How to Create a Profitable Paid Ad Strategy For Your Videos And Grow Your Business

Data shows that nearly 100 million hours of video are consumed each day on Facebook. 100 million hours!! Not only that, videos on Facebook generally achieve 135% more organic reach than photos, showing that users enjoy watching videos on this platform specifically. Because Facebook influences more than half of consumer’s online and offline purchasing behavior, it’s important to get in front of these potential prospects as quickly and as often as possible. This way to do this is through creating a profitable paid ad strategy.

There are a few key strategies to create profitable Facebook ads for lead generation businesses. With the right strategy for your videos, you can boost your business and grab a foothold in the marketplace. Here are 6 crucial steps you should take to make sure you generate those leads and close those deals.

Choose Your Budget

Begin with the end in mind. Know how much you want to spend. There are a few ways to go about this, with the two most common being a combination of a maximum daily spend and a set campaign budget. Setting a daily budget helps stretch your advertising dollars over a longer period of time.

When you select your budget in Facebook, you’ll be able to see your potential reach. There are several metrics, but here are the most important ones.

  • Reach – The number of unique individuals who saw your ad
  • Impressions – The number of times someone had the opportunity to see your ad
  • Cost per result – How much it cost to reach the goal (clicks, messages, etc.)

As you start out with your advertising, you may not know how many people you should be reaching and how much it ought to be costing. Spend a few minutes looking online for industry averages. You’d be surprised at how many agencies, service providers and individuals like to share their results. In broad brushstrokes, depending upon your industry, cost per leads can vary to as low as $11 to as high as $100.

With those ranges in mind, think of what you want to accomplish with the budget you’ve set. Remember, video advertising in general is more expensive, but that also is because it drives more attention, consideration and conversions when you reach the right audience.

Plan Ahead

Did you know that it can take up to 48 hours for Facebook to approve an ad? If you don’t plan ahead and your strategy is to quickly boost a video advertisement the day you post it, then you might not get the results you expected. (Especially if your content ends up taking more than 24 hours to get approved.)

Additionally, you might not be letting your ads run long enough. It’s fine to do a single, one-day advertisement if you’ve primed your audience to buy. However, if your one-day advertisement is the first time they’ve seen your brand, service or offering, you likely won’t be able to convert as many people into leads as you’d like.

Furthermore, remember that 85 percent of Facebook users watch video without the sound on. You need to plan to have your video ad make sense. This can be accomplished with text overlays or by using subtitles. No matter what, in order for your video to shine and generate leads, you have to think about how your content will look and how you will support your message through paid ads.

Pick Your Campaign Objective

You’ve budgeted and planned ahead. As part of that planning, you should have thought about what the objective of the ad campaign would be. While the end result is to generate leads through your fantastic video content, there are lots of ways to accomplish that task. Within Facebook ad campaigns, there are three overarching objectives – awareness, consideration and conversion.

In an ideal world, you would run video ads that support each objective in order to move people through the purchase funnel. Let’s talk about the tactics within each. Choosing the right objective for the right video can help improve your lead generation numbers and reduce your cost per lead.

Awareness

Awareness campaigns help generate interest by letting people know what products and services you offer. Facebook has two ways to create campaigns with awareness objectives.

  • Brand awareness
  • Reach

Each option has different ways the algorithm targets your audience. However, both types of awareness campaigns support single video ads. These campaigns are great for general brand lift.

Consideration

Consideration campaigns are designed to get people thinking about your business and wanting to look for more information about what you do. For video ads on Facebook, there is a consideration campaign designed entirely around lead generation. These lead ads include forms that your customers can fill out. This is perfect for creating a profitable Facebook ad campaign.

Conversion

A conversion campaign encourages people to purchase or use your product or service. People can fill out forms and not be ready to buy. Sometimes you need to let your video ad help seal the deal and convert those on the fence into your camp.

Set Up Your Website Correctly

It can take several hundred digital touchpoints to convert someone from consideration to conversion. One of the most painful things to watch is businesses who spend lots of time and money on video ads not take the extra step to ensure their website is ready to help them convert their leads into sales later. The two most important tracking tools to do this are Google Analytics and a Facebook Pixel.

The Facebook Pixel is especially crucial when setting up Facebook ads. These tracking cookie are all over the internet. By setting up these cookies on your website, you are learning who your customer is and what their behavior is. These cookies can be used to later remarket to people who have already interacted with your page, ads or website. This is really powerful and important stuff, so don’t think setting up a campaign on Facebook is enough.

Adjust, Adjust, Adjust

Once your Facebook ad campaign kicks off, check in on it. After 500 impressions, your ad will be given a relevance score. The closer to 10 that number is, the better the ad is performing with the audience you chose. Anything under 7 should be adjusted. That adjustment could be audience, creative, copy or call to action. A Facebook video ad campaign shouldn’t be set and forget. (The need to adjust to get things right is another reason to follow No. 2 and plan ahead so you have time to make changes.)

Review Metrics

Along with the relevance score, you need to check in on how much of the video ad has been watched. It’s important to see where people drop off. Is there a jarring cut? Change in the music? Do people lose interest? What percentage? Perhaps you want to remarket to people who started, but didn’t finish your video. Without reviewing the metrics, you won’t know if your video content is hitting the mark and ultimately making you money.

Conclusion

A profitable paid ad strategy for your videos requires budgeting, planning and reviewing. It’s not enough to set up a last-minute campaign and hope things will go off without a hitch. Start taking advantage of the video real-estate landscape Facebook has to offer and watch paid video ads take your business to new heights.

The Comprehensive Guide to Content Marketing In 2019

Everything you should know about content marketing to grow your business and reach your goals

Have questions about content marketing? Then you’ve come to the right place. This comprehensive guide takes you from inspiration through distribution to answer every question you’ve ever had about content marketing (and some you’ve never thought of).

Definitions and driving forces:

  • What is content marketing?
  • Why do I need a content strategy?
  • What is content marketing strategy?
  • What types of content do I have to choose from?
  • How do I distribute content?
  • How does social media fit into content strategy?

Getting started or improving performance in content marketing:

  • Where can I research content topics?
  • How often should I post to my blog?
  • How often should I release videos?
  • How often should I post to social media?
  • How do I post content to social media?
  • How do I organize my content marketing?
  • How do I track results?

Definitions and driving forces:

What is content marketing?

Marketing trends come and go. In the 1930s, radio ads were the hot new thing. In the 50s, it was TV ads. Marketing has pretty much always evolved to take advantage of the latest technology. You might call content marketing the marketing tactic for the internet age.

But you came here for a definition, not a history lesson. Content marketing is text, videos, audio images, or other content, thoughtfully distributed with the goal of building customer relationships and, ultimately, driving sales.

