marketing strategy

Marketing Strategy Using Old Mediums

Billboards

Advertisers pay between 1.1 million and 4 million annually for a Times Square Billboard. The average Times Square visit lasts 81 minutes and of that time, eight minutes will be spent looking at advertising billboards. 300,000 people walk through Times Square every day. On busy days, the number jumps to 480,000. So you can expect some 1.5 million impressions daily. Of those daily visitors, 243,358 will post something about their visit to a social media channel. Facebook leads the charge with 135,000 and Instagram is slightly behind with 102,000. Snapchat and Twitter follow with just under 100,000 for a combined effort. Yes this is digital but its using the principle of different marketing strategies from old mediums.

Coke has been advertising in Times Square for 97 years. Its new billboard is the worlds first 3-D robotic sign. It is structured with more than 1,500 LED screens, its content is programmed by time of day. The sign is 42’ in width and 68’ in height. It weighs in at 240,000 lbs. Took four years to design and test the sign and took 35 engineers to make it happen.

With all this said, do you think that having a sign that 300,000 people see each day, is worth it? Are you ready to spend 4 million? Coke believes its a core strategy to its marketing efforts. What could you be doing to get just a 1/3 of eyeballs looking at your brand or product?

5 Reasons of Proof that Brand Marketing Works 

Television

Moving away from Billboards and into television, GEICO spends over a billion dollars each year. Second to GEICO is State Farm which spends HALF of GEICOs budget. Why in the world would GEICO spend that much each year? Believe it or not GEICO has been losing money for the last four years, but Warren Buffet’s thought was “don’t let up”. In 2016 indicated that GEICO grew written premium revenue 12.5 percent to $26.3 billion, and earned premium rose 12.2 percent. So is really spending 1 billion to make 25 billion plus, a stretch? Anyone would do it, right? No way. It’s a gamble and if you look at how you are holding back your marketing budget, you are not willing to take the same gamble. You are doing it right now!

Radio

So lets say you are a frugal spender but a trade show here and there is not pulling in the numbers you need it to. Let me introduce you to radio. Radio is the leading reach platform: 93% of us listen to AM/FM radio over the airwaves, which is higher than TV viewership (89%), PC use (50%), smartphone use (83%), and tablet use (37%)

  • 271 million Americans 6+ listen to the radio each week;
  • 67 million Millennials use radio each week;
  • Audiences are becoming more diverse with 42 million Hispanic listeners and 32 million Black listeners in March 2017; and
  • Digital radio listenership has increased dramatically from 12% of Americans 12+ listening weekly in 2007 to 53% in 2017.

Maybe this vehicle is the right one for your product or branding efforts, or maybe its in the mix. It’s reasonably priced and given the demographics, could launch your business into greatness.

I am sorry to say that there is no clear formula for money spent vs consumer awareness and every business is different. Its like saying you want hardwood floors put into your home. I could ask 20 questions after that idea such as 1) what type of wood, 2) what stain 3) how many coats of stain 4) what width 5) what kind of varnish 6) do you want your trim replaced at the same time and so on…The choices are endless and it can be the same for your marketing efforts.

However, there are so many ways to promote your brand, but you must be willing to invest in yourself. Hire an agency that understands all the platforms because just “going digital” isn’t alway the right choice.

social media marketing

increase SEO

Digital Marketing Trends To Watch For in 2018

Leads, conversions, connections and engagement. Those are some of the things you want to accomplish with your 2018 digital marketing. The challenge is using the marketing techniques that have the most impact on your target audience. Here are five trends you can integrate into your 2018 marketing.

Think Micro Moments

How many times a day do you reach for your mobile phone to buy, do, research, watch or discover something? On average, consumers are making these momentary decisions well over 100 times a day. Those decisions are known as micro moments. They represent an opportunity to make your brand standout.

This means providing the right information to the right consumer at the right time. A brand does it by offering one-button access to needed information.

