Easy reading day today: soak it in on this fine Spring day (or Fall day, if you’re in the Southern Hemisphere). The one that we absolutely, positively want to point out to you is today’s featured article on SlideShare: we don’t know what we have to do to convince you that this is the #1 content marketing vehicle for B2B. We’ve included a couple of marketing automation primer scoops, a revealing experiment in color testing for landing pages, and a few excellent infographics. Have a wonderful weekend my marketing siblings (go ahead, wish us a wonderful weekend right back)!
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Featured Marketing Automation Article
In a recent conference, I was asked my opinion on what is the biggest opportunity in B2B Content Marketing? Without hesitation, I answered “Slideshare.”
With more than 50 Million visitors per month and more than 100 million pageviews, slideshare is one of the top websites in the world and should be a key focus of any B2B content marketing program.
According to Comscore, Slideshare is used by business owners and business executives at a rate 5 times any other social network! The top categories in Slideshare are Business and Technology, followed by Education, Travel and Health.
Dang it, what do we have to do to convince you that SlideShare is a MUST?? DO WE HAVE TO SCREAM?????? The power of SlideShare and LinkedIn combined is so great that it's a must social media channel for B2B. Look: the VP of Global Marketing for SAP is telling you this!!
For any successful organization that relies on the Internet for leads and sales, marketing automation stands to increase efficiencies and revenues. Here's a look at marketing automation: the primary elements, core benefits, and opportunities.
The 10 primary elements of marketing automation include:
- Email Marketing: Initial and scheduled delivery based on buyer interests, roles, personas and actions.
- Landing Pages and Forms: For each campaign.
- Campaign Management: Includes development or repurposing of content (creative, video, short and long-form.
- Marketing Programs: Associated offers and content to support sales.
- Lead Generation: Associated advertising, social media, word of mouth and search engine visibility to drive participation in the system.
- Lead Nurturing / Lead Scoring/ Lifecycle Management: Includes prioritization of customer types based on fit and likelihood to buy, in addition to the filtering of leads by engagement and interest. Assumes existing customers are always leads, and keeps them in a system that continuously delivers relevant content.
- CRM Integration: Transfer of leads to sales opportunities and follow-up. This includes technical integration of platforms like Salesforce.com.
- Social Marketing Capabilities: Includes integration of social media platforms such as Hootsuite to achieve better tracking and attribution of social to sales.
- Resource management: Includes consultative services.
- Marketing Analytics: Includes measurement of the revenue contribution of each campaign and associated program element.
Again, another primer for the newbie. And the author refers you back to Jon Miller!
First, there is the basic question — Does our company in fact need marketing automation tools? To answer that question properly, one needs to self-assess needs, staff abilities, level of management support, and budget.
These questions can guide one to answering that fundamental question:
- What exact toolset is required to meet our business’ unique needs? There is no “one-size-fits-all” solution on the market.
- What specific goals are there? The identification of goals requires that the right stakeholders be consulted.
- Does management support exist? A C-level executive should sign-on to support the endeavor.
- Does our organization have the required internal skill set? Maximizing ROI is fully dependent upon a willingness to adopt a new platform and to engage in the necessary training.
- How will success be measured? The better one understands the reasons for pursuing a marketing automation
platform, the easier it will be to set appropriate benchmarks.
- Has cost been properly established? The marketplace offers both all-inclusive tools and others that resort to a wide array of add-ones that can dramatically increase costs.
A nice, easy article for the MA newbie. If you are, click through to read, then come back here and search the tag "marketing automation". Plenty of excellent information to assist you. BTW: Jon Miller has written some excellent articles on MA selection, and you'll want to refer to his posts (again, scooped here).
In the treatment, the team simplified and sequenced the pricing, and used a color design to emphasize the value of the offer. By strengthening the communication of the offer’s value through color, copy and layout changes, the treatment increased clickthrough by 81%.
What's the value in taking information and providing a much better visual presentation? In this case, CTs almost doubled. TEST!!!
The topic for this B2B social media case study is familiar: LinkedIn. The overall strategy and goal are also familiar: Use third-party validation from customers for thought leadership and brand awareness, and build an online community around a specific target audience.
The twist comes in the actual channel used to execute this campaign. DocuSign took what might have been a pretty standard email effort, and instead of using its email database, it utilized LinkedIn to send a series of sponsored InMails from its webinar speakers. Read on to learn the results of this marketing effort.
A different approach to using email marketing to drive registrants. What we don't know from the article's results is if it compares favorably to other webinar registration drives, i.e., this one drove 3.5% conversions, but what were past registration rates? May be worthy of testing.
Seeing digital advertising integrated into the content experience on social networks, news sites and streaming services is a somewhat new phenomenon, but it has taken off quickly.
Social networks, news sites, digital content aggregators and streaming media services are rife with ads that are integrated into the content experience. According to a new eMarketer report, “Native Advertising: An Emerging Consensus for a New Kind of Ad,” these so-called “native ads” are providing new ways for marketers to reach target audiences and new avenues of monetization for content sites that are under intense revenue pressure.
Although business prospects for native advertising are positive, the medium has its detractors. Some media executives and marketers are wary of the blurring of lines between content and advertising that occurs with native ads, particularly in the context of news sites. Others question the return on investment of these ads, arguing that native ads cannot scale for multiple placements.
As banner ad performance shrinks to as close to zero as you can get, there's a grasp for something different, and that different is native advertising. We've been keeping an eye on this, and find it as a better alternative to display...for now. Watching for backlash.
SilverpopTM, the only digital marketing technology provider that unifies marketing automation, email, mobile and social, today announced at its Amplify 2013 customer conference, the launch of Universal Behaviors. Now for the first time, marketers will have access to a live stream of real-time behaviors that they can easily understand and instantly integrate into highly relevant individualized campaigns.
“Marketers are being bombarded with a tremendous amount of data about their customers, which often seems like noise,” said Bryan Brown, director of product strategy for Silverpop. “To deliver highly relevant campaigns that convert, marketers have to not only hear everything, but act on what they learn. Now they can extract individual conversations and engage each person in real time. Universal Behaviors removes any remaining barriers to the vision of delivering true one-to-one communications to limitless numbers of customers via behavioral marketing automation.”
We normally do not scoop product or company announcements, but we are doing so today with two. This is one from Silverpop, which caught our eye inasmuch as we find it intriguing that they are offering a service that catches behavior from across a variety of different vendors. See the release for details.
Social Media - In the early days of social media, users interacted like real people do. However, in time, social networks evolved into pits of broadcast messages. Here's how companies lost their way ...
[INFOGRAPHIC] 2013 Sales Performance Optimization | DocuSign
2013 sales performance results across multiple industries and company sizes.
[INFOGRAPHIC] The Anatomy of Content Marketing | ContentPlus
Quality content is at the heart of any successful marketing strategy. Just like the heart powers the body, quality content drives marketing strategies