As an agency, our clients often ask us what should I focus my marketing efforts on? As predicted, the answer is not as clear cut as that. It depends heavily on what you’re already doing, what’s working out well and where you need to plug the gaps.
An ecosystem for marketing, you say?
There absolutely is a marketing ecosystem. You need to nurture ground-level work before you can ascend to tall forests... Or something similar. It's about getting the balance right. Mastering some basics. Walk before you can run type of stuff. But what does that even mean?
Marketing Qualified Leads to Sales Qualified Leads
Most of us are familiar with sales funnels, but what about the marketing channels that power the leads through them. This great diagram from The Marketing Blender simplifies the process into two stages: marketing qualified leads (MQLs) and sales qualified leads (SQLs), and the content silos that are most effective at driving success. Aligning your content to your customer's journey is a key tenet of inbound marketing.
Let’s get planning!
When your website was built, chances are you worked on a user journey through the content. But over time this can become cluttered and need a bit of TLC. If your website is particularly old, you might want to consider refreshing it to bolster your lead generation and nurture processes.
MQLs need to be directed to your website before they can qualify as SQLs. But we’d urge you to work backwards on this process.
#1 Identify your service clusters
Of course you know what you sell, but have you identified the product/service clusters? There are likely to be areas that fit into groups. For example, our clusters are: web, digital and creative.
Once you've identified these, it’s time to work through your website. And essentially tag the pages that are most relevant to each.
#2 Journey planning
So you know your service clusters, and you’ve tagged your pages to fit into each. It’s now time to think about the content journey:
- Intrigue (blogs, videos, hints and tips)
- Discover (whitepapers, guides, resources)
- Consider (product features, case studies)
- Decide (pricing, demos, sales interactions)
You can read more about the content structure for lead nurture processes in depth here.
#3 Is your content up to scratch?
Analyse your pages and look at your conversion and bounce rates. How are those stats in particular looking? Chances are, if your conversion rate is low, and your bounce rate high, you need to address the content. Working with a UX specialist and content marketing specialist may help you identify what needs to change.
#4 Are you ready to start driving traffic?
If you’re happy with your service clusters, content mapping and journey plans, you’re ready to begin. If you’re not happy with these, don’t worry – we can help!
What are my options?
Once you’ve ticked everything off the list above, it’s time to start looking at your options to drive leads:
SEO is the foundation of your website, so this should always be high up on your list of priorities. Along with fresh content, it provides consistent, long-term results.
Social media and press releases will feed into your traffic, bolstering your efforts consistently, provided you maintain an active presence. You’ll need to identify a strategy behind these in order to get the best success.
Lastly, PPC will likely give you the quickest results. That said, you must be sure that you’ve set up your ads correctly, otherwise it’ll fall flat.
How should I prioritise these?
Your marketing ecosystem needs strong roots to weather storms. It also needs a strong base in order for you to fully optimise it to reach your nirvana state.
- Content & SEO are the key drivers, without these, your campaigns are gutless.
- Social media (and PR to an extent) only work if you sustain the input. It’s no good to be super active for a month and then let it all go. You need to build trust, reliability and consistency.
- PPC is great when you need a boost. So long as you have a goal in mind, you’re golden. But you’ll need quality content to get more bang for your buck. Remember, Google assigns a quality score to campaigns. This is based on the relevance of your ads keywords, the landing page content and user experience (e.g. bounce rates and conversions).
But wait, there’s more!
Oh, there’s always more. This diagram helps break down the activities even further. Once you’ve mastered the basics, consider this checklist as the next steps:
I don’t have the time!
It's a delicate balance making sure that your marketing ecosystem is optimised for success. Yet most of us are time poor when it comes to starting additional projects at the moment. Whether it’s additional resource or expertise, we’ve got you covered. Working with a digital marketing agency need not feel like you’re treading on anyone’s toes or replacing anyone. We like to think of ourselves as an extension of your team.
Have a chat with us to see how and where we can help you achieve marketing excellence.