Inbound Marketing Company Blog

What's your social media strategy?

Posted by Keith Errington

Social media is used by people for many things; some tweet about the music they are playing, some post to Facebook about what meal they just ate, bloggers write about the smallest of plot details in an obscure TV series, and Pinterest users post recipes containing beetroot.

What has this got to do with business you ask? Absolutely nothing. And that’s really my point. You can tweet, post, blog and pin about anything under the sun, so what you really need is a plan, a direction – a strategy – to ensure your social media activity serves the business and delivers real return on investment.

Marketing strategy

It should not be surprising that your social media strategy should fit with your overall marketing strategy.

The best strategies are integrated strategies – almost all the big successful campaigns of recent years have been integrated across many different communication channels. One of the biggest, and most famous is the Compare the Meerkat campaign – wonderfully integrating, TV, radio, posters, social media, PR and sales promotion to great effect.

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Has professional services marketing changed forever?

Posted by Jeremy Knight

It’s not so long ago that most professional services work was won through referrals. Not just from client recommendations, but also from hours of networking invested over the years, building relationships with introducers and intermediaries.

Referrals still work of course but, for most firms, fewer clients are won in this way today. In fact, tougher regulation in various sectors has made referral for new business almost impossible. Tighter controls recently imposed on the legal sector are testament to that.

Maybe therefore your firm is not growing at the same rate as it used to.

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WANTED: Social Media Superhero

Posted by Keith Errington

Social Media is a unique communications channel. In previous posts I’ve talked about it being more than just marketing – a combination of marketing, PR, customer service, research and more.

I suggested that an organisation has to recognise the multi-dimensional impact of Social Media on its business.

And I recommended that an organisation should employ a multi-discipline, Social Media Manager.

So who is this extraordinary person and what qualities, skills, competencies and knowledge should such a superhero possess?

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WTF is SMarketing?

Posted by Jeremy Knight

Historically, for many organisations, the relationship between Sales and Marketing resembled a battleground - Sales contesting that leads from marketing were woefully unqualified, and Marketing feeling affronted by the apparent lack of effective follow through on their hard won leads. For many, the rift ran deep.

Replace the guns and blades with pointed fingers and heated memos, and you’ll have seen this scenario at some point in your career, I can almost guarantee it. You may even feel things aren't that much better today.

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Sales and marketing just got better: HubSpot launch new CRM

Posted by Jeremy Knight

I don’t need to tell you: selling just doesn’t work like it used to!

It used to be a salesperson held all the cards – had all the information a buyer needed, and the consequent power over any deals on pricing, spec, etc.  But today, information is highly accessible to anyone who cares to search for it, and the buyer holds the upper hand.

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5 ways your digital marketing mix is like camping...no really!

Posted by Kirstine Storey

Really? I hear you! Surely, the link between camping and the digital marketing mix must be pretty tenuous.

But bear with me - it’s still summer after all (just), so maybe you've still got the time and space to ruminate and reflect on even the most obscure of analogies…

My family does a fair few camping holidays each year; we’ve chalked up 3 this year so far (in the UK and France) with a fourth planned at the end of September, before the weather gets too chilly.

And rather sadly, some may say, I found myself thinking about the ways in which planning and undertaking a camping trip bore a striking resemblance to the approach that businesses should take to their marketing in this noisy, digital world. No, really!

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Social media: What's your policy?

Posted by Keith Errington

One of the great liberating things about social media as a communications channel is that anyone can do it. But, for a business this is both a blessing and a curse.

It’s a curse because any of your employees could be using social media in a way that does not benefit the business or even worse, in a way that may be sabotaging it.

On the other hand it’s a blessing, as all those employees could be a collective force for good – adding significantly to the marketing effort and engaging directly with customers and prospects, providing an authentic voice for the company.

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What qualities do thought leaders bring to their business blogs?

Posted by Eric Swain

Anna Lawlor, journalist and co-founder of Social i Media, gives her interpretation of the term "thought leadership" and what it takes to become a proponent in your field.

Thought leadership is a term that is often bandied around in the content marketing field so Anna, what do you define as thought leadership and how do you deal with clients who are interested in becoming a "thought leader", out of the blue?

Quite a lot of people either think they are thought leaders (often self-determined) or would like to be. I’m a bit uncomfortable with the term "thought leadership" because there’s a danger of it just being another mindless piece of business jargon. What does thought leader actually mean?

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B2B email marketing success: 5 things to check before you hit send

Posted by Kirstine Storey

Email is easy, right? You design your campaign, your content is penned and you have included the offers that you want to highlight to your contacts, and now it’s time to hit send. No, not quite yet!

Done well, B2B email marketing is a highly efficient and cost-effective means of generating new revenues, repeat business and stronger relationships with your clients. But done badly, as we all know, it is an area of marketing that is shrouded with risk: risks around your reputation as a purveyor of interesting, useful content ("that link is broken"); risks around your spoiling your relationship with your clients ("my inbox is drowning…!"); risks around your relationship with ISPs – with the danger of being black-listed if you are sending large volumes to an un-opted-in mail -  the worst outcome here.

So, how can you ensure that the emails you send do not fall foul of these inherent hazards, and achieve the engagement, interest and response that you desire?

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7 simple B2B blog strategy tips that will help you get read

Posted by Jeremy Knight

According to research in The State of Inbound Marketing 2013 by Hubspot (sample 3,339) 62% of marketers published a blog in 2013 and almost 80% reported inbound ROI, proof that they can be ultra-critical to the success of your business.

A good b2b blog has multiple benefits and can be a great way of projecting an authoritative and trustworthy company personality to your existing customers as well as helping you get found by new prospects, too.

If it contains relevant and useful insight, helpful advice, and intelligent opinion, it will get shared, extending your reach. And, each time you publish a new post you are adding a new page to your website, so you become more visible to the search engines.

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