Monthly Top 5 List: Tips for Startups to Generate Leads without a Website

Monthly Top 5 List: Tips for Startups to Generate Leads without a Website

The most important thing for any startup business is to increase the number of leads generated. But in the business world with so many competition, how can a new business make sure it can survive and compete in the market?

The Internet plays an important role in helping new businesses reach out to their potential customers for business growth opportunities. If you are a startup company who doesn’t have enough resources and experience, inbound and outbound lead generation campaign can be a bit risky. However, even if you are a new in the business or a small company, you can still compete with some of the big companies within your industry.

Having a website where people can go to raise brand awareness and attract new leads is necessary. But for startups who lack online presence can implement these 5 tips to generate sales leads for their business.


#1. Consider outsourcing your B2B lead generation campaign


New businesses don’t have enough warm leads to nurture in their sales pipeline. If you want your business to grow, you’ll need to delegate the lead generation to the experts and focus on more important tasks. B2B lead generation companies provide:

  • Professional sales rep to represent your company on your behalf
  • Right tools to monitor and manage your campaigns for you
  • Sales-ready leads

Related: Why Companies are Spending Heavily on Lead Generation


#2. Attend business events or seminars.


One of the main reasons why business owners choose to participate in an event is to generate leads. A business event is a powerful way to reach out to your prospective customers. It opens great opportunities for every growing business within their industry to create brand awareness.


#3. Blogging


Even if you don’t have a website, that shouldn’t stop you from generating leads through blogging. Many marketers use WordPress for free blogging and reach out to their target audience. Blogs can be used as a lead generation machine. How?

  • Use CTA’s.

Here’s an example of a CTA used by GAP to increase their email subscribers.

CTA GAP

  • Provide informative content. When creating content, focus on the issues and concerns of your audience. Share successful stories that they can relate to with an emphasis on how they’ve managed to solve their problems.
  • Consistent blogging. By simply showing up on a regular and feeding your audience with informative contents encourages them to interact with you and engage in a conversation that could eventually turn into a sale.

Related: Create an Industry Related Content Without Being a Bore


#4. Social media marketing


According to IDC, social media channels are used to build relationships with prospects throughout their sales cycle. 75% of B2B buyer’s decision-making process was influenced by social media. However, marketers don’t really use social media to sell. Instead, they use it nurture their prospects and eventually turn into a close deal by:

  • Building brand awareness
  • Creating a community of followers
  • Engaging with prospects and customers

Related: How to Make your Business Thrive in Newer Markets this 2017


#5. Referrals


One way to get more leads for your business is through word of mouth. Most buyers rely on the recommendations from a family, friends or a colleague. A referral is based on trust and credibility so it’s the easiest way to convert these prospects into a closed deal. Note: You need to provide a good customer service in order to be referred.

Related: How to Lure Malaysian Leads To Invest on your Business

Yes, small businesses or a new company can without a website generate as much leads as your competitors do. Whether you’ve decided to include outsourcing your lead generation campaign or have your own team to handle it for you, there are different ways to increase your sales. Follow these 5 tips to get more sales opportunities and close better deals even if you are a startup company who doesn’t have a website yet.

Author Bio

Dara Lin helps companies in Australia increase their business revenue through lead generation and appointment setting services.

 

 

Increase the numbers of your  Qualified Leads Dial +60 3.2772.7370

 

 

Create an Industry Related Content Without Being a Bore
NEVER Forget these 7 Ground Rules for Creating Engaging Content
Where to Dominate outside Google (Search Engines in Asia)

Create an Industry Related Content Without Being a Bore

Create an Industry Related Content Without Being a Bore

“Nobody cares about your products, except you. Create interesting content!”

– David Meerman Scott

 

 

If you have a website, you need content to drive traffic that converts. Every B2B marketer is eager to learn how to create a useful content for a niche industry that delivers results for your business.

In this article, we will help you refine your content strategy in creating an industry related content that works for you and your business.

#1: Identify your audience for this Niche.

Learn everything about your audience. In order to get higher CTR (Click-Through-Rate) that converts you must identify and know who your audience are, what they’re interested in, and how can you create an interesting content that’s appealing to their eyes and eventually turn them into customers.

Ask yourself these questions:

  • Who are the target audience?

Before company launched a product in the market, they are more likely to define their target market. Same goes when writing a content. You have to picture out your readers. Learn exactly what they do and their interests. Group them by location, by industry, etc.

  • What do I know about them?

Some companies use Google Analytics to learn about their customers such as their age and gender. Know their interests and behavior.

google analytics

#2: Start with a Precise Idea

When looking for ideas for your content that are within a specific industry, dig deeper into a specific area. How? Research for a broader topic and narrow it down.

