by Yoon Cannon | Attract More Customers, Business Growth Tips Blog
The Buyer’s Journey is a key concept that allows brands to create more compelling marketing by understanding their customers’ needs and mindset. If you want to create world-class video content, it should be central to your marketing strategy.
Generally, the buyer’s journey is split into three stages:
Awareness – the prospect is researching a problem and looking for a solution. For instance, they may be searching how to get more website traffic.
Consideration – the prospect begins researching the solution. This is where you introduce your product as the solution and explain how it helps. For instance, you could create a piece of content entitled SEO Strategies for Your Business.
Decision – the prospect chooses which product to purchase. Typically, this involves comparing multiple products and brands and selecting the one they think will best solve their problem. In our example case, this could mean comparing Ahrefs and SEMrush.
These stages roughly translate to customers being cold, lukewarm, or hot leads. When they are hot, they are close to making a purchase, while cold leads may not even know they have a problem yet!
In this article, we focus on how to use video content to move prospects down the sales funnel and onto the next stage of the buyer’s journey.
Video is consumers’ favorite form of media – a staggering 88% want to see more video content from brands (Wyzowl) – and this guide is packed with actionable tips that will help you make the most of this brilliant marketing medium.
Awareness Phase Video Content
In the awareness stage, prospects are cold leads. They are positively freezing. As cold as cold can get. They may not know your brand and product exist. They may not know they have a problem at all!
Video content in the awareness stage should be centered on a soft-sell strategy. The goal is to introduce your brand and valuable industry information in a way that encourages the viewer to trust your expertise.
The buyer journey usually starts with prospects searching for information on a particular pain point. They are looking for content that features solutions to their problem. But they are not researching solutions in any depth. They just want to know what their options are.
Informational Content & ‘How To’ Videos
Right now, your potential customers don’t know they have a problem. Your video content needs to change that and make people more aware of potential bottlenecks in their everyday lives or businesses.
That is where informational content and how-to videos come in.
Informational content has no barriers to entry, meaning that anyone can watch them regardless of their knowledge level. This is crucial to bring people into your sales funnel.
Think of it this way: if your customer doesn’t know they have a problem yet, would they watch a testimonial video for your products? It’s unlikely.
Whereas informational content which puts the focus on educating the watcher (as opposed to making the sale) hooks their attention and introduces your business niche much more organically.
To know which content to create, you need to find out what your sales prospects are searching for and then create content that:
- Answer their question(s).
- Enables you to integrate your brand and industry organically.
How-to guides and informational content are popular. They typically generate high search volumes on both Google and YouTube. They are also applicable to all industries. Every sector has ‘how-to’ related keywords they can target and create content for.
Take the social media scheduling tool, Hootsuite. It might choose to create content targeting the following keywords:
- How to get more social media followers
- How to create better social media content
- When is the best time to post on social media?
Interviews & Content Partnerships
Another way of raising brand awareness is partnering with other businesses to create video content. This gives you access to an established audience that already knows and trusts your partner’s opinion.
There are plenty of examples of this happening in the marketing world.
For instance, the SEO tool, Ahrefs, teamed up with the social media tool, Buffer, to provide a digital marketing masterclass that was a major success. And local restaurants often team up with cocktail makers to put on a joint event. Bars and pop-up kitchens also regularly collaborate, resulting in greater exposure for both parties.
When choosing a partner, make sure they are a non-competitor with a similar target audience. If you are looking for the great content you can make with that partner, consider:
- Expert interviews and knowledge exchanges
- Joint training webinars
- Social media channel takeovers.
Consideration Phase Video Content
The consideration phase is where prospects go from cold to warm. They know there is a solution to their problem and they think your brand could have the answer.
Now is the time to start featuring your product more heavily in content. You want to prove that your product does the things they need it to. There is an art to this, though. If you are overly promotional, you might frustrate prospects.
Instead, you need to draw them in with more informational content. But this time, it will be less general and 100% industry specific. You are going to tell them how your brand benefits them.
Let’s return to the prospect from our intro who wants to generate more website traffic. They read Ahrefs’ awareness-stage content covering the importance of keywords in SEO. But now, they are wondering how you go about conducting keyword research. Ahrefs knows that and hits them with… Keyword Research: A Beginner’s Guide.
Perfect consideration-stage content.
Once you have introduced your brands and products with awareness content, you need to move them onto another useful resource. Expert guides are an excellent choice.
Expert guides allow you to talk about how great your brand and product are. In the process, you explain how well it resolves the pain points highlighted in the awareness stage. You achieve this by properly introducing your products and explaining what they do and how they benefit the viewer.
