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We outline the two key drivers marketers should focus on in aligning their digital strategy in the face of the Coronavirus crisis.
By Zelda Tupicoff, COO, Prime Creative Media
It’s not uncommon for B2B companies to rely heavily on in-person meetings and trade events in their sales process. Not many people buying industrial equipment, commercial vehicles, or medical devices will do a quick Google search and click ‘add to cart’ when spending tens of thousands of dollars on these high-value items.
The journey starts months, and even years, before the purchase. Your future clients have read about you in trade media, built up brand recognition overtime, informed themselves about what’s in the market. None of this has changed in the Coronavirus crisis, so it’s important not to abandon the long-term marketing strategy that takes into account the full buyer journey.
What has changed is the direct lead generation done in person at meetings and trade events. Sales teams find themselves at a loss without being able to “get out there” and find leads. It’s this part of the sales process where you should now be directing your digital marketing efforts. Forget about traditional trackers like click rates, overall traffic, and impressions. These do little to help your sales team right now. Instead, direct your efforts into generating quality leads.
In working with hundreds of B2B companies, our clients have found the most success in generating leads when they focus on these two drivers.
Driver Number One – Quality Traffic
Many companies marketing high value products and services make the mistake of investing too heavily in Google Ad Words and SEO, assuming that the more traffic there is to a website, the more sales they will make. The challenge is, there is no guarantee that the traffic will be of quality and will lead to sales. Even the most carefully thought out search words don’t assess whether a person is a real decision maker, if they are in a relevant industry, and if they are ready to purchase. It’s also an expensive exercise, with the most popular search terms attracting the highest price, and that price only ever goes up as those terms get more traffic.
You can achieve better results by purchasing some traffic in partnership with a reputable industry resource of engaged readers. This can look like: promoting your websites and whitepapers as digital display ads, direct solus EDM mailouts, sponsored content, and links on articles which can provide ongoing SEO. You should pick a publication that has the same readership as your ideal client. The quality of leads for your sales team is more important than the volume when you want to convert those leads to sales.
You can achieve even better results by combining a qualified audience with an investment in quality content that drives organic traffic. By providing decision makers with high quality, targeted resources, you have a much better chance of attracting the right people to your site. If you’re selling conveyor belts, work with a quality content marketing writer offering tips on how to choose the right conveyor belt. The only people that will read the content are those who are looking to purchase. Even if the article only attracts a fraction of the traffic that it would from purchasing the words “conveyor belt” on Google, it’ll lead to many more qualified leads. Importantly, at a time when we’re all looking closely at cutting costs, it’s a one-off investment that will keep delivering.
Driver Number Two: Quality Data Collection / Lead Generation
Once you get people to your site, it’s imperative that you collect the data of who is visiting. Don’t rely on contact us forms, or simply having your phone number and email displayed everywhere, unless your strategy is for your sales team to wait for incoming calls and emails. If your sales team is to make outgoing calls and emails, you need to give them a list of qualified leads.
To do this, you need to use a CRM that can integrate with an online form to capture the data of people visiting your website, including their emails and phone numbers. Because people are reluctant to give them up, you need to give them a reason, with a piece of gated content. It could be a special offer, an informational video, a guide to purchasing, or a technical whitepaper. Ensure that what you offer is of value by working with a specialist trade journalist or content marketing expert. You’ll immediately lose trust if you don’t come through with a quality piece. Also, by offering quality content, when your sales team goes to make outgoing calls, the prospective lead will already have had a good experience with your company.
Download our guide, for more about the many traffic and lead generating tools Prime Creative Media have to offer.
As Australia’s largest B2B publisher we have been looking at how we can best support our many industries through the changing COVID-19 situation.
We are committed to keeping our industries connected and supporting our clients and readers through this challenging time.
We recognise that meeting in person will be limited in the months ahead. Major conferences and events have been postponed for the next six months, including some of our own. Many companies are discouraging face-to-face meetings, and organising for team members to work from home.
With the potential for companies and individuals to become isolated we recognise communication within the industry has never been more important. Fortunately, through our media brands we are in a position to facilitate the necessary lines of communication that must be kept open between staff, suppliers, and clients.
We are in a strong position to support our industries through our media platforms: magazines, e-newsletters and websites. To that end, using print and digital platforms to communicate with the market has never been more important.
Prime Creative Media is committed to continuing our frequent communications. Our regular newsletters, web sites, and printed magazines will continue to be produced on schedule, with our entire team prepared to work remotely as needed.
With so many other businesses moving to remote workplaces, we are now offering complimentary home address delivery of our publications to ensure continuity of service to our existing subscribers. Additionally we will offer three-month complimentary subscriptions to anyone else in the industry who would like a subscription to stay informed.
The economic challenges we face with COVID-19 are significant, but temporary. At Prime Creative Media we are taking a long-term view to our business, marketing, and investments, and it has been encouraging to hear this week from many clients who share our mindset.
We look forward to supporting our industries through our communication platforms in the coming months, so that our economy can push through this challenging time.
Please don’t hesitate to contact me directly to discuss your situation and how we can help.
Prime Creative Media