inbound marketing like a boss
Post on 21-Oct-2014
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DESCRIPTIONMy presentation for PubTalk.
LIKE A BOSS
Intro Slide -
No business can exist for itself alone. It ministers to some great need, it performs some great service, not for itself, but for others.. or failing therein, it ceases to be profitable and ceases to exist. This quote by Calvin Coolidge touches on something I think is really important... "not for itself, but for others" That's why we as businesses exist... isn't it? To help others... whether that's to solve a problem or to satisfy a need or desire. We're here to help others. Well, I'm here today to help you... so that your business can be found more often by those that you're looking to help.
My name's Kevin Getch and I'm the President of Webfor, a digital marketing agency that my wife and I started 4 years ago. We now work with over 50 clients across the US in many different industries and employ 7 amazing people. We just found out we were nominated for the Vancouver Business Journal Growth Awards. And I am very proud of that. What I'm most proud of though is not our growth... It's the growth that we've been able to help our clients achieve.
When I was just starting my business I started working with amazing women... Kathy & Sharon. They owned a preschool and daycare facility. They were both previously teachers and were extremely passionate about helping our young to succeed. The recession had hit them hard and they were at their lowest enrollment ever. They had laid off a lot of their staff and were working themselves overtime. They didn't know what they were going to do. They had a very large space and capacity for over 40 more kids. They took a chance on me and within a little over a year they were not only at capacity, they had a waiting list of people wanting to bring their kids there. It's these kind of stories that make me most proud of what we do.
The changing landscape in marketing & technology was a big part of what was hurting Kathy & Sharon's business. Their old methods of attracting clients weren't working for them anymore.
How consumers go about making purchases has changed.
Today's consumer is more educated than ever and they have access to the worlds information at their fingertips. Prior to making purchases your customers are searching online, reading reviews & testimonials, and even checking what people are saying about you on social networks.
Just 3 years ago ~ 58% of Americans said they researched products or services online before making a purchase (be that either online or in store)
Today that number is 84%.
So how do you take advantage of this tectonic shift in consumer buying habits? The answer is simple... Inbound Marketing.
WHAT ISINBOUND MARKETING
For those of you asking What is Inbound Marketing. The concept behind Inbound Marketing is simple... your potential customers come to you... rather than you going after them.
The essence of a successful inbound marketing strategy is that you are earning traffic from search engines, websites, social networks, email campaigns and creating a following through developing platforms with engaging content. Think of Inbound Marketing as the Attraction Method.
I'm going to explain how you can leverage your website to earn more traffic and attract more clients, what tactics to choose and finally we will cover how to track it all to make sure you know where your marketing dollars are working best for you.
It's extremely important you leverage your website. Your website is at the foundation of your inbound marketing strategy & lead generation. Leveraging web technology can allow you to be able to interact, communicate with and sell to hundreds or even thousands of people all at the same time. The investment you put into your website will pay dividends for many years to come. If you do it right!
2. User Experience
3. Search Engine Optimized
4. Content Strategy
1. Design - One of the first things users notice about your website is your design. They immediately get a feeling about your business based on the colors of your site, the images, the layout, font, your logo and branding. A well designed website can make your visitors feel that your company is an authority in your industry. Design can make the difference between a visitor contacting you or not..2. User Experience - If you're not providing a great user experience... you're actually making it harder for your customers to buy from you.... A good user experience involves having a website that loads quickly, having an intuitively laid out navigation, understanding what the client might be looking for and making sure you make it easy to find. You should start with the goals that you want the visitor to take whether that's calling you, filling out a lead/contact form or making an online purchase and make those as easy as possible to do.3. Search Engine Optimized - It doesn't matter if you have the most beautiful website with an amazing user experience if people can't find it. It's like having the best billboard ever out in the middle of the desert.4. Content Strategy - It's important your website is easy to update with new content. You should have blogging capabilities so you can easily update and add engaging and resourceful content yourself. 5. Mobile - If you're not building your website to be mobile friendly you're saying you don't care about 1 in 5 customers that comes to your site. For some businesses it's even higher. Traffic from mobile devices is expected to surpass standard computer traffic in 2014.
This is where a lot of companies go wrong. Many businesses spend way too much time & money on tactics that don't produce any results. More often than not it's that they were sold some internet marketing package that was the best deal since sliced bread.
Choosing the right tactics and strategically implementing them is key to your success.
Let me introduce you to the universe of Inbound Marketing. The universe of inbound marketing is separated into 3 main galaxies. You have Search, Social & Direct (We also call Direct Opt-In, because this is where people have opted into being contacted by you directly... through email, text or push messaging).
One of the first things you need to ask yourself is... "What are your consumers buying habits?" This will help determine where to direct both your time and money.
A lot of the business we work with look like this (Search Focused slide) these are dentists, attorneys, medical practices, contractors... Search is their main focus and their highest ROI, but we also recommend they leverage social and direct marketing tactics as well.
For businesses that may not have a lot of demand for their product or service yet may look more like this (Social focused slide). Say you invented a new part for a bike.. or more specifically for competitive cyclists. Because this is a new invention people may not be searching for your product yet. For Search you would want to take a method where you created content that targeted the cycling community, get published on cycling sites, create videos around your product, so that when they're searching online they come across your website and for social you would want to build a social community of cycling enthusiasts specifically finding people who are influencers in the cycling industry and connecting with them, getting them to use your product and possibly endorse or share it online.
