In an age where information is readily available at the touch of a button thanks to Google you would be forgiven for thinking that businesses have the answers to all their questions right at their fingertips.
However it seems that the opposite is in fact true. Australian businesses are suffering from an information overload. Many are often left confused, wondering what all the information that is out there means for them and their businesses. In particular within the Marketing Agency we are seeing businesses suffer from the burden of trying to understand how the plethora of marketing concepts apply to their business and how to select the channels most appropriate to their particular organisation and target audience.
This prompted us to think about the conundrum our customers experience and as a result have put together the top 5 questions (and answers) we are commonly asked.
1. How do I get the most out of my website?
The first thing to ask yourself is what is the purpose of your website? Does it exist as a lead source, is it there to simply educate potential customer about what you do and reconfirm to your existing customers why they chose to work with you, or is it a platform to sell your product? Once you have a clear understanding of the purpose, it is then easier to maximise your investment in a website.
a) My website exists to generate leads
If your website exists to serve the purpose of being an online lead generator than you need to consider what you have available on your website to make that happen. A contact us form is no longer good enough, and in some instances neither is offering people the ability to sign up to receive your eNewsletter. Think about what you offer, and what your customers need and consider developing content based on those two elements such as white papers, eBooks, Infographs and the like and make them available on your website in exchange for their email address. You could also get really savvy and depending on the subject matter of the content or the type of content they download, you could add them to an email automation sequence so they are really warm by the time you pick up the phone to contact them.
b) My website is an educational tool
With some industries it simply doesnt work or isnt appropriate to sell online or generate leads via a website. In those instances the websites purpose is purely educational; to demonstrate the organisations expertise and knowledge in the industry, provide case studies to demonstrate success with previous clients and to showcase current and previous customers. If this sounds like you, then content it your answer; and lots of it. We recommend adding things like blog posts, client stories, eBooks, whitepapers, case studies, opinion pieces etc. keeping the information on your website fresh and current not only make your business look professional, it will also help with your SEO and your organic search ranking on Google.
c) My website is my online store
If your website exists to sell your product or service, than the most important thing you need to consider is the User Experience, or put simply, asking yourself if you are making it easy for customers to find you, and once they do, purchase from you. Many people we work with feel quite overwhelmed by the term User Experience, but it isnt something to be frightened by. Just think about all the things that happen to you when you are online purchasing something that you hate. Write them all down, and then go and check your website to make sure you arent doing the same. Once you have improved the user experience, its important to focus on making sure you are leveraging the traffic that comes to your site. If someone visits and doesnt purchase you could consider implementing strategies such as remarketing or abandon cart emails to get them interested again.
2. I feel like we are spending all this money on marketing but I cant tell if its working. What do I do?
The first thing to do, if you havent done it already, is to develop a marketing strategy. If you have a good marketing strategy in place, that has been created to help achieve your business goals and objectives, and is supported by clearly defined marketing plans, then you should be aware of your spend and what it is achieving. The second part to this is tracking your calls and emails and making a note of the source of each and every lead and opportunity. In an ideal world, it is recommended that a CRM is invested in, and there are many free solutions such as Xero available. If a CRM isnt feasible for your business, it could simply be putting a sheet of paper near the phone and asking each team member to ask and make note of how the caller found out about you. At the end of the day/week/month/quarter you could add the results together and have some understanding of what is working and what isnt.
3. Do I need to have a Facebook page?
We get asked this very regularly. And my response is always why do you want one, what will you be doing with it? If you cant easily and logically answer that question then I would reconsider the relevance of having a Facebook page. I generally give an example of a Plumber who created a Facebook page because his mate told him he should and was subsequently baffled when it wasnt working. The reality is that when something went wrong and someone needed a plumber, they werent going to Facebook to look for a provider. They were going to Google to find their nearest one. The message in that anecdote is to consider who your audience is and how they behave when they are looking for a service provider. If having a Facebook page makes sense with their buyer journey, then go for it. However consider your options and appropriateness. Your target market may be engaged with social media, but as your product/service is B2B, LinkedIn may be the appropriate option.
4. What should we do to keep our customers loyal?
The answer to this is really simple. Keep them happy. This isnt about giving them discounts or sending them lavish gifts, it about doing what you say youre going to do, when you said you were going to do it. Keeping your word increases the level of trust your customer has in you and makes them more reliant and dependable on you. Our other recommendation is to implement what we refer to as a Surprise & Delight Strategy. Think about your customers buyer journey with you and identify areas for improvement or long gaps without contact and develop ways to rectify those situations. Maybe you could invite them it attend a webinar or event or send them a thank you card or an article that they may be interested in. these things demonstrate that you understand your customer and are willing to go above and beyond.
5. Where do I go for help?
There are many programs available where you can get general information about marketing related topics; however there are very few that will work with you on an individual basis to help you with your marketing. The Digital Enterprise Program is a government funded initiative that offers FREE two our workshops on a variety of topics such as Adwords & Analytics, Social Media Marketing and Content Marketing. The Program also gives you access to a marketing consultant who will spend 4 hours with you, at your place of business, working on the marketing for your business.