Visual Media

Video remains one of the strongest forms of content in digital marketing today. In fact, YouTube attracts more adult viewers during prime TV viewing hours than any cable channel. And in 2016, Facebook reported over 1.5 billion users view over 8 billion videos every day.

The visual elements of a video have more impact on viewers. The viewers attach deeper meaning to video messages and they are more likely to take action based on the video’s call to action.

Three Videos Every B2B Website Should Have

Native Advertising

Native advertising has been around for a long time. But, it has emerged as a growing trend in the digital marketplace. It offers a seamless way to market a product or service in an almost non-disruptive manner.

The goal of native ads is to present the right information in front of the viewer when its needed. And to do it seamlessly. Viewers often don’t spot the native ad, assuming its a part of the web page’s content. And that is powerful.

Personalized Client-Centric Content

The content you present to a returning visitor needs to be different from that presented to a brand new viewer. You can do that with personalized client-centric content, also known as smart content.

It all starts with tracking what interests a particular visitor. You track this information using a marketing automation system, which tracks the web pages that a visitor looks at. That information lets you present content and ads personalized to what the visitors has an interest in.

Create Your Own Band of Influencers

An influencer is simply someone who recommends your product or service to other people. The more influencers you have talking your brand, the more people will start to pay attention. Creating a band of influencers can take your brand, product and service to the next level.

It starts with understanding what your customers need and solving their problems. This builds brand loyalty. These customers will start telling their friends. Add in a few known influencer names and your brand is on its way.

These digital marketing trends can take your business in new directions next year. If you haven’t already started your plan, now is the time. You want it in place and ready to go with the New Year.

MAXIMIZING YOUR MARKETING BUDGET

how to tell your brand story

What Is The Brand Development Process?

Branding is more than just creating a logo and slapping it on a website or the side of a van. Brand is about a consumer’s perception of your company. A positive perception means that a customer has a sense of quality, value and trust in your company. A negative perception means the opposite. Connecting emotional with a brand takes dedication, a brand leader and relentless following the style guides rules and guidelines. That is why you need to understand the brand development process and how to do it successfully.

Brand development is a multi-stage process with the ultimate goal of building brand equity in a consumer’s mind. Brand equity is an intangible set of assets that cannot be tracked on a balance sheet. But, the value of that equity is the most valuable asset a company can own. Think about Kraft, Amazon, Apple, Will Ferrell or Servpro. What emotional ties do you have with these brands?

The Brand Development Process

Developing a brand must be part of the larger marketing plan for the company. It is often the biggest challenge but the most critical. You don’t have to invest millions to develop your brand, but making the effort will pay off.

The Brand Development Process Demystified 

Determine what you are branding

You can brand almost anything. The most common things are a person, a company, a product or a service. A critical part of the branding process is determining exactly what you are branding, positioning the brand, what you are promising with your brand, your story, and your elements and style. This process can be overwhelming, but with the help of a marketing team, you can make it happen.

Research your target market

Marketing research into your target market is critical for effective brand development. It is a step that many startups overlook because they think they know their audience. The reality is that, professional market research will give you critical insights into who the target is, what they like/dislike, what their challenges are, and how you can help them. As I have been doing this for 30 years, not ONE company has ever properly realized their target audience upon the first meeting.

Compile your brand definition

The next step is developing a clear brand definition. This definition can be in the form of a story or statement that clearly reflects what your brand is all about. Your marketing team will help you define what you are offering, how your target audience will benefit from it, what guarantees you offer, and what your unique selling proposition (USP) is. Remember to ask the question, what can this brand do or stand for that no other brand can say?

Create your name, tagline and logo

Giving your company a name, a tagline and a logo is the fun part of brand development. But, it is not something you should do without careful thought. Your marketing team can help you determine what name, tagline and logo will resonate with your audience. Nike’s Just Do It! has become a staple of a strong statement just as “It’s Finger Lickin Good” or “Just like a Good Neighbor, State Farm is there”.

