Ahhh, spring: The days are longer, the flowers are in bloom, and hints of summer are in the air. It’s a time of renewal and regrowth for many things, and that should include your business marketing. So why stick with the same old lead generation tactics?
Don’t get me wrong: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!” If your current marketing is consistently generating a desired number of qualified leads for your business, then keep doing what you’re doing. However, if your results have fallen off over time, or your heart just isn’t in it anymore, consider the following five ideas for spring cleaning your marketing.
1.) Update Your Website
Your Website is your digital sales representative, showcasing your brand to the world, and yet it’s easy to neglect. Take a look at your Website (don’t worry, I won’t tell anyone it’s been a while since you have!) and ask yourself the following questions:
- Is the look still feel fresh, or does it appear dated? How does it compare to your competitors?
- Is it mobile friendly?
- Are the existing keywords/SEO still relevant? Could you update to produce better results?
- Is the site’s navigation user friendly? Ask a friend to find 3-5 specific items on your site and then give you feedback on how easy they were to find.
REV Resource: If you’d like some expert advice on refreshing your Website, we have several partners that specialize in Web design, SEO, SEM, etc. Let us know what you may need, and we can point you in the right direction.
2.) Create a Video or Two (or Ten)
Show, don’t tell, is the mantra of today’s marketing. Prospects would rather watch a video than read lots of text to understand quickly and easily how your product or service can help them. A professionally-produced video is a resource that you can use on your Web site, on social media, as part of a sales presentation or trade show display, and more.
But if you are concerned about costs, content, and/or the camera-readiness of your staff, here are some alternative ideas:
- Animated explainer videos are a fun and effective way to educate your prospects on a product or service in only 2-3 minutes. And it’s all computer-generated, so no need to memorize your lines. Here’s an example from one of our clients.
- Go “behind the scenes” to give your audience a more informal glimpse of the personalities that make up your company
- Interview your customers for testimonials about your company
REV Resource: Contact our friends at TG Visuals Video Production for an exploration of what type of videos could create an effective visual message for your brand.
3.) Host a Webinar
If you’ve talked shop with me for more than five minutes, you will know I’m a big fan of Webinars. Webinars level the playing field for small businesses and expand your marketing reach by allowing you to present to multiple prospects all at one time. Plus, the cost of hosting Webinars is much lower than most other forms of traditional marketing (trade shows, advertising, etc.) and Webinars integrate well with email and social media (other lower cost marketing tactics).
REV Resource: Check out our 5 Best Practices for a Successful Webinar guide for lots of tips for a DIY Webinar. Or if you’d prefer us to do the heavy lifting for you (and why wouldn’t you?), take advantage of our affordable Ready-to-Go Webinar Sherpa services services.
4.) Get more social
Whether we B2B marketers want to admit it or not, social media is here to stay. There are of course, many social media platforms out there; however, we’re going to recommend that you especially focus on increasing your LinkedIn activity—most B2B marketers under-utilize the capabilities of this powerful platform. LinkedIn can provide you with a goldmine of prospecting possibilities, including:
- Research target companies, follow their Company pages, and learn who is the appropriate contact for you
- Follow companies that are highly esteemed in your industry (or that of your target prospects’) to stay informed and relevant
- Join groups where your target prospects are active, and participate in discussions to connect and demonstrate your expertise
REV Resource: Read this great article from our archives on maximizing LinkedIn for new business development
5.) Go Forth and Network
Digital connecting is great, but sometimes we just need to get out of the office and go talk to people face-to-face. Meeting new people that can be potential referral partners is an effective way to pump up your lead generation opportunities. The goal should be to connect and build relationships with other professionals that are not competitors for the purpose of referring business to each other. (Caution: Don’t be that person who tries to sell everyone your services the moment you meet.)
If you are new to referral networking, or are looking for more/different opportunities, we recommend the following:
- Check out your local Chambers of Commerce and Rotary Clubs. (To really get plugged in, volunteer for a committee!)
- Ask trusted colleagues where they network. If they are part of a referral networking group, they will likely invite you to visit.
REV Resource: If you are in the Atlanta area, we highly recommend the Professional Services Alliance (PSA) for business-to-business services professionals, meeting twice a month in Sandy Springs. If interested, email Tara for details.
by Richard Kirby, Executive Impact
When I joined LinkedIn (LI) in 2003, there were less than half a million subscribers. As of January 2013, they now boast over 200 million. LI has become, without question, THE online social network for business.
Are you and your business leveraging the phenomenal potential of LI? In this article, you will learn four key strategies that will gain you new customers and revenues you never knew were possible.
Strategy 1: Attract new prospects by increasing your online visibility. Similar to SEO for your company web site, a more “findable” LI profile will insure that more prospects find your offerings 24/7/365. With 90%+ of buyers researching online before making purchases, it is critical they find you in their LI search results.
So, what can you do to improve your “rank” in LI searches? First, broaden your network by inviting desirable contacts to connect and accepting such invitations when offered. Second, follow the recommendations LI offers when you log on and add information to complete your profile. Third, add to your profile keywords that prospects are likely to use when searching for your products and services (see my profile as an example).
Strategy 2: Encourage prospects to contact you by increasing your LI credibility. Once you have increased your visibility, it is critical that you create an attractive first impression. Major sources of credibility are endorsements and recommendations. Endorsements are likely to come organically from satisfied customers and positive business relationships. Recommendations, on the other hand, will require focused action.
Here is an action plan for increasing your credibility: Start by making a list of your most satisfied customers and asking them to provide you a recommendation. Better yet, write a brief two- or three-sentence suggested recommendation, send it to them, and ask that they modify it or use it as provided. As you receive recommendations, elect to show them on your profile so visitors can view them.
Strategy 3: Establish and/or improve your LI company page. The previous strategies referred to your individual LI profile. If you are a solo entrepreneur or the principle in a very small company, this may be sufficient. If you are not, then you should create and fully populate a separate company page. You can find information to guide you through the creation of a company page by clicking on Help Center at the bottom of LI pages and entering “company page” in the search bar of the subsequent Help Center page.
Strategy 4: Identify prospective clients and reach out to engage them. You can find prospects on the Advanced People Search page utilizing keywords, company names, job titles, etc. With over 200 million users, you can find many people you desire to engage through these searches.
Don’t have the time or need some help to enact a more effective implementation of these or other business development strategies? Check with REV Demand to see how they may be able to assist you. Good luck and happy selling!