A varied collection of marketing technology knowledge today, covering SEO (the impact from Google+ and Google Authorship, link building, and a great SEO comparison tool), gamification (one of the most underutilized B2B tactics today), retargeting (another underutilized tool), content curation, and more. We’ve included a Gartner post on the arrival of B2B eCommerce (although I think it is a bit premature for the not F1000), and a few infographics to make your day. Welcome to the summer doldrums.
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Last month, IRCE hosted its first-ever B2B eCommerce content track at its big show in Chicago. 500+ attended my keynote session in the morning…and Grainger’s VP of eCommerce, Paul Miller, saw similar turnout for his presentation later in the day. All in all, impressive numbers for an inaugural session series.
In 2012, Oracle hosted the lone B2B eCommerce event. But by my count, 2013 will see at least six exclusively B2B eCommerce shows: IRCE B2B eCommerce track, Oracle B2B Commerce Summit, hybris Gameplan Chicago, hybris Gameplan Berlin, B2B eCommerce Congress, and B2B Multichannel. In short, B2B eCommerce has arrived.
We’re all in the early stages, but the benefits are tremendous (not to mention the completion of the marketing cycle with real attribution). It hasn’t fully arrived yet, but Forrester’s research (if you’re a subscriber) should be helpful, e.g., Five Keys To Effective B2B eCommerce.
Here is the best part about content curation, though. It doesn’t require you to be a writer, or a filmmaker, or an on-screen commentator. Curation is inherently behind the scenes. What it does require, though, is expertise. It requires the ability to think and collect. They are different skills sets than creation, but in a business environment – it is far more likely that you will find someone with deep subject matter expertise in a particular industry, topic or issue. They may not necessarily be gifted writers or documentarians, but their expertise is their strength and though creating original content may be an uphill battle – curating highly valuable content available elsewhere can be a much more realistic goal.
I hope that’s what is being accomplished with The Marketing Automation Alert: I spend 2+ hours each day culling, collecting, reading, reviewing, and publishing around the topic of marketing technology, and I couldn’t be happier with the results. Note the one benefit NOT delineated in this post: I am now more up-to-date on marketing technology than ever before. A year well spent.
Retargeting is an incredibly effective tool for modern day B2B marketers. In this post, we break down the what, why and how of B2B marketing retargeting.
Knowing the numbers and learning from others are the first steps in developing a retargeting strategy. Retargeting is a highly-effective tool of modern marketers when done right. Your B2B business can be more successful with retargeting by following these three best practices.
- Focus on complimentary campaigns. Retargeting can’t be restricted to one tactic: social, search, site or email. Your retargeting campaigns need to include at least search and site. Consider where your current customers and target audience and develop retargeting campaigns that will create impressions and click-throughs via multiple channels.
- Budget accordingly. Budget for retargeting has to come from somewhere and unless you can establish a new budget just for retargeting, you’ll likely be pulling from another area of marketing. One common area that retargeting budget is pulled from is traditional display campaigns. Make the most of your display dollars by allocating some of that spend to retargeting.
- Get multi-dimensional when measuring success. The vast majority of the Chango respondents (78%) use both view-through and click-through to measure the success of their retargeting campaigns. When running retargeting ads, make sure you are measuring the metrics that contribute to brand awareness and customer engagement, not just one or the other.
The Big 3 of Underutilized Tactics by the B2B Marketer: gamification, referrals and retargeting. If you want to learn more about retargeting, go here, click on Filter, and then select the Tag Retargeting.
Get under the hood of your blog and use these 5 simple dials to measure the effectiveness of your blog traffic sources!
The five dials on your blogging traffic dashboard to measure your traffic are:
- Paid Traffic. When you use Google Adwords, Facebook ads, targeted Ezine and offline classified ads to drive people directly to your blog, then you are managing paid traffic. Using paid media is an “instant on” approach to managing your blog traffic.
- Referral Traffic: When your blog or blog post is noted on another website as link back to your site, count the amount of traffic that is driven.
- Organic Traffic: When a visitor arrives at your blog by way of a search engine, from a Google or Yahoo search term (e.g., social media marketing coaching), this is organic traffic. This earned traffic is typically driven by high-quality content.
- Direct Traffic: Direct traffic is when a someone lands on your blog as a result of typing in your URL.
- Social Traffic: If your blog is the hub of your content wheel, then the social media channels are the spokes. When you create a blog post, you need to make sure all of your social media channels are used to spread the word. As your posts reach your followers, their followers (via retweets and shares) and others (who are searching on keywords and hashtags) you can drive more visits to your blog. Make sure to optimize every social media post to rank highly for each obscure long-tail key phrase.
That’s it: that’s the list. The biggie is the last one: having all your content driven from one hub (regardless of what your hub is). Take, for example, this post: it goes to my blog, Twitter, FB, LinkedIn, etc., all from one posting.
Targeting content both on- and off-site based on LinkedIn personas opens up a rich new world of content marketing opportunity.
Here are four strategies for creating and distributing content on LinkedIn:
- Maximizing the LinkedIn news feed as a content delivery mechanism. This is standard content marketing “table stakes” – delivering relevant, targeted content direct to company followers through LinkedIn’s news feed.
- Encouraging followers to share brand content on a brand’s behalf. Many Facebook best practices also apply to LinkedIn – people trust recommendations from their network. Brand awareness is spread by investing in personalized social experiences that encourage the network to participate, and share that participation. Beyond using the LinkedIn share button, brands that deploy LinkedIn APIs to create personalized social experiences outside LinkedIn can encourage participants in those experiences to share.
