3 KEYS TO TRANSFORMING SALES & MARKETING WITH INBOUND MARKETING

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1 3 KEYS TO TRANSFORMING SALES & MARKETING WITH INBOUND MARKETING

2 by Mark Mathson This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States License. Please feel welcome to share this on your blog, on social media, or to whom you think might enjoy it. Thank you.

3 3 Contents 3 KEYS TO TRANSFORMING SALES & MARKETING WITH INBOUND MARKETING... 1 Introduction... 4 The First Key to Transformation: Sales & Marketing Embrace Inbound Marketing... 7 The Second Key to Transformation: Find Your Best Prospects and Ideal Customers... 8 The Third Key to Transformation: An Inbound Marketing Plan... 9 The Inbound Marketing Plan Broken Down Final Thoughts About the Author Next Steps Appendix... 24

4 4 Introduction There are approximately 2 billion global Internet users, which are 28% of the global world population. i The way we, as a collective human race research, shop, buy, and connect have changed, thanks in part to a shift in mindset, and the technology available. Business has adapted and innovated better ways to connect with customers and prospects through mediums like social media and blogging. Many are still figuring this out, but what is the real impact? 69% of B2B organizations report that they are increasing their organization s website design, management and optimization, and social media budget in % of B2B orgs reported they are increasing their search engine optimization budget in 2011 Other types of traditional marketing are on the decreasing investment side, these include: Public relations, telemarketing, and direct mail ii (see figure below)

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6 6 So why are businesses increasing their marketing budget on inbound marketing core components like content marketing, blogging, social media and search engine marketing? We all have become incredibly efficient at researching things online. Your prospects are no different. They want to find the information that they need and quickly. More importantly their first impressions and interactions, yes interactions, are crucial in the buy cycle. Are they able to interact directly with your company through social media, blogging? Nurtured leads produce on average a 20% increase in sales opportunities versus nonnurtured leads. iii Companies that excel at lead nurturing generate 50% more sales ready leads at 33% lower cost. iv Takeaway: The Internet, along with a shift in the mindset of people, and new technology mediums available such as faster search engines and social media have fundamentally changed the way your prospects buy. Adapting and innovating to align with their buying methodology will help your business grow and sales increase.

7 7 The First Key to Transformation: Sales & Marketing Embrace Inbound Marketing The research is there and available to show that leveraging inbound marketing is one of the most effective and increasingly cost effective ways to generate new sales ready leads for your business. But how can your company transform into a lead generation machine? The first step is to look at your strategy, and align it to what is realistic and the next best step. For example, if you have noticed that your website isn t generating the leads you would expect, look at what you are doing to increase conversions. Are you currently investing in Internet marketing techniques? Is it effective and proving ROI over time? Takeaway: A transformed company will have the following five key inbound marketing components top of mind in their marketing and sales teams: Getting Found - Create, optimize, and promote your content and get found Converting Leads - Nurture leads to gain more customers. Win more sales. Analyzing Marketing Performance - Make Marketing Decisions. Focus on what works.

8 8 The Second Key to Transformation: Find Your Best Prospects and Ideal Customers Make the customer the hero of your story. Ann Handley, MarketingProfs Taking care of your clients and customers while making the experience the best possible will continue building your reputation, while creating wonderful stories of success. One of the best ways to do this is to attract your best and most ideal customers in the first place. Inbound marketing helps achieve that. By building buyer personas and aligning your marketing and sales efforts directly pointing to your best prospects, the business can grow while building real stories. Takeaway: A transformed company will attract ideal leads and customers that will help continue building the success of your business by building a great reputation.

9 9 The Third Key to Transformation: An Inbound Marketing Plan What grade would you give your marketing and sales right now? Are the efforts being put forth by marketing and sales right now generating the revenue goals necessary to grow your business? How would you know unless you are actively measuring the link between marketing, sales, and what happens afterwards, the customer experience? In the third key to a marketing and sales transformation, aligning business goals with an inbound marketing strategy is one of the most important things you can do to help ensure the plan will be followed. Inbound marketing is the process of: Attracting more traffic to your website Converting more traffic into leads Converting more leads into customers Measure & analyzing each step for continuous improvement

10 10 To transform to getting found, converting leads and being able to analyze sales and marketing results, there are about ten steps that really need to take place. These will help align your organization with real sales and marketing goals, and to help put a timeline and structure in place to hit the mark. Remember, inbound marketing lead generation results depend on consistent action taken in the right direction. No longer do you have to wonder if your dollars spent on marketing are worthwhile. Inbound marketing is completely measurable! 1. Align with goals 2. Website meets objectives 3. Benchmark metrics 4. Establish objectives 5. Buyer personas 6. Benchmark competition 7. Campaign tactics 8. Milestones & Resources 9. Launch campaign 10. Measure and shift

11 11 The Inbound Marketing Plan Broken Down Step 1 - Align Your Inbound Marketing Strategy with Your Business Goals Key components: Brand awareness? More traffic? More leads? Retain customers Summary: Your inbound marketing strategy and your website should be designed to help you achieve your business goals. Examples: Are you trying to build brand awareness or retain existing customers or convert more site visitors into leads?

