Hello Friend, I hope you’re having a splendid week so far.
Somehow we skipped a couple of months and it’s now November – the Christmas decorations are already appearing…
I say the same thing every year but, I don’t quite know how we got here so quickly!
Before I get into it, I know what you’re thinking: Stu, you appear to have neglected to send a newsletter for the last two months. And you are correct.
I’m not really a fan of making noise simply for the sake of it (and we’ve been pretty flat out, to be honest), so I thought I would wait until there was something useful to tell you.
So what was the cause for the pause, and what’s been keeping me and the team so busy?
Read on to find out…
The Implications of AI series is now fully released and available for your listening pleasure
If you’re wondering how you can actually deploy AI tools in your growth sales-marketing workflow, this is the series for you. I had 5 very different conversations about the real work applications and implications of artificial intelligence.
The hype train shows no signs of slowing – almost every major and minor SaaS platform has AI plastered all over the website by now – however the most practically useful AI features I’ve seen so far from our own toolkit are:
- Automatic chapters and written summaries of videos (generated from the transcript). If you’ve seen any of my or the team’s walkthroughs you will have enjoyed the handing auto-chapters and summary feature already, very helpful if you want to jump around or back into a video.
- Brand voice roll on writing. Not to be all like “I liked it before it was cool” but we’ve been using copywriting AI assistants since I started Flow State over 2 years ago. Our tool has a great “continue writing” feature for long-form content that builds on what you’ve written before, as well as the brand voice in use.
- Summarise. Sounds simple, but in our project management tool, there’s a simple feature to summarise all content on a task card. This saves a huge amount of time when extensive discussion, feedback or external content has been added, allowing the team and I to get up to speed with ease.
The main thing AI can do for you practically in 2024 is create efficiency in your research, analysis and production process.
We’re always happy to chat about what we’re doing here so please let me know if you’d like to get into the details of what works and what doesn’t right now.
The hype cycle according to Gartner
This diagram was released in a PR in Nov 2022, specifically talking to the finance industry, but I think it holds pretty true across the board.
As I’m sure you’re aware we’re approaching peak hype rapidly right now, so we should be preparing ourselves for the depressing plummet into disillusionment, before we start to see some genuinely productive things emerge.
We’re releasing the next series of The Flow State Podcast very soon to continue our examination of the highs, lows and WTFs of AI, be sure to tune in to follow the journey!
It’s going to be an interesting ride through 2024 and into 2025.
Image Credit: Gartner
Insights from the Sales Enablement Summit in Sydney
I spent a couple of days in Sydney soaking up the current state of affairs in Sales Enablement at the start of the month.
It was a fascinating insight into how large brands are tackling the current challenges in B2B sales, attempting to bridge the sales-marketing gap and what enablement actually looks like in their teams.
A few key things I took away from the sessions that might resonate with you and your own brand:
Measuring the impact of enablement
It was interesting to see only 1 presentation that really zoomed in on measurement this year. Lucy Lee (Purple Patch) walked through a case study demonstrating a simple, powerful way to demonstrate the value and impact of sales enablement.
Slide Credit: Lucy Lee
Knowing the game vs. playing the game
A large number of people in sales enablement roles have never sold themselves. If you haven’t experienced the challenges of sales yourself, it’s essential that make the effort to understand them to effectively enable your colleagues.
Slide Credit: Annie Holden
Are your sales team getting pulled away from actually selling
Following that, Alexander Bedford (Fortinet) highlighted the increasing distractions and pressures on salespeople in B2B roles. AI is just adding to the pressure right now, potentially doing more harm than good in your sales function. Image Credit: Alexander Bedford
Product Updates: Target Account Insights, Social Listening & Buying Group Behaviour
Marketing effectiveness and ROI have been high on the agenda throughout 2023.
The dual trends of decreasing effectiveness from big digital media ads and rising costs to actually reach your audience have caused a refocus on what makes a good marketing mix.
Now as a lifelong advocate of organic/inbound marketing, this has been music to my ears. The cheap and easy days of pay-to-play have drawn to a close, and some thought is required to build a sustainable strategy for your brand.
That’s why we started developing our own approach to audience research, from which our social listening solution emerged. Knowing your customer is the essential foundation for any effective marketing or sales strategy, so if you’re keen to find out more about your target audience, we have just finished and released a new version of our social listening solutions.
Why is our approach different?
We have built what I think is quite a cool approach to social listening. instead of broad brush macro trends based on demo or firmo data, we look specifically at your target accounts and prospects to give you insights into what they are doing, what’s important to them and who is influencing them.
This lets you align your marketing and sales messaging much more closely to your targets; talk about what’s important to them at a time and place that makes sense.
Less analysis, more effective action. The dream!
Shoot me a message back if you’d like to find out more.
Until next time…
Thanks for reading this far!
I hope you found this interesting. I’d love to know what you would like to hear more of (or less of) and I’m always happy to chat if you would like to discuss anything.
Look forward to hearing from you.
Founder & Managing Director
Flow State Marketing