2013 gold trophy

The “Best Content” series brings you a handful of the most thought-provoking and informative articles, reports, and webinars related to technology branding and marketing published over the last year, broken down into bite-sized pieces.

IT Services Spending Power Shifts Away From IT Leaders
Buying power is shifting away from the CIO: as this CIO.com article notes, “current economic uncertainty has hastened a growing shift of influence away from enterprise IT towards other business stakeholders.” A Forrester Research survey revealed that over 40 percent of companies anticipate that their CFOs will have a larger role in IT buying in the coming months. And furthermore, IT services research and consulting firm Everest Group conducted a survey that found that IT professionals initiated only 25 percent of IT initiatives within companies. Why? As CEO of Everest Group Peter Bendor-Samuel explains, “the cloud tells the business they can have production-ready tech at their fingertips without having to go through the CIO.” Read more on how enterprise IT will address this shift here.

Inspired B2B Marketing with Xerox’s Leah Quesada
As the world has been turning to digital, the roles and offerings of established tech companies, such as Xerox, have also been changing. Forbes interviewed Leah Quesada, the Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Xerox, and she offers her advice for inspired marketing, with regard to commercial insight (or the “[supplier’s] knowledge of a problem customers have that they either haven’t realized, haven’t realized the significance of, or have always thought was just a cost of doing business”). Quesada explains the importance of getting your feet wet and an “outside in” approach; read about these insights and watch Leah Quesada explain them here.

Tech selling: The rise of the sales engineer
BtoB Magazine interviewed a marketing VP at an IT security software company, asking for his insight on the changing IT buyer and what this means for tech marketers. As information today has become more and more readily available to buyers, more and more decision makers are becoming involved in the buying process. And because tech companies are “putting out all this content, white papers, trials, etc. to drive buyers to engage,” everyone that the buyer comes in contact with must be just as knowledgeable about the products as the marketing department. Read the full interview here.

3 Marketing Fails That Can Hurt Your B2B Technology Brand
Using a personal example, the author of this Business 2 Community post explains how a B2B technology brand’s marketing can go wrong. Brands that sell technology products or services must consistently address wants and needs of their target audience, and the writer points out three potential missteps: “not living up to your big promise,” “alienating a segment of your customers,” and “misjudging your customers.” Read the post here.

Technology: Key Visual Trends
Curve, Getty Images’ online magazine, has followed recent technology imagery trends. They point out three particular trends: connectivity, urbanity, and with the rise of smartphones and photo sharing, the everyday. For a tech brand, understanding what images resonate with audiences and why is vital, and Getty explains these current “visual ideas and conventions”: watch here.