Launch the brand

With all the elements in place, it is time to launch the brand. That means creating your first products, offering your services, or making a name for yourself. It could mean many things to many brands like digital campaigns, radio spots, drip campaigns, demographic targeting, print or even showing up at tradeshows. On the surface that sounds easy, but there are many moving gears that need to align to keep the marketing moving forward. The good news is that with all the prep work you did before, your launch will have a great foundation.

Manage the brand

With good up-front work, your brand launch will be successful, gaining momentum as you provide consistent service and quality. Even with a successful launch, you will still need to manage your brand going forward. That is why you need a dedicated team, always monitoring your company’s reputation, doing continuing research, and updating the brand as the market evolves. This step is one that is most ignored when things are running well, but is most important.

Read more on 10 Rules Of Brand Development

These steps will help you and your marketing experts develop a strong brand. The full brand development process takes time. But, look at it as an investment in the company’s future, one that will pay off with dividends for years to come.

I always tell individuals that if your air conditioner breaks, you hire a professional that does it everyday to find the problem and find a cost efficient way of solving the issue. The same theory can be applied to marketing and developing a brand. Marketing companies do it everyday, know the shortfalls and successes, and will have it launched months or years before you could on your own.

Learn The StoryBranding Process

how to have a successful blog

How to Have a Successful Blog

You might be wondering, how can my company have a successful blog? Blogging has become a great way for companies to write about content that relates to their company. Content can include tips and advice on any topic that relates back to what the company knows. Topics for blogging can range from “What a Good Landing Page Looks Like” to “How to Start Your Own Business in 10 Easy Steps”.

How do you make sure that your company has a successful blog? Here are 6 easy steps to help your company with a successful blog.

Make Your Topic Something People Care About

The first step in having a successful blog is to have a topic that people are going to want to read about. Find a topic that you find will be useful, and then research your topic to make sure you are providing reliable information to your readers, and then you can write about your topic. Make the topic interesting, and something worth reading.

Make the Formatting Easy To Read

When you are formatting your blog, it is ok to have multiple paragraphs. These paragraphs can be small. It is better to have many small paragraphs, instead of a few really lone paragraphs. A blog is something that people are going to want to be able to read easily. When writing a blog for your company, include offers and promote other blog posts as well.

Have an Attention Grabbing Title

As you are reviewing your blog, go back to the title. This title is important and needs to be clear, specific, and most importantly, attention grabbing. Titles should also be between 50 and 60 characters. If it goes over 60, the end of the title will be cut off in the search engine.

Pictures Are Fun to Look At

A blog without pictures can be boring. Add a picture or two to your blog. These pictures can be relevant to your topic, and they can also just be a part of a blog as long as they fit. For example, if your blog is directed towards an audience of readers who are business people, you could include a picture of someone wearing a suit. Pictures are a nice addition to the blog. Do not forget to cite pictures if they are not yours.

Links and CTA’s

A successful blog includes links to other relevant articles, as well as a CTA (call-to-action). A CTA is an eBook or guidebook that people can download. It is additional information on the topic that the customer is looking for.

Share on Social Media

Once you have written your story, it is time to share it. You can share your blog through a multitude of social media platforms including LinkedIn, and Facebook.

Read more on 8 Tips on Social Media Best Practices For your Business

Be Consistent and Frequent

The most important thing to remember is consistency and frequency. Blogging is more than one post. It is multiple posts. When you are in charge of blogging for your company, it is best to post a minimum of two blogs a week.

Blogging can be fun. Follow these steps to ensure that your company has a great blog.

Integrating Social Media & SEO Efforts For Enhanced Search Engine Results

landing page lead conversion rate

5 Types of Landing Pages To Increase Your Lead Conversion Rate

Are your company website’s landing pages converting as many visitors to leads as you’d like? One problem may be that you are not using the right kinds of landing pages. Landing pages have several purposes: to collect important information from visitors, to begin building a relationship with visitors, and, ultimately, to convert visitors to leads. Some companies only have one or two types of landing pages, and as a result, their lead conversion rates suffer. Here are 5 kinds of landing pages that are sure to increase your lead conversion rate.

