miserable?

by Debra Andrews on June 21, 2016

Be a Champion, Not a Challenge!

First one, then another.  Now it’s a pattern that I can’t ignore.  Marketing Managers and Marketing Coordinators who began their jobs at middle market B2B companies with great enthusiasm are coming to me to share their growing frustrations and ongoing struggles.  They have faced one too many impossible tasks or brick walls, and some are on the verge of giving up and moving on.  Senior executives – Owners, Presidents, Partners, Shareholders, and Vice Presidents – are almost always part of the problem.  The good news?  As you’ll learn, these same leaders can thankfully be part of the solution.

Life as the middle child:

Working in the marketing department of a middle market B2B company has the potential to be a very rewarding experience.  Unfortunately, many junior or mid-level marketers wind up discouraged and disappointed rather than feeling fulfilled and part of a productive team.  Lack of direction and education as well as a daily dose of isolation take a toll on these Marketing Managers and Marketing Coordinators.  The end result is often an abrupt exit that isn’t beneficial to the marketing professional or to the B2B company that will need to, once again, regroup.  This is clearly a “Lose-Lose” scenario. 

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Topics: Marketing Departments, Strategic Marketing Consulting, Fractional CMO