Example:

You are going to write about ‘Lead Generation for Advertising Company’, find out through Google the common problems people in this industry are experiencing. Then narrow down this topic and research it further to write ‘How to Launch a Successful Lead Generation Campaign for Advertising Company’

 

You can also use Title Generator tool to get related topics of your chosen keyword.

 

You will get over a hundred title suggestions that  will give you some idea what next topics to write on.

 

#3: Make Google as your best friend

googlesearch

Research, Research, Research!!! Educate yourself of the industry to create better content. By understanding a particular niche, you will be able to write a convincing content about it.

Related: NEVER Forget these 7 Ground Rules for Creating Engaging Content

#4: Talk to industry experts

Researching about your customer is important. But you have to learn from the experts in order to have a better understanding about a particular niche. Talk to industry experts. They can provide you with expert insight into their niche industry that you can use in creating an interesting content.  Subscribe to industry media or attend events if necessary.

Related: B2B Marketing in Malaysia: 5 Points on Enhancing Thought Leadership

#5: Create Contents that Fits the Value Proposition of your Business

When creating content for a particular niche, you need to figure out the following:

  • Find out the problems you are solving
  • How do you solve these problems?
  • How is your solution unique from others?

#6: Find out Authoritative Keywords that Works

Use google adwords to know the number of searches of your keywords and to decide whether it is right to invest your time and effort in optimizing those keywords.

Here are some tips to remember when thinking for the right keyword for your content:

  • Don’t stuff. Overloading your content with these words will make it look like your writing for search engine alone. Never forget to write content that will spark up engagement and interaction between you and the readers.
  • It is best to keep an updated list of keywords to become more familiar with all of them and find out what works best.

Below are few examples of our industry-related content and the reason why they are read by our audience.

  • Make them realize what they’re missing on their strategies.

Ex: What drives a Successful Lead Gen Campaign for Software Companies?

  • Intrigue them with new tips.

Ex: Medical Businesses: From Print Ads to Multi-Channel Marketing

  • Relate your services with your target Industry but don’t just promote. Educate and give value to the readers.

Ex: The Crucial Benefit of Telemarketing Services in the Field of Healthcare

Take note that you can learn everything overnight. But with these pieces of advice, you will be able to write contents for a specific industry that is more effective and that delivers results in no time with the right approach.

Originally posted at Callboxinc.com

 

 

Here’s How to Lure Malaysian Leads To Invest on your Business

How to Lure Malaysian Leads To Invest on your Business

Implement the most Effective Marketing & Lead Generation Campaign

in Malaysia this 2017! Dial +60 3.2772.7370

 

 

Create an Industry Related Content Without Being a Bore
NEVER Forget these 7 Ground Rules for Creating Engaging Content
Where to Dominate outside Google (Search Engines in Asia)

NEVER Forget these 7 Ground Rules for Creating Engaging Content

NEVER Forget these 7 Ground Rules for Creating Engaging Content

With a target audience in mind, it can be very difficult to create enticing content that supplies your database with the best leads.

Here is an excerpt from Matthew Broomfield’s article from GristOnline.com showing the correct approaches to writing for the B2B crowd.

#1: What the user wants matters most

Clients won’t usually read your text unless they want information. So when writing for them online, start with the same question every time: what does the user want to know?

Learn more in Content Marketing: Comprehensive Guide for Content Marketing in Malaysia 2016

#2: Really know your audience

Your online readership is often less select and exclusive than those reading hard-copy.

Some of your online readers might not be so engaged with your subject matter on an everyday basis. Others would have found your digital content through Google or other search engines. Think of your different readerships in concentric circles: your digital readership is probably broader than your print readership.

Learn more in Content Marketing: Apply Segmentation for Better Understanding of your Audience

#3: Don’t just follow the crowd

Heard about how more people are reading content on smartphones? You’ve seen them on the train and bus, right? But what percentage of your target audience are using these devices? And are you ready to create regular bespoke content for digital channels rather than just replicate print material?

By following the latest trends you might not actually be serving your readers as well as you think. Nobody should know your readers better than you, so really think about what they do and want, not what fads suggest they do and want.

Learn more in Content Marketing: Where to Dominate Aside Google (Search Engines in Asia)

#4: Speak their language

Use the same vocabulary, phrases and industry references that clients often use, but steer clear of excessive jargon. This makes them feel that the content provider understands their specific circumstances and challenges.

Learn more in Content Marketing: The Static Website Is Dead — Long Live Personalized Content

#5: How people read online

Online readers don’t start at the top and read all the way down – they have roving eyes.

People tend to read a web page in an ‘F’-shape pattern, according to various web-user studies. They look across the top, down the side, then read further across when they find what they need. So put the most important information at the start of titles, sub-headings and bullet points.

