Want A Rock Star Blog? Be Sure You Address These 8 Areas

Posted by Matt Polashuk

Feb 10, 2016 12:00:00 PM

Blogging_Best_PracticesBlogging is a term that has taken off over the years but not just for moms who want to talk about their favorite recipes or 20 something’s who want to write about their summer Eurotrip. Recently, forward-thinking businesses have realized it’s true value as a lead generation and lead nurturing tool, driving significant web traffic and providing clients and prospects with important industry information. All items which lead to more sales.

This is not just my opinion, as the data exists to back me up. HubSpot’s 2014 State of Inbound report determined that marketers who have prioritized blogging are 13x more likely to enjoy positive ROI. Additionally, 82% of marketers who blogged daily acquired a customer using their blog and 57% of marketers who blogged monthly brought in new business as well.

While the blogs we write differ based on our target audience and the nature of our businesses, there are things that all B2B companies should pay attention to in their approach to blogging. Here are eight things to consider that will help you get the most bang for your buck from your blog.

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing, Lead Nurturing

6 Reasons to Add Webinars to your Content Mix

Posted by Stacy Bouchard

Feb 9, 2016 3:00:00 PM

6-reasons-to-host-a-webinar.jpgA long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, I was a marketer in the engineering consulting business. Not as exciting as Star Wars but it did sometimes seem like I was on another planet. Kidding aside, one of our most successful tactics for generating leads was hosting seminars. We’d work with our technical staff to identify topics that our prospects were interested in learning about or HAD to learn about because of changes in regulations.

Each event was held in one of our offices or at an off-site meeting place. The agenda usually included multiple speakers all presenting something relevant to the overall topic. These events were successful because we were able to invite very specific prospects and clients to learn about something that was causing them pain or was about to cause them pain. We were then able to deliver our teaching point-of-view on the topic in person and really establish ourselves as the experts. Our prospects looked forward to attending these seminars and prioritized them in their schedules.

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

How to Create an Effective Sales and Marketing SLA

Posted by Doug Davidoff

Feb 5, 2016 1:00:00 PM

create-effect-sales-marketing-sla.jpgThis post originally appeared on the HubSpot Marketing Blog.

The alignment of an organization’s sales and marketing efforts is a crucial strategic imperative for companies that desire sustainable growth. Despite the evidence of improved business performance, it’s still a rarity to find an organization that has and maintains full alignment. The good news is that the issue is getting far more attention than ever before, and more organizations are making progress.

A major cause for the overall lack of progress is that while the issue of alignment is getting more strategic attention from executives, it’s still getting very little focus in terms of tactical and structural changes that need to be made within an organization to sustain the goal.

While talk and will power can improve results in the short run, structural change is required to sustain the effort and to gain the benefits of such a pursuit. It is for this reason that the development of a documented service level agreement (SLA) between sales and marketing is so important.

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

Want More Inbound Leads? Make Sure Your Premium Content Doesn't Suck

Posted by Maria Votlucka

Jan 19, 2016 12:00:00 PM

According to the Content Marketing Institute, in 2016, B2B organizations plan to produce 76% more content than in 2015. That’s a lot of marketing noise! To boot, CMI also reports that in 2015, 64% of marketers didn’t have a content strategy and only 30% of marketers said their content was effective. 

Get More Inbound Leads with Your Premium ContentThose numbers are unnerving considering the blood, sweat and tears (time, more time and money) that you invest in developing premium content pieces such as whitepapers, ebooks, case studies, how-to guides, etc. Premium content is key to your business’ success! Whether your offer is for the epiphany (above the funnel), awareness (top of the funnel), consideration (middle of the funnel) or decision stage (bottom of the funnel) of the buyer’s journey, to achieve success your strategy must be aligned with how buyers engage, learn and consume content today - not 6 months ago.

So how do you get the most ROI from your premium content? Start with your buyer personas. To grab their attention, capture them as a lead and guide them down the path to becoming delighted paying customers, your premium content must be focused on what matters most to them. Do you know how effective your premium content is?

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

[Free Tool] The 8 Elements of an Effective Landing Page

Posted by Matt Polashuk

Jan 12, 2016 4:00:00 PM

Landing-page-example.pngLast week, Ellen wrote about improving conversion rates on landing pagesToday, I’m going to take a deeper dive into the elements of an effective landing page.