Email List Opt-In Landing Page:

It’s been proven that the most effective place to put your email opt-in form is on it’s own dedicated landing page. An email list opt-in landing page gives you more room to tell visitors exactly how they stand to benefit from filling out your form with their personal information. By removing pesky distractions, like navigation, a landing page urges your visitors make a decision: opt-in or miss out on quality content and offers.

Product Detail Landing Page:

A product detail landing page is common in the retail industry. Product detail landing pages are located on the company’s main website, and contain the information regarding the product for sale such as features, specifications, and customer reviews. A benefit of product detail landing pages is that there is no extra work or cost required when it comes to creating a separate page. Another benefit of this landing page is it applies to visitors who are in the awareness or the consideration stage.

Read more on Driving Website Conversions During Each Stage Of The Buyer’s Journey

Coming From [social network] Landing Page:

These type of landing pages can be applied to every type of traffic that your website generates. Most likely, any landing pages attached to your social media accounts bring visitors to your home page. This is a start, but it’s not the best option. You should make your landing page more customized and personal. A good social network landing page addresses where the visitor is coming from and provides information the visitor is probably looking for. Information such as background about the company as well as how to get in touch.

Content Guide Landing Page:

Inbound marketing revolves around content. If your company blogs, you can extend the reach of your content by organizing it with its own landing page. The blog page on your website is useful, but it probably shows only the latest content. By creating topic-specific content landing pages, your best quality work is being showcased to your visitors.

Lead Capture Landing Pages

These pages are often referred to as “squeeze” pages. They don’t contain any exit paths or distractions such as links or navigation tools. A lead capture landing page should include one thing: a button that takes visitors to a form where they are encouraged to submit their personal data. In order to coax visitors into filling out the form, offer an incentive, such as eBooks, whitepapers, or webinars.

  25 Website Must Haves For Driving Traffic, Leads & Sales

sales qualified leads

How To Nurture Marketing Qualified Leads Into Sales Qualified Leads

Inbound marketing consistently helps organizations generate qualified leads. But if your company cannot convert these leads into customers, the leads you generated will go to waste. This can be frustrating, so here are some strategies you should add to marketing plan to convert your leads into sales:

1. Define your qualified lead

Develop criteria for what you consider a qualified lead. By definition, a marketing qualified lead (MQL) is the lead with the highest probability of being a customer compared to the rest. Identify those that are more qualified than others for conversion. Qualification criteria can include: titles, responsibilities, urgency, etc. Using analytics and intelligence, here is how to narrow your leads down:

  • Define your buyer profile:
    • Ask yourself who is most likely to buy your product.
  • Identify actions that indicate interest:
    • Analyze patterns in the kind of actions visitors demonstrate when on your site
  • Revisit your criteria periodically to reflect market dynamics for better focus and effectiveness

[Read How Closed-Loop Marketing Helps Convert Leads To Customers]

2. Gather information to qualify your leads

At this point, assign your team responsibilities accordingly to nurture marketing qualified leads into sales qualified leads. Consider the following questions:

  • What’s the company size and industry of your lead?
    • Knowing the name of your lead’s company isn’t enough
  • What problem is your lead trying to solve?
    • If you know this, you can provide them with the solution they’re looking for
  • Do your leads have the authority and power/budget to buy?
    • Focus on those with ability and authority to generate more sales conversions.
  • When are they likely to buy?
    • By using analytical tools, you can tell whether a visitor to your site has a history of buying. You can also determine their consistency by calculating the time interval between their purchases
  • What are your lead’s other buying decision influencers?
    • This is information yoru lead need before they commit to buy.