From Huffingtonpost: Your Content Marketing Strategy after Real Time Google Penguin Update

#6: Keep it simple

Short and common words are easier to recognise and understand. Clients might typically be intelligent and well-educated, but that doesn’t mean the text needs to be an intellectual challenge.

When you use longer words (9 or 10 letters), users are more likely to skip shorter words that follow – words of 2 or 3 letters. The more complicated words you use, the more words your readers will skip.

Learn more in Content Marketing: Problem with “Counter-Content”? Take these B2B Lead Generation Tips

#7: Less really can be more

Your digital content should be tailor-made to the needs and habits of your digital readers. Don’t make it a dumping ground for whatever material you can get your hands on. Over time it will resemble an overgrown garden. Remove old, superseded content, and publish only what the user needs to know so they can complete their task. Nothing more.

Below is a summarized and shareable infographic of all the tips we’ve mentioned above. Share or download this image.

For every content marketer, NEVER forget these Ground Rules in Content Marketing!

NEVER Forget these 7 Ground Rules for Creating Engaging Content

SEE Full image here!

 

To get more marketing tips, check our B2B Marketers Blog!

Incorporate content marketing efforts with other effective marketing channels.

Learn more dial +60 3.2772.7370

 

 

Where to Dominate Aside Google (Search Engines in Asia)

Where to Dominate outside Google (Search Engines in Asia)

When a brand turns into a verb – and not just an ordinary verb at that, one that many of us do nearly as regularly as breathing and blinking – you know you have a great product.

And when that same brand, which is now a full-fledged verb, makes the word “search” sound ancient, what you have is a revolutionary invention.

Notice we don’t use “look it up” or “check the dictionary” or “try the internet” anymore when we tell someone to look for the definition of something? We just say “google it”. Heck, we have learned to trust Google so much instead of calling the family physician for an opinion on that recent spate of absentmindedness, we simply google “symptoms of early Alzheimer’s”.

Yes, Google has turned into some omniscient virtual entity, and if somebody starts claiming miracles, too, somebody just might turn it into a religion.

Even in marketing, where the world wide web is a non-negotiable must-have, Google wields a great deal of influence. In fact, the birth of SEO lends credit to Google, as there was a need for an industry whose main focus is to boost the ranking of a name or term in Google and other search engine results. But mainly in Google.

“It’s no surprise that Google is the go-to search engine in the world. Its global market share is around 70% — still a great number considering that there are a dozen other choices.”

 

Yes, it is every SEO guy’s dream to rank high in Google, but there’s still the other 30% that’s waiting to be tapped, too. Thanks to the diversity of Asia, the Asian market alone has more than a handful of search engines to be explored and tried in order to maximize an SEO campaign. Let’s check out what the following names on the list can offer in the context of the SEO industry.

bing

Bing is Microsoft’s answer to Google, and so far, a far second in market share. It might never be as popular as Google, but at least, it’s the best alternative, at least according to one-fifth of internet users who say Bing is their search engine of choice. Now, if more than two-thirds of the world’s internet users rely on Google, what made the 20% trust Bing instead? Good question. Lifehacker, a tech website, has some great articles where they try to convince readers why Bing is worth giving a try. Among the arguments include:

  • Bing is especially helpful to digital marketers using advanced search operators. Why? There are various tools that can give you inbound link data, but there’s only one place to go for outbound link information – Bing.
  • If you’re big on content, especially videos, Bing’s video search is significantly better than Google’s, giving you a grid of large thumbnails that you can click on to play or preview if you hover over them.
  • Bing covers the same wide scope as Google, with an invitation to search for anything, everything, and sometimes get “quick answers” back with data tidbits. It does some topics in unique ways, like its Visual Search, video thumbnails, and robust travel visualization.
  • And just for bragging rights, Bing powers Yahoo’s search engine.

Related: Cost Efficient SEO Marketing? Is That Even Possible?

yahoo

Yahoo! is several things: it is a search engine, a news aggregator, a shopping center, an emailbox, a travel directory, a horoscope and games center, and more. Yahoo!’s homepage has news, sports info, and links to all of their services that make up almost anything you could want to do online. This works even better if you use Yahoo! for email, but it does mean that you have to change pages to use another search engine. This ‘web portal’ breadth of choice makes this a very helpful site for Internet beginners, as well as those whose prospects are into a lot of things all at once. But here’s more good news: some experts profess Yahoo! Finance is more helpful, and more importantly, Yahoo! users sleep a little more soundly at night knowing their digital footprint is safer. While Yahoo! has yet to develop a mechanism that doesn’t keep your search history, it’s a lot better in this regard than Google.