- Encouraging sharing of conversational content in LinkedIn groups. Conversations in a LinkedIn group are just as much about content marketing as the distribution of videos, case studies, webinars, white papers, and the like.
- Offering targeted content hubs, based on LinkedIn personas. B2B brands with well-organized existing repositories of content can target that content to the right personas by encouraging visitors to log in using their LinkedIn credentials before they browse the content.
Use the LinkedIn connection with SlideShare to improve your content delivery system into LinkedIn.
On the surface, it might be tempting to jump right in, create a Google Plus account, setup Google Authorship and begin plugging away. And I would definitely recommend joining Google Plus (new to Google Plus? Circle me and I’ll be glad to show you around!), I would advise caution when it comes to pushing ahead with Google Authorship. Instead, I’d ask the following questions to help me determine if Authorship makes sense in your specific situation:
- Are you building a personal brand/reputation? Google Authorship is for individuals. If you are trying to build up authority for yourself or bloggers/content creators within your organization, then Google Authorship is for you. (Side note: if you want to see what’s happening with regards to building authority for companies and organizations, check out this recent blog post from Ross Hudgens of Siege Media.)
- Are you truly a content creator? Writing one or two blog posts is probably not strong enough to get the benefit from Google Authorship. You need to make certain that you can regularly generate meaningful content to share, with extra emphasis on creating “meaningful” content.
- Can you maintain your focus on a specific set of topics? To be effective, especially early on, it would be wise to select a few specific topics (3-4 at most) that you would like to build authority on. If there are 40 other authors covering a specific topic, look for a new angle or move on to a different topic. The goal is to find your niche.
If you answered “yes” to the questions above, Google Authorship may be perfect for your situation. To learn more about getting started, I would direct you to the Google Authorship and Author Rank community in Google Plus created by AJ Kohn and Mark Traphagen in Google Plus. This is an excellent resource for learning more about the fine points of this evolving topic.
First, the impact on your SERP from Google Plus and Authorship should come as no surprised. But I wanted to make sure you saw this key excerpt, as I don’t think it is a barrier to any B2B marketer when considering Authorship as a part of your overall social media strategy.
Learn how to create social media sharing and follow buttons for the top 5 social networks.
Social Media Follow Buttons
These buttons serve to promote your business’ presence on various social networks and help you generate fans/followers for those particular accounts. By placing these buttons on your business’ website, you can help to create visibility for your social media accounts and easily extend your reach there. You can put these buttons anywhere on your website, but we recommend at least placing these buttons on your website’s main homepage, your ‘About Us’ page, and your blog’s homepage/sidebar. The Twitter Follow Button, Facebook Follow Button, and LinkedIn Company Follow Plugin (and more) we’ll cover in this article all serve as social media follow buttons.
Social Media Share Links/Buttons
These links and buttons enable your website visitors and content viewers to easily share your content with their social media connections and networks. Adding these buttons to your content allows you to expand the reach of your content to new audiences and generate new visitors back to your website. You should add social media sharing links/buttons to every piece of content you create, including landing pages, web pages, individual blog articles, email content, etc. The Tweet/Share Button, Facebook Like Button, And LinkedIn Share Button (and more) we’ll cover in this article all serve as social media sharing buttons.
One place for all your social media buttons. Very convenient.
For the in-trial marketers at Autodesk, gamification is not a toy. Because of gamification, Autodesk experienced a 40% increase in participation in a free trial for one of its products.
In this B2B Summit presentation, you will learn:
- How gamification has been conditioned into our lives
- Autodesk’s two approaches to in-trial marketing
- How gamification was implemented into a free trial of a high-end product
- The next step for Autodesk
You can also download the slides to this presentation.
I firmly believe that Gamification for the B2B marketer is one of the most underutilized tactics available. Strongly encourage you to, at the very least, review the slides.
A new study commissioned by Silverpop and conducted by Forrester Consulting indicates that the vast majority of marketers surveyed believe that behavioral marketing can boost their performance in a range of areas, most notably in return on investment, revenue attributable to marketing activities, and customer satisfaction and loyalty. Though the sample size is small, responses suggest that mature or transitioning behavioral marketers are indeed seeing better results than their peers.
Among B2B respondents, for example, mature/transitioning behavioral marketers estimate that 34% of their sales pipeline can be attributed to leads their marketing function has generated, compared to 26% of “immature behavioral marketers.”
Of course, you’ll find a high correlation with MA usage.
Moz has released their 2013 search engine ranking factors, surveying 120 SEO professionals and having them rank different search factors. While this isn\’t the full survey data, it does have a lot of interesting information to consider.
The Moz results can be found at 2013 search engine ranking factors.
Many of us faced a challenging 2012, and 2013 has been no different. We created a survey to really capture the current market sentiment and better understand how industry peers are faring.
Important guide, especially in light of Penguin 2.0.
Find all the ways keyword text is used on webpage with this invaluable tool. The Side-by-Side SEO Comparison Tool compares two sites in a side-by-side report.
Using a free tool to find all the ways keyword text is used on webpage is very helpful to SEOs. But to have a keyword tool that compares two sites in a side-by-side report is even better. At a glance, you can see how your page and a competitor’s page use keywords, how much text is on the page, and which keywords are used. This is invaluable competitive intelligence for SEOs. Internet Marketing Ninjas offers just such a free SEO tool.
A TREMENDOUS competitive analysis tool. Get this to your staffers, your contractors, your consultants.
The folks at Spundge wrote a blog post recently for Mari Smith, 9 Steps to Creating Engaging Content, with a “no-hype, buzzword free” infographic that I really like.
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