The best way to deliver B2B sales results consistently is to have a growth marketing strategy in line with your sales message. Your potential clients are online and they are looking for information daily. If you can provide the content they are searching for you are going to position yourself to win their business.
Kathleen Booth, owner and CEO, Quintain Marketing says, "Companies that produce educational or informative content can establish thought leadership and generate leads earlier in the buying process, setting the stage to ultimately win the business," she notes. "It may sound counter-intuitive," she continues, "but the key is to avoid selling." By offering prospects helpful information in the form of a blog, you can win their trust and their business. “Creating valuable content for your audience will position you to be a trusted industry resource for your customer." You may be thinking, how can I write a blog? Because you are a thought leader and expert in your industry, you are qualified to address your customers needs. Some or all of the information which you are blogging about is already available on your website. When prospects read your blog, they’re looking to learn something or solve a problem.
What is Content Marketing?
You have probably heard about Content Marketing and how the most successful sales professionals are using it in some way shape or form. I have been providing my ideal customers with growth by using content marketing since 2013. It is very easy to see that a growth marketing strategy along with your content strategy will boost your number of new clients. The fact is that more people are consuming content online than ever before. In turn more sales managers and marketing professional are providing their potential clients with much needed valuable information as a result of this increase in content consumption.
The best marketing approach for a B2B company is to issue an appeal to your target audience. Determine what types of material are likely to generate a response from potential clients. You must make it clear what you want your potential customers to do with the content and offers you are sharing in order to create an interest in your product and encourage potential customers to visit your website. Joe Pulizzi, founder of Content Marketing Institute, says in a recent episode of the Marketing Cloudcast, “If you’re not writing down your strategy, it doesn’t exist.” Sixty-eight percent of B2B growth marketers don’t have a documented content strategy — and without a documented strategy, you’re creating content without goals or purpose. The success of your marketing campaign cannot be measured without tracking and reliable data. The great news is many companies are there to help with SMART goals and strategy, so don't worry.
Starting a blog is fun, you get to communicate your ideas to your audience. Blogging should be easily accessed by your prospective clients and should have some design aspects considered. Let people know about your blog. Promoting the blog is crucial to its success. Although grammar and spelling are very important, focus on the readability and don't spend too much time on each blog post. As Susanna Gebauer from The Social M's says "Blog audiences know that you are not the New York Times. They know that you don’t have 3 editors checking every post" So don't freak out about every blog post being 100% prefect. Try to have a constant stream of new content available for your readers. Most importantly if you are thinking that a blog is not for you. A blog will increase web traffic to your company website, helps develop your companies online personality as well as communicate companies events, job fairs, industry news and much more.
How can Growth Marketing help me?
Lets talk about the cost, how to start a growth strategy and how to analyze its performance. The cost of a starting a growth strategy is low, your company already has content so you just need to utilize it. As much as 70% of the content your company has, is not being used at all or used properly. Creating new content is not as hard as you might think, you are an expert in your field so people want to hear from you. Starting a new growth strategy with either new or unused content from your website or marketing materials can be done by starting a blog. Along with you blog you can offer your readers free eBooks, white-papers or infographics. It’s no big surprise that in order to be a leader in your industry you have to have a plan. More importantly, a plan that can be driven by results.
What it the ROI of Growth Marketing?
The truth is that the best investment you will make is to begin a growth marketing strategy. Just ask Neil Patel, he has founded numerous companies and provided growth strategies for Advantage Consulting Services that counted Fortune 500 companies like Samsung, Amazon, Microsoft, and Viacom among its clients. Everywhere you look companies are using a growth strategy to engage customers and share their message. Lets look at some examples of the success that content marketing provides.
- 36% of companies with a documented content strategy indicate their content marketing is “very effective” or “extremely effective.”
(Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs)
- 77% of all companies rate their social media marketing as successful at achieving the most important objectives set for it to some extent. (LinkedIn Technology Marketing Community)
- Metrics for B2B content marketing success: Sales Lead Quality (87%); Sales (84%); High Conversion Rates (82%); Sales Lead Quantity (71%); Website Traffic (71%); Brand Lift (69%); SEO Ranking (87%) (Content Marketing Institute/MarketingProfs)
- Year-over-year growth in unique site traffic is 7.8x higher for content marketing leaders compared to followers (19.7% vs 2.5%). (Source: Aberdeen)
Inbound Marketing is described by Joeri Van Overloop founder of Bizwebjournal "...providing quality content to attract potential clients to the products and services you’re offering after which you then get to know those clients personally so that they are eventually left with no choice but to do business with you." You can do this by starting a blog, blogging will allow you to communicate with your prospective clients at the appropriate time. You will be able to gain their trust by giving them free valuable content and they will look to you as a trusted resource for information. My favorite aspect of inbound is that you can automate it. Once you have solidified your message and your routine you can sit back and watch as the visit and contact role in. It does take some time to build a base of content to promote, but perseverance is the key, so stick to it! Keep in mind growth marketing is much cheaper than traditional marketing, the main investment is your time and energy.
Buyers today are savvier than ever before, they consume different growth at different times in different ways. Creating semi-fictional representations of your ideal customers will allow you to focus on your best customers. You can also create buyer personas for the customers you don't want to do business with. Having multiple buyer personas will also allow you to tailor your content to a specific niche market. Buyer personas include demographics, age, work role, company size, common issues or problems etc...
Email is still the most important and cost-effective way to communicate with your customers, but if you are not segmenting your leads and customers based on their buyer personas, you are wasting your time (we will get more into that in the next section). Email can be used very effectively to nurture your leads and convert more new leads. All the industry leaders agree that email marketing is the best investment for marketing and sales. Here are some stats for you.
Email is 40 times more effective at acquiring new customers than Facebook or Twitter. – McKinsey
- Email marketing drives more conversions than any other marketing channel, including search and social. – Monetate
- Email marketing has an ROI of 3800%. – DMA
- Email’s ROI was 28.5% compared to 7% for direct mail. – Chief Marketer
- For every $1 spent, email marketing generates $38 in ROI. – Campaign Monitor
- The total number of worldwide email accounts is expected to increase to over 4.3 billion accounts by year-end 2016. – Radicati Group
- 72% people prefer to receive promotional content through email, compared to 17% who prefer social media. – MarketingSherpa
Segmenting leads and customers will really allow you to tailor your sales and marketing campaigns to target specific buyer personas. You will now be able to create custom offers for each buyer in the particular part of the buyers journey that they are in. In other words, you can now have multiple offers for each buyer persona to offer them as the travel through the process of buying your product or service. You will also get a sharp increase in repeat business and activate those old clients you haven't heard from. Interestingly, you will also be able to interact with potential clients through segmentation.
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