Archive for the ‘Email Marketing’ tag
With the holiday season right around the corner, does your small business have its email marketing campaign in place and ready to go? If not, you could be left scrambling at the last minute.
For those in the retail business, for example, the holiday rush can be an opportunity to make up for lackluster sales earlier in the year. For small businesses that have a tough time selling over the holidays, it can place them in a very precarious position heading into the next year.
If your company’s B2B marketing strategy appears to be taking on some water, perhaps it is time to set sail on a new course?
Since marketing plays such a key role in the direction of many companies, take the time to review your company’s efforts and if they are being directed squarely where they should be.
Reviewing Your Marketing Needs
As you review your company’s marketing needs, analyze where your return on investment (ROI) could be improved, where money may be disappearing to and where you see your company’s finances down the road.
Among the specific areas to zero in on are:
Marketing used to be only for the bigger companies. They were the only ones who could afford major marketing campaigns on buses, signs and in news print. These days, SMBs are getting a huge boost in everything. Even in the B2B market, SMBs are able to compete with the larger businesses. It all has to do with the ability to market their company online. The biggest key to the marketing online is the ability to properly use a few key marketing techniques. This way, they get the attention that they need as well as the revenue that they deserve.
There are three main components any business will need if it is to have any hopes of being able to get the kind of B2B business it is looking for. They need to be able to have a website which takes advantage of everything that SEO has to offer. It is necessary to have a working knowledge of the social media sites to use them correctly. It is also necessary to be able to market through means like email. If you have mastered these concepts, you will be assured of having a great business with a lot of success.
Using SEO for Marketing
Of all of the different online marketing techniques, one of the most important is the ability to draw people to your website without having to pay any money at all. By using SEO material, it is possible to make sure that those searching for the things you have to offer will be able to find your website. They will learn about your company through the kind of content that you have available so that they can see how your company will benefit theirs.
Using Social Media for Marketing
Purchasing managers spend just as much time online through social media sites as anyone else. They want to find out about the businesses that they are buying from before making a purchase. Make sure that all of the content which is on your social media site will properly represent your company to any possible clients. This way you will be able to build a loyal following of people who will receive every piece of marketing that you attach to Facebook posts as well as the posts that make to your Twitter account.
Using Email for Marketing
Email is still something which is checked every day by individuals and businesses alike. It is possible to gain the attention that your company needs by sending out different emails. This way you will be able to market everything from a digital security system to the services and products other businesses might want to purchase. Gathering email addresses is possible through your social media pages as well as through your website. Using them will help you to get the word out about the latest that your company has to offer.
Author: Matt Kraustrunk, Resource Nation.
Resource Nation provides free tools, tips, and purchasing advice for business owners and entrepreneurs in over 100 business categories ranging from phone systems to credit card processing. Whether it’s connecting businesses with local and national pre-screened vendors, or offering easy service comparisons on a VoIP service, Resource Nation empowers business decision makers by providing the information they need to make smart choices.
Traditional marketing techniques involving tradeshows, events, direct mail etc. are still very prevalent, and they are heavily used by many companies to market their product and service offerings. While online marketing is gaining a much larger share of the marketers’ budget – it would be imprudent to ignore the traditional marketing techniques that are still a very powerful means of getting marketing messages across to targeted decision makers.
In this recent study of Interactive marketing priorities for SMBs, (Forrester) for 2011, Shar VanBoskirk believes that 54% of marketers will decrease their marketing budget for traditional tactics. While more than half of the marketing budget is now being spent on interactive/digital/online marketing, it is still hard for some companies to actually understand the true value or ROI gained from this medium. The return on invesment is approximately measured based on the number of click throughs (CTR’s) from email marketing or Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising or from number of page views calculated from certain analytical tools. Online form, used by marketers to gather useful information of their prospects, is also very powerful online lead generation technique. But with stats indicating that only 1-2% actually will ever be willing to share you their information, makes this lead generation technique not that attractive (The ‘Contact Us’ fallacy: The importance of identifying anonymous visitors).