Related: The Reasons for a Collapsing Content Strategy

baidu

 

Baidu is to China what Google is to the rest of the world – a household name. In fact, Baidu owns 60% of the search market in China and is still growing in strength. Recent developments, such as its decision to branch in Internet Television and a recent partnership with Bing, means that Baidu is no pushover and wouldn’t be satisfied to cater to the Chinese market only.
It’s set up is very similar to Google, utilizing PPC (pay-per-click) and organic listings to provide search results triggered by specific keywords. Placement is very similar also with PPC ads on the top and right hand side of the landscape (marked) and organic ads placed centrally.

Related: China’s Baidu Video Attracts $155 Million Funding

Baidu has profited in this market due to many factors: It handles the Chinese language better than Google, providing more accurate results and also has the ability to perform multi-platform search (including music and videos). Baidu also passes government restrictions and the highly public fall out between Google and the Chinese government has only aided Baidu’s market dominance. So if you’re going to do business in China, it’s a no-brainer.

Related: Not your Typical ABCs: What you Can Learn from Alphabet, Google’s New Company

 

naver

Naver. If you happen to do business in Korea, it is wise that you focus your SEO efforts on Naver, as it owns a huge 62% of the South Korean search market. In contrast, “global” engines such as Google and Yahoo own just 7% combined. Indeed, such is the dominance of Naver that Google altered its simplistic design to a more portal based option, with limited success.

Naver dominates the market in South Korea because it can adapt to the language difficulties and the search trends of the country. Naver also has historical and trustworthy presence which is supported by its high online shopping penetration (99%).

Related: Naver joins Korea’s operators to launch app store

The Naver landscape is radically different, but PPC ads dominate the landscape and organic ads are placed only in a small area low down on the page. Furthermore, the same business can be placed numerous times through PPC on one page .

Honorable Mentions:

Duck Duck GoIf you think your prospects are those who value their privacy more than anything else, then you better start cramming your ads and posts and whatnot here. To put things in perspective: Duck Duck Go is to Twitter as Google is to Facebook.

blekko

Blekko. Although not that known in Asia, Blekko is a good alternative especially for those who want results that are specific and have somehow already been “filtered”. The downside: it filters even the ad-filled results, and it just might have included your own ad.

You don’t always have to go with hype, find out where are your audience, then decide what search engine should you penetrate for a more successful search marketing campaign.

 

Compliment your search engine strategy with content and social marketing:

Comprehensive Guide for Content Marketing in Malaysia 2016

Business 101: Building Your Thought Leadership Level 2.0

Do you Have these Essentials in your Digital Marketing?

 

 

Learn more savvy marketing strategy for your campaign in Malaysia! 

Read more B2B Marketing and Sales tips.

Interested to get qualified leads in Malaysia? Dial +60 3.2772.7370

 

A Comprehensive Guide for Content Marketing in Malaysia this 2016

There’s about 2 million content published over the web in just one day – what makes your content stand out?

 

If you think content marketing is as simple as hitting ‘publish’ then you’re doing it wrong. It’s long been proven that a quality blog outnumbers the website traffic provided by those that are poorly written.  Even in this time, there are still B2B marketers that are still committing to their old ways.

Wake up from that slumber, there’s more than just writing a 500-word article.

According to Marketingprofs.com, Only 44% of B2B marketers say their organization is clear about what content marketing success or effectiveness looks like. Some 55% of us say our organization is either unclear or we’re unsure whether our organization is clear…

 

So how do you craft content that your target audience will scroll back to and click on while browsing the search results? This 2016 and even from the past years, the same challenge remains, how will you fight mediocrity?

Make your content unconventional that it magnets the eyes. But don’t start typing yet, there are still that have yet to be analyzed.

Here is a Slideshare presentation from the collaboration of 2 content marketing authorities, Marketingprofs.com and Content Marketing Institute, that will help you change the course of your game plan.

 

You might want to check out these articles on content marketing:

 

 

 

 Get some tips on our latest guides and blogs today!

Read more B2B Marketing and Sales tips - Callbox Malaysia

 

The Reasons for a Collapsing Content Strategy in Malaysia

Whatever you are selling deserves proper recognition. Demand generation strategies specifically serve to make your products and services visible to people you want to have as customers. Thus, you rely on effective content marketing strategy.

In B2B lead generation, companies can never do without proper planning and distribution of content. People are more sophisticated now in searching for consumable information. On your part as a solutions provider, simply having a blog or a social media account just won’t cut it.

What businesses need to do is to:

1). Identify the social media platforms commonly used by one’s target audience;

2). Conduct market research to gauge audience responsiveness to certain types of content; and

3). Avoid decisions proven to be fatal to one’s content marketing.

Clearly, marketers in the B2B industry can hardly resolve that last one and submitting to the adage of “Everybody makes mistakes” only intensifies the problem of poor web traffic and its disastrous offshoots.