To gather all this information, you will need the help of sales people or telemarketers in what is known as human-to-human lead qualification

3. Use the information effectively

Your marketing department should use the information obtained to nurture and close sales qualified leads. If you succeed in maximizing on the information you gathered, you will not only have sales and revenue but also reduced operational costs, as you will use less resources to obtain customers. The most effective way to nurture is to get as personal as possible with the help of tools like email marketing, telephone calls, one-on-one conversations, etc. Segment your target by their interests to generate results.

Now that your sales qualified leads have matured into sales, you can choose to close the sales over the phone or personally, depending on how complicated your product or service is. Set up all relevant appointments if necessary, and ensure your customers feel appreciated.

Inbound marketing will help you grow your business by attracting website visitors, converting them into leads and closing leads into customers

b2c marketing automation

Difference Between B2B and B2C Marketing Automation

Marketing automation offers a company the chance to centralize most of its marketing activities into a single software platform and to automate it to an extent. This centralization appeals to both B2B (business to business) and B2C (business to consumer) companies. However, the way B2B and B2C marketing automation works is different due to fundamental differences between the two groups.

Why Is Marketing Automation Between B2B and B2C Different?

Effective marketing addresses each customer’s individual goals and needs. This remains true whether the customer is B2B or B2C. Because these groups have differing goals and needs, the way you market to them has to be different. As a result, the following differences remain when you use marketing automation:

  • The marketing focus differs:
    • With B2B, the focus is on generating leads and keeping their subscribers engaged throughout the longer sales cycle.
    • With B2C the focus is on building the brand.
  • The tactics used are different:
    • B2B marketing delivers content that positions the company as an industry leader, while nurturing the lead in the sales process.
    • B2C marketing is about the customer journey and making data-driven recommendations for products or services.
  • The tone of the messages is different:
    • B2B messages are to targeted groups at different stages of the sales cycle.
    • B2C messages are more personal and highly relevant to the individual.

[Here Are 5 Benefits Of Marketing Automation]

How B2C Marketing Automation Differs From That of B2B

With all the differences between marketing to the B2B and B2C groups, it’s easy to see why their marketing automation needs differ as well.

  • Communication channels. While both B2B and B2C businesses rely on email for marketing, the B2C use other channels as well. Text messaging, push notifications and retargeting are just a few examples. The B2C marketing automation solution needs to handle these additional channels.
  • Data used. B2B consumers are businesses that have specific needs. Marketing data for this group would include approximate company size, industry, point of contact and specific needs. B2C consumers are individuals with specific tastes. Marketing data for this group includes age, gender, purchase history and frequently visited product categories.
  • Features needed. B2B companies need help with nurturing their leads through the sales cycle. They want features like lead scoring and integration with their CRM system. B2C companies want to retain the customers they get, so they want features like reputation management, retargeting and retention marketing.
  • Marketing focus. B2B marketing focuses building the one-on-one relationship. B2C is more about building the brand and building mass appeal.
  • Pricing. B2B automation is priced based on the number of contacts managed within the system. B2C automation is priced based on the volume of data. It is not uncommon for B2B automation to have only 100 contacts in the system while B2C has thousands.

The differing approaches of B2B and B2C marketing lead to their different marketing automation solutions. Trying to substitute one strategy for the other is difficult, due to different features and pricing structures. If you need help finding the right solution for your business, call us here at Stevens-Tate.

  25 Website Must Haves For Driving Traffic, Leads & Sales

marketing automation strategies

CRM vs. Marketing Automation Strategies; What Is The Difference?

Building a relationship with each customer is essential in today’s business world. Without that relationship, you simply aren’t going to have the sales needed to remain profitable. That is why both CRM (customer relationship marketing) and marketing automation strategies focus on building that relationship.

Understanding how these strategies and systems complement one another helps businesses market and sell to their target audiences effectively.

The Critical Customer Relationship

Even with so much being done online these days, customers still want a relationship with the companies they do business with. They want to feel that a company understands their needs and that the company will address them.

How a business addresses the critical customer relationship will mark its success or its failure. Companies need to build and nurture this relationship. They do this by collecting critical data that helps them address their customers’ needs and challenges.