I’d like to share here how companies can still make use of their traditional marketing. Combining both traditional and online marketing techniques (powered by marketing automation and sales intelligence tools) companies get the best possible ROI from their marketing budget. Integrated marketing will not only augment your marketing efficiency, but will also give your marketing a much needed boost in this digital age.
Use marketing automation tools to nurture leads you already have in your sales funnel
Meet with your prospect at a networking event. Exchange your cards hoping that they might call you or that you will get back to them when the time is right. But, is the time ever right? After the event, your card will either end up in a pile of other similar cards collected over the years or will just be forgotten. You can alternatively choose to nurture those leads on the given email address. Marketing automation tools can nurture leads with pre-written, automated email messages, and help you stay on top of their mind, giving them a chance to learn more about you.
After all, on an average it takes about 7-10 touches to register certain brands and their marketing messages. A series of nurture emails with valuable content such as thought leadership, industry knowledge, and links to marketing collateral can help you reinforce your marketing message in several ways.
Use CRMs funneled by marketing automation to continue building the relationship
Prospect info gathered from these traditional channels can be manually entered into your CRM. Marketing Automation (MA) tools synced with certain CRMs make it possible to send the prospect info from CRM to MA tools to track future visits. You can also track if your prospect show more interest in your offering after your initial meeting. Marketing automation is then used to track, score, and nurture those prospects until they become a qualified lead. Anonymous visitor identification system, can also report visits from different individuals from the same company showing their cumulative interest. Keeping a watch on your prospect/company will help you solidify the next steps within your sales process.
Use of email marketing to inform and persuade your prospects in the funnel before the show
Bulk emails can be used to inform your prospects of the tradeshow booth you are setting up or a seminar you are hosting. The email informs and persuades the prospects in the list to come and visit you at those events, and they are an excellent way to – increase the awareness of your brand, and get a meaningful reason to get in touch with your prospect list to inform your prospects about your events along with your new or existing initiatives.
A set of 2-3 emails before the event is reasonable to stay in touch with your prospects and persuade them to take an action (such as opening the email, looking at the content), and hopefully attending and meeting you at the show.
Use online marketing with traditional techniques to increase brand awareness and get business online
It is never too late or too expensive to start online marketing and improving your website for better conversion. Online marketing will help you get business online and also help you establish your brand’s awareness. This online presence creates a buzz around your company and products, and definitely gives your company an edge in the digital age. Combining the use of editorials or advertorials in your target market magazine along with an online banner ad will hit multiple audiences, both offline and online.
To learn more about combining traditional and online marketing (powered by marketing automation), read this whitepaper on increasing tradeshow ROI .
Nowadays, the majority of sales are generated from the web. However only 1-2% of website visitors engage with the companies they are researching and even less become customers. Companies turn to online advertising, search media, search engine optimization to increase leads. The expectation is that if you can get visitors to a website, and if the website has forms, visitors will fill out a contact form. However, amount of inquiries from forms typically fall short of expectations.
The truth is most website visitors avoid filling out forms. Forms are so prevalent; nobody wants to fill out another form. Besides exposing their email address, people know if they fill out a form, they can expect to be hit with email. Even if you put valuable information behind a form, most visitors’ feel that they’ll likely find what they need if they keep searching.
Losing Without a Chance to Participate
As mentioned, people don’t fill out forms unless they have to. For most buyers, they’ll only fill out a form when they’ve done enough research to make their decision or next move. If you don’t have the ability to identify a buyer during the early stages, you may not even have a chance to participate before losing.
If you can identify a potential buyer in their research stage and proactively engage with that buyer, your odds are significantly increased. Especially if you are the only one among your competition who can engage them before they engaged you.
There are a number of anonymous visitor tracking solutions available that can help companies do more than just wait for inquires. Identifying anonymous visitors provides your sales team the ability to make well-timed calls, your marketing team the ability to nurture leads and business intelligence on your potential customers, and gives businesses a critical edge in this increasingly competitive business environment.