The Revery Blog

Nerissa Atkinson

Nerissa Atkinson is co-Director of The Revery, a marketing agency that creates 'human shaped' marketing to educate buyers, accelerate sales and drive revenue.
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Recent Posts

Not your Dad's software; selling software to Millennials.

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 07-Sep-2016 23:04:29

 They used to say that big large glass buildings don’t buy software, people do. But we would be more correct in saying that when it comes to business software these days, people aren’t buying software, big large-glasses wearing Millennials are. And if you’re in the business of marketing or selling software or marketing this has big implications for you.

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Topics: SaaS Marketing

What binging on YouTube taught this content marketing agency about content.

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 11-Aug-2016 22:52:28

I spent a weekend binge watching YouTube so you didn’t have to - yeah, I know, I'm good like that. After a hard week searching for gems at the old content marketing agency mine, I spent a weekend in my jammies, strong coffee in hand, eyes going slowly rectangular with a little arrow in place of each pupil.

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Topics: Content Marketing

6 brands proving B2B content marketing doesn't need to be boring.

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 11-Aug-2016 22:38:13

In the hierarchy of marketing, there is an unofficial ranking of ‘cool’ brands to work for. Top of the list? Luxury brands and beer (nothing surprising there). Middle of the pack might be banking - big budgets, and looks good on the CV too. And way, way down the bottom of the list you’ll probably find B2B firms.

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Topics: B2B marketing

Online lead generation means never having to cold call again.

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 13-Jul-2016 23:40:17

Hands up who loves cold calling? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Sigh. While it's meant to be a great means of lead generation, quite frankly being on the receiving end of a cold call is just dreadful and uncomfortable and unwelcome and like most people, my aim is to slip past it as fast as I possibly can.

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Topics: Lead generation

Lead generation ideas: how to spark a love match on LinkedIn

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 16-Jun-2016 20:51:07

Ask anyone to recommend some reliable B2B lead generation ideas, and sooner or later they'll point you towards LinkedIn - but likely with no real clue of what to do when you get there. So, you fumble around, stalk a few good-on-paper profiles, maybe make a few connections but get no further.


So is Linkedin really the fast track to 'swipe right' of lead generation ideas?

It makes sense to see why LinkedIn is billed as the social network for business, but why does it seem so hard to make a connection? I don’t know about you, but at times it kinda feels like a bar at the end of the night, with everyone talking past each other, desperate to find The One before it’s too late.

Because it’s so easy to reach people in the right role and the right industry it makes sense that it features highly in the list of lead generation ideas. But because of this ease, LinkedIn has become a bit of a meat market for sales prospecting, as I’m sure you’ve experienced yourself. And obviously this sort of behavior has left people feeling just a little allergic to any overtures from someone they don’t know well.

More importantly, your The One is not necessarily out there drink in hand, swaying to Taylor Swift and looking hard for you too. 

To make sure that this strategy is worth investing your time in, you first need to understand the reasons LinkedIn users visit the social media platform; to reconnect with past colleagues, update their profile, participate in groups and research – in effect, they come goal oriented.

I'm sure you know how hard it can be hard to capture the attention of someone focused on something else, and this can make marketing irritating or just plain invisible.

So like at the beginning of any good long-term relationship, it pays to take it slow. LinkedIn, like any social media is a long term game when it comes to effective relationship building (in fact, you'll find that many B2B lead generation ideas tend to require a long term focus).

Think of it like this. You wouldn't barrel into a room and ask for someone you’ve only just met to buy from you or give you personal info, and while it's virtual, social media is exactly the same. You need to find ways to solve their problems or enhance their lives and not come in fast with the hard sell.


Filling your little black book

When you do first reach out, you're likely to get a better response if you spend the time crafting very personal and targeted messages that show you know about, and are interested in them or their business. To put it bluntly, there’s nothing memorable about getting that standard ‘I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn’, and while they may accept your invitation, it's a guarantee that who you are will quickly be forgotten.

Instead, find something genuine to say that they can respond to (compliment their approach on another social network if you follow them, comment on an aspect of their background or identify a shared interest) otherwise the next move will always be yours to make.


Going steady

It’s a fact that we respond well to people who like us, and by being a regular in their news feed you can begin the cycle of ‘know, trust, buy’, important in all sales relationships. Take the time to stop in regularly and interact with your contacts’ status updates by commenting, liking or sharing their content, and celebrating their successes.


Be irresistibly interesting

Curate external articles, research or reports that might be of interest to your target market, by setting up Google Alerts, or using a tool like Medium, Flipbook or Feedly. Focus on topics that are tangential to your service or product and see if you can use them to create discussion - you'll find this idea helpful for other forms of social media lead generation too.


