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Should your business be ‘capturing leads’?

Should your business be ‘capturing leads’?

If you’re a service based business without any means of lead capture on your website, then you’re probably allowing many prospective clients to slip away. Perhaps you’ve come across the term ‘lead capture’ while reading up on content marketing, but aren’t quite sure what sort of difference it would make to your business, or how you would implement it. Let’s take a look at what lead capture is, what the benefits are, and what’s involved in doing it. What is lead capture? Lead capture is the practice of inviting website visitors to register their details in order to receive content and/or further communication from you. In the simplest form, lead capture is that ‘subscribe to our newsletter’ or ‘subscribe for updates’ option you see on many sites. However, unless your content writers turning out  highly unique material and you have droves of people wanting to sign up, this doesn’t go far enough. One reason this isn’t sufficient for most service businesses, is that not all their prospective clients have precisely the same interests, challenges, pain points and buying motivations. Unless you’re able to segment your database into buyer types, and deliver the most relevant content to each, results with a newsletter subscription alone are likely to be mediocre. Another issue is in the timing. When someone subscribes to your blog or newsletter, that action doesn’t indicate what they’re interested in right now, or how you might help them. However, if they download an eBook related to a specific challenge, it’s a different story. What you have then is often a genuine lead – someone who has identified themselves as a...
8 Digital Marketing Courses Business Owners Can Take for Free

8 Digital Marketing Courses Business Owners Can Take for Free

Calling all business owners who are tired of banging their heads against brick walls due to average digital marketing results. Sound like you? As every business owner knows, sometimes, if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself…at least until you find (or can afford) an exceptionally competent person to take it over. For many businesses, budgets simply don’t allow for outsourcing everything to digital marketing professionals. There might be no choice but to dabble in some DIY marketing strategies. The problem is, when we do attempt our own SEO or Pay Per Click (PPC) tweaking, we often don’t know enough to get the results we’d like. And as they say, a little knowledge can be dangerous! If you’ve been experimenting with your own digital marketing like a nutty cyber professor, and your results have been… well…blah…it might be time to think bigger. Here’s a list of 8 free courses and resources available to amplify your DIY marketing prowess. All of these can be done online in your own time. Take your time and investigate them all, or click the link on the list below to jump to the course of most interest. SEO training with Moz Adwords & Digital Marketing training by Google WordStream PPC University Inbound Marketing – HubSpot training Open Universities Australia – Online Advertising GFC Learn Free – Social Media Marketing Canva Tutorials – create fabulous images Wistia Video Tutorials SEO Training by Moz (facilitated by Udemy) Had a crack at your own SEO before? Or do you simply need to wade through the basics because outsourcing isn’t an option? SEO can...
2017 New Year Content Checklist

2017 New Year Content Checklist

Heading into the New Year with a resolution to step up your marketing efforts? If you didn’t get the results you wanted in 2016, here’s a quick checklist you can use to identify weak spots in your content marketing. Assuming you’ve made some effort to publish content during 2016, here are the four top mistakes we see that diminish the results: 1. Putting Little Effort into Content Creation With so much content online, if you’re not making a big effort to create content that hits home with your audience, you might be wasting your time creating content at all. Short shallow articles that state the obvious won’t hold audience attention even if a catchy headline entices people to click through to read it. And what’s the point of attracting visitors to your website or LinkedIn article if they’re going to roll their eyes and click the back button? The bad news: good content takes time and effort to create. The good news: even one or two excellent articles a month, properly promoted on social channels, can increase your audience, and help you connect with prospective clients. If your team can’t devote the time, there are content writing services who will be happy to help! 2. Failing to promote content on social media Many business owners believe that simply publishing regularly on their blog will drive additional traffic to their websites and deliver extra business. If you undertake your keyword research and publish well optimised posts, you might indeed garner some extra traffic to your website. But you’ll bring in more if you’re drawing people’s attention to your content via social...
Great content strategy – but who’s going to implement it?

Great content strategy – but who’s going to implement it?

So, you’ve developed a content marketing strategy your competitors would envy, but will you be able to carry it out? Creating a content strategy or an inbound marketing plan will provide a solid direction, but it’s what comes next – planning your content – that will determine how well you implement. If you don’t have a comprehensive plan, don’t jump in an attempt immediate implementation. Your strategy is only the what and why. Now you’ll need to plan the who and how. It’s this planning phase that will allow you to streamline your activities for the best chance of consistent implementation. Perhaps your strategy involves: Researching to ensure you choose topics of greatest interest to your buyer personas Publishing high quality content consistently Optimising your content for discoverability Being highly active on the social media channels most relevant to you Curating outstanding content your audience will appreciate Regularly repurposing your own content assets into eBooks or other material Here is a breakdown of some of the tasks involved to help you decide on the who and how for your content plan. Topic and keyword research – taking the time to undertake keyword research not only helps you identify popular search terms and long tail keywords with potential, it helps to identify the type of information your prospective clients are looking for. The person most suitable for this task might be your content strategist, or any other team member from a writer to a marketing assistant who has a thorough understanding of your audience, and familiarity with the tools used to undertake keyword research. Writing – there are several potential solutions for...
Here’s What it Takes to Produce Good Content Regularly

Here’s What it Takes to Produce Good Content Regularly

Having recently written about the content creation processes that agencies need to produce quality blog content for their clients, I realised that many business owners would benefit by understanding some of those processes too. It’s likely there’s much more to it than you thought, so here are some of our relevant processes. Most will be relevant to you whether you’re creating your content in-house or outsourcing the task to professional content writers. Defining your audience It’s the first hurdle, and many fall here. It’s often because the business concerned has more than one target market and so they either create content that attempts to address both, or they only think to address one audience, which may or may not be the one that brings in the most revenue. The audience split might be something like residential/commercial,direct client/agency, or business/individual, or it could be split across industries, sectors, or even age groups or other personal factors. The split usually means that your audience groups have slightly different interests, and different factors that will motivate their purchase decisions. It stands to reason that you need to understand the interests and motivating factors for each important audience group, and tailor content that speaks well to that audience. When you create one-size-fits-all content, you risk not capturing anyone’s interest. Creating buyer personas can be a very helpful exercise. Understanding the steps of their buyers’ journey The ‘buyers journey’ might sound like marketing speak, but not taking it into consideration can also result in creating content that doesn’t appeal. But if you’ve been in business for a while, it’s likely you’ll be able to...
7 Steps to Consistent Content Strategy Implementation

7 Steps to Consistent Content Strategy Implementation

There’s really only one way to get results from content marketing (or inbound) activities, and that’s to have a solid content strategy in place, and implement it with consistency. For businesses big and small, that requires a certain level of organisation and commitment. But as with most business activities, the better the planning, the better the output. Here are the 6 steps to consistency and results. Have a documented content strategy! If your company’s content strategy is all in someone’s head and not documented anywhere, I’d go so far as to say that planning and consistent implementation is impossible over the long term – either because that person won’t always be available, or because as the business grows, the wheels will fall off as other tasks are given more priority. Document early and create consistent habits while you can. Conduct a content audit For the business that’s been publishing content for a few years without a documented content strategy in place, it’s a great idea to undertake an audit while you’re developing your strategy. A content audit can identify valuable pieces of content that can be repurposed or redistributed, as well as identifying outdated material that should be removed or updated. It will be a time consuming exercise if you have hundreds or thousands of pages of content, but if you’re able to make better use of the content you’ve already invested in creating, you’re likely to come out in front. Plan per quarter or year You might not be able to plan all your pieces this far ahead, but you can identify seasons, particular months, or even specific...