What is a conversion worth?
When working with clients, I often ask - "what is a conversion worth to you?" The response I get is typically "We don't know." You are probably asking yourself why this is important.
First, let's start by defining a conversion. A conversion is an important action that a user takes on your website, such as downloading a pdf, filling out a contact form or clicking on a phone number or email address to get in touch with a business. These are very important metrics to track. Let's use a "Request for Quote" form as an example. To begin measuring how much a conversion is worth, you need to know the following variables:
How many Request for Quote forms are filled out over the course of a year?
How many of those Request for Quote forms end up as sales?
What was the average dollar amount for ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, Inbound Marketing, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO by John Anderson on June 4, 2019
Marketing Tips To Get Engineers Engaging With Your Business
How can industrial marketers reach out to engineers now that communication has shifted to online and content marketing? TREW Marketing and IEEE GlobalSpec partnered to conduct a survey and discovered the best ways to interact with technical professionals. Let’s dive into some key findings.
Technical Content Is King
The survey found that engineers preferred datasheets, case studies, and product/how-to videos over other types of content such as trade publication articles or infographics. When creating marketing pieces, consider using white papers and other informational pieces that will engage and inform this technically-minded audience.
Keep It Fresh
Over 90 percent of engineers surveyed are more likely to do business with companies that regularly produce new and current content. Your website is not something you can just set up and forget. You need new content to keep visitors engaged and coming back. However, before you start adding blogs, calculators, and other cool content, here are some things you’ll want to consider.
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by John Tillotson on January 3, 2019
WHAT ARE UTM PARAMETERS? WHY ARE THEY IMPORTANT? AND HOW DO YOU IMPLEMENT THEM?
Have you ever run a campaign and wondered how effective it was at driving traffic to your website? You did append UTM tags to the links in the campaign, didn’t you? If not, Google Analytics reports will not contain the data you need to measure campaign performance.
That’s why UTM codes (also known as UTM tags or UTM parameters) are so important.
UTM Parameters: What Are They?
UTM parameters are attributes you append to hyperlinks (destination URLs) for marketing campaigns sending traffic to your website. When the link is clicked and the visitor arrives on your site, tags are sent back to your Google Analytics Account and appear in your Analytics metrics.
Here is a sample link we could use when this blog is shared in an email blast; the UTM parameters are appended to the URL):
Why Use Them?
Failure to append UTM tags to hyperlinks will do more than simply hinder your ability to do effective campaign ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, General, Inbound Marketing, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, SEO, Social Media by John Anderson on December 3, 2018
Facebook B2B Advertising Comes of Age
Don’t listen to your kids: Facebook advertising isn’t just for moms in the 35- to 40-year-old age range. Thanks to its retargeting and similar audiences features, Facebook has become a powerful tool for B2B advertisers seeking new customers who are similar to their existing customer base. Today, you can effectively “follow” individuals that visit your website on Facebook and utilize all the information Facebook knows about those people—age, job, location, pages visited, etc.—to identify similar people on Facebook and then reach out to these potential new customers with targeted advertising. It’s a game changer.
How it works
Customers who are a good fit for your company and are interested in what you do visit your web page. These visitors then return to Facebook at some point, in the normal course of their day. Facebook knows a great deal about these individuals—analytics that include everything from age, marital status, location and job to favorite TV shows, movies, ...
Posted in: General, Inbound Marketing, Online Advertising, SEO by Jon Ballard on March 22, 2018
Gated Content: Is Your Content Worthy of Capturing Leads?
Is Your Content "Gate" Worthy?
Don’t know what Gated content is? You’re not alone.
So, what is gated content?
Gated content is information that is valuable enough to a visitor that they are willing to exchange their contact information to access the content. Consider the email address as the key, and the content as the treasure chest. The visitor just can't wait to see what’s inside.
It sounds simple. The lead gains access to valuable content and you continue building the relationship by keeping the conversation going.
It’s really not that simple. In a time where inboxes are saturated with promotional emails, it's difficult for visitors to hand over their precious contact information. Because it’s so difficult to gain and maintain trust, you need to make sure of two things:
1. Your content demonstrates Econ 101
2. You follow-up with the Golden Rule
There’s an exchange of information, for information. The user gives up something in order to ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by Online Marketing Team on August 2, 2017
Grow Your Bottom Line With Conversion Rate Optimization
Spending resources on a website design is only half of the battle when it comes to the growing your business online. The real ROI from your site comes down to two things:
Traffic: number of visitors on your site
Actions: what people are doing once they get to your site
Your business may have a great looking site. However, if you don’t have traffic or can’t convert visitors, it isn’t contributing to your bottom line. Website traffic and conversions really go hand in hand. The better you are at converting visitors, whether it’s making a purchase, requesting a quote, or signing up for a mailing list, the more traffic you can afford, and the more customers you can get.
