After a while, marketing becomes a well-oiled machine.
You have your strategy in place, you get comfortable with your tasks and your processes seem to run themselves. However, settling too far into autopilot can be devastating to your efforts.
That's why it's essential to check back on how you're approaching the marketing game. Examining if your process is working can help you adjust pieces of your plan.
Approaching just fragments of your strategy allows you to revamp certain aspects without starting from scratch. To optimize your marketing process and ensure it's as effective as it can be, take these small steps in revisting your procedures.
From a micro-level, you can always strengthen your systems, which in turn strengthens everythin on a macro-level.
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A call to action (CTA) is one of the simplest but most crucial elements to any content marketing strategy. This short suggestion leads customers to more information, a sales rep or even better, a purchasing page.
Depending on the content the CTA is bookending, it should always fit the tone, audience and logical next steps.
An enthusiastic CTA like, “Tell us in the comments below!” doesn’t fit with an academic whitepaper, but would be appropriate on a light-hearted blog.
This CTA is especially ineffective if there isn’t a comments section to begin with.
Knowing your content and customers helps develop better CTAs. Targeted CTAs convert 42 percent more visitors into leads than basic ones.
Creating a personalized CTA can be as easy as speaking to specific, but broad groups. A CTA for a customer is going to accomplish different things than a CTA for a lead or a visitor.
It’s all about knowing the reader’s level of familiarity with your content and company.
To check the true effectiveness of your CTAs, you can analyze the traffic gained through clicks or downloads. Measuring the number of downloads gained from CTA to read a whitepaper, ebook or guide will indicate how well it is working.
Asking people to comment, then monitoring the comment section should prove how much engagement that CTA received.
And keeping track of how many people take you up on your offer for a live chat or follow-up should show how well (or not) this works.
To revitalize your CTAs that might be failing, follow these tips:
- Make them visible. A CTA buried in the conclusion isn’t going to get many leads. A large graphic button will catch eyes and clicks.
- Keep it concise. A quick, directive call to action will get more response than a long, suggestive one.
- Innovate. Getting creative helps your CTAs to stand out from the average. You can get inspired from these examples.
- Follow Through. If your CTA encourages your visitors to contact your company or reach out to your team, make sure you follow through and contact them in return.
Most importantly, aligning your CTA to your content is just one portion of successful conversion.
Next, when revisiting your marketing strategy, you should test the waters of your content’s resonance with your audience.
Are you exploring topics, cultivating conversation and presenting ideas that matter to your customer base? If you are, it is probably obvious by the engagement you see.
However, even if you aren’t seeing hundreds of responses, don’t panic. You still might be creating good content, but your readers might be the silent type.
Often times, an experienced CEO will enjoy your content, but isn’t racing to comment or engage on social media.
Resonance should be measured against industry standards. If you are adding just another, “30 Ways To…” list to the blogosphere, you aren’t making an impact.
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If you are creating content like a thought leader, you will impart new ideas to your audience and keep them coming back for more.
To measure online marketing look at the following aspects:
- Source and quantity of traffic
- Visit-to-purchase rate
- Traffic numbers
- Page load speed
- Bounce rates
- Retweets and Facebook shares
These metrics, while general in nature, are a good indication of how successful your marketing plan is.
They provide tangible evidence of how your content and other efforts are performing. Using these as guidance takes a wise balance of data-driven marketing and a personal plan of attack.
Maximizing Social Presence
With nearly nine out of 10 companies using social media for marketing purposes, there are numerous ways of approaching a strategy.
Some companies take a hands-off approach; others are very involved. To choose the right social strategy for your company, it is important to be cognizant of your audience and the types of social users you are attracting to your account and conversations.
If you aren’t seeing the engagement numbers you are seeking, you can try to maximize your social company’s social presence in a new way.
Often relying on a single company account to carry the social marketing burden is an unrealistic and incomplete plan.
The best way to maximize your social presence is to encourage your employees to get in on the game.
Content shared by employees receive 8x more engagement than brand-shared content.
Because an employee account puts a face to the content, a personality to the brand and a human touch to what can be a very impersonal activity, people are more willing to connect and engage with a real human.
Beyond the basic employees, people will look to the leader of a company for information. Despite the fact that companies with socially-active CEOs perform better with conversions, a very small percentage of CEOs are actually on social media.
A recent study of the Fortune 500 company CEOs revealed only 39 percent are active on their social accounts, and none have an account on all six platforms, defined as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube.
Instituting an advocacy program that helps employees promote your content on their social accounts makes it easy to maximize your social presence.
There are also many tools that can assist with enhancing your efforts. Technology combined with a personal approach streamlines your marketing plan and increases your success.
Every prosperous company takes the time to reevaluate its practices and principles to ensure it is serving its customers in the best way possible.
Marketing should use this idea to optimize its processes as part of the reevaluation.
Revisiting how you accomplish things isn’t an admittance of failure or a sign of defeat, it’s simply a smart way to do business.
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Checking the success of your CTAs, testing the resonance of your content and maximizing your social presence can lead to a refreshing revival of your marketing strategy, invigorating your team and efforts with new power.