If you’re like most business owners, you’ve probably heard some occasional chatter about marketing trends: social media, content marketing, SEO and other hot topics. You may have read up on some of these trends circulating, but you question which are passing fads and which will truly impact your company. We’ve spoken to many business owners who communicate hesitations about adopting inbound marketing practices. Most of them struggle to establish the truth hidden in the multitude of eager over-promises and conflicting opinions. Among these protests to adopting an inbound marketing strategy, 4 lies surface again and again.
Here are the 4 most common lies we hear from business owners as reasons not to utilize inbound marketing, and the facts that disprove them:
4. Social Media isn’t for me.
We’re not going to argue that Social Media will bring you all the sales you’ve ever dreamed of. While Social Media can be an additional touch point in the sales cycle, the real value of maintaining a consistently strong presence on various Social Media channels can be attributed to a number of benefits:
- Social Media Builds Brand Awareness. A Pew Internet survey found that 65 percent of Internet users in the U.S. use social networking sites (Search Engine Watch). Obviously that’s not 100 percent, and you may be part of the 35 percent who decline to use these social hubs. Here’s another statistic to consider, though: 96 percent of companies participating in a recent survey plan to increase their investments in social media. Who is a part of that 96 percent: Your clients, your potential clients, and your competitors. Building a solid Social Media presence can help establish you as a serious player in your industry, with an army of followers, friends, and connections behind you.
- Social Media Encourages Networking Opportunities. Some of these networking opportunities will result in sales (62% of B2B Companies report that they have acquired a customer through LinkedIn). Some of these opportunities will result in a new job, a new recruit, a new friend, or maybe just some passing helpful advice. As a successful business owner, you’ve probably succeeded once or twice because of some well-placed connections. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to network.
- Social Media Personalizes Your Company. Social Media can help put real, human faces on an otherwise faceless company. Followers will start to think of your company as a multitude of real people rather than an impersonal, machine-like entity. What happens when a C-level executive shares some helpful advice on LinkedIn or takes a moment to reply to a tweet? People listen.
3. My email marketing is good enough.
Are you sure? Ninety-one percent of email users have unsubscribed from a company email they previously opted-in to. According to a survey by Mashable, 49% of users opted-out of emails because the content became “repetitive or boring over time,” and 25% opted-out because the content wasn’t relevant to them. If you aren’t engaging your recipients with each email, you will end up disengaging them.
Another startling statistic is that only 20% of emails are actually opened or clicked through. This number dips even lower for companies not practicing healthy email marketing habits. Utilize these tips to improve your email open rate:
- Send emails to the right address. One out of every five emails is not delivered to the intended recipient.
- Avoid spam filters by optimizing your content. Seven percent of emails are delivered straight to spam folders and never seen.
- Track your open rate. You can determine which tactics your audience receives positively by measuring your results. Study the content and subject line of emails that elicit high open and click-through rates and duplicate the approach in other campaigns.
2. Nobody searches for my company on Google.
Ninety percent of adults use search engines and over 100 billion global searches are conducted each month. Still not convinced? These searches frequently target businesses like yours. For example, the term “IT Staffing” is searched over 4 million times a month, and 2.7 million of those searches occur in the US alone. Not only are millions of people searching on Google, but they’re also searching for you. How many sales are you missing out on because these users can’t find you? Or worse, because they are finding your competitors?
A great way to build your website ranking in Google is to have a strong blog. Without digging into the goldmine of benefits a blog can bring to your company, we’d like to point out that maintaining a strong blog will drastically improve your search engine ranking and bring in more leads. Numerous studies have shown that B2B companies with a blog generate as much as 67% more leads than companies without.
1. Nobody cares about my website.
Eighty-five percent of people in a recent poll agreed the quality of a business owner’s website is an important factor in earning a consumer’s trust. If you have a website that doesn’t reflect your company’s values and practices, why would a potential customer consider you? We’ve already proved that people are searching for you, but once they find you, what will your website say about you? Your company can convey so much about your brand with a well designed, engaging website: trust, leadership, professionalism, quality, and more. Use your website to tell people your story.
Not only do potential customers factor in the quality of your website in their buying decision, but many people will also factor in the ability to view your website on a multiple device. In fact, two-thirds of smartphone users say a mobile-friendly site makes them more likely to buy a company’s product or service.
Hopefully we’ve cleared up the truth about inbound marketing, but if you still have questions, we’re here to help you find answers. Are you curious to learn more? Start a discussion with us about Inbound Marketing.
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