Need help putting your content pieces together? Marketing Consultants may be your answer!

Marketing Consultants put pieces together

Let’s face it, it’s your content and using it to cultivate your organization’s position in the marketplace is a pretty first-hand endeavor.  Only you can really know what position you want to take, what conversation you want to have – and ultimately what story you want to tell. So, when is it appropriate to bring in a content marketing consultant?

Consultants help bring out your unique story, the one you want to tell and can help you set the stage.

 If you think that’s a good idea, then it may make sense to bring in an outside consultant.

An accomplished marketing consultant will:

  1. Bring the experience of previous engagements and help you avoid the pitfalls that are inevitable in setting any new large effort.

 

  1. Help uncover your unique conversation.

 

  1. Devise the execution plan.

 

  1. Reset expectations among the team, especially where there is internal disagreement about the details of how it will all get done.

“Our business is one of a kind.” So how can a marketing consultant help you?

When an organization says “our business is unique” …..what they’re actually saying is “our content is special.”

Part of the approach to content marketing is a generalized approach that attempts to find that uniqueness.  So bringing in someone new who doesn’t know your organization can shake the trees for some good things to drop. This can also shine a light on how to  differentiate your business from your competition.

A good consultant know the pitfalls, the best practices and ways to navigate the politics of recruiting others in the organization.

A experienced consultant provides:

  1. Sanity checks for getting things done

 

  1. Plan how roll-outs should be phased

 

  1. Suggest what kind of content velocity is appropriate

 

  1. Ultimately, uncover the realistic opportunity for the marketing effort to succeed

In Summary, to clear off the dust and get your business thriving again hiring an outside content marketing consultant can bring a new light to your story and ultimately bringing in more sales and customer retention.

 

6 Advantages of Employing an Inbound Marketing Consultant

Advantage of hiring a Inbound Marketing Consultant

Inbound marketing, a series of actions to drive growth and create movement in a modern, quantifiable, and scalable way. Organizations that implement the inbound process are achieving 4x more in driving revenue and hitting sales goals.

INBOUND MARKETING, WHAT DOES IT TAKE?

In short, inbound marketing focuses on enticing traffic, converting traffic to leads, and nurturing leads to new sales and opportunities. Which is crucial for a book of business and a marketing consultant can do this for you with great knowledge and expertise.

Here are the top justifications and benefits for considering an extra hand for your inbound marketing efforts.

1. There’s a lack of resources

To get inbound marketing humming there are several steps. For business’ that may not have the marketing budget to hire a team, an consultant can bring the necessary resources.  More than 60% of B2B marketers today struggle with achieving leads and generating revenue for lack of resources such as staff, funding and time.

2. You don’t understand mechanics

Understanding the principle is just not enough: attract traffic, give them a reason to convert, nurture them into customers, etc.—but you don’t entirely understand how the methodology works. A consultant can make sure the important parts are functioning.

3. Benefit from their experience

Consultants have experience across diverse industries and trying different approaches to attracting traffic, converting to leads, and nurturing into new opportunities. This diverse set of experiences can come in handy as the strategy hits brick walls and you need to come up with new ideas to test.

4. Receive inclusive planning

Hiring a consultant can give you that outside look in and objectively put into action the process of Inbound. Planning is key for your success and the experts fully know and are trained to implement.

5. Spread out the cost

A consultant has resources that are shared across their team and other clients. Instead of your organization needing to hire a copywriter, SEO expert, social manager, etc., you can leverage shared resources from your consultant

6. You’ll be able to learn as you go

Oftentimes, you can learn from your consultant as you go. When you feel ready to take on parts of the program yourself, you can! Most consultants are willing to work with you at contract renewals if you have new resources that are up to speed on inbound mechanics.

Wrapping Up

Inbound marketing is an effective mechanism for driving growth, it also cost less than other tactics. Why not go for quality at a great price!

Part THREE: Developing Your 2017 Digital Marketing Strategy – Aiming High

Welcome to PART THREE of developing your digital marketing strategy series!

In this blog I am going to go over measurement, device performance & accountability and landing page optimization & conversion rate optimization.

If you missed PART TWO and or PART ONE, please feel free to review.

Measurement

Measurement is a strategic elements that many of us do not take advantage of. Ask yourself “How are we measuring our goals?” You will mostly undoubtedly discover that there is work to be done.

Keeping a pulse on performance via multiple platforms is a good idea, but comparing the performance tracked by different platforms isn’t ideal.

In order to measure the performance of the strategy and to provide clarity into the tactical elements, the goals need to be very specific and quantifiable (we’ll get to that part later). If you are promoting multiple products, there should be separate goals for each.

This also tends to lead to double-counting conversions that multiple platforms contributed to and therefore took full credit, as opposed to an attribution model that shows cross-channel impact.

Device performance & accountability

I urge you to continue to read on to bring a clear understanding of the importance of the different impact that each device has played in historical success.

After defining your goals in our paragraph above, you should determine each device’s role in achieving those goals. Don’t stop now, your success depends on this.