You build customer relationships by providing interesting and engaging content that your audience is eager to consume. As they consume your content, customers come to trust your business and see you as an authority in your industry. As a result, they feel comfortable giving you money in exchange for a product or service.

The best thing about content marketing is that rather than being annoyed by the commercial break, customers seek content to consume. According to Demand Metric, content marketing costs 62% less than traditional marketing while bringing in 3 times as many leads. So you spend less money and get a better result.

But content alone is not enough. The best content in the world is useless if nobody sees it. So you also need to distribute it to your audience.

Where and how you do that is all part of your content marketing strategy.

Why do I need a content strategy?

There are two kinds of businesses: businesses that don’t bother to create a content strategy and businesses that are top performers in their industry.

If that seems like an extreme statement, consider this. The 2018 Benchmarks, Budgets and Trends Report from the Content Marketing Institute found that 62% of top performing companies have a documented content marketing strategy.

If you don’t have a documented content strategy you’re going to miss opportunities, miss customers, and generally just miss out.

How do I make a content marketing strategy?

A content marketing strategy tells you what content to create and what to do with it once it’s made. Developing a content marketing strategy starts with goals. Think about the effect you want your content to have. Are you trying to boost sales? Increase customer loyalty? Make more people aware of your product?

To measure your progress toward those goals you need to identify trackable metrics. How many people are clicking your link, reading your blog, leaving comments, sharing your posts and videos?

Make sure that every piece of content is effective by codifying your unique value. What sets you apart from other companies in your industry? What is your brand story? How you tell this story depends on who your audience is.  

Create customer personas to help you understand who your audience is. That way you can ensure that every piece of content you make appeals to the people you’re trying to reach. Personas will also help you decide where to distribute your content for the greatest impact.

Compiling all this information into a document that everyone on your team can access puts you on the road to being a top-performing company.

What types of content do I have to choose from?

Almost anything can be content. A blog post? Content. A video? Content. That funny gif you shared on Twitter? Content. All of it is content. The trick is to choose the format that fits your message and your audience.

Longer-form content is good for conveying complex messages or big ideas. It includes videos, blogs, newsletters, infographics, podcasts, e-books, webinars, case studies, apps, white papers, and slideshares. So, yeah. Pretty much everything can be content.

Short form content is better at conveying a single clear idea or topic. It includes charts and graphs, lists, mind maps, templates, quizzes, and polls.

Super-short content is good for reinforcing an idea you’ve already presented in long-form somewhere else. It can also help solidify your brand voice. Flash form content includes cartoons, illustrations, GIFs, memes, quotes, user-generated content, and timelines.

It’s almost impossible to assemble a truly comprehensive list of content marketing formats, because anything that entertains, educates, or informs your audience counts as content.

If you try to make content in all of the formats listed above, you’ll likely overwhelm your audience. Also, your marketing team might stage a coup.

You’ll get the best results by choosing two or three formats and doing them really well. Once you’ve mastered your messaging and customer interaction around one format, you can add another format to the mix.

How do I distribute content?

Where you distribute your content depends on who your audience is, the type of content you’ve created, and what your goals are.

The best content is created with the distribution channel in mind. For example, if you’re making a video, the length and tone might be different if you’re creating a video for an email to existing customers versus one that will be publicly shared on your Facebook page.

The go-to distribution channels are your website, your blog, marketing emails, and social media platforms. Choose your distribution channels based on who your clients are. If you’re selling designer sunglasses, LinkedIn probably isn’t your platform, but Instagram might be.

Find out: How to distribute your videos for maximum growth

While choosing the best distribution channel is important, don’t make the mistake of distributing on only one channel. Ideally, your content appears in some form on the go-to channels that fit you, like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Instagram.

You’ll probably make some adjustments to fit the platform, but the extra work spent repurposing one piece of content means more eyes on it—and ultimately higher return on investment.

Where does social media fit into content strategy?

If you keep your content confined to your website or blog, you’re limiting its reach. Social media is where content goes to make new friends.

Guess what the most popular social media channel in the United States is.

Go ahead.

You said Facebook didn’t you? #facebookmarketingislife #remarketingcentral

In 2016, you would have been right. But in 2018, the Pew Research Center found that YouTube is actually the most popular social media site, with 73% of U.S. adults using the platform.

Facebook was a close second with 68% The next most popular were Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat. LinkedIn was on the list at 25% and Twitter at 24%.

Before you run to post your video on YouTube, hang on a second. The most popular site isn’t always the best option. Theoretically, more popularity means more eyes on your content. It also means more competition from other marketers.

If you’re posting only on YouTube and Facebook, you’re hitting a wide swath of the American public—but that might not contain your ideal customer.

Different platforms have vastly different demographics. Pinterest users are overwhelmingly female at 70%. Snapchat users are young, with 85% percent are between the ages of 18 and 34. LinkedIn users are business professionals.

Instead of distributing to everyone and hoping the right people see it, distribute on the platform with the highest concentration of your target audience.

Getting started (or improving performance) in content marketing:

Where can I research content topics?

Great content starts with a great topic. You need something that resonates with your target audience. Something that makes them sit up and take notice. Something they’ll go out of their way to consume.

So it’s no surprise that selecting content topics is the task voted Most Likely to Cause Marketers to Bang Their Heads Against the Wall. But the right tools can help you avoid those headaches.

Before we get into tools, let’s relieve some of the anxiety you’re feeling. If you think you’re going to come up with a completely unique topic that nobody has ever talked about before, you’re wrong.

Everything has been talked about before. Absolutely everything. The goal isn’t to come up with something completely unique. It’s to say it in your voice colored by your brand story.

Okay, now to the tools.

Google Analytics. The perfect tool for researching keywords and search terms that will help your content show up in Google searches. That’s a useful insight since Google is the top search engine in the world with 1.6 billion unique monthly visitors. The next runner up, Bing, only gets 400 million.

Google Trends. While we’re tapping the rich resources of planet Google, don’t forget Google Trends. This handy dashboard shows you what’s trending on Google. You can even search for specific keywords or phrases and see how popular they’ve been over time.

Ubersuggest. This helps you discover keywords and phrases related to your topic. Results include search volume, competition, and cost per click.

BuzzSumo. This website helps you find the most shared, trending, and highest performing content for specific topics across the web. This is a paid service, so expect a monthly fee.

EpicBeat. Similar to Buzzsumo, EpicBeat lets you see shares comments and engagement for popular posts on different topics. They have limited free functionality, but you can upgrade for full access.

Ahrefs Content Explorer. See how content has performed across different social media channels with this powerful content research tool. You’ll pay for this one, too.

Quora. A free membership site where anyone can post questions and anyone can answer. Search by your topic to find out exactly what questions people are asking about it.

