HubSpot has created a Great Audio/Visual presentation with valuable and practical ideas and actions for marketing in this recession - check it out here. In 75 minutes you'll gain new insights from Mike Volpe, VP of Inbound Marketing, at HubSpot. So close your office door - invest time in how you can use your brains instead of dollars from that very limited marketing budget.
Key take-aways I found useful and that have reaffirmed my beliefs:
Be Your Own Media
I found this statement powerful: "Think like a Publisher". You can now create, publish and obtain feedback on your own content. David Meerman Scott drills on this point in his book The New Rules of Marketing and PR: How to Use News Releases, Blogs, Podcasting, Viral Marketing and Online Media to Reach Buyers Directly. A very insightful, useful read. (I have both the book and audible version).
What to publish? It can be in a blog, podcast, video, photos, presentations, eBooks, news releases and so forth. Use multiple avenues- they are all free or very minimal in cost.
Seriously get involved with the move to an Inbound Marketing focus
Inbound marketing makes sure you can be found first when the prospect is ready. Inbound marketing uses the best of what social media has to offer.
I have covered the importance of and tips on Social media engagement in several blog posts. Social media powerfully combine with a CRM system to increase business and gain success with your CRM business strategy.
Business Blogging works - in many different ways.
You are a publisher of your content- you don't have to wait for another high priced advertising firm or a web designer. A blog is lead nurturing. Be yourself and let your remarkable content flow as you educate your audience. More on Business blogging...
Create content to match the buyer phase and concerns. Make sure the content is targeted to buyers in today's economy.
Participate in Q/A and Discussion Forums
SEO - Search Engine Optimization is both a science and a Art.
Everybody uses Google to find information and being found first takes an effective SEO plan. Content is king, and knowing the keywords used by your prospects to find you is paramount. Your business blog will help to push you to the top of Internet search listings.
Twenty-five percent of SEO comes from your web site pages and blog articles. Some comes from the visible content of key words people use to find information and some is the invisible technical part.
More importantly 75 percent of SEO is off page - recommendations you get from friends and inbound links TO your site/blog. These links are online recommendations and valuable feedback on how you are attracting other people.
Use tools to Measure your Return of Investment
Use the www.Grader.com tools: Website Grader, Press Release Grader and the social media grader tools for Facebook and Twitter.
If you have Hubspot (like we use) there are several Analytical tools for Keyword grader, Page grader, (inbound) Link Grader, Blog analytics (views/links), etc.
The number of subscribers, the number of leads and the conversion percentage to customers are trends you can use to measure success.
Analytics provide you with the ability to make better marketing decisions.
Cut cost per lead
Cut low ROI programs
Cut non-lead generation activities
Improve lead quality
Increase Lead generation
Focus on ROI measurement
Use Inbound Marketing - start now to dedicate time to inbound marketing
Mike recommends you split your time up into thirds:
Spend 1/3 of your time consuming information by reading and reviewing the information. Subscribe to key industry blogs of the RSS feeds through Google Reader. "Listen" to what others are saying and topics on their mind.
Spend 1/3 of your time producing new content. Publish content in your blog, presentations on sites like SlideShare and video on YouTube.
Spend the remainder 1/3 engaging your prospects. Discuss and communicate the value of your products and services with the needs you hear from those conversations.
Other useful resources:
Would you like to learn more about Extending your Reach and Attracting Qualified Leads?
We offer a free marketing consultation session to help get you started. As an Inbound Marketing Certified Professional, I enjoy looking forward to our conversation.