Some businesses should focus on all 3 areas a couple I can think of are restaurants or day spas. If you're a day spa you it would be important to really focus on all 3 areas. Search, Social & Direct are all huge for a business like this, because you're a location based business getting people to check-in on Google, Facebook, & Yelp while they're getting their mani or pedi is a great idea, collecting emails to send out special offers, maybe sending appointment reminders via text.
As your potential clients connect with you in each galaxy they are more likely to become a client and become "Champions of Your Brand".
The Galactic Core - This is where you want to get as many visitors of your site to as possible. As people engage with your brand the process may start in search,
As you connect with potential clients in more of these 3 main areas you start to develop what we termed "Champions of Your Brand"
Maybe present some examples and go into more detail about how each of these tactics works with the other to benefit the overall strategy.
The increasingly vast number of tactics available make determining your marketing strategy more complex than it used to be 10 years ago. Each tactic has it's own set of best practices and some of them are a constantly moving target which makes staying on top of things a full-time job.A restaurant (Good in all areas)Whereas if you're selling Adult Diapers, (preparation H, etc) Social may not be a big area for you as most people may not want to share that with the world.Say you've invented a new part for a bike (there's no demand and no searches for your product yet as no one knows about it, so you target the demographic or people who buy bikes.) so you have to take an indirect approach and target them. Your content strategy would be around garnering more traffic for people searching for cyclist related terms, on social you would find and follow influential people in the cycling community and engage them... maybe get them to try or endorse your product... and you wouldn't want to forget about collecting emails (or maybe phone numbers) maybe through a special promotion.. etc.
The number one place people begin their shopping journey is Search. Google alone has over 100 billion searches every month. In fact if you were to take the buying decisions influenced by Google and quantify them it would represent the largest economy in the world.
The social media galaxy is huge with literally 1,000's of social networks. These are just a few of the largest.
Facebook has over 1 Billion UsersWhile you were sleeping Google+ became the 2nd largest social network in the world with 343 Million Active Users(YouTube - 280 Million Active Users | Twitter - Over 200 Million Active UsersLinkedin - 200 Million Active UsersPinterest - Doesn't release data)
Businesses have a hard time with social media as many feel it is a time waster and others feel it is valuable, but they don't know how to harness it's power or where to spend their time.
The common mistake we see most businesses make is that they try to market themselves on social networks rather than trying to build relationships. It's the same mistake a lot of people make when trying to build a network off-line. If you're at a cocktail party and the person you're talking to talks about themselves incessantly and is constantly trying to sell you something... how fast are you going to have to create an excuse to get away?
Now if you have a conversation with someone who is genuinely interested in you, asks you questions, shares interesting information with you and makes you laugh... you're going to enjoy that conversation, build a relationship and engage with them in the future. This is the real magic sauce behind social media.
Social is a phenomenal avenue for some businesses to create awareness, build community and help increase conversions. I think everyone should be involved in social media to some extent. A general rule of thumb is
Social is the number one place where people spend time....
The lines between Search & Social are becoming increasingly blurred. If you are logged into Google+ and you do a search on Google you will get search results that also include results from your social circles on Google+. I've been testings Facebook Search Graph and though they have a long way to go when it fully launches I think they will capture a small share of searches for restaurants, bars & entertainment. These search results are also affected by people in your social circle.
Google+ launched in June of 2011. In less than 2 years it has become the second largest social network based on active users in the world. The really amazing thing about how social and search are merging in a lot of ways is that Google personalizes your search results based on those people in your social circles (only on G+ right now). This means that if you have a large social circle of people who are your potential clients (or clients) and you're logged in to Google you are more likely to see results from those in your circle. It also personalizes the search experience letting you know people who are in your social circle and if they +1'd or reviewed a local business acting as a referall on your behalf.
Facebook Search Graph. I've been testing the Facebook Search Graph and it is very interesting and quite controversial to some. A lot of it's focus is on searching for people... people who like this or people who like that, what music do my friends listen to, but it also has the option to search for restaurants & bars (as well as other businesses, but they're obviously focusing on their strong suit. I'd highly recomend you optimize your Facebook Page for Facebook Search Graph encouraging people to check in... etc.
Direct is a powerful tool to have in your belt. It is usually fed by Search and/or social to initially build your list, but once you have a list of a a few hundred or a few 1,000 people it is very powerful to be able to reach out with a call to action, special offer, your latest blog or just to stay top of mind for them by sharing useful information. Email is a great way to increase the number of people following you on your social networks as well and can help benefit your Search Marketing campaign through amplifying your contents voice and encouraging people to share and link to it.
One of the biggest challenges for small-medium business owners is understanding which marketings tactics are working for them.
You can track when someone makes a purchase or fills out a contact form on your website and you can tie that back to the keyword they typed in what search engine, social network, website or email it came from. This allows you to understand what sources are driving leads.
Now many of our clients prefer the client call them and often 90% of their business leads come over the phone. If you have any sort of local SEO strategy you do not want to use call tracking numbers... so you gotta go old school.
Ask them! Don't ask the standard, "How did you hear about us?" that elicits and auditory response. Our clients have gotten alot better results by asking, "How did you find us"? and then maybe following up with, "Do we have someone to thank for referring you?". What you'll find is customers tend to share more about how they came to find your business.
We've talked about the importance of leveraging your website, we discussed choosing the right tactics for your business, and we talked about tracking where your clients are coming from. If you can just focus on implementing those 3 things you will be miles ahead of your competitors.
Kevin Getch, President & Lead SEO
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