To prevent your content marketing and lead generation from collapsing, it is important to NOT do any of these:

 

Becoming business-centric

Becoming business-centric

 

Narcissism poses itself as a natural psychological phenomenon of modern culture as evidenced by the epidemic popularity of “selfies” and “groufies.” But not everyone can benefit socially from these acts, especially not B2B businesses. Decision-makers are basically people in need of efficient solutions to specific problems, and whipping out braggadocio simply won’t do them any good. Having them to listen and engage is a matter of producing web resources like infographics and blog articles to which they can relate present circumstances.

Make content more interactive and engaging than ever! Here’s how to start creating your first infographic.

 

 

 

Refusing to optimize your site

no-68481_1920

Sure, having a website with fancy widgets may give you a sense of achievement, but many more factors are involved in the passive process of converting visitors into leads. Loading time and the design of your fill forms also affect influence over a possible engagement. It is certain for prospects to bounce off your landing page when they are forced to wait for more than two seconds for a webpage to fully load or to supply information rather than their email addresses.

 Related: Increase your Fill Form Conversions with these 7 Calls to Action

 

 

 

Doing it without research

good-1122969_1920

 

 

How do you know if a content strategy is effective? You simply conduct a test, and not just through typical A/B testing here. We’re talking about experimentation with the use of analytics tools. No doubt businesses need guidance in interpreting traffic data and determining the best ways to attract more visitors. A multi-channel B2B marketing company can be considered in such a case.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

DOWNLOAD NOW: HOW DOES CALLBOX RUN A MARKETING CAMPAIGN?

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Will Google’s NoFollow Link Policy Kill Your SEO? Not if you follow these tips

Will Google’s NoFollow Link Policy Kill Your SEO - Not if you follow these tips_DONE

At one point or another, marketing teams resort to using techniques that are generally frowned upon by the online community. It will probably take a long time until the marketing realm is totally rid of these so-called “black hat” strategies, but Google is determined in its crusade against stopping it once and for all.

One of these resolutions is the recent requirement of nofollow tags in links from other websites.

The modus operandi

One of the traditional, overused tactics in SEO is to try and get as many backlinks from authority websites as possible. This is because those websites regarded as having high PR can influence the “linkers” in terms of authority, thus boosting their chances of getting a high rank. This happens despite of Google’s insistence that PageRank be treated as the strongest factor in SERP rankings.

This activity also poses a dilemma for websites in their fear that Google may suspect them as a “link seller”. But now, Google requires links to include the rel=”nofollow” tag to stop passing on authority “credit” to other sites, and to thus avoid being penalized.

 So when do you need to use a nofollow link?

If your site supports paid links, you need to use nofollow in order to keep these links from giving credit to other sites. Also, if your site has a comment section that you don’t always monitor, using nofollow links prevents commenters from getting credit from you, as well as posting bad links that could hurt your SERP rankings. This also applies to content posts that other people may contribute on your business blog.

Nofollow is also helpful when embedding media (such as infographics) or widgets that you obtained from other sites. The thing is, you don’t want Google to think that you’re endorsing those sources, so you need to make sure credit is not passed on to them.

Obviously, you also wouldn’t want to boost the authority of your competitors, so you need to make sure you attach a nofollow tag when linking to a site that most probably belongs in the same industry as yours.

There is nothing to fear so long as you stick by the rules

Google’s intentions are, at the end of the day, for everyone’s welfare. It may be a hurdle to our current marketing situation, especially to those who have been accustomed to using their own strategies, but it’s healthier to compete in leveled field rather than allowing a few to get ahead by not following the rules.

What Is And Isn’t “Native Advertising”? And 5 More Questions To Ask About It.

20130829-header-image-native-advertising

 

Michael Groszek takes a closer look at “native advertising” as the buzz that surrounds it just seems to get louder. He asks, and answers, 5 questions that every decent marketer should ask about this “new tactic”, breaking down “native advertising” to demystified, digestible chunks.

B2B Content Marketing: 5 questions every marketer should ask themselves when using native advertising

As marketers, we’ve all heard the buzz about native advertising.

We’ve heard how it’s going to revolutionize advertising and begin to phase out traditional display ads. But despite all of the hype, it seems like everyone still has varying ideas of what native advertising actually is.

In today’s B2B Lead Roundtable Blog post, I wanted to share my view on native advertising from a business intelligence perspective and the role I believe it has in the future of Internet marketing.

Question #1. How can we use native advertising?

What do you think of when you hear the term “native advertising?” An advertorial? Valuable content with a paid placement? Promoted tweets? Search engine marketing ads? Promoted stories and posts on social media networks?

Over the last year or so, I’ve heard countless different arguments about the true meaning of native advertising.

