As we enter the second month of 2016 we are no doubt implementing (or starting to, or maybe just thinking about) those changes to our online marketing strategy that will help enquiries and prospects flow into our business.
Some of these do not require a big spend, but merely simple tweaks or considerations of existing activity. Here are the top ten to double check, which you can think of as a performance audit:
1. The call to action (CTA)
The all-important online hook: the reason to follow up. Start with the landing page/website. On your action button, rather than the default and safe 'Submit', change it to 'Compare', 'Download', 'Save Me Money', 'Go'; the benefit/action should be stated to the user. Stop thinking process and start thinking customer experience to keep the user journey moving nicely.
2. Mobile-optimised with a difference
When my company’s site is viewed on a mobile device there is now a widget fixed at the bottom of the screen with a phone icon which, when clicked, makes a call to the company phone number. Inbound telephone enquiries have increased about 40% since making this small change. This is definitely worth doing, particularly if you consider the high amount of viewers on your page via mobile in both B2C and B2B sectors.
3. Video engagement
Without doubt the growth medium in lead generation and customer acquisition, according to various sources.
Proliferation in YouTube, apps and as a precursor to publisher content, video is a great opportunity to not only increase brand awareness but create interaction and generate top-converting leads. The best adverts are the ones that cover these facets.
The automotive industry is great at this; you've watched an ad showing a 4x4 crusading on a mountainside road by the Pacific Ocean - you’re then served a pop-up link to a landing page to book a test drive. Perfect.
4. Be social
Utilising the CTA on Facebook, make it count by sending it straight to the correct page. Rather than the default 'Contact Us' destination (yawn) on your company page, make this interaction valuable for the user. A free demo if it is technical; a webinar signup; a free trial; get these followers, and potentially great brand ambassadors, mainlined into the user journey.
5. Website traffic
With greater competition for traffic, bids, and inboxes, this is the year to think about audience wastage and trim the fat. Who are your target customers, and be honest, who are your most valuable customers? If you think you know this, be ruthless and ditch the non-target market, whether it be derived from email marketing, programmatic advertising, paid social or PPC. Invest in getting the right audience rather than the biggest, and combined with content designed for this niche, watch the conversion rate increase.
6. Landing page focus
You have the prospect in your arena - do not let them go. Lose leakage and do not create too many options. If it is online conversions, consider losing the telephone number from the landing page. Hide the menu options. Ensure the page is mobile optimised. There is also an alleged 'squint test' which I personally endorse. I.e. when you blur your eyes and look at it, is the message clear and simple?
7. Content: create, curate and exchange for details
If offering value, be sure to get something back - typically an email address. This is particularly prevalent in B2B with content syndication and whitepaper downloads, and curating your own online presence through a magazine/blog. However, consumer brands are starting to embrace this. A charity we recently worked with offer a free will writing guide in exchange for the user’s name and email address.
8. Your existing customers and email
Your existing user base is the easiest to sell to and presents an obvious way to lower your cost per sale. Sort your database in order of who are the most engaged, who are the most responsive clickers, and serve them what they want and how they want it.
Email marketing is still the most powerful channel for personalisation and, along with other retargeting techniques, you can utilise your customer base to drive significant value from your key, and even lagging customers.
9. Automation and speed of response
As many a stat and LinkedIn meme will tell you, real-time or immediate (or at least quick) follow up is essential for any lead activity and enquiry onto your website. Unless you have been residing under a digital rock you will know how prevalent marketing automation is and how it addresses this need. The benefits are clear.
Utilising Hubspot, Marketo, Eloqua and the like, or integrating CRM with an email marketing platform is key to engaging conversation quick with respondents and creating personalised communications frequently, driving them down the funnel to conversion. In short, start conversation quickly, start it first and keep it going!
10. Partnerships - the quick referral
And finally, think how your product/brand sits in its space. What other complimentary products work well? For example, a coffee business works brilliantly with a food business, whereby the latter's customers get a discount code specifically for the coffee. It is a natural cross-sell and is completely measurable. Lead gen and performance - delivered!