Answers.com. Like Quora, you can type a keyword or phrase in the box and get questions from real people on that topic.

Answer the Public. This is a weird one, but you can’t beat it for ease of use and volume of ideas. Type your search into the box and get a graphic with dozens of questions asked by the internet hive mind.

All those tools are useful, but don’t forget your greatest resource—your customers. Pay attention to the questions they are asking. Your sales and customer service teams probably have a short list of questions that they hear all the time. Find ways to answer those questions with your content.

How often should I post to my blog?

Your blog is often the cornerstone of your content marketing efforts. It’s where you post videos, engage with customers, and share the special bonus content you’ve created.

According to Hubspot, B2B marketers who use blogs get 67% more leads. And companies that blog get 97% more links to their website.

The general rule is 11 or more posts per month will maximize your results. Anything less than that, and you’re getting small improvement for each additional post.

Super-small companies (10 employees or fewer) see a jump in traffic with each additional blog post per month. Even one or two additional posts can increase traffic by 50%.

The outlier here is large companies with more than 201 employees. They see very small change when they increase from one post to 10. But by posting 11 or more times a month, they can increase traffic by 4 times.

So, if possible, post about 3 times a week to get the most out of your posting schedule.

How often should I release videos?  

There’s no hard and fast rule for how often you should release videos. It depends on how you’re using them. If your videos are part of your sales funnel, you might create 8 or 10 and push them to potential customers through email over a period of weeks. If you create videos for your blog, you might need one per week.

But remember that they take little longer than a blog to produce, so you may want to make several in advance.

How often should I post to social media platforms?

Every social media platform has different methods of sorting posts. Those algorithms impact the lifespan of posts on the platform. Generally, marketers talk about the half-life of a post, the length of time it takes for content to reach 50% of its total lifetime engagement.

Twitter posts have the shortest half-life at 18 minutes. Pinterest has the longest with a half-life of 3.5 months. In between, you get Facebook at 30 min. Instagram at 19 hours. And YouTube at 6 days.

How often you post depends on how your audience responds to your posts, but the following are a good starting point.

Twitter: 10-20 times per day

Pinterest: 10-15 times per day

Facebook, Instagram: 1 time per day 

LinkedIn: 1-3 times per workday (skip Saturday and Sunday)

YouTube: 1-3 times per week

And remember, you don’t have to post on all of these platforms. Pick the one or two that are most popular with your target audience and concentrate your efforts there.

How do I post content to social media?

Posting several times a week or even just once a day can get time-consuming. Fortunately, there are tools to help you.

Facebook has a built-in scheduling tool that allows you to plan your posts weeks and months ahead of time.

Most other social media platforms haven’t bothered to add this feature. But that’s not a problem since dozens of social media management platforms exist that can be linked to your social accounts for scheduling and analytics.

Some popular favorites include Hootsuite, Sprout Social, and Buffer. They offer similar services at a range of price points and functionality levels. Explore and find the one that’s right for you.

A note of caution when scheduling posts: things change. Markets shake up. Major tragedies happen. News breaks.

If something major is affecting your industry, it’s a good idea to take a look at your scheduled posts and make sure they’re still on message before they go live.

How do I organize my content marketing efforts?  

It seems like a new content management tool pops up every day. Some are better than others for specific tasks, but ultimately it comes down to preference. Which tool you choose depends on what you need the most help with and the size of your budget.

HubSpot. Markets itself as all-in-one inbound marketing software. It allows you to plan, create, and track the performance of content across your website and social channels. There is a free version with limited functionality, but the paid versions offer a formidable suite of services that include blog and content creation tools, social media, email marketing, and more.

CoSchedule. A marketing calendar at heart. With drag and drop functionality and the ability to collaborate across teams, this calendar lets you plan blog and social content in one place. Paid plans range from individual to agency versions.

MailChimp. Designed for email marketing, MailChimp also helps you make weekly digests, segmented email lists, and RSS campaigns. A/B testing is built in. The free version has a lot of functionality but limits the number of subscribers and emails you can have per month.

Buffer. This popular social media management tool includes a social media calendar, analytics, and the ability to manage all your social media accounts from one dashboard. The free plan is fairly robust but lacks a calendar. It also limits you to three social accounts.

Trello. A robust project management tool, Trello works equally well when the project is your content. Trello helps you track where content is in the creation pipeline. And it’s free.

How do I track results?

Many of the tools mentioned above include some sort of analytics reporting to help you track how your content is doing. Social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube have built-in analytics dashboards, as do Hootsuite and Hubspot. A few other tools can give you even more insight into how your content is performing.

Crazy Egg. This tool gives you visual reports to track where visitors go on your website, what they click on, and how they move through your site.

Google Analytics. This is the go-to reporting system to help you see how customers are interacting with your content.

Kissmetrics. Helps you measure engagement, track the effectiveness of different marketing channels, and even send emails based on user behavior.  

Whatever tools you use, make sure you are tracking your results. Using that information, you can refine your content marketing strategy and boost your ROI.

2018 Update Of The Latest Innovations From Google

Adlabs Live Stream Of Googles Marketing Marketing Innovations Keynote

Join Me In Watching Googles Marketing Marketing Innovations Keynote

Posted by ADLABS on Tuesday, July 10, 2018

2018 Update Of The Latest Innovations From Google

1. Gmail can now autocomplete entire emails (!) with a new feature called Smart Compose — just keep hitting the tab button, and Google will autocomplete your message. You can switch it on right now as part of the new Gmail experience Google is rolling out.

1. Gmail can now autocomplete entire emails (!) with a new feature called Smart Compose — just keep hitting the tab button, and Google will autocomplete your message. You can switch it on right now as part of the new Gmail experience Google is rolling out.

2. A new Google Photos feature called Suggested Actions can spot friends in your photos and offer to share those photos with those people with the press of a button.

2. A new Google Photos feature called Suggested Actions can spot friends in your photos and offer to share those photos with those people with the press of a button.

3. Google Photos is more powerful now. You can instantly turn photos of documents into PDFs. You can also remove color from your photos — even just in certain areas — or re-colorize your old black-and-white photos of your relatives.

3. Google Photos is more powerful now. You can instantly turn photos of documents into PDFs. You can also remove color from your photos — even just in certain areas — or re-colorize your old black-and-white photos of your relatives.

4. Google Assistant has made a major breakthrough, according to CEO Sundar Pichai. Soon, it will sound much more natural — in fact, the new voice of Google Assistant, coming later this year, is none other than the R&B star John Legend.

4. Google Assistant has made a major breakthrough, according to CEO Sundar Pichai. Soon, it will sound <em>much</em> more natural — in fact, the new voice of Google Assistant, coming later this year, is none other than the R&B star John Legend.”></span></p>
<p class=5. Google Assistant is also much smarter now. Thanks to a feature called Continued Conversations, you don’t need to say “OK Google” every time you want to talk to it — just use the command to get the conversation going, then ask as many questions as you’d like. Google Assistant will also remember your past answers and parse multiple questions in one sentence.

