A recent post in a business forum asked the question "How can I make my blog popular?". This got me thinking about creating something that answers the seemingly simple question, what is the purpose of a blog and how to blog effectively.
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But the thing is, from a standing start you are (generally speaking) six to nine months from the results that will lead to inbound marketing success, and that only changes when you commit to doing it. As long as you prevaricate and ponder you'll remain six to nine months out. Trust me, I've got medals for this.
Here in the UK, there are many businesses who have embraced inbound marketing. However, it's fair to say there's still a lot of skepticism, and it's easy to understand why. Embarking on an exercise of web-based lead generation requires a big effort and a fresh approach to finding new customers. It's also true that inbound isn't a quick fix if your sales pipeline has dried up, it takes time.
All that said, if you do take the time to create a solid strategy and implement it, inbound will deliver. You see for all it's "newness" in essence inbound gives something valuable to your customers, giving you the opportunity to get value or revenue back.
We're a lead generation agency. We build websites that generate leads using the inbound marketing methodology. However, we also create web-based software applications or web apps for some of our clients and for general consumption.
In this short post I'm going to talk about two little web tools (see what I did there) you might find useful as part of your inbound marketing efforts. Read on for more!
We're are a lead generation or inbound marketing agency. We exist to help clients generate interest in their businesses and what they have to offer using the web and social media. We do this with the aim of generating enquiries or leads.
The tools we employ include great web design, strategic thinking, SEO and everything in between. That's it in a nutshell. We do it because we love it and we enjoy working with clients who want to leverage the web to positively impact their bottom line.
Last week Twitter repositioned itself from a social network to a news channel. For those of us who have been tweeting for a while (7 years in my case) this is not a huge surprise as we have seen the network become less social as it has grown.
We created a rather nice little keyword tool many moons ago called Seed Keywords. The idea was simple, create a scenario or problem and ask people to provide the search phrases they would use to solve it. We figured that getting real search phrases from real people in response to a very specific problem would add some spice to the mix, and it did. It's proved to be a useful tool in people's SEO and search marketing armoury.
We hope you enjoy our blog posts and find them useful. If you do then can we please ask a small favour?
We get quite a lot of invitations to tender or ITT's. These lifeless documents are often put together by out of touch advisors working with businesses who are confused and in need of help. I get it, I understand why on the face of it, it seems to make sense. The businesses don't know what they need (neither it seems do the advisers) and to compensate for a lack of knowledge they commoditise it and go out to the market looking for a price. This approach rarely works.
Email marketing is still one of the most effective ways to reach potential customers and, more importantly, to provoke a response. Even with decreasing open rates, emails can trigger actions better than most other marketing tools.
Thanks to our own inbound marketing efforts we get a steady stream of fantastic business opportunities. Many of the enquiries we get are from businesses at an early stage of their journey into inbound marketing; so early they are often unaware of the inbound marketing philosophy. What I mean is they've recognised their websites are not generating leads but that's as far as they've got. I believe there are 7 stages to inbound marketing success and I'll now explore all 7 stages as I see them, based on our experience with many businesses.
In our industry, webby marketing type stuff, we get lots of emails that start like this. "We wanted to let you know about our lead generation service which gives you access to thousands of clients per year seeking new websites and an average of £35K worth of projects per month." These emails amuse me (I amuse you?). They amuse me because they're offering us low-quality leads and an opportunity to compete with a bunch of lowest common denominator companies, usually for a thirty-bob client. No thanks.
In a recent post, Julie wrote about the importance of marketing in a downturn. It was aimed at the good people of Aberdeen and indeed, Houston, who are going through interesting times because of the fall in the global oil price. Most people didn't see this coming, or chose not to, and now marketing departments around these cities are scrambling around in an attempt to get the phone ringing again. Let's just say their lead generation wasn't quite up to scratch.
In Business to Business Marketing, decisions tend to be lengthy and complicated. They usually involve more than one person, a good deal of money and a fair amount of risk. Every step of your marketing efforts should be moving them towards becoming a lead.
In a recent blog post we opened up about inbound marketing costs and introduced the idea of a retainer. Now, we get that some people will wonder why they need to retain an agency to help them generate more leads online, thinking it's perhaps a distinct project with a start and an end, not so. Lead generation isn't an activity with a start and an end.