Building Online Assets
As an online marketer and small business owner I try and look for techniques that provide the best bang for the buck. In the last blog we talked about Mac Macintosh’s marketing insights for technology companies. I want to expand on one of his points from that seminar that focuses on inbound lead generation. How we can be more effective at lead generation by using time and tools available to build up lead volume.
If you are a small business owner it is often hard to justify thousands a month for marketing automation services. So what can you do quickly and with relative low cost to support inbound traffic? You can of course run pay per click advertising and drive immediate traffic but I will leave that technique for another time as PPC campaigns do not build online assets for you.
What you can focus on is content or more specifically relevant content that you can generate quickly. The two I am going to mention are well known tools like blogs and social media like LinkedIn and Facebook. The second is site content.
Posting articles, content, news releases, and updates to your website builds keyword rich content. Overtime this resource of information is valuable as it directly supports your organic rank. As people read and review your opinions and knowledge they will grow to realize you really do know what you are doing and therefore represent real value as a supplier. Knowledge is king and sharing it online is good marketing. This blog is case in point.
A note from Mac on content is how one important piece of information can be repurposed in a number of different ways to accommodate the different types of people looking for that information. A new product release could make its way into a blog, newsletter, case study, whitepaper, video, webinar and so on. As you build these online marketing assets they directly support your inbound lead nurturing with the goal to convert more sales over time. Some recent HubSpot stats show that inbound marketing in this fashion can produce a 62% cost savings per lead when compared to other techniques like direct marketing efforts.
Social media also fits this model. I appreciate that for many B2B businesses building awareness on Facebook currently might now be top priority, but business tools like LinkedIn are seeing significant increases in use (up over 20% in 2011). While we can blog and post to Facebook via Twitter and delve into this social space with useful tools like LinkedIn, in its simplest form we are trying to connect our knowledge and content to the audience. If we do this over time we are essentially lead nurturing which will increase sales and reduce our cost of that sale.
One last note, again from HubSpot’s research, the leaders of this type of inbound marketing currently are small businesses. Entrepreneurs are famous for working long hours for little pay and I think this fits the bill. It is relatively easy to build website content, provide search optimization by adding keyword rich content and send out news, product details, articles etcetera on a regular basis. It is even suggested we Blog (or tweet) everyday but I am not sure if many of us can find that much to say without starting to describe the weather or the color of the office walls. (Silver spring grey FYI)