5. Google Assistant is also much smarter now. Thanks to a feature called Continued Conversations, you don't need to say

read more about smart compose

6. Google is rolling out something parents have been craving since the advent of personal assistants: a politeness feature, in which you essentially get credit for saying “please” when you ask Google Assistant for something. It’s designed to teach children to not be bossy when asking for things. When you say “please,” Google will respond in kind — and even compliment you.

6. Google is rolling out something parents have been craving since the advent of personal assistants: a politeness feature, in which you essentially get credit for saying

7. Pichai unveiled a wild experimental Google Assistant feature called Duplex: You can ask Google Assistant to call a business on your behalf, and Google’s AI will schedule an appointment for you. Yes, this is totally real. Google demoed two phone calls on stage to give people a taste.

8. Google’s new version of Android, called Android P, focuses on “digital well-being.” Basically, Google wants you to spend less time on your phone and more time with your loved ones, so Android will give you information about how you use your phone and even create controls to limit screen time, particularly with apps like YouTube.

8. Google's new version of Android, called Android P, focuses on

9. If you subscribe to multiple publications, like newspapers and online magazines, a new feature called Subscribe with Google will let you access all your paid content anywhere, including on Google Search, Google News, and the publishers’ sites.

9. If you subscribe to multiple publications, like newspapers and online magazines, a new feature called Subscribe with Google will let you access all your paid content anywhere, including on Google Search, Google News, and the publishers' sites.

10. Google is preparing for Android phones without buttons. The new Android P has a new navigation system that makes multitasking easier by emphasizing gestures over virtual buttons. It looks very similar to iOS on the buttonless iPhone X, where there’s a swipe icon at the bottom of the phone to help you navigate and multitask.

10. Google is preparing for Android phones without buttons. The new Android P has a new navigation system that makes multitasking easier by emphasizing gestures over virtual buttons. It looks very similar to iOS on the buttonless iPhone X, where there's a swipe icon at the bottom of the phone to help you navigate and multitask.

11. Android P has a “shush” mode. If the feature is turned on and you put your phone facedown on a table, it will automatically activate “do not disturb” mode.

11. Android P has a

12. Another smart feature in Android P: If you’re looking at the screen and rotate the phone, either on purpose or accidentally, a button will pop up to let you also rotate the screen. Otherwise, you can keep the display the way it is.

12. Another smart feature in Android P: If you're looking at the screen and rotate the phone, either on purpose or accidentally, a button will pop up to let you also rotate the screen. Otherwise, you can keep the display the way it is.

13. Google showed off some very cool technology for Google Maps designed to let you use your phone’s camera to navigate around town using Street View. If you waved your phone in front of you, you’d see the Street View version of what you’re seeing. If you needed directions, giant arrows — or even animated characters — could point you where to go next. It’s a lot like “Crazy Taxi,” but in the real world.

13. Google showed off some very cool technology for Google Maps designed to let you use your phone's camera to navigate around town using Street View. If you waved your phone in front of you, you'd see the Street View version of what you're seeing. If you needed directions, giant arrows — or even animated characters — could point you where to go next. It's a lot like

14. Google announced a cool new feature for its futuristic camera software, Google Lens. Now, if you point your phone’s camera at a book, you can highlight the text with your finger and copy it to your phone. Yes, really.

14. Google announced a cool new feature for its futuristic camera software, Google Lens. Now, if you point your phone's camera at a book, you can highlight the text with your finger and copy it to your phone. Yes, really.

15. Google Lens also has a new feature called Style Match. If you point your phone’s camera at an outfit — or accessories or furniture — Google can use its object-recognition and machine-learning prowess to help you buy that item online, and it can even show similar styles you might like.

15. Google Lens also has a new feature called Style Match. If you point your phone's camera at an outfit — or accessories or furniture — Google can use its object-recognition and machine-learning prowess to help you buy that item online, and it can even show similar styles you might like.

 

Resources:

https://www.businessinsider.com/google-io-announcements-highlights-2018-5

https://www.businessinsider.com/google-io-live-blog-updates-coverage-2018-5

https://markets.businessinsider.com/stocks/googl-stock

https://google.com

 

Having A Solid Buyer Persona Is The Key To Online Success

You may have the best idea, the best product, and the most organized and seemingly effective business plan out there. But, if you don’t know your buyer’s persona, then none of that really matters.

The Top Must-Haves For Any Kickass Marketing Plan

Must-Haves For Any Marketing Plan

Any company that wants to be successful must have a solid marketing plan to get their name out there, bring in leads, and close on a sale. While there seems to be more or less an unofficial system in place that most businesses can follow to design their marketing plan around, why is it that some businesses do so much better than others?

For starters, although all businesses may have a marketing plan in place, there’s a big difference between what’s considered a good marketing effort and what’s considered not-so-good. A good or a great marketing strategy one of the key differentiators that businesses need in order to grow, and although it takes a lot of effort, the guidelines are essentially the same across the board.

As long as you have these three things at your disposal, then carrying out an effective marketing strategy shouldn’t be too much of a challenge:

1) A Brand Persona

The first step in putting forth a great marketing effort is to establish a brand for yourself. When most people think of a brand, the first thing that comes to mind is a logo. While a logo is certainly important in the fluidity of your brand across your website, social media platforms, etc., it’s not really what defines a “brand.” In fact, a brand is actually defined as A type of product manufactured by a particular company under a particular name.” This means that when people come to learn about and understand your product (or services), they know that it’s directly connected to YOU.

That being said, developing a strong brand so that you can string it through all your marketing efforts takes a bit of an investment. And, in many cases, it also requires an expert that can walk you through the process. Sometimes, it helps to have an outsider help you understand what makes your business stand out from all the others. You may be selling a product that hundreds of other businesses are also selling, but for some reason, yours is unique. Tell them why. When you have the answer to that, then you know what your brand really is. Only afterward can come the creation of logos, signatures, visions, missions, mottos, and all those things that are generally tied to what people should be defining as a company’s brand persona.

2) A Buyer Persona

In addition to defining your company in terms of a brand persona, there also comes the other side of selling your products and services, and that’s establishing criteria for the people who will buy from you. Therefore, you must also have a buyer persona in order to put forth the best marketing effort possible.

According to Hubspot, a buyer persona is defined as “A representation of your ideal customer based on market research and real data about your existing customers.”

Customer data can include anything and everything from user behavior, demographics, and the needs and desires of your customer base. Until you gather this information — and you continue gathering it throughout the lifetime of your business — you won’t be able to define your buyer persona and really understand your audience.