This works because the content also provides immense value to the viewer, strengthening their trust in your business, ensuring they appreciate your expertise, and moving them one step closer to buying.
Product Explainer Videos & Demonstrations
Having introduced your products in the expert guide, you can also start going into greater detail about what they do and how they work. It is time for product explainer videos!
Cartoon explainer videos are a great way to simplify complicated information and explain how your product resolves your audience’s problems. They are engaging, informative, and easy to understand. The ideal combination for lightly educational content.
Product demos take this process one step further by showing your product in action and focusing on key features in greater detail. Prospects watching your product demos are warming up.
Decision Phase Video Content
Finally, decision phase content turns warm leads into sizzling hot prospects. At this stage, customers have decided to buy a solution but are comparing competitors’ products. This is where you start the hard sell by creating content that puts all the focus on your business, your product, and its USPs.
Customer testimonials are the modern equivalent of word-of-mouth advertising. They are extremely powerful. This is demonstrated by the fact that 9 out of 10 people say they trust what a customer says about a business more than what that business says about itself (Wyzowl).
When every day people come out and support your product, it puts you in a strong position. Their opinions can help sway undecided buyers by alleviating any concerns they have.
Industry Case Studies
Case studies are an excellent way of showing that your product delivers on your promises. They are evidence that it really does resolve key customer problems.
With this in mind, businesses should create case studies for every industry in which their products are relevant. This ensures you are targeting particular pain points and problems, while also speaking and appealing directly to specific customers.
When creating industry case studies, make sure your videos cover:
- What the customer’s problem was
- How the product resolved the problem
- The end result or dream outcome for the customer. Focus on how your product made the customer’s life easier.
Finally, let’s look at competitor comparisons. Many businesses shy away from mentioning their competitors in their marketing materials. However, those companies are missing a trick.
Prospects can quickly and easily find your competitors. All it takes is a brief Google search. Rather than pretending these competitors do not exist, create an honest video that weighs up the pros and cons of these competing products and compels the viewer to buy yours.
It is a wonderful chance to snatch control of the narrative and give prospects a long list of reasons why your product is the right choice. Highlight the unique features your product has (and your competitors’ product hasn’t), but do not ever attack or criticize your competitors in the video. It will only backfire and reflect poorly on your brand.
Author: John Butterworth
John Butterworth is an experienced digital marketer who believes the fastest way to grow any business is by automating their lead acquisition. He’s helped many companies to scale rapidly through a tried-and-tested combination of SEO, CRO, and email automation. John’s career has taken him across specialist roles in China, Vietnam, and The UK. Currently, he works in-house for global video creation platform Viddyoze.
by Managing Editor Yoon Cannon | Attract More Customers, Business Growth Tips Blog, General, Leads, Marketing and Sales Blog Posts, Success Mindset
by Yoon Cannon | Attract More Customers, Build Your Dream Team, Business Growth Tips Blog, General, Management-Leadership, Management-Leadership, Outsourcing and Hiring Tips Blog
by Yoon Cannon | Attract More Customers, Business Growth Tips Blog, Create Your Dream Business, Marketing and Sales Blog Posts
It’s funny how ranking high in search engine results locally can often be far more challenging than ranking high globally. That may seem counterintuitive, but in many instances it’s true.
But just because it’s hard doesn’t mean that it can’t be done – and done effectively. In this article, we’ll share with you proven local SEO strategies that you can implement immediately to get your content or webpage to rank high in local search engine results in 2021.
Strategy #1 – Take Advantage of Directories and Listings
This is one of the more obvious steps to take when trying to rank high in local search results, but it’s a good place to start. You should list your company or website in as many relevant directories as possible. These directories will, more often than not, be national or global directories, but they serve as a search engine in and of themselves. They require you to include a local address, then they can filter queries for their users based on location.
In addition to this helpful service directories provide, the fact that your company or website is listed in several different directories is something search engines look for.
Strategy #2 – Set Up a Google My Business Account (GMB)
According to a recent study carried out by Search Engine Land, “GMB and reviews are the variables that have grown the most in their perceived impact.”
Setting up a GMB will not only help your company rank high in search results but will get you listed on Google Maps as well. You can also post social media engagements onto your GMB listening, which would be another good way to boost your search engine results ranking.
As valuable as the service is, you might be surprised to know that it is completely free to set up a GMB listing.