Traffic is a matter of search engine optimization (SEO). No one will end up on your site if they can’t find you. Search engines are essentially the gatekeeper when it ...
Posted in: Conversion Rate Optimization, Inbound Marketing by Jon Ballard on July 27, 2017
Increase Sales on Your Website By Optimizing Your Internal Search
Increase Sales on Your Website By Optimizing Your Internal Search
I find that it's easy for website owners to overlook a valuable avenue for optimization. Internal search functions are sometimes thrown on as part of a design and otherwise ignored unless there's a problem. However, looking at your website visitor logs and discovering what they're searching for can help you generate more sales.
Audit Your Current Internal Search Experience
Review top searches on your site and try them yourself. What comes up in the results? If you don't see anything or the results aren't relevant to the keywords, fix the problem. Otherwise, you lose website visitors due to frustration.
If you see a lot of searches for a competitive brand consider a strategy to direct those searches to your alternative product.
You may need to switch to a new internal search solution if your current one is unable to generate worthwhile results for your visitors. You need to ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by Jon Ballard on July 24, 2017
7 Step Plan for Switching Marketing Automation Platforms
Change is never easy, and changing marketing automation systems has the perception of being exceptionally difficult. Still, SiriusDecisions reports that every year nearly 10% of B2B organizations that currently have a marketing automation platform plan to switch to a new vendor.
There can be a lot of reasons to switch. Whether it is to save money or because of an integration issue, sometimes the best answer is to cut your losses and change platforms. It is easy to find yourself caught up in the hype of marketing automation to a point where you are lured in to paying over $1,000 a month or more on a platform that doesn’t even fulfill your needs. But, that doesn’t mean you have to continue with that system.
Marketing automation has the power to provide a substantial ROI, which is why 79% of the best marketers have already been using marketing automaton for years. However, with hundreds of ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on February 20, 2017
Five Things You Must Include In Your 2017 Digital Marketing Mix
As 2016 comes to a close, many companies are already planning their digital marketing strategy for 2017. Here are five essential elements to include in your digital marketing mix for the coming year.
Earlier this month, Yahoo suffered a security breach that affected more than one billion of its user accounts. A security breach of this size should serve as a reminder of just how critical it is to ensure that your website is secure in 2017. We provide our clients with server-level monitoring for maximum security.
As scammers become more adept at stealing sensitive information, phishing scams are also on the rise. The Anthem medical data breach of 2015 was one of the largest data breaches in American history, and it caused by a phishing scam that targeted Anthem employees. Today’s scammers will go to great lengths to separate you from your money or to access your customer data. In our blog post, Lessons ...
Posted in: General, Inbound Marketing, Local SEO, Marketing Automation, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization by Jon Ballard on December 30, 2016
Drive The Right Traffic To Your Website: Poor Marketing Could Be Costing You
It’s pretty exciting once you’ve made the decision to invest in a new website or redesign your current one. But simply having a shiny new website isn’t enough to guarantee success. You still need to figure out how to get your existing customers and prospects to visit your new website.
So how do you make sure you’re getting the right traffic to your website?
Social Media Marketing
Social media marketing is more than simply creating a company Facebook page or Twitter account. It’s about communicating directly with your target demographic on their preferred social media platform in a way they are receptive to. Effective social media marketing helps you create better brand awareness and customer loyalty by providing clients and prospects with content that is relevant to them, establishing your company as an authority in your industry and an indispensable resource for your customers.
Email marketing is a great way to re-engage with your existing customers. Today’s ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation, Online Advertising, Search Engine Optimization, Social Media by Online Marketing Team on November 28, 2016
10 Marketing Automation Workflows You Can Actually Use
Marketing automation platforms are powerful tools that create sophisticated automated workflows based on highly targeted list segmentation and behavior. As result, marketing automation has become an essential part of many successful marketing strategies.
Whether you are a seasoned marketing automation veteran looking for fresh ideas, or a beginner wondering where to start, the following workflow examples are designed to help you get the most out of your marketing automation platform.
1. New Lead Drip Campaigns
New Lead Drip campaigns typically start with gated content, such as a white paper, eBook or webinar, that visitors find valuable enough to provide their contact information in order to obtain. At this time, the lead is not quite ready to buy, but is interested enough to read the information. At this stage, the visitor is referred to as a Marketing Qualified Lead (MQL). New Lead Drip campaigns send MQLs a series of timed emails that are designed to guide them through ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on October 12, 2016
Close the Inbound Marketing Loop with Inbound Sales
The doorbell rang unexpectedly. As I walked to answer the door, I mentally prepared myself for the confrontation that was to come.
Not a physical confrontation mind you, but one filled with the fake pleasantries of listening to another door-to-door sales spiel that usually follows an unexpected doorbell ring.