But, once you do understand your audience, altering your marketing strategy so that it’s appropriate for your audience, will be a breeze. This can be done in a number of different ways, whether its analyzing information on trends of your buyers or taking a poll to find out more information on your leads.

3) A Plan and Basic Strategies

Finally, once you’ve got your brand persona and your buyer persona all taken care of, it’s time to come up with a plan as well as basic strategies to follow through on. This will allow you to measure the success and positive change that’s happening in your company over time. A great marketing effort comes from company leaders and their employees who work together to create the foundation that determines how things will work, in order to reach the final goal – making money.

It lays out a series of steps that are your best guarantee to finding success. And, once you go through this process, you’ll be able to go back, again and again, to analyze how you’ve done, so you can improve yourself for the next round.

Remember that a great marketing effort can only exist when a company continues to find areas where changes can be made so that you can come out with more profit, more customers, and more leads than the previous quarter. This plan, along with your basic strategies, will be different for each and every business, so it’s a good idea to meet with an expert to make sure that your plan and strategies are directly aligned with your end goal.

Don’t waste time playing around with a marketing strategy that just won’t work. Hire a marketing and branding expert to get you started on the right track from the very beginning. This way, you can be sure you have everything in place to create an outstanding marketing effort that will continue to bring in leads and drive in profit.

Looking To Get Your Buyer Personas In Order?

Check out this free guide!

 

5 Reasons Why You Must Have a Brand Persona

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5 Reasons Why You Must Have a Brand Persona

There are three main pieces that every company must put together in order to put forth their best marketing effort, and one of the most crucial is your brand persona. Most companies know the importance of the role marketing plays in their business.

After all, Mcdonald’s didn’t get to where it is today without those Golden Arches! Companies who, therefore, put more time, money, and overall effort into their brand persona, will have an easier time measuring their success compared to those who don’t.

A brand persona is what’s used to define who you are and to single you out from the competition. If you don’t have a brand, then you can’t move forward with your marketing strategy.

HR Persona

HR Persona

1) A Brand Persona Defines Who You Are

If you want people to be interested in engaging with you as well as buying your products or services, then people need to know who you are. Just like no two personalities are the same, no two brand personas should be the same, either. In order to establish your brand, think of what personality it would have if it were a human being. What would its traits be; its character? What are its values? Think of these questions when you try to formulate your brand persona, and you’ll have no issue coming up with all the other aspects that often coincide with a brand — your story, your logo, your mission, etc.

Example Brand Or Buyer Persona

Example Brand Or Buyer Persona

2) It Tells Your Audience What You Can Provide

If you’ve ever used a brand name to refer to a general product — for instance, calling a tissue a “Kleenex” — then you already have an understanding of how much your brand persona has the ability to influence your audience. Of course, your company may provide more than one product or service, but there’s something about what you’re offering that people should crave and that they can’t go without. For some companies, this might just be one item, and for others, it may be a whole list of items. And, even though people can likely find those items elsewhere, your brand persona tells them why they need to get it from you.

Example Of Either Buyer Or Brand Persona

Example Of Either Buyer Or Brand Persona

3) It Sets the Tone or Voice for Your Company

We’ve mentioned that one way to create your brand persona is by giving it human characteristics. But, behind all that, are the actual human beings who have helped to create and build the company. A brand persona not only tells your audience what you can provide, but it tells them who you are based on your company’s tone or voice. Sometimes when these two things don’t match up well, people can choose to boycott your products (Chick-fil-a can speak to this), especially if they don’t feel that what you’re providing agrees with what your values are.

The tone or voice your possess, therefore, demonstrates to the world what you stand for. Perhaps you have an interesting backstory that inspired the business, or you donate a percentage of your profits to charity. This is all part of your brand persona, and why having this particular piece of your marketing strategy matters. People are much more likely to buy from your company when they feel they can relate to you as a person.

4) It Makes Your Company Unique

Having a brand persona as part of your marketing effort means that you’ve worked to create something that makes you stand out, even if there are many other companies doing something similar.

Think of ice cream companies in the United States. Ben & Jerry’s is known for its unique, yet familiar, flavors, Baskin Robbins is known for traditionally having 31 flavors, Friendly’s is known for creating an atmosphere for friends and family, and newcomers — like Salt & Straw — are known for using local ingredients to create flavors that no one else has ever tried before. These companies are all more or less doing the same thing, but there’s a reason that a customer would gravitate to one more than another. For them, it’s all about your brand.

Example Brand Or Buyer Persona

Example Brand Or Buyer Persona

5) You’ll Become a True Competitor in Your Industry

Despite the fact that your company isn’t the first one out there selling ice cream, travel backpacks, or business consulting (if you are, more power to you for getting there first!), one of the main reasons you must have a brand persona  is because it will lead you to become a true competitor in your industry. We know what you’re thinking — “Who wants competition?” In case you haven’t realized this yet (and, if you haven’t, you’ve probably got some more experience to gain), competition is a GOOD thing. It means you’re playing in the big leagues, and people will notice that.

Developing a strong brand persona as a part of your marketing effort isn’t always easy to do. However, by hiring an expert to help (aka we’d love that to be us), you can be sure that you’re starting off on the right foot so your business can be successful long term.[/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

Grow Your Social Media Following With Organic Marketing

Grow Your Social Media Following With Organic Marketing

Organic marketing is a way for company leaders to bring in leads without paying for a platform to do so. It’s an opportunity for businesses big and small, new and old, to push their advertising to the furthest possible boundary with the current resources they have available. Those who are able to implement strong organic marketing strategies are able to do so because they can confidently rely on less resources to achieve more results. One way this is done is by taking advantage of the number of free advertising options that exist on these platforms. This will allow you to connect with high-qualified leads that are interested in your products and services, without needing to spend a dime or waste time on leads that need a lot more convincing.

Why Social Media Channels  

Organic marketing strategies can be applied to pretty much anything these days, whether it be website landing pages, mobile apps, or email campaigns. But, the main reason most company leaders resort to social media channels for this specific marketing strategy is because it’s where the attention is. By next year, it’s believed that there will be approximately 2.77 billion social media users around the world, which means that the average company will already be provided with a list of potential leads for free — they’ll just need to put in a little time to make sure they are visible and accessible.

Luckily, finding those leads on social media via organic marketing has never been easier. With an algorithm very similar to Google, users on Facebook are provided with an enhanced experience that will display posts and ads that are relevant to only them. Automatically, social media allows you to connect with the people that are meant to find your products and services, without you having to lift much more than a finger to do so. And, while there are certainly ways to pay for marketing on social media platforms, many will find that you can get just as much done by not paying anything at all.