Be impossible to ignore

Draw greater attention to your own content by 'blogging' on LinkedIn rather than posting links to a blog in a status update (to do this, click the pencil icon in the ‘share an update box and you’re away). This is particularly potent because your connections get an alert that you’ve posted new content.  As soon as we at The Revery started doing this we noticed a huge increase in comments, likes and sharing from our connections.


Getting out of the friends zone

If you’re thinking about sending them an InMail, provide them something of use before you 'go in for the kill' of asking for a coffee meeting. As an example, I got a great response once from a connection when I came across an article with an interesting take on his industry. I sent it across to him with a humorous comment, asking nothing in return. This opened the barriers to a light-hearted conversation, and he later came back to me asking me to present a proposal. 

Ah, true love.


Looking for some other lead generation ideas? It might be time to reconsider your B2B marketing strategy.

b2b marketing

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Topics: Social Media

Zen and the art of your content marketing strategy

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 19-May-2016 11:08:46

"The person who chases two rabbits catches neither."

These were the words of a client as we were talking branding and content marketing strategy recently, and 3 thoughts crossed my mind. Firstly, I was charmed that we have amazing clients who both build B2B tech solutions and quote Chinese proverbs in meetings. Then, I was briefly distracted by the amusing vision of someone trying to catch a warren full of rabbits, Benny Hill-like (there’s your ear worm for the day, you’re welcome).

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Topics: Content Marketing

Social marketing and yogurt moved a start up to $1 billion in sales

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 07-Dec-2015 19:48:52

Chobani is a company which has grown from startup to a staggering US$1 billion in annual revenue in less than 10 years based not on the sales of a new software or app, but on yogurt. And what’s most surprising is that the company has achieved this success with no private equity investment, and with a marketing strategy that was based solely on social media marketing until 2011.


So here's some tech marketing tips from a fast growing startup that's - surprise - yoghurt, not software.



In 2005 Greek-style yoghurt was uncommon in the US, with consumers more familiar with thinner, sweeter varieties.  With a high protein content and low in fat, you might think the market would be restricted to health-conscious buyers, But Chobani’s CEO and founder, Hamdi Ulukaya was adamant that his product was for everyone, and not just a speciality item.

This attitude led to one of their early successes, with distributors reluctantly agreeing to place Chobani yogurt in the standard dairy aisle, rather than in specialty cases giving it a much wider audience.  And from the beginning the yogurt was priced at an accessible US$1 per cup, a price point intended to suggest quality and good taste, without pricing itself into a small a niche market.    

This distribution is replicated in Australia where Chobani sits amongst more familiar brands.  Australian consumers are regularly offered ‘buy 4’ discounts, which encourages multi-purchases as well as trial of new flavours and packaging options with promotional items like ice cream moulds and online recipe ideas helping to demonstrate other uses for the product. 

With a focus on maintaining a quality product and through the support of a passionate fan base - the Chobaniacs - Chobani spearheaded a new market, and by 2010 the US Greek yogurt market was experiencing annual growth of 203%, compared to just 3% for traditional forms of yogurt.

Since then they have consolidated their positioning as real, authentic and simple with sponsorships of the Olympics, and some recent TV advertising building on their down-home brand, built on a platform of a great idea and a lot of hard work.



And some smart real-time marketing during the 2014 Oscars saw their Twitter feed filled with reminders that special effects are only good in the movies.


So as a SaaS or tech business, what lessons can you take from Chobani?

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Topics: Social Media

What tech companies can learn from bakers about digital marketing.

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 15-Nov-2015 10:36:33

Spend any time on Pinterest and you'll probably come across 'the ultimate guide to chocolate chip cookies' (from blogger Handle the Heat), which shows how small variations to a recipe affect the end result.  While the magical deliciousness of chocolate is certainly partly responsible for the 200,000+ pins the post has received, it's also proof of the great marketing conundrum; we all like things just the way we like them - but as businesses we don't always know what that is.

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Topics: B2B marketing

Is your technology brand strategy developing a Kodak moment?

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 14-Nov-2015 22:01:26

2013 marked the 125th anniversary of Eastman Kodak, a brand which in the mid 70s had an incredible 90% market share, only to escape bankruptcy recently through the sale of many of its patents to companies including Amazon, Facebook and Google.

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Topics: SaaS Marketing

How Periscope can form part of a B2B social media strategy.

Posted by Nerissa Atkinson on 12-Nov-2015 11:19:48

I knew Periscope was a winner the day I taxied down the runway and took off in the cockpit of a WW2 Lancaster bomber. That same evening I took a walk down a night noodle market in Taiwan and had a guided tour of a museum in Glasgow. I was hooked.

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Topics: Social Media