Strategy #3 – Solicit Reviews
Whatever you have to do to get your company or your product or service reviewed, chances are that it will be well worth it. Reviews play a major role in search engine results. Also, there are many users who, when looking for information about a company or a product, will only click on reviews or review sites.
The best way to get your customers or clients to leave reviews is to ask. Sounds easy enough. And in most cases it is. You should be engaging with your customers, and asking for their feedback in the form of a posted review is a good way to engage. But make it easy for them. If you’re engaging with your customers or clients via email or social media, attach a link to some review sites where they can post their reviews. You could also send them a simple review template along with the link so that they could write and post a review in a matter of minutes.
As a general rule of thumb, people love sharing their opinions. And when it comes to ranking high in local search results, that is definitely behavior you want to encourage.
RELATED BLOG ARTICLE: 5 Great Tips for Marketing Your Small Business
Strategy #4 – Solicit the Help of a Professional
While there is certainly the right way to go about it and plenty of wrong ways, there is no shortcut. The truth of the matter is that in order to get a high search engine ranking, you need backlinks – and a lot of them. Getting backlinks means creating a lot of content that features a link to your company’s website and then getting that content published on high-traffic sites. The process takes a good amount of time and manpower.
The good news is that there is no shortage of professionals willing and eager to lend a helping hand. A digital marketing manager is one of the top careers in IT in 2021. Along with SEO content writers you can find on sites like ProBlogger or BloggingPro, soliciting help from professionals can be a real-time-saver in addition to yielding results – for the right price; of course.
RELATED BLOG ARTICLE: How to Generate More Leads with Content Marketing When You Hate to Write
Strategy #5 – Publish Local Keyword Optimized Content
It’s more beneficial in terms of SEO results for your company to be linked to from an outside source (like a directory, reviews, or a blog). But publishing your own content that ranks high for certain local keywords then linking to your company from there (even if it’s internal) still has value.
The added bonus of this strategy is that it shouldn’t be difficult to find local keywords that are easy to rank for. You can use a powerful tool like Ahref’s Keyword Difficulty Checker to get an idea of what keywords you should target, then create and publish your content accordingly.
Strategy #6 – Optimize Headers and Meta Descriptions for Local Searches
In the grand scheme of SEO, this is a relatively small factor – though not inconsequential. However, it’s so easy to do it would be negligent not to. Simply include your location in headers and meta descriptions of your online content. It’s a quick fix and implemented along with other smart SEO strategies, it will yield results.
Strategy #7 – Partner With Local Service Providers
There’s strength in numbers. It’s possible to succeed on your own, but the odds are far more in your favor if you have help, if you are an army rather than an individual going into battle.
You probably already have associations with other businesses – suppliers or couriers, for example. The chances are that they, too, are looking to boost their local search engine results. Talk to them. See if you can’t find a way to work together toward these shared objectives. It could be as simple as a mention with a link on their website in exchange for doing the same for them.
The Bottom Line
Boosting your local search engine results won’t happen overnight, which is a further reason to get started implementing these strategies today. Optimize your website, target easier local keywords at first, take advantage of directories and GMB. Engage with your customers and solicit them for reviews, and boost your backlinks with the help of a freelance writer and local businesses you already partner with.
QUESTION: Which of the 7 strategies in this article do you think will yield the fastest results? If you implement all 7, how soon do you think it will be before your business is on page one? Share with us in the comments below!
by Yoon Cannon | Attract More Customers, Business Growth Tips Blog
Generating leads is all about capturing a prospective buyer’s attention and compelling them to investigate further. And while you certainly don’t need to be a gifted novelist or best-selling author to create dynamic content that will generate more leads – in fact, the skillset of a copywriter is quite different than that of an author – you still need to convey information succinctly and compellingly, often with the written word.
It’s worth exploring why you hate writing. There are likely some underlying reasons that can be identified, and steps can be made to transform a vital activity you hate into one you love. But instead of that noble pursuit, this article is going to focus more on immediate fixes or workarounds so that you can create marketing content that will generate more leads for you today, despite your hatred for writing.
Actionable Tip #1 – Hire A Freelance Copywriter
Delegate, that is often cited as a key component to success. When a task needs to get done, and you lack the skillset or the passion required, chances are there’s a professional you can turn to who will do the job for you.
There is no shortage of freelance copywriters looking for work. You can place an offer on popular job boards for writers like ProBlogger or BloggingPro. Or you can look for freelance copywriters on popular Facebook groups for freelancers like Cult of Copy.
When you do find a freelance writer you want to hire, you will need to provide them with a bit of direction – similar kinds of content they should look at to get an idea of what you want, a narrow word count range, specifics about the call to action that should be included.