Examples of Organic Marketing on Social Media Channels

When you look at the different organic marketing strategies, it doesn’t take long to see that one of the easiest ways to practice this strategy is through social media channels. This is primarily because “organic” means “free” and social media is, well, free. This gives users a wide array of opportunities to target potential leads, without having to make an investment in something that may not lead to any results. If your business is already on social media, then it’s likely you’re already practicing some degree of organic marketing. But, in case you need a refresher or you want some other pointers, here are some examples:

Optimize Your Brand

You can’t plan on maximizing your organic marketing without having a solid brand. Make sure you have a logo that speaks to your clients, and ensure that that logo and everything associated with your brand, is plastered on every page and group you run. Additionally, make sure all our social media accounts are linked.

Utilize Video

Video is a great way to bring in leads is through organic marketing. Whether you choose to post pre-recorded videos that you’ve already posted on Youtube, or you’d rather try your hand and live video, this channel can play a huge role in any marketing campaign, but is guaranteed to reach way more users via social media.

Share Often

One of the best ways to enhance your organic marketing strategy is by sharing content as often as possible, whether that’s your content or someone else’s. More shares and more activity on social media that can ultimately provide value to your clients and increase connectivity overall, will naturally make you more exposed.

Use Emojis

Organic marketing can be done in something as simple as a Facebook post. But, not just an ordinary post — one that really attracts people. By implementing strategies like the use of images, emojis, and spaced out text in a post, people will be intrigued by the mere attractiveness of your post, and will thereby engage with you quicker than they normally would.

Monitor Your Competitors

If you want to be successful with organic marketing via social media channels, then it’s necessary that you monitor your competitors to see what they’re doing on social media. If they are talking about trending topics or you see that their posts are getting a lot of likes and shares, then take note of what they are doing and try to replicate that.

Automate Your Inbox

Most social media platforms, especially Facebook, give page owners the ability to create automatic responses in the messaging portal. This will come in handy when you’re too busy to respond to messages all the time, but you want to ensure your leads are being taken care of.

Engage with Others

While automatic responses are great, those who want their organic marketing strategy to be successful must put in the time to engage with others, whether it’s a post someone makes in a group you’re in, or a comment on one of your links. Take the time to react and continue the conversation, and these leads will start to get to know who you are and what your brand represents. After that, it won’t take long for you to lead them to the end of the sales cycle and increase that closing ratio.

Post Relevant Content

Content is one of the best ways to bring in leads and make a sale without having to spend too much money. (Unless, of course, your company has hired a content creator.)  Content that’s done well — whether it be an eBook, a whitepaper, a blog post, a podcast, a video, or anything in between — should be done with the idea in mind that it will provide value to the lead or customer for free. From there, they should get a nice slice of what it’s like to have your products or services, and they’ll, therefore, be more inclined to pay for the next piece.

But, it’s not only free for them, it should be free for you, too. Sure, you’ll have to create the content yourself, but no one said that you need to reinvent the wheel. Come up with a consistent content strategy and share away.

Things to Keep in Mind

Because social media platforms like Facebook have worked to perfect their algorithms, companies are having a hard time reaching as many people as they’d like to, despite the fact this was the very thing that made organic marketing what it is. There is some debate regarding whether or not company leaders should rely too heavily on this marketing tactic via social media, because, after all, there’s no such thing as a free lunch. That being said, if companies can find ways to reach their leads organically while also investing in some paid media (such as boosting posts or paying for ads), then they are much more likely to be successful. Balance is key to success.

There are many ways in which company leaders can implement organic marketing strategies, and social media is one of the most reliable in terms of ratios. But, knowing how to do it and knowing how to do it well are two different things, so take the time to utilize social media channels to the best of your ability. After that, it shouldn’t take long to see how easily organic marketing can be achieved.

What Is Organic Marketing?

Marketing 101: What Is Organic Marketing?

When it comes to growing your business by attracting more leads, there are several different ways to go about it. While some company leaders put a lot of money and time into their marketing approach, others have a way of growing their following and making more sales simply by letting the marketing do itself. This is known as organic marketing, and it’s a sure-fire way to expand your business naturally. However, that doesn’t mean that there’s no work to be done — after all, creating a successful organic marketing strategy requires at least some type of ‘investment’ upfront.

The Basics of Organic Marketing

Organic marketing is a marketing strategy in which companies can bring customers to them “organically,” which means they aren’t actively chasing after customers with in-your-face marketing campaigns, irritating sales calls, or paid ads. It’s defined as natural marketing tactics that are free, because anything you pay or to bring in customers would be considered “inorganic marketing.” Organic marketing is a term that’s thrown around a lot, and you may have heard the term “inbound marketing” more often. Inbound marketing and organic marketing are essentially the same thing, but organic marketing can be thought of as “inbound marketing 2.0” as it takes similar strategies to the next level.

Different Types of Organic Marketing

These days, there are many different types of organic marketing that company leaders can experiment with. While a combination of all types of organic marketing strategies is wise, some companies may feel as though a certain type works better for them than others. Before you discover what works best for you, take a closer look at the main organic marketing tactics used by companies today:

  • Organic marketing using social channels
  • Organic marketing using external groups and online communities
  • Organic marketing by building connections on an individual basis

Examples of Organic Marketing

Within those three different types of organic marketing tactics are additional strategies companies can use to grow their following. The number of examples are endless, but there are a few that have proven effective thus far for many businesses selling in a variety of different industries. Remember, anything that can be used to bring in leads without paying, can be considered a form of organic marketing. Best of all, the more organic marketing examples you try for yourself, the more it will boost your validity on platforms like Facebook:

  • Highlight your best performing posts on social media by pinning them to the top of your page
  • Use emojis to brighten up your posts
  • Share a link to your page in a Facebook group that allows people to highlight their services, for instance, an entrepreneur group
  • Publish interactive content, like polls, contests, tag-a-friend, etc.
  • Host a webinar or one-on-one consultation with an interested client where you offer value for free

Setting the Groundwork

One of the main reasons company leaders zero in on organic marketing is because it allows them to save time and money on finding leads. But, it’s also a better way to bring in leads in general, because people appreciate when companies do things naturally. No one wants to feel as though they are being coerced into buying a product or service. Instead, they prefer to find a solution to a problem their having, or be given valuable resources for free before they make a financial commitment.

As you can see, organic marketing isn’t “organic” in every sense of the world. It takes some time before you can get yourself to the point where you see the leads coming in, and that’s only after putting in the initial work to make that happen. Social media posts are going to post themselves, and video chats with interested customers isn’t going to happen via a bot (though, that’s certainly not impossible).

That being said, these tasks should only take a few minutes of your time, and with software like marketing automation, you can do more. The fact that any determined company can potentially bring in loads of leads with just a post or share and absolutely no money down, goes to show that organic marketing is something every smart business leader should be considering, if they are not already doing it.