Breaking the goals down to the device level forces you to be both more deliberate in creating tactics specific to each device and accountable for their individual performance, as opposed to letting it all come out in the wash.

Landing page optimization & conversion rate optimization

You may be thinking right now, ” My performance in the past years has been strong” this is where I urge you as I have in the leading up to paragraphs to not slow down or you may turn around one day and see your being left behind. DREAM BIG, AIM HIGH,because there’s almost certainly something to be gained by identifying opportunities to improve your conversion rate through landing page optimization. In fact in Inbound Methodology it has been proven that the more ADDED landing pages to your site the more click through and conversation rate. (Watch for future Blogs on Landing and Thank You pages)

Keep in mind the device goals that you set, and be sure to review opportunities for landing page, app and site conversion rate opportunities through the lens of those goals.

Next week I will join in the Account Base Marketing aspect, be sure to catch that Blog!

Stay tuned for additional digital 2017 marketing  tips!

Business Consulting at Your Door!

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Part Two: Developing Your 2017 Digital Marketing Strategy – Aiming High

Welcome to PART TWO of developing your digital marketing strategy series! If you missed PART ONE, you can click here.

In this blog I am going to go over a few key steps with regards to analysis and competitors while reaching a goal.

Historical performance & gap analysis

Let’s talk about a few lessons with analyzing past performances. Consider these insights as you move forward. What worked? What didn’t? It is helpful to outline your performance in great detail so that you have a benchmark for goal-setting. Make note of any tracking issues or caveats, if applicable.

Considered your performance results. Are they strong, poor or just okay? Identifying your strengths and weaknesses allows you to uncover opportunities and growth.

Keep in mind whether there were (or are) any external influences that positively or negatively affect historical performance. At times we see deviations in performance due to things that are entirely outside of our control. Those blips should be adjusted for when creating projections for the year ahead.

Competitors

Analyzing the competition is another great way to uncover opportunities, allowing growth.  Having an unbiased understanding of strengths and weaknesses also gives you a leg up.

Ask yourself these questions from a product standpoint and a marketing standpoint:

  • What are your competitors doing that you aren’t?
  • Realistically, what are they doing better?
  • How are they messaging their value proposition?
  • How can you further differentiate your offering?

You might want to see my Blog – How to Make Your Advertising Content Relative to Your Audience

Goals

Strategy is an important trait, without this it really becomes impossible to attain your goals. Before you can outline the digital marketing goals, you have to understand the business objectives and the role that digital marketing should play in supporting those objectives. From there, you can create more specific goals as they pertain to digital marketing.

The aforementioned sections (target customer, historical performance, gap analysis and competitors) should help to shape your goals. Everything in the remaining sections should be determined with the purpose of achieving the goals outlined within this section.

In order to measure the performance of the strategy and to provide clarity into the tactical elements, the goals need to be very specific and quantifiable (we’ll get to that part later). If you are promoting multiple products, there should be separate goals for each.

Goals should also be anchored in profitability. With e-commerce, this is often considered easy enough. With lead generation, there needs to be an understanding of lead value and ROAS (return on ad spend) and ROI (return on investment) on lead counts, also taking into account the point of diminishing returns. However with lead generation let’s talk briefly about customer retention. Adding in a customer loyalty goal in 2017 is a must. Using BIG Data here is really what I call your “golden nugget”.  Next week I will join in the Account Base Marketing aspect, be sure to catch that Blog!

Stay tuned for additional digital 2017 marketing  tips!

Business Consulting at Your Door!

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Part One: Developing Your 2017 Digital Marketing Strategy – Aiming High

The consumer path-to-purchase has never been more challenging. Over 80% of journeys span digital and physical channels and consumers demand experiences that are personalized, convenient and seamless from browse to buy and beyond. All the more reason for us to Dream Big and Aim High.

Digital marketers need to map each point across the series of interactions that occur from awareness through advocacy that deliver on the modern consumer’s expectations and incorporate surprise and delight along the way.

Customer target

More than likely you know your customer levels like the back of your hand, but it is beneficial to outline personas when creating your marketing plan. Marketing roles go beyond the general sort into detailed descriptions, which can provide assistant in identifying opportunities to reach all of the consumers that form your target audience.

For example, you might aim for middle-aged mothers differently from the way you target young single women, because their priorities are diverse. Their browsing, social media and search lifestyle likely differ as well, which influence ad placement and targeting.

 Buying cycle

Undoubtedly, you know your sales cycle. As you strategize your marketing strategy, be sure to account for the different steps in the cycle and how you intend to facilitate movement throughout the funnel.

  • How can you drive additional low-funnel traffic?
  • How long does it typically take for consumers to move through the cycle?
  • Where are consumers dropping out of the funnel?
  • How can you nurture your pipeline?
  • How will you drive top-funnel traffic?

Stay tuned for additional digital 2017 marketing  tips!