12 12 Key components: What works? What doesn t? Ideal customer Reason for website Step 2 - Website meets objectives Summary: Your website needs to meet your technical requirements, competitive differentiators, and core brand values so that it supports your business objectives and future marketing initiatives.

13 13 Step 3 - Benchmark Current Sales & Marketing Metrics Key components: Monthly Visits Leads Generated Customers Acquired Average Revenue Per Customer Summary: How many monthly website visitors do you get; what about monthly leads? Look at the average revenue per customer, and your sales goals of new monthly booked revenue.

14 14 Step 4 - Set Traffic, Lead Generation, and Customer Acquisition Goals Key components: Traffic Lead Generation Customer Acquisition Goals Summary: If you improve visit to lead conversion rates, you ll need less traffic to hit your revenue targets: Therefore, it would make the most sense to create more offers, build landing pages and prominently place calls to action on your website in order to convert more visitors to leads. This also helps determine appropriate amount of resources (time and money).

15 15 Step 5 - Define Your Ideal Lead or Customer Key components: Ideal Client Profile Specific o Age o Gender o Family Info o Role o Hobbies Summary: Define the criterion that helps you determine an ideal lead from a so-so or bad one. You may have multiple client profiles that are ideal.

16 16 Step 6 - Competitive Benchmarking Key components: Not Key Focus But Need to Know Website Overall Grade Traffic Rank Inbound Links Summary: Gather data about your competitors in order to uncover successful strategies you can emulate as well as how you can beat your competition where they re weak. Are they are using social media? Is their blog effective? How strong is their SEO?

17 17 Step 7 - Campaign Tactics Key components: Time to get tactical SEO Social Media Content Marketing: Blogging, ebooks Lead Conversion Summary: Review your website. Are there any pages you should add? Look at your competitors' websites for ideas. Blogging is an absolutely critical component of helping you achieve inbound marketing success. According to data, companies that blog attract 55% more site visitors, 97% more inbound links and 434% more indexed pages. Further, companies that blog achieve 126% more lead growth than companies that don t. v

18 18 Step 8 - Milestones & Resources Required for Inbound Marketing Success Key components: Activity Time: Internal and Outsourced Marketing Technology Milestones Summary: Inbound marketing requires skills that you or your organization may or may not possess. Your organization may also need to develop new skills. You may be able to achieve your sales and marketing objectives more effectively by outsourcing certain tasks, hiring an inbound marketing agency to do inbound marketing for you, or hiring a coach or consultant to guide you as you do the work.

19 19 Key components: Campaign Milestone Guide Expected Return Aligned with goals Step 9 - Launch Campaign Summary: Now that you ve developed the strategies, tactics and all that is involved to help make your website and online marketing a lead generation machine, launch it. Now is the time to closely monitor and pay attention to what is needed to shift over time. This leads to measuring and shifting.

20 20 Step 10 - Measure and Shift Key components: Monitor Performance Shift When Needed Flexibility Summary: There are many statistics that you can measure over time to determine how successful your Inbound Marketing Strategy is, and how to improve your results. You should be checking your analytics at least monthly and much more frequently when you are tweaking and improving ongoing activities or campaigns. Probably the most valuable measure of success is your conversion rates. Your conversion rates indicate the number of visitors to your website that became leads and the number of leads that became customers. You should measure conversion rates and overall numbers from each traffic source including SEO, blogging, social media, PPC and marketing. Then, you should evaluate which activities to continue, tweak or stop based on what s working and what s not, as well as what can most easily be improved.

21 21 Final Thoughts Unlike other marketing and advertising expenses, inbound marketing is an investment that produces compounding results over time; As you create inbound marketing assets like blog posts, landing pages, links and social media followings, they will help you attract traffic, capture leads and convert leads into customers - every day into the future Everything from the beginning of time has involved some form of communication, one way or another. This communication makes modern economies work, thrive and grow. The objective with inbound marketing is to simplify the approach to marketing. For too long, marketing in general has been overcomplicated and this puts a burden on everyone, especially the small guy. The way we all now communicate has changed that. The Internet changed all of that. What other platform can you expend energy on with tool sets such as blogging, and get great results in return?

22 22 About the Author Mark Mathson, an inbound marketing strategist, has over 11 years of online business experience and consultant across several industries, Mark is a speaker, writer and promoter of leadership and innovation in the inbound marketing industry. He helps businesses increase leads and sales and build a stronger brand through utilizing their website as an inbound marketing magnet. Connect on Connect on LinkedIn Get in touch

23 23 Next Steps The process of transformation for sales and marketing is both exciting and valuable. The time, energy and resources put forth increase both marketing ROI and sales values. Employing inbound marketing ensures that you build a solid resource for lead generation that will continue to generate new sales ready leads into the future. I hope you have enjoyed this paper on the 3 keys to transforming sales and marketing with inbound marketing. I help business owners and managers grow their businesses using inbound marketing, social media, SEO, and lead generation. If you d like to discuss how to transform your company s marketing, contact me. I look forward to talking with you.

24 24 Appendix i Internet World Stats, World Internet Users and Population Stats, June ii MarketingSherpa B2B Marketing Benchmark Survey, August iii DemandGen Report, Calculating the REAL ROI from Lead Nurturing. iv Forrester Research Report v HubSpot Report Lead-Growth-Than-Non-Blogging-Businesses.aspx

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