Why You Should Be Doing It

We are very lucky to be living in a time in which there are so many ways to advertise your business for free. The internet and social media platforms have gifted entrepreneurs with something that wasn’t even fathomable a decade ago. Though companies will still no doubt continue to invest money in things like ads or boosting posts, there’s no guarantee that those strategies will always work. And, when you can bring in leads without needing to spend a dime, companies can do so much more with less. Organic marketing has completely changed the way businesses advertise and sell their products and services, and those who aren’t taking advantage will likely fall behind.

Looking To Automate Your Business? Think Again..

Truthfully we all hate doing the tedious tasks that could just easily be fixed or made easier by a fancy software…

But, more likely than not 99% of us are jumping into automation software WAAAAAY too quickly.

Let’s preface this article for a sec, software is great and we are not saying you shouldn’t use it to make your life easier. After all who wants to spend more time on the minute tasks that could be automated by a machine?

We do though believe that automation software is best suited for the business processes that we have already done the hard work of optimizing from the manual process. Think of the hard manual process as a way to better understand how the job is done on a granular level. Often times we are so focused on just getting the work done that if we took a step back to understand what we doing and why then we would be able to make adjustments and decrease the amount of time doing the work. If you’re lucky you’ll find a smoother process for yourself that doesn’t rely on software at all.  #savethatmoney

Ok moving into the reasoning for this article in the first place.

Me: “Let me see the email you’re planning to send.”
(Shows me his cold email.)

Me: “What’s your response rate on this email?”

Jason: “Not sure. That’s why we need email automation.”

Me: “Gotcha. I recommend Gmail.”

Jason: “But Gmail won’t send automated follow-ups.”

Me: “Right.”

Find 100 prospects.

Send two emails to each prospect.

Call them three times.

IF you get 5% of people to meet with you

AND you have 15% conversation to close rate

THEN we can chat about email automation tools.

It’s easy to get seduced by tech.

Keep the start simple.

NOTE: If you or someone you know relates to this story above share it. We all love sharing stories, don’t we? 

Your Likely Running Your Business With Automation But Completely Unprepared Todo So

Trust us when we say that It’s not just you that’s doing this wrong. So many of us are constantly searching for the latest and the greatest tool’s that can further automate your business.

But, what should be doing is increasing efficiently of the current process over trying to find the next tool or full automation to use.

Stop wasting your money and focus on how to make your process more efficient and effective using what you’ve already got.

By always thinking automation first without taking the time to optimize how a business process works create a BIGGER MESS.

Spending more of your money to automate crap, just brings you MORE crap at a faster pace.

Start Making Your Business Processes Efficient:

We get it; when someone talks about optimization your mind immediately goes “lets build and automation”…

Automation’s are helpful in all but, what about your actual process. Before you invest in your fancy new software that will “fix your problems.”

Like that happens…

First, you should be looking into the FREE methods you can use to optimize your business processes further.

What we do when we decide to optimize a specific section of our business is we take a look at our current process. Often, we resort to just writing it out on a whiteboard. Then, we start adding the numbers that matter to get an Idea of how optimized it is already.

Many times, just by writing out your current process, you’ll find parts of it that could be changed and reworked. When you see what part’s of the process you’d like to change then WRITE IT OUT AND FOLLOW THROUGH WITH THE CHANGES.

After you’ve written it out, give yourself some goals to hit before you decide to make any more changes to the process. Sometimes the methods that you think are inefficient rally just needed more time and data.

What We’d Starting With When Optimizing Business Processes:

Before anything here, recognize that every business is different and each one will have places that REQUIRE your attention. These processes of your business are the ones we’ve felt had the most significant impact on the small businesses we’ve worked with.

 

1. The Sales Outreach Process

Most of us HATE sales, some of us though were born for it. By understanding the fact that you and your sales peeps are likely missing out on sales opportunities. Just because of how you do your outreach via. Email, social, call, letter, etc.. So we recommend taking some time at least two times a month to look into how your team performs their outreach.

Whats their outreach process?

  • Do they spend time getting to know each possible customer before outreach or are they just playing a numbers game?
  • Do they follow a copy regardless of who they are talking to? if so, why?
  • How have the possible customers responded to how they did their outreach? Was it good or bad?
  • How many people wanted to move forward after 100+ outreach attempts?

Spending some time looking at how you and your team first speak to your possible customers could easily 5x the amount of business you’re currently getting.

 

2. The QUALITY Of Your Customer Service

Something so many business owners and employees neglect are the quality of their customer’s service. This in many ways (especially with today’s THERE FOREVER reviews online) can hurt your business. We always recommend taking a deeper look into the whole process of how you handle your customer’s questions and issues, so you can make your customers experience AMAZING every time.

DID YOU KNOW: One of the best ways your business can get more business is from your past customers and their referrals.

Does that make you think a little more about how you treated your last customer?

What we recommend looking into your customer service process. Often you’ll find many inconsistencies in the way you and your team connect and build a relationship with your customer. Taking some time to look deeper into how both you and your team do this can provide some REALLY valuable insights.

  • Some Questions Recommend Asking Yourself During The Process:
  • How long does it take for questions to get answered by you or your team?
  • What is the time frame for you to send a customer a refund, and how easy is the process?
  • How Do you manage GREAT reviews, and also the bad ones?
  • Who keeps in contact with your customers to increase the Life Time Value of your customers?
  • How do your customers react to your customer service experience?

 

3. The Quality & Consistency Of Your Community Outreach

Are you confused on this one?

Most business neglect the amount of community outreach they do. After all, you wouldn’t immediately think about how much community service you do as a relatable metric to how many more business opportunities you’ve gained or new clients you’ve acquired. At least for now, since community engagement is an AMAZING way for your to further connect and market your business and add some extra personality to who is apart of your business and what you stand for.

Now, if you are trying to think of the ways you can connect with your community (if you’re not already doing it) some of the best places are FREE!

If we had to choose only three methods for community outreach, we would have to decide.

Social Media Outreach: this process may seem complicated and hard to do if you are not used to doing it. But, Organic Social Media Marketing is a very straightforward process that takes some effort on your part. Better yet it doesn’t even cost anything to you besides say your time.
This is one of the best ways to do your outreach if you are on a tight budget or want to engage in a new way with your local community. If you’ve never done Organic Social Marketing, you should check out our post on how to do just that!

Go To Networking Events: This isn’t for everyone, but this is an excellent way for you to connect with your target customer. If you are new in a field or have just started your business going to networking events can be a compelling platform to launch your business off of.

If you have never been to a networking event, just understand that people want to connect with you as a person first and then as a business.