So, I asked myself, “Why does everyone seem to have such differing views?”

Why isn’t defining native advertising as black and white as some of the other marketing concepts we deal with on a daily basis?

Well, if you ask me, it’s because that’s essentially what a native advertisement is.

There is no current standard for native advertising, nor will there ever be one, and that’s the point.

A native advertisement is supposed to adapt to the content surrounding it in order to engage a potential customer by using their previously indicated interests. If there were set standards for native advertisements, that would essentially eliminate the advantage native ads are claimed to offer.

Which brings me to another point …

With all of the tools available today, we have the distinct advantage of knowing far more about our potential customers than marketers in generations past.

All of this knowledge allows us to create highly relevant content to attract the attention of those potential leads based on their decision to interact in a specific environment.

So, if there was a set formula, wouldn’t it essentially eliminate the ability we have to provide a user with highly relevant content that, if presented correctly, will engage them when they may have otherwise been disinterested?

Consequently, I would suggest marketers take a moment to stop focusing on a rigid definition of what native advertising is and isn’t to embrace what it can do for your marketing efforts given the adaptability native ads offer.

Question #2. Is native advertising really a new tactic?

Not really.

One thing that has me confused is why everyone seems to think that native advertising is such a new and revolutionary concept.

When I first started to hear the buzz around native advertising, I immediately thought back to my high school cross country days.

I remembered reading an article in Runner’s World about precautions you can take to avoid injuries. As I flipped through the pages, there was an ad placed for Asics shoes that outlined what causes many common running injuries and how its shoes were scientifically designed to help prevent these problems.

I knew it was an advertisement, but it was also highly relevant to the content I was reading. I chose to divert my attention to the ad instead of the content around it.

So, I would argue that Asics’ idea of designing an ad that was relevant to the content surrounding it was essentially a “primitive” utility of native advertising.

Although my example is not a direct B2B example, it’s not a far reach to find native ad adoption in white papers or sponsored posts on Facebook that are also dispelling other myths about B2B social media use.

Question #3. Do our ads offer value and relevance?

Delivering valuable content that is relevant to your prospects is the key to a successful native ad campaign.

Generating quality content can be a difficult task, but it’s certainly not impossible if done correctly.

Producing valuable content that not only relates to the interest of the user, but is also relevant to your business should be the goal of every native advertising campaign you undertake.

So, what does a successful B2B native ad campaign look like exactly?

Well, according to Buzzfeed, it looks a lot like the consumerization of B2B marketing.

GE Aviation created a “flight mode” campaign designed to promote its presence at the 2013 Paris Air Show. When users visited BuzzFeed.com, the flight mode campaign transformed the Buzzfeed homepage into a grid of articles readers could “fly” over with a little plane icon.

Whenever users stopped on content they were interested in, they could hit the space bar and read the article in the normal view.

While a lot of the buzz was centered on the seemingly odd pairing of an ad campaign for an aviation giant’s presence at an air show running on an online publication, the campaign has been considered as a success so far, which brings us back to my point …

Offering quality content that is relevant is central to successfully using native ads as a B2B marketing tactic.

Question #4. What are the risks?

I see a future in native advertising, but from a business intelligence perspective, “Careful you must be when sensing the future.”

Yes, that was a quote from “Star Wars,” but Yoda’s advice actually holds a lot of truth when it comes to native advertising.

While I will not dispute there is a future in native advertising for B2B marketers, I wanted to offer caution to use the tactic of native ads responsibly and here’s why.

Imagine a scenario where your ideal prospect is researching a new product, let’s say software that lets small businesses share voice mails across cloud storage. Eventually your prospect comes across an article outlining all the benefits of using Brand X’s voice mail clouding over Brand Y’s service. If the information appears to be from a reputable source, the article may ultimately influence a prospect’s purchase.

But, what happens to Brand X’s credibility the moment the prospect realizes that “article” was actually a carefully constructed advertisement produced by Brand X attempting to appear as impartial, informative content?

Well, I don’t know about you, but for me, the brand is taking a big credibility gamble. Although this is a completely hypothetical situation, problems could very well arise if companies try to disguise native ads as unbiased content.

Which brings me to my final question …

Question #5. Are we trying too hard?

I know … it goes against everything you have ever been taught.

But when it comes to native advertising, trying too hard to disguise your ads can be the difference between a successful campaign, and losing a prospect for good. My suggestion here is to avoid trying to “disguise” an advertisement as unbiased or pragmatic content.

If the content is native, you won’t have to disguise anything as it engages prospects without jeopardizing your organization’s credibility. I know I’d rather see a brand recognizing and embracing the potential of an advertisement than attempting to trick me by masking it behind the illusion of an unbiased expert.