[Learn How to Create Content for Each Sale Funnel Stage]

The Top of the Sales Funnel

The strategies you use at the top of the sales funnel are going to be different from the strategies you use at the bottom. And these strategy approaches define the differences between CRM and marketing automation strategies.

At the top of the sales funnel, you are capturing leads wherever they come from. They can be people with a casual interest in your product or they can be seriously in the market and just starting the research process. The problem is, there is no real way to know which category the lead falls into. This is where marketing automation and nurturing comes into play.

With marketing automation, your strategies are capturing key pieces of information and using them to nurture a lead further into the sales funnel. This could include contact information like name, email address, phone number, company name, and company size; number of visits to the website and which pages are of particular interest, or which premiums they choose.

Each piece of information gathered about a lead brings critical insight into where they are in the sales cycle. Downloading details about a particular product, for example, is a sign of interest in that product or, at least, that product group. This can trigger the marketing automation system to send targeted emails or special offers.

The Bottom of the Sales Funnel

At a designated point in the sales funnel, a lead moves from the marketing side to the sales side. This is when the data gathered indicates the lead is moving towards making a purchase decision. This is where the CRM system comes into play.

That data gathered in a CRM allows your sales force to nurture the lead into closing the sale. It offers a picture of what the customer wants and their history with the company. Your sales team can use it to schedule calls with the lead or to set dates for follow-up.

The good news these days is that there are a growing number of systems which offer both types of functionality. That way, you can leverage both CRM and marketing automation strategies without worry about one system getting out of sync.

MAXIMIZING YOUR MARKETING BUDGET

marketing automation software

Email Marketing vs Marketing Automation Software: Which Is Right For Your Business?

Email is an essential part of marketing in many companies. One challenge many companies face is choosing which software to use in order to manage their email marketing.

On one hand, an email service provider like MailChimp or Constant Contact can send targeted emails out to select leads. It can also  provide reporting on how your audience opened the email and clicked through. On the other hand, marketing automation software, like Hubspot, offers the same functionality, plus a whole lot more. Marketing automation software has the ability to nurture leads throughout the sales process, as well as the ability to monitor website visitor behavior.

The challenge is determining which solution works best for your business.

Email Service Provider Vs. Marketing Automation

Your company’s marketing needs are going to be different from the business across the street. You will need a unique blend of marketing tactics to connect with your audience and maximize your lead nurturing. Deciding which of these solutions will work better for your business requires knowing the exact needs of your company and industry.

Here are some factors to consider between email service providers and marketing automation software:

You have long sales cycles that require multiple touch points. Marketing automation helps to make some of these touch points happen without human intervention. It is possible to use an email service provider to make some of these touch points. However, the process is manual each time and there is no tracking of how a lead responds.

[Read About the 5 Benefits of Marketing Automation]

You need to sort casual prospects from sales-qualified leads. You don’t want your sales team’s time wasted contacting prospects who are not ready to make a purchase yet. Marketing automation allows you to score and grade leads so that your sales team will know who is close to making a purchase. Email services do not offer this functionality.

You use your lead database to promote events and participation more than for nurturing sales leads. Some businesses do not have a dedicated sales team. They have a short sales cycle and don’t need personal follow-up to get customer purchases. Email service providers are actually a great fit for this type of business. The additional functionality of marketing automation is just not needed in this business model.

You want more insight into how well your marketing activities are working. This is where marketing automation comes out ahead. This software allows you to track just about every aspect of your marketing from email click-throughs to landing page statistic to normalizing your lead data. Email services just don’t have that capability.

Which is Right for Your Business?

Only you, as the owner of your business, can determine which solution would work best in your company. Email service providers work well for building brand recognition, promoting events, and enhancing customer loyalty. However, for those companies that want a more robust solution, marketing automation software is the best solution.

Now, which solution would work best for you?

  25 Website Must Haves For Driving Traffic, Leads & Sales