What You Can Expect to Pay
Most freelance writers charge by the word. You are likely to find writers charging anywhere from 4 cents a word to 8 cents a word. Be wary of a freelancer who offers to do the job for less than 4 cents per word. They are more than likely to be amateurs, and it is unlikely you will be satisfied with their work.
Many freelance writers will ask for a percentage of the conversions their content garners for email campaigns, and some freelance writers will want a combination of per word compensation and a conversion percentage.
It’s Hit or Miss
Finding the right freelance writer for your needs is a bit hit or miss. You may need to hire more than one before you find the best writer for your needs.
Any professional writer will have a portfolio you can look at, but it’s important to remember that they write for their clients. So, their portfolio is not always indicative of their voice or style but rather the voice and style the client has asked for. When you look at a prospective freelance writer’s portfolio, what you want to be on the lookout for, above all else, is variety. The writer’s portfolio should give you an indication of how flexible and versatile the writer is.
Actionable Tip #2 – Get Better at Writing with Online Courses
Hiring a freelance writer can get expensive. Plus, even if you do find a good writer who meets your needs, it is unlikely, in the long run, that you will be able to get as far as you want to go with content marketing if you, yourself, have a strong dislike for writing.
The most common reason people give for not liking writing is that they don’t feel confident in what they write or feel they are simply bad at it. Perhaps they don’t even know how to begin writing a piece of marketing content.
The good news is that you can easily address these issues. There is no shortage of competent professionals willing to share their tools of the trade. It’s always a good idea to level up your career through training, and if you feel that writing is a particular weakness, consider taking an online course in copywriting.
There are several good training platforms you can check out to find the right course for you. Many of them are free, though you may have to pay to receive a certification.
To start with, check out the popular platforms like LinkedIn Learning and Allison. Or check out a more comprehensive list of the 14 best sites for taking online classes.
Actionable Tip #3 – Use Transcription Software
Often, a blank screen or a blank page can provoke anxiety in people. This is another common reason cited why some people hate writing. If that sounds like you, perhaps you should consider dictating your lead-generating marketing content and let AI software create a transcript for you. If you choose this approach, you will still need to do some editing. But at least you won’t have to work from a blank screen or off of an empty page.
Some of the more popular speech-to-text software programs on the market include Veed, Otter, Amazon Transcribe, and Verbit. You can also check out this comprehensive list of the best speech-to-text apps on the market in 2022.
Actionable Tip #4 – Make a Video
A substantial amount of leads are generated online through video content. However, creating good-looking and engaging video content requires some technical know-how – recording and video editing. And the equipment you need to make something of a high enough quality is more than you would need to write a compelling piece of copy. However, creating engaging video content could be an example of taking a weakness (you hate writing) into a strength (you are obliged to make great video content).
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Actionable Tip #5 – Use Pictures
While it’s debatable whether a picture is worth a thousand words, in any event, it is true that when it comes to creating marketing content, a picture (or a series of pictures) can save you from having to write a thousand words.
You’d still need to write a caption or a quote and a call to action. But by relying on pictures, you could create compelling marketing content that will generate more leads for you without having to do much writing.
The Bottom Line
If you hate to write, that’s understandable. Though to create lead-generating content without putting down at least a few words is tricky. However, there are a few workarounds. At the end of the day, it’s best to focus on what you’re good at, what you’re passionate about, while taking steps to try and fortify your weak areas.
RELATED BLOG ARTICLE: 6 Copywriting Secrets that Generate Leads
QUESTION: Why do you hate writing? And how are you able to create marketing content that will generate more leads for your business? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
PS. We now offer done for you marketing services, so if you want a mix of blogs written for you and writing your own hit reply button and ask me how that works.
by Managing Editor Yoon Cannon | Attract More Customers, General, Leads
The B2B market has irrevocably changed in the last few years. Customers are better informed and expect a different, more personalized type of service. Strategies that worked even a few years ago are becoming outdated, leading CEOs and VPs of Sales to seek new ways to generate leads.
Our 2021 Ultimate Guide to Lead Generation for B2B Service Businesses will teach you how to update your strategy.
How to get more B2B leads in 2021?
While the question for many businesses is “How can I get more B2B leads?” the real question should be, “How can I get more qualified B2B leads?”. Quality over quantity.
So, we’ll focus on how to get well-qualified leads.
How To Implement the Right Lead Generation Strategy
Choosing the right strategy depends on several factors, including:
#1. What is Your Product or Service?