So, to sum it all up, while I do think native advertising has proven its potential as a content marketing tactic and is now being adopted more frequently into B2B marketing, I want to reinforce that a native advertisement is just that – an ad.

Positioning it otherwise may very well damage the credibility of your business and drive away prospects.

But, if you embrace the ability you have to provide prospects with relevant and valuable content, there is potential for innovative new ways to turn native advertising campaigns into ROI.

This article first appeared on B2BLeadBlog.com.

Not The AdWords That You Used To Know

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In the Smart Insights article, Google AdWords changes in 2013 – reviewing the opportunities and potential problems, Tara West outlines the changes with Google AdWords that you need to be aware of and how you can make the most of the opportunities that go with them.

These changes are:

  • Device Targeting and Bid Adjustments
  • Flexible Bid Strategies
  • New and Enhanced ad Extensions
  • Low Search Demand keywords are not eligible
  • Competitive data
  • AdWords Display Advertising changes

Device Targeting and Bid Adjustments

The most controversial change from Enhanced Campaigns has delivered is the shake up with device targeting. In previous times, best practice has always been to target mobiles and tablets in separate campaigns (away from desktop campaigns) because they perform differently. This also allowed the advertiser control over the split in spend between tablet, mobile and desktop.

The AdWords interface has now changed so dramatically that you can no longer target tablets separately because Google believe they perform in the same way as desktop devices (in my experience they don’t, but who am I to argue with the big G).

All devices are now targeted within one campaign, and bid adjustments are used to increase or decrease bids for mobiles. There is no way to increase or decrease bids for tablets, which is a real shame.

You can choose not to target mobile devices by making your mobile bid adjustment -100%.

Bid adjustments aren’t all bad news – there are some other handy bid adjustment features for location and times of day.

Bid adjustment feature by location and time of day

If you have a local business with physical locations, you can increase your bids for users who are within a certain radius or location close to your business. For example if you were an Estate Agent with offices in Winchester, Southampton and Basingstoke, you could set your campaign to target the whole of Hampshire but increase bids by 5% for users in Winchester, Basingstoke and Southampton because you believe they are more likely to convert.

The functionality for bid adjustments based on times of day has always been available in AdWords but now it’s more prominent in the settings section of the interface.

Explore your campaign performance by times of day using the Dimensions tab, and then increase or decrease bids as required.

For example if you are a cafe, you may want to increase your bids from 12pm to 2pm because this is when people are most likely to search for your business and actually visit your venue. Likewise, if you are an e-commerce site, you might see in the Dimensions tab data that your site performs well throughout the day but most conversions happen after 5pm. You could then increase your bids between 5pm and 9pm because you know clicks during this time are most likely to convert and you want increased visibility higher up the page.

All bid adjustment functionalities can be found within the settings tab and then green sub-tabs within it.

It’s important to remember that all bid adjustments stack on top of each other. For example if your standard bid was £1 and then you bid up 10% for people who are in Winchester, and then also bid up 10% for users between 12pm and 3pm, your new bid would be £1.21.

Flexible Bid Strategies

This is a completely new feature in AdWords where you can choose a bidding strategy and Google will automatically optimise your bids based on achieving this strategy.
It sounds too good to be true, and that’s because it might be.

Nothing can beat a bidding strategy managed by a human (or even a human using a 3rd party tool), but sometimes you just don’t have the time or the knowledge to constantly tweak bids.

This is when Automatic Bidding Strategies might help you:

Tell Google to optimise your bids to achieve a set Cost per Acquisition, Cost per Click, maximum number of clicks, or simply for a certain position in the paid search results.
AdWords does this by using all the time, location and device data in your account and changing your bids accordingly.

The bid strategy for Cost per Acquisition is helpful if you are targeting mobiles on Enhanced Campaigns and used to use Conversion Optimiser, as Conversion Optimiser does not function alongside mobile targeting with Enhanced Campaigns.

Read the rest of Tara’s article here.

Your LinkedIn Company Page Now Coughs Up Some Mighty Metrics

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If your LinkedIn Company Page is more than just a brochure and you use it to actually grow your network, as you should, then this latest update from LinkedIn should bring a smile to your face, or even elicit a little dance, for those among us who are reeeally into social analytics.

These new Company Page analytics are a vast improvement over LinkedIn’s previous “Page Insights” and “Follower Insights”. According to LinkedIn, the new analytics will help you:

– Identify the updates that drive the greatest engagement
– Filter engagement trends by type and time period
– Get more detailed demographic data about your followers
– See the growth of your follower base and benchmark it against similar brands

The Next Web shows a few screenshots to give brand and social media managers an idea of what the tool delivers:

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“A huge amount of information is given to detail the engagement for each post, including the total number of impressions, clicks and interactions…Nestled underneath is a a graphical overview of  the performance of each update over time, split into impressions on the left and engagement on the right. Each line graph is split between organic clicks and those achieved by Sponsored Updates – a subtle nudge towards LinkedIn’s premium features. It’s also worth noting that the filters on the right can be used to look at clicks, likes, comments and shares specifically too.”

