Marketing Blueprint for Sales Growth & ROI
For many brands, SEO, social media, email marketing, conversion, content marketing, mobile, and website design and development have been approached as independent practices for many years.
While some have always approached the digital space with a marketing perspective – applying marketing fundamentals to drive strategy, implementation, and measurement – many have handed off the strategic implementation of each channel to its perspective implementer.
As the lines blur between website user experience, publishing content, sharing on social media, and optimization for search and visibility across devices, marketers are being forced to go back to their roots. They must create, manage and own the complex multi-channel, integrated strategy.
Search and Social Media
SEO (search engine optimization) is of no value if what is being optimized doesn’t serve the customer in their quest for answers, solutions, and deals. Because search engines care more about delivering the best result to those searching, brands shift their focus toward providing quality and relevant answers. Marketers must shift their thinking from keywords to context when developing pages, posts, updates, and conversations that put the brand in the path of customers.
Social media has become the ultimate delivery mechanism for quality content and direct engagement with customers of brands in all industries. It is indispensably important because it allows two way conversations between companies and their target audience which strengthens that bond. Publishing or broadcasting into the social landscape won’t be enough, as most marketers are beginning to learn. Interaction with customers, on a one-to-one level, delivers tangible benefits. Ninety percent of consumers who have interacted with a brand on social media are likely to recommend that brand, with 83 percent willing to try the brand themselves according to a study conducted by the Internet Advertising Bureau.
The Bottom Line is Still the Bottom Line
Marketing Directors are being pressed more than ever to deliver metrics that demonstrate ROI from marketing investments. After all, positively impacting the bottom line is the ultimate goal. IBM has predicted that ROI will be the leading metric for Marketing Directors to measure success by 2015. This perspective forces strategic planning and accountability that many marketers have escaped amidst the adoption of multiple digital platforms in the marketing mix in recent years. ROI doesn’t tell the whole story, however. The measurement of this metric must extend beyond promotion to the other 4 Ps of marketing (product, price, and place) to fully leverage investments and insights that can impact the bottom line.
Sales: Feed the Funnel
In today’s digital, social landscape, the path from sales prospect to customer is far from linear.
Social selling isn’t a new concept. However, social selling in the digital landscape has not come naturally to the sales professional, as reported by SalesForce.com.
One fact has become clear: It’s imperative that marketing and sales work in concert in order to gain the full advantage of how today’s landscape impacts the relationship with prospects and customers. Every aspect of the marketing mix and sales process must be cohesively orchestrated to connect with prospective customers and provide everything they need to make that purchase decision.
Good Content is King
Social media, search, email, video, and all other owned assets must be driven by quality and intent.
Content for content’s sake benefits no one. An astounding sixty to seventy percent of content in b-to-b organizations goes unused due to irrelevance, according to Sirius Decisions, indicating that the content isn’t being properly developed.
Nearly 16 percent of the annual marketing budget for B2B companies is allocated to creating and distributing marketing content. It is imperative that content be strategically developed and deployed or it becomes an exercise in futility. This is perhaps the largest area requiring marketers to evolve. Content must serve a purpose.
One of the most organic, powerful ways to make content more valuable is to use content to replicate the way customers interact with every touch point of the brand (brick and mortar, events, sales, customer service, etc.). Quality content will anticipate customer`s pain questions, answer objections, invite engagement, inspire content sharing, and ultimately lead to the sale. This can’t be achieved in a vacuum. The cultivation of quality content will require contribution from every area of the organization, and support every aspect of the business.
Mobile and Multi-Device Consumption
Today’s “perpetually connected” consumers are known to consume the web across multiple devices, as reported in The New Multi-Screen World Study by Google. Creating content that is easy to consume, share, and act upon – consistently across all platforms – is more important than ever.
Multichannel, Omnichannel – Its All Connected
Businesses and brands have sought out the expertise and support from experts in each of these fields to help them leverage each method. That approach is now outdated.
The new standard of using all mediums to support every facet of customer engagement forces a more holistic, unified channel approach, which promotes efficiency and projects consistency to audiences, and enhances ROI. The allocation of resources must be guided by information, as opposed to intuition and industry hype.
Blurred Lines: Website, SEO, Content, Email, Social Media & Mobile
For years now, those who approached the many facets of audience development and engagement in social media, search, email, direct marketing, mobile, and media as extensions of guiding marketing strategy have been in the minority.
It is quite common for each area of the marketing act as a separate practice area. SEO is left to the search engine optimization experts, website design, content, conversion left to the web experts, email owned by the marketing team, social media left to the marketers, and analytics for each all-too-often viewed independently.
All Roads Lead Home
Content plays a vital role in driving social media sharing, conversation, email marketing and social-selling, all of which influence authority in search and drive traffic to the website as the ultimate destination for all activity.
To fully enjoy the benefit of content, SEO, social media, email, etc., the website must be the ultimate destination and authority for all topics related to every offering of the brand.
Marketing Leadership Is More Important Than Ever
For sustainable success companies and brands must bring together every aspect of customer engagement under the marketing umbrella. If there was ever a time for strategic marketing leadership roles, it is now.
Without a comprehensive overview on how each of these efforts adds strategic value to the development of the offering, sales of that offering, relationship with customers, media, employees and partners; the investment in any aspect of marketing (SEO, social media, email, PPC, video, etc.) is destined to disappoint.
Contact the Expert SEO Group for your Digital Marketing Blueprint. 800-762-4708