For those unfamiliar with the term, landing pages are web pages that allow you to capture a visitor’s information through a conversion form. Think of them as a sales rep that is working 365, 24/7 for your business. Capturing leads through landing pages is not only an effective method of lead generation but has become a primary and vital method for any business to build out the top of their sales funnel.

While landing pages should not be thought of as a one-style-fits-all tool, there are certain elements of a landing page that must be included in order to garner optimal results. 

According to Hubspot, the elements of an effective landing page include a headline, hidden navigation, context, images, and forms. At Imagine, I have utilized these elements along with other components to create landing pages that fulfill their purpose of converting visitors to leads.

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

4 Insights to Increase Landing Page Conversion Rates

Posted by Ellen Salzler

Jan 6, 2016 3:30:00 PM

4 Insights to Increase Landing Page Conversion RatesIt’s a small victory when a visitor comes across your site and navigates to a landing page. What makes it a big win? With all the hard work you’ve done to get that visitor to your site, when they continue along a conversion path to fill out your form and become a lead…well, that’s worth celebrating!

When that visitor turns out to be one of your buyer personas in the midst of their buyer’s journey, that’s even better. Of course, part of the journey includes entering the top of your funnel by following the lead conversion path you’ve designed for them. A lead conversion path is made up of 6 elements:

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

5 Ways to Incorporate Personalization into Your B2B Marketing

Posted by Stacy Bouchard

Jan 5, 2016 5:00:00 PM

b2b-marketing-personalization.jpgRemember the theme song from the show Cheers? In case you forgot, here’s the chorus to stir your memory…

Sometimes you wanna go…

Where everybody knows your name

and they're always glad you came.

You wanna be where you can see,

the troubles are all the same.

you wanna be where everybody knows your name.

If someone were to pick a theme song around using personalization in B2B marketing strategy, it would be this one. Isn’t this how you want your prospects to feel when they interact with you?

I think everyone likes walking into a room where people greet you by your name. But more importantly, they like to know that someone understands their troubles. Personalization can help you be that someone to your buyer personas.

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing

The Fastest Way To Kill Your Blog (& What To Do About It)

Posted by Doug Davidoff

Dec 7, 2015 10:00:00 AM

Screen_Shot_2015-12-06_at_5.41.47_PM.pngI had a conversation recently with someone who told me that blogging didn’t work. He’d been blogging for years and only saw moderate increases in traffic and little to no increase in leads generated as a result of blogging.

His company had been blogging pretty consistently. There were occasional gaps in posting blogs, but his company certainly averaged more than a blog a week over an extended period of time.

As a result of this conversation, I offered to review his blog to see if I could figure out why it wasn’t creating meaningful results. He agreed and after spending a little bit of time reviewing his company’s posts, I was quickly able to determine the root cause of the problem.

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing, Demand Generation

Is Cold Calling Dead?

Posted by Doug Davidoff

Dec 3, 2015 4:00:00 PM

is-cold-calling-dead.jpgIn 2009, I wrote a post that got some provocative responses asking the question Is It Time to Kill The Cold Call? On Tuesday, I commented on a post on HubSpot’s sales blog by Leslie Ye, Wake Up, Cold Callers: 6 Reasons I’ll Never Buy From You. Clearly the last eight years have not settled this topic. One only need look at the comments to see the passion – and difference – of opinions.

The message of the post was that cold calling doesn’t work (or at least rarely works) because, “Cold calls and emails are annoying, interruptive, and rarely useful. And it’s no wonder: With more information available to buyers and sellers than ever before.”

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Topics: Lead Generation, Inbound Marketing, Sales Development, Demand Generation

The Difference Between Demand Generation & Lead Generation

Posted by Doug Davidoff

Sep 4, 2015 3:00:00 PM

Recently, I’ve heard a lot more conversation about demand generation and lead generation than I have for some time. Unfortunately, it’s been caused by people treating the terms like synonyms.

While this is certainly a topic where I get more geeked up than the average businessperson, the difference is important enough that everyone involved in growing a business should understand it.

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Topics: Lead Generation