Now, I understand door-to-door salespeople are just trying to make a living, so I always listen politely and hear them out, then respectfully tell them that I’m not interested.
I opened the door.
“Hi I’m Joel with XYZ Cable Company. I’ve heard there have been issues with our competitor in this area, so I’m seeing if you are interested in switching providers.” he said as he handed me a pamphlet about their services.
“Thanks, but we are fine with our current provider.” I told him.
“But this is fiber optic, so it is better than what you have!” he said.
“That’s nice, but I’m not going to make a switch. I’ll keep ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on August 11, 2016
How to Write Content For Your Manufacturing Website to Increase Conversions
As the convenience and popularity of search engines continues to grow, your company’s website is the first impression prospective customers get of your organization. Making sure your company’s website features an appealing design and layout is important, but aren’t the only aspects you need to consider when designing your manufacturing website. After all, your website needs to be more than just appealing. Your website needs to convert.
Today’s manufacturers know that their website needs good content in order to convert, but most aren’t sure of the type of content they should include on their website, or how to write content that generates conversions. To write web content that converts, you must:
Define your call-to-action.
Clearly define the action you want your website visitors to take. Do you want users to fill out and submit a request a quote form, request samples, make a purchase directly from your website, etc.? After defining your conversion action, write content that ...
Posted in: General, Inbound Marketing, Web Development by Online Marketing Team on July 27, 2016
The Secret to Getting the Cheapest Website Possible
Looking to get the cheapest website you can? This blog will help you pay as little as possible for a website from a web development company.
The only thing you have to do is keep searching for a company to perform the work at a lower cost. That’s it! There is always someone willing to do a job for less money. If you search long enough, you will eventually find the lowest price company (more likely a single person) available!
What’s the catch?
The catch is that you will most likely end up getting what you paid for in terms of quality, and it will probably end up costing you more when you factor in lost revenue and the investment of your time.
Despite how it looks against the budget, cheaper is not always better. I was recently speaking with a new client of ours who is currently redesigning their website for third time in less than two ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Web Development by Jon Ballard on July 7, 2016
Content Marketing: Tell Your Story
Wesley* had given the last of his cash to the mechanic who had fixed the engine in his van. Wesley now sat inside that van parked in the Janesville Walmart parking lot wondering how he could afford gas to drive the van anywhere. Cancer and its treatments had sapped his strength. Medical bills had emptied his bank account and taken his home.
He lived in the van.
Careful budgeting of his monthly military pension had helped Wesley survive for a good long time. His next check was just one week away, but in order to receive it, he needed to attend a meeting with his counselor in Madison. He had left a message for his counselor explaining his financial/fuel situation, and now he waited for a return call hoping he had enough minutes on his phone to complete the conversation they would have.
He was out of money. He was out of gas. ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by Rose Stricker on June 8, 2016
Essential Design Features For Lead Generation
What’s the purpose of your company’s website? If you’re like many other companies, the answer is simple - to generate leads.
But it takes more than just having a website to convert visitors into leads. If your company’s website doesn’t engage visitors or direct them to take your desired action, it’s not going to generate leads for you. To generate leads, every page of your company’s website needs to have a specific purpose and provide visitors with an exceptional user experience.
To generate leads, your company website should have:
A Professional Design
Most of us already know that first impressions are important, but did you know it takes 0.05 seconds for visitors to decide to stay on your website or leave it.
According to Stanford Web Credibility Research, 75% of visitors use a company’s website to determine how credible the company is.
A recent article from Kinesis reports that “studies of user behavior have found that visual appeal and website ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation, Web Development by Online Marketing Team on April 29, 2016
What The General Data Protection Regulation Means to Email Marketers
Similar to the passing of the Canada Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) in 2014, the 2016 General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) proposed by the European Union (EU) has caused quite a stir in the digital marketing community. Just last month, the EU finished drafting the GDPR and made the provisions public. Final approval of the GDPR is expected early this year. Once approved, the new regulations will go into effect three days afterward, followed by a two-year transition period. This two-year transition period between approval and enforcement may make it easy to ignore initially, but the GDPR metes stiff penalties that require businesses to assess their current data collection process and implement a GDPR compliance strategy. But what exactly does the GDPR require?
Unlike the United States, the EU operates under an opt-in model of informed consent, instead of an opt-out model. Because of this, the GDPR requires explicit consent from consumers for the right to collect ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on February 1, 2016
Do You Know How To Get Backlinks From News Sites To Boost Your SEO? You Should!
Backlinks have always been known to be a big part in SEO and they still play a major role in determining your rankings and the amount of traffic your site gets from search engines.
Keep in mind some backlinks are better than others. When figuring out how to get more backlinks, make sure that you are focusing on getting links from places that make sense. A recent study by Moz suggested that sites that have more links from "news" sites get more search traffic. Here is our advice on how to create "newsworthy" content and get news sites to publish it.
