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B2B Marketing: How Buyers Share Vendor Content

B2B marketingFor vendors who sell (or hope to sell) to B2B customers, it’s important to realize that buyers in this sector have their own unique habits and processes. Among other things, the timeline involved in making the transition from browsing to buying can be much more involved and time-consuming than it is with B2C customers.

This is one of the findings illustrated in recent research conducted by The Chief Marketing Officer Council and NetLine. The big takeaway: B2B buyers rarely make impulse purchases or snap decisions.

The research found that the majority of B2B buyers tend to review and share vendor information among one or more groups internally while contemplating a buying decision. This content is circulated among buying groups which The CMO Council refers to as “sharing circles.” These circles tend to be based on one of three approaches:

  • From the middle out (35 percent): Content sourcing and purchase decisions are driven by tactically focused executives, but senior management is informed about how and why key decisions were made.
  • From the bottom up (30 percent): Junior or mid-level managers source primary content and share upstream to members of senior management, who then make the final purchase decision.
  • From the top down (29 percent): Senior management consumes content, sending information downstream for product identification and final purchase and execution.

The research also found that these sharing circles and their decisions are being driven by three key segments. For marketers who want to communicate effectively with these power players, it’s important to consider the needs and motivations of these three personas:

  • Researchers: They will primarily seek out the most broad and expansive content and are focused on new industry reports and research to inform them of advancements in solutions, trends impacting the market and opportunities for improvement
  • Influencers: These people are interested in both the broad thought leadership consumed through trusted third-party channels, as well as vendor-branded technology specifications, data sheets and use cases. This group emerges as the segment most interested in summarized content, including infographics, video and blog commentary.
  • Decision Makers: This group wants to stay informed through research reports and analyst commentary but also expect to have access to data in order to speed and enable better decision making in the tail end of the decision funnel.

By thinking about the people who will play the most active roles in evaluating and sharing your content, you can decide how best to package that material in order to get the best results.

We can handle your content marketing and all of your B2B marketing strategy needs.

Posted in B2B Marketing | Tagged B2B Marketing, content marketing, keo marketing

Google Adds Video Campaigns Report to Analytics

online advertisingWhen it comes to grabbing an audience’s attention, video is a great choice of content format. As the soaring popularity of tools such as Vine (along of course with the perennial king of online video, YouTube) proves, today’s high-tech users are very comfortable with, and fond of, video as a quick and effective way to get information. Video allows you to make a point in a more dramatic and memorable way. It is of course also a great choice to engage those with short attention spans.

That’s why more and more businesses are incorporating video into their online advertising campaigns, including those run through AdWords. A tool designed specifically for this purpose is YouTube TrueView video ads. Marketers can create video ads and only pay based on the number of people who actually watch them.

While these ads may be effective, that’s often hard to say with certainty since measuring the results of these ads can be a challenge. Now Google is trying to make that easier by adding a new Google Analytics Video Campaigns report that focuses on TrueView ads. The new feature was announced on a recent post on Google’s Analytics blog.

The post noted, “With more than 1 billion unique users each month from across the world and with 40% of that traffic on mobile, YouTube is one of the best places to reach your target audience with high-quality, compelling video.”

As the post stresses, creating a TrueView video ad is a quick process using AdWords for Video. You then just auto-tag your video and link your Analytics and AdWords accounts, and you will be able to see detailed data about your video traffic. This information can be useful to you in helping you decide how to adjust your budget and targeting strategy.

KEO Marketing can handle this and all of your online advertising campaign needs.

Posted in internet marketing, keo marketing | Tagged AdWords, google analytics, keo marketing, online advertising

Interesting Stats on Marketing Automation

marketing automationMarketo recently teamed up with Software Advice to survey companies about their marketing habits and automation needs, and used that information to put together an interesting infographic called The State of Marketing Automation Trends 2014 highlighting some insights related to these topics.

Not surprisingly, one takeaway is that automation tools are becoming increasingly popular among marketers, many of whom are only just starting to investigate and experiment with these products.

So, who is looking at automation solutions most? It’s probably no big shocker that high-tech businesses are leading the pack. But consulting, manufacturing and media firms are also high on the list. The largest segment of buyers consisted of companies with fewer than 500 employees. This makes sense, as these companies have the strongest motivation to try and find ways to get maximum results from a limited staff.

Some other findings shown in the infographic include:

- 91% of buyers were evaluating marketing automation software for the first time

- 40% of buyers said their main goal was to improve lead management, while 30% were motivated by a need to automate their processes

- Lead nurturing was the most requested capability for marketing automation software, followed by reporting/analytics and lead scoring.

While marketing automation tools may be a good way to make your process more efficient and less labor-intensive, you still need actual humans doing the planning and brainstorming, and creating the strategies. That’s where KEO Marketing can help, as we handle comprehensive marketing strategy planning and execution for a wide variety of clients.

Posted in internet marketing, keo marketing | Tagged keo marketing, Marketing Automation, marketing lead management

What to Know About Gmail’s Unsubscribe Feature

unsubscribeGmail users will now be able to unsubscribe from unwanted newsletters and promotional messages more easily. Google recently announced the addition of a new unsubscribe feature that will make it simple and quick for Gmail users to remove themselves from mailing lists.

The unsubscribe link will appear in a very visible spot at the top of the message, right next to the sender’s name.

Marketers need to be aware of this change, and what they need to do as a result. In his Marketing Land blog post, “Everything You Need To Know About Gmail’s Auto-Unsubscribe,” Tom Sather shares some tips for how you can handle the unsubscribe option.

First, though, he points out that marketers should resist the automatic negative reaction they likely have to this news. He points out that it is in a business’ best interests to make it as easy as possible for email recipients to unsubscribe from unwanted mailings. This decreases the odds that you’ll be marked as spam, and also improves both your deliverability and reputation.

Now, to activate this feature, your must focus on your email header. “Gmail’s unsubscribe feature is based on the list-unsubscribe header,” Sather explains. “The list-unsubscribe header is an x-header, which means it appears in the email header, but isn’t visible within email clients. As a result, email providers like Gmail can use this as a way to create an action. The list-unsubscribe header can appear as an email address, a website, or both.”

You have the option of using either a MAILTO or URL function in directing the unsubscribe command. “If only the MAILTO version is listed, or if it appears last, an email message would be sent seamlessly behind the scenes to the address given,” Sather says. “Gmail has stated that they prefer the MAILTO version and have suggested they may move away from the URL altogether in the future.”

Of course, after you implement this feature, you must then follow through and ensure that you are in fact removing people from your list once they click on the unsubscribe link. Otherwise, your deliverability may be negatively affected (not to mention, you will annoy people).

Sather points out that the unsubscribe option will only be available to senders with positive, established reputations. If you are starting a new campaign using a new IP address, you likely won’t see it. If you aren’t using a new address but still don’t see this option, that may be a red flag alerting you to a possible issue with your reputation.

We can help manage your email campaigns and protect both your deliverability rates and reputation.

Posted in email marketing | Tagged email marketing, Gmail, keo marketing