Business Consulting at Your Door!

stayTuned-1

How to Make Your Advertising Content Relative to Your Audience

Effective advertising aims tailored messages to clearly identified market segments, or target audiences. The act of aiming obviously depends on knowing where to point. Consequently, the best way to create relevant content is by starting with a concise definition of your target audience — knowing where to point. Acquiring insights into their characteristics and buying motivations equips you with the knowledge to develop messages that resonate with that target audience.

Target Audience Profile

Defining your target audience requires specifics. You need a composite picture of your target audience that includes its persona as evidenced by its demographic profile and its psychographic profile as evidenced by its attitudes, opinions, values, aspirations and lifestyles. Use whatever demographic attributes you believe are most relevant for your profiling purposes. Age, sex and education attainment might be very important. But, religion, ethnicity and home ownership may be unimportant. Take care that your demographic variables are germane to an actionable target audience profile. By going through this exercise, you may discover that you have multiple target audiences separated by age group, for example, which require different advertising content.

Probe for Understanding

Much of your demographic data can be obtained from secondary sources such as census data or from an inexpensive survey of customers and prospects. Psychographic characteristics are not that easily attainable, unfortunately. You may have to gather this information by using focus groups or a more formalized survey that structures probing questions about emotions, perceptions and buying behavior without being offensive. Ultimately, you want to arrive an understanding of what triggers the buying decision and an expression of the key benefit that’s associated with your business, which aligns with that buying-decision trigger. This is the proprietary benefit that separates you from your competition.

The Advertising Goal

Having completed the upfront work of developing a composite picture of your target market, you’re now prepared to address the question of what you want the advertising to accomplish in view of the information acquired in defining your target. Your advertising goal is an expression of moving the target audience’s perception and attitude about your business, product or service from its current position to where you want it to be. The change typically translates into the wanted change in audience usage of your product or service. The goal of your advertising could be a change from a negative to a positive or a change from unknown because you’re a new entity to a positive attitude.

Persuasive Strategies

You effect change in the existing perception and attitude about your business based on a unique user benefit that drives buying decisions, which your target associates with your business, product or service. The user benefit must be relevant, compelling and believable based on what you learned about buying-decision triggers in developing the target audience psychographic profile. The benefit is the centerpiece of your advertising content that persuades your audience to make a purchase. You can use rational persuasion with a benefit that appeals to logic or an emotional benefit that appeals to instinct. Many marketers encourage using both, because shoppers tend to buy based on instinct and justify their purchase based on logic. What’s important is that the benefits resonate with your target audience.

Demographics in Advertising Strategies

by George Boykin

You have two options when selecting the audience to receive your advertising messages: You can engage in mass advertising that reaches everybody in your market area, or you can target your advertising to reach specific segments of your market area. Marketers use demographics in target advertising. Demographics or demographic profiles describe certain characteristics of unique market segments that are targeted to receive your advertising messages.

Understanding Your Market

Mass advertising is financially out-of-reach for many businesses regardless of size. This is why marketers have found demographics quite useful in understanding and categorizing market segments according to socioeconomic characteristics, which are observable and measurable. Socioeconomic characteristics are commonly accepted as predictive markers for buying behavior. Typical examples of demographic variables are age, gender, ethnicity, education, occupation, income level, marital status, religion and family size. These characteristics are often called the external reality because they describe the “who” of your market segment — what’s observable about their economic and social status relative to others. Demographics allow considerable flexibility to input the characteristics that are most relevant to your target market. The only qualifiers are that they be observable and measurable.

Demographics in Advertising

Demographics govern advertising message content and media vehicle selection. For example, the message, the imagery, the music and the latest buzzwords that are used in laptop computer advertising that targets teenagers would likely be inappropriate in advertising for the same laptop computer that targets retirees. Moreover, you will have better success reaching teenagers on teen-oriented programs than on the Sunday morning talk shows. Your challenge as an advertiser is to match your advertising message with the demographics of your target market using the most effective vehicles to reach that market.

Demographics Limitations

Demographics tell you about the external realities of your target market — who is buying and likely prospects for your product or service. Demographics do not explain why consumers select certain products or services while rejecting others. Marketers needed a better grasp of the “internal” qualitative elements of human behavior that shape buying decisions. The resolution to these qualitative concerns is found in psychographics. Psychographic analysis explores attitudes, opinions and personality traits that shape shopping behavior. When you combine demographics with psychographics, you get a quantitative and qualitative picture of your target market. This composite picture helps you to develop more persuasive advertising messages and select more efficient media vehicles to reach your target market.

Developing Targeted Advertising Strategies

Thanks to target advertising, you can create messages and use media tailored to shoppers with demographic and psychographic characteristics that are typical of your current and likely customers. You can build a demographic profile of your target market from public databases and from low-cost surveys. Marketers frequently use focus groups to develop psychographic profiles by asking probing questions of respondents that share similar demographic traits. Focus groups can prove to be costly. Nevertheless, investing in focus groups to develop a psychographic profile that complements the demographic profile of your target market could be invaluable in developing a targeted advertising strategy for your business.