You can read the complete Next Web article here.

What To Write In Your Company Blog To Help Your Leads Find You

Content marketing is the vehicle upon which online companies rely to generate quality sales leads, attract business opportunities and ultimately make a profit. But content marketing is not simply about writing on a topic you are passionate about. If you want your online business to be truly profitable, you have to tailor your posts for search engines and most especially your readers. Here are the important things to consider when deciding what to write on your company blog.

Keywords

Content marketing is all about keywords. Before you write something, you have to check how much competition you have for those keywords. The more competition you have, the less likely your target sales leads will be able to find your blog. You can use Google’s Adwords Keyword Tool to help you choose relatively easy keywords related to your niche that you can use on your posts.

Content

What you write about in your blog basically represents your website, so if you want people coming to your website and purchasing your products, you have to make convincing and interesting content to make this happen. Your blog posts should contain your chosen keywords (but not too much or you could end up penalized by the largest search engine right now: Google) and these should be seamlessly integrated into the topic of your post. To better get the attention of your target sales leads, write about something that they can identify with, or write about a problem that their demographic is constantly experiencing. If you provide solutions on your blog before they even happen with your sales leads, then they will see your blog and your website as a very valuable resource. Write about things that are not only “good to know” but also things that they “have to know”. This will help establish you as a thought leader within your niche and help make your products become more reliable.

Schedule

A schedule is imperative if you want to keep readers coming back to your blog, aside from great content. A posting schedule will help you regularly update your blog, and sticking to it religiously is the only way to make a lead generation tool out of a series of blog posts. In the words of blogger Chris Guillebeau: “I know if I missed a day and nothing happened, then it would be much easier to miss another day. Pretty soon I wouldn’t have much of a sched­ule, and then I’d have less motivation. It’s a downward spiral that I want to avoid, so I keep the schedule sacred. ” To help you keep up with your posts even if life becomes too busy, a great idea from Chris is to write 10 posts in advance. This way, if you become pressed for time, you can still post according to your schedule and keep your readers happy.

If you don’t have time to write for your blog, then consider hiring a lead generation company who is experienced with online marketing. A good company will help you create great content for your blog while you concentrate on your business website.

How To Start An Interesting Blog For Your Small Business

This week, we’re going to tackle the basics of how to set up your own blog for your business. A good blog will attract quality sales leads using your content and can eventually become the main lead generation channel of your business.

Every day, there are about 2 blogs created every second around the world, and a significant percentage of these blogs are by beginners. Due to the popularity of online entrepreneurship, most of these blogs are probably connected to a company website from a fledgeling business, much like yours. If you really want to make a significant dent in your target niche, then you have to make sure that your company blog will be able to attract your sales leads. To help your businesses get better returns for your efforts on blogging, we have provided here the essential tips on how to start a company blog from scratch.

The best way to start a blog is by using available free platforms for blogging, the most popular of which are WordPress and Blogger. Both platforms have their own strengths; Blogger, being affiliated with Google, allows for faster integration with Google-owned business tools while WordPress, being a bit more for professionals, offers more customizability for your blog. Using free hosting sites such as these will save you from the expense of purchasing the services of a hosting company. If you have funds set aside for you blog however, you can make use of a self-hosted WordPress blog for a few dollars, the cheapest web hosting service being about $3-$4 a month.

After you’ve selected a good blogging platform, it’s now time to create the design of your blog. A free hosted blog provides free templates from which you can choose and easily apply to your site. A self-hosted blog will let you create a more customized blog or, if you want, you can hire a web designer to design your blogsite for you from scratch. This is the best choice if you want to integrate your blog design to that of your website.

The important things to consider about design are:

  • It should be user friendly – you don’t want your sales leads to have a hard time finding previous or recent posts on your blog, much the the RSS button.
  • The colors should be appealing to the eyes and, ideally, reflect the colors from your website.
  • It would be best if you have a responsive design for your blog so that the template automatically adjusts when your leads view your blog through their mobile devices.
  • All elements of the site should load quickly so that your readers won’t bounce off, so as much as possible, keep flash designs to a minimum.
  • Integrate good SEO tactics like using meta and title tags in the framework of your blog to make it search engine friendly.

Do not forget to include a call to action on your blog. A splash page which instructs your viewers to sign up for newsletters will allow you to easily add them to your business list in case you have to email them or need your telemarketer to call them about product updates.

The next post will be all about what to write on your blog, what your posts are about, and how to make these easily searchable through search engines.