Archive for the ‘Online Marketing’ Category
Social media marketing seems very much to be the domain of consumer companies, but increasingly b2b organizations are being encouraged to get in on the act.
An interesting article written by one of B2B International’s clients, GlobalSpec, and recently published in Quirk’s, offers some handy tips to B2B companies taking their first steps in social media marketing:
1. How often and for what purpose does your target audience participate in social media?
By looking at how often and why your target audience participates in social media, it will help you to decide the sort of content – and the frequency – that you should be aiming for.
2. Which social media platforms do they prefer?
With a huge choice of social media channels to choose from, and more springing up every day, you must consider which would best capture the attention of your target audience.
3. What are your organization’s goals in implementing a social media initiative?
Depending on whether you’re seeking awareness, demand, engagement or actual sales, will influence your chosen social media strategy. Social media is particularly good at playing a supporting role in brand recognition and visibility in your target markets; building relationships with your audience; and establishing your company as a thought leader in your industry.
4. What resources (i.e., people, time, budget, etc.) do you have available to invest in social media without taking away from other online marketing efforts?
Social media can be budget-friendly, but don’t forget that time and resources are still required to create fresh content and analyze the results of your efforts. It’s important to remember that social media should merely complement rather than replace any existing successful online marketing programs.
5. How will you integrate social media into your overall marketing strategy?
With limited resources, key to maximizing your social media efforts is integrating it into what you are already doing, for example reposting your regular blog posts on Facebook, or Tweeting about a webinar you may be hosting.
6. How will you define success and measure ROI on your social media investments?
You already measure the effectiveness and ROI of all of your marketing initiatives. Social media is useful in building awareness, engagement and thought leadership. To achieve those goals, consider driving traffic to your Web site by offering downloadable content (e.g., white papers, research, infographics, etc.).
7. How will you promote your social media efforts in other initiatives?
To drive traffic to your social media platforms, you will want to incorporate them into your other marketing initiatives: Include links to your social media channels on your Web site, blog, business cards and in your collateral. Add them to your e-mail signatures.
Read the article in full here
Yet more statistics that point to the ever growing importance of the internet for marketers:
A new report released by eMarketer reveals online advertising spend will grow by as much as 13.9% this year, to reach a record $25.8 billion. This double-digit trend is expected to continue until at least 2014, by which time total spend will have broken the $40 billion barrier and online will have become the most important advertising medium.
Standard & Poor’s Financial Services also predicts strong – albeit slightly reduced – growth, estimating that US online advertising revenue will rise by 10% this year.
With a new year upon us, we’re all wondering what surprises 2011 has in store. BtoB magazine makes its own predictions for the top trends this year. For more of their predictions, visit BtoB’s 2011 Outlook: Marketing Priorities and Plans survey.
• BUDGETS SHIFT MORE HEAVILY TO ONLINE
This has been happening gradually over the last several years but the pace is increasing as marketers have been seeking lower-cost, more measurable ways to reach their audiences during the recession. This shift is aided by improvements in technology. According to BtoB’s 2011 Outlook: Marketing Priorities and Plans survey, 78.5% of B2B marketers plan to increase their online budgets this year.
• MORE EMOTIONAL, PERSONAL COMMUNICATIONS
As marketers strive to connect with business execs at work and at home, they are getting much more personal and emotional. In other words, the line between B2B and B2C is becoming less distinct, reflected by TV, print and online ads that have much more of a consumer feel.
• DATABASE-DRIVEN MARKETING AND NEW CUSTOMER INTELLIGENCE METRICS
B2B marketers will get much more sophisticated at mining customer data and making that information the focal point of their communications.
As marketing techniques and data-mining programmes get more sophisticated and personal, so do the metrics used to evaluate these efforts.
• OPTIMISING SOCIAL MEDIA
Despite arguments to the contrary, social media is becoming an integral part of marketing for b2b companies: 62.6% of marketers plan to increase their spending on such channels this year, according to the Outlook survey.
• FEEDING THE CONTENT MACHINE
B2B marketers must continuously create and maintain content used for marketing purposes – from social media networks to landing pages, blogs to thought leadership events.
With online marketing seemingly growing in importance all the time, we found it interesting to assess how much this really is the case. Emedia recently published results of its 2010 Online Marketing Strategy Survey conducted among marketers and digital marketers, some of the key findings of which are published below:
Yet more indication that the internet is the future for much of our marketing spend: in the first quarter of 2010, internet advertising revenues in the United States reached $5.9 billion, a 7.5% year-on-year increase.
The new figures, from the Interactive Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers, show the highest ever first-quarter revenue levels for the online media industry, indicating that interactive advertising campaigns continue to prove their value and effectiveness – or at the very least their measurability.
These figures seem to tie in with recent Bellwether Report statistics, showing that UK digital budgets were revised upwards in the first quarter of 2010 for the third quarter in succession, with digital the fastest growing of all advertising mediums.
Meanwhile, eMarketer has revised upward to 10.8% (from 5.5% in December) its forecast for US internet advertising spend this year compared with 2009. It predicts that internet ad spending will total $25.1 billion in 2010, after declining 3.4% last year. In more specific terms, search spending is expected to increase 15.7%, banner ad spending 8.2%, and video spending a massive 48.1%.