We suggest using the following methods to get a backlink from a news site:
Publish Press Releases
Subscribe to Help A Reporter Out
Engage in Industry Forums
Blog About Current Events
As a part of our regular SEO plan here at Foremost Media, ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Search Engine Optimization by on September 24, 2015
9 Reasons You Should Redesign Your B2B Website Today
In today's marketing climate, your company's website is one of the most prominent and valuable marketing resources available. When done properly, a website redesign can show quick and significant return on investment for a company making you look like a marketing rock star. Below we have 9 reasons to help you justify a website redesign to your boss:
1. Google Penalizes Sites That Are Not Mobile Friendly. This is costing you traffic
If you are like many of our B2B clients, as much as 30% of the traffic to your site comes from mobile devices. On April 21st, 2015 Google begin to reduce search rankings for sites that are not "mobile-friendly." This update could already be having significant impact on your traffic as Google is giving priority to sites that are "mobile friendly" in their search results. In order to restore your mobile traffic, it is important to certify your website passes Google's Mobile Friendly test. ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Web Development by Jon Ballard on June 16, 2015
Google Releases Mobile Survey
Have you ever come across a satisfaction survey from Google when doing a search? It looks something like this:
Google has been pushing this survey on desktop now for the past few years in hopes of gaining insight as to what searchers expect on their SERP. (Search Engine Results Page). Just recently, they began displaying this survey on mobile searches as well.
The timing of this is not coincidental. Google just finished rolling out their mobile-friendly update, and they are looking for feedback. This is the perfect opportunity for searchers to let Google know if they are happy with the results received on any given mobile device, as well as a gentle reminder to businesses as to just how important a mobile-friendly site really is.
Posted in: General, Inbound Marketing, Search Engine Optimization by Online Marketing Team on May 27, 2015
How To Use A/B Testing To Improve Your Email Marketing
You know your emails could perform better. You spend hours debating what subject line to use, what wording is best and even whom the email should appear to come from. You take your time constructing the perfect email, and then you painfully hit the send button to await your fate.
Slowly, the results come in. Your open rate and click through rate are both good, but you cannot help but be disappointed. You expected great, not good.
What happened? You followed all the best practices you read about in blog articles. You analyzed every element of the email, what should you have done differently?
With A/B testing you can now focus your efforts on improving your emails with actual data. A/B testing compares two elements against each other to determine which one performs better.
This simple test will take the guesswork out of your email marketing activities and allow continuous improvements to take your emails from good to ...
Posted in: Inbound Marketing, Marketing Automation by Jon Ballard on March 3, 2015
Seeing forum.topicxxxxxxx.darodar.com In Your Analytics?
There is a simple reason that your website is receiving a lot of referring traffic from the darodor.com domain, and the exact URL usually looks something like this "forum.topicxxxxxxx.darodar.com". Ask yourself, what did you do when you saw that? What was your gut instinct? That is correct, you copied it, and pasted it in your browser bar. Then what happened? It took you to an aliexpress page (a company owned by Alibaba) that is pitching holiday items for sale. Now, it is starting to make sense. Let's explore this further.
When I click on my particular "referrer" in webmaster tools, it first brings me to darodar.com, then redirects me to a russian domain called iloveitaly.ru. Next I am redirected to an aliexpress subdomain that has a very specific string at the end of it "aff_platform=aaf&sk=YNRjYvfmq%3A&cpt=1420754856013&null". Do you know what this means? It means that I am being tracked because the person that sent me to ...
Posted in: General, Inbound Marketing, Search Engine Optimization by Online Marketing Team on January 8, 2015
[Infographic] What Is Inbound Marketing?
Have you noticed the term "inbound marketing" being thrown around lately? The concept has taken the marketing world by storm. It involves combining a variety of online marketing disciplines into a holistic approach that focuses on attracting, engaging and converting leads.
Interested in learning more? Take a look at our new infographic.
Embed the infographic on your own site!
What is Inbound Marketing Infographic
From: Foremost Media
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by Jon Ballard on September 17, 2014
Are You Marketing Effectively Throughout The Buying Process?
The goal of inbound marketing is to attract your ideal visitors and ultimately convert them into delighted customers.
It is imperative that you create buyer personas to make sure you are not only attracting qualified leads, but that you are also creating content that engages them. In order to move them from leads to customers, you need a thorough understanding of the buying process.
There are five stages to the buying process, and as inbound marketers, we need to have a deep understanding of each stage. The relevancy of the content to the buyer persona is largely dependent on what stage they are currently at in the buying process. Understanding what stage they are in, will allow us to move them along in the buying process and eventually convert them into customers.
The buying process is not anything new. John Dewey first introduced the concept in 1910. The stages are as follows:
1. Problem/Need Recognition
2. Information Search
Posted in: Inbound Marketing by Jon Ballard on August 13, 2014