So, when your there, enjoy it, have a great time, and be yourself, no one likes a fake. Doing this often with help build the foundations of your local network with these people. If they are not your direct customer, you can likely find them by building rapport with the people you know at these events.

Volunteer In The Community: With all of the needs in the community is surprising how few companies take time to volunteer in their local community. Often when you go to these events, you’ll find people that work at larger companies that are there for a similar purpose as you. But, just remember this type of community outreach is different but can at the very least bring some warmness in your hearts.
We recommend looking into local NFPs that are focused on a message that correlates in some way with your business values. Starting there can lead to building connections with influential people in your community.

If you are ever looking to start throwing your money at new automation, you came across. Please think again and take a step back, not every process needs to or SHOULD be automated. If you go through some of the methods listed above and find you still need to automate parts of your business, then you can feel confident that you are choosing at the right time. We hope this has been able to help you along your journey as a business owner and marketer.

Don’t forget to share with your friends!

Why Your Content Strategy Is Seriously Failing

Do you remember when you had to be convinced that content marketing was worth the effort?

Now, it’s more popular than ever before and has proven to be more effective than any outbound marketing activity, costing 63% less and generating three times as many leads.

In fact, 90% of all organizations now incorporate content marketing into their overall marketing strategy. We’ve evolved from bemoaning how long it takes to write a blog article to eagerly adopting new formats and approaches.

This is, after all, a generation with young adults earning $10 million per year through monetized blogs on YouTube:

It’s safe to say the overwhelming effectiveness of content marketing has been established. For businesses who have adopted this channel, however, there is one potential pitfall. A big one.

Its equation is simple. The more organizations produce and promote content, the more content there is available to be consumed. The more content available, the less time their audience has to identify and consume the most valuable and relevant content to their needs and interests. This is what Mark Schaefer calls ‘content shock’.

What is Content Shock?

Schaefer published an article four years ago in which he suggested that content marketing was not a sustainable strategy for many businesses. What was once a relatively uncrowded content space, “Red Bull was a beverage company, not a media company, Chipotle was making burritos, not claymation films, and there were roughly one-third as many bloggers”  was becoming a “situation where content supply is exponentially exploding while content demand [remains] flat”.

In 2018, we have officially reached saturation point.

As well-intentioned as your efforts are, no matter how many hours you spend researching a blog post, or scripting a webinar, there are no guarantees that your work will yield positive results. This infographic shows just how easily your content can get lost in the crowd.

Your Content Strategy is Failing

You know your target audience. You built a strategy. You put together a content calendar. You invest time and resources. And… it’s not working.

In our current state of content shock, this is unsurprising. You need to be able to differentiate your brand, demonstrate your Unique Selling Points, and set yourself apart from an ever-growing level of competition. To quote Steve Martin, “Be so good they can’t ignore you.”

This may seem like an impossible prospect, but even in a world in which 500 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every 60 seconds, you can still come out on top.  

Let’s check out the most likely reasons your content strategy is failing and how to turn things around!

 

  • You aren’t measuring the ROI of your content.

 

Only 8% of marketers consider themselves “very successful” or “extremely successful” at tracking content marketing ROI. If your business is spending time and budget on creating and distributing content, this is, unquestionably, the metric that matters most. And if you aren’t using the right tools and data points, it will be impossible to achieve.

Use a time-tracking app or iPhone timer to discern how long it takes to create a piece of content. Don’t forget to pause the timer while taking a break. The worth of your cumulative time spent creating content is your investment.

To find the return, you need to discern which metrics to track. If it’s online sales, you should set up a Google Analytics User Flow report to see what website visitors do, like whether they click your CTA after reading an article, or whether they make a purchase after landing on a product page. Then, knowing which content on your website is converting and which is underperforming, you can optimize your strategy.

If the main objective of your content marketing is lead generation, you can calculate content ROI by tracking the number of contact enquiries that were completed via lead gen forms around your content. Depending on how you set up your lead gen forms, this can be done through your CRM, email provider, or software such as Leadformly.

If you want to adopt a more all-inclusive approach, you can use Google’s Attribution Modeling to calculate the monetary impact of every piece of content consumed at every step in the customer journey.

Once you’ve figured out what will constitute your return, calculating ROI is only a few simple steps away. Through your content ROI, you can determine which titles, topics, and content formats best engage your customers and provide most value. These insights will enable you to adapt and refine your content strategy, and set you up for success.

 

  • You haven’t considered video.

 

51% of marketing professionals worldwide cite video as the medium with the best ROI. Marketers who use video content grow revenue 49% faster than those who don’t, but many brands are still reluctant to embrace it as part of their content strategy. Despite its unparalleled ability to boost brand awareness, generate quality leads, and maximize sales, video still carries a few common misconceptions.

Many assume that video only works for top-of-funnel campaigns, when brand awareness is the key objective. Or that it’s more suitable for B2C audiences rather than B2B. Or that anyone with a smartphone can create compelling video content. Or that it’s too expensive for your organization to have its video content created professionally.

The truth is, video can be whatever you want it to be and achieve whatever you need it to achieve—often more effectively than other formats. Now that the average human attention span is shorter than that of a goldfish, it’s more feasible to imagine a consumer engaging with a 60 second video than a 1500-word article (apart from this one of course!). Easy-to-consume over breakfast, during a break, or on a commute, video also helps viewers retain 95% of its message compared to 10% for text, ensuring your brand stays front-of-mind amongst your target audience.

Video also has the ability to engage your customers on a variety of platforms. As one of the most repurposable content assets, video can seriously maximize its ROI. You can use video on your website’s landing pages to increase engagement, in email marketing campaigns to increase CTR, and in social ad campaigns to increase conversions. If you’re reluctant to invest in video production, this amazing example from Zendesk, suitable for every stage of the sales funnel, may make you want to reallocate your marketing budget!

  • You aren’t being specific.

 

You know you need to produce content as part of your wider marketing strategy. Before you start, you need to be able to answer one deceptively simple question.

“Why are we creating this content?”

One of the most common reasons for the failure of an organization’s content strategy is they haven’t considered the needs and interests of their customers. Consequently, their content lacks direction and clear purpose. You’ve taken the time to identify specific business goals and specific target audience segments. Now, you need to identify your specific content niche.

It’s important to avoid becoming an aimless content creator, fluctuating between listicles and webinars and GIFs with no sense of cohesion. Consider your target market, your value proposition and your industry. From there, decide upon the most appropriate content formats. Keeping a narrow focus will enable you to build your brand reputation and strengthen relationships. Potential and existing customers will come to eagerly anticipate your particular pieces of content.

You might become the company known for their emotive customer testimonial videos. Maybe your product review podcast series will be your specialty. But whatever angle you choose to adopt, stick with it, and do it well. Your content marketing performance metrics will speak for themselves!