When customers buy your product or service, they are fundamentally purchasing a solution to a problem. A good product addresses a specific pain point. It could be that you save them time, money or offer them a solution that’s not on the market. Whatever it is, make sure that your marketing materials demonstrate the value of your solution.
#2. Who is Your Target?
Understanding who you are trying to sell to requires deep research. What are the demographics, what don’t they like about competitor’s solutions, how can you make life easy for them? Etc.
#3. What is Your Business Revenue Model?
Different revenue models require different lead generation strategies. One-off purchases, scaled pricing, and subscription prices require their own considerations and knowledge of various consumer personas.
#4. Where Do Your Customers Hang Out?
Specific platforms have distinct demographics. If your B2B consumer persona is serious business people, try LinkedIn. If they are Millennials, Instagram could be the right place.
Tips to Plan Your B2B Strategy:
- Understand your customer persona
- Underline the value of your product or service in your marketing materials
- Understand that different business models need their own approach
- Concentrate your efforts in the places your personas congregate.
Five Channels for B2B Lead Generation
#1. Inbound Marketing
Inbound marketing is all about content and solid SEO (Search Engine Optimization). It is still one of the most effective ways to get site traffic — and leads — to your site.
Capturing leads can be done with this process:
1) Write helpful content that targets keywords and questions relevant to your product.
2) Valuable content will help you rank and appear in the SERP when your target market is searching for solutions.
3) Once your leads visit your site, you need to find a way to get their details.
4) Use gated content that requires them to leave their name, phone number, and email address.
Which Gated Content Can Act as a Lead Magnet?
This content will depend on your product, service, and target audience. But some of the types of content that attracts leads are:
- White papers or ebooks
- Email series
In short, offer your prospects valuable content, and they’ll arrive.
The thing to remember when using inbound content as a strategy is that it takes time to bear fruit. So keep at it. It can take as long as 6 to 12 months.
#2. Pay-per-click advertising (PPC)
If you need something quicker than inbound marketing via SEO, PPC advertisement is a solid strategy.
This process involves paying for site traffic. There are several pros and cons here.
-Lots of traffic
-Potential to target your demographic
-Can get expensive
-Not all traffic is verified
Additionally, there are lots of options available in the ad space. Banner ads and ads that target demographics via social media (for example, Facebook) are good. Additionally, Google offers a wide range of services to get your product or service in front of the right eyes.
Native ads are another appealing option. These are the ads that appear like native content on a news feed or other digital publication.
#3. Social Marketing
Having a social media presence is crucial for most products or services. Creating brand awareness and establishing expertise and credibility in your field are great ways to get attention.
However, to turn your social media into a lead-generating machine, here are two great tips.
1) Make social media posts that are interesting, helpful, and include your CTA. However, it’s not always time for the hard sell. Most of your interactions will be with people in the awareness stage of the sales funnel, so a gentle approach is the most effective.
2) Use social media to drive traffic to your site or landing page. You can use content like blog posts, videos, or other values to achieve this. Once you’ve got them there, you can try and capture their details.
How to Generate Lead Through LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a fantastic resource for B2B leads. This platform is where most prospects are.
Here is a proven lead generation strategy for LinkedIn:
1) Make a solid profile.
2) Be active with posts and in relevant groups. Make connections.
3) Engage, make connections, be helpful, demonstrate how your solution can help.
4) Collect relevant details and contacts, which by now should be warm leads
#4. Influencer Marketing
Millennials have become skeptical and untrusting of traditional advertising. For this reason, influencer marketing took off because it offered something similar to trust and word of mouth.
However, while marketers generally used it for B2C products, influencer marketing has become popular for B2B recently.
Depending on your niche, this can be very effective. And not necessarily by using well-known names. Micro or nano influencers can be very effective, with the bonus of locking down on very tight demographics they serve.
#5. Outsource Lead Generation
While the above tactics are effective, outbound lead generation still gets the best results. However, many businesses struggle to generate enough leads for their sales people.
By outsourcing cold calling and appointment setting, you can let your reps focus on their core competency: closing deals.
With the assistance of a B2B lead generation service, you can make sure each prospect is fully qualified and warmed up already, leading to higher conversions for your sales team.
B2B lead generation costs time and money. Formulating strategies that work for your market and your target audience is vital. Using a combination of inbound and outbound marketing, you can make sure your lead pipeline is full of quality prospects interested in your product.
Author’s bio: John Dubay is the Managing Partner at Leads at Scale, an outsourced sales support company that helps B2B companies generate well-qualified leads at scale, ready to be closed.