A digital marketer’s user experience review of HubSpot Marketing Hub

A recent conversation sparked me to think about my own use of our marketing automation tool, HubSpot, specifically about the time it saves me, or the time and hassle I would have to revert back to without it! Our content strategy is a big part of my role, and this has been simplified by using the inbound marketing principles and marketing automation over the last 12-18 months. Publishing blog articles and series is my most common use, so I’ll start there…

Blog Management and Publishing


Publishing a blog article is not as simple as a copy/paste/publish straight from a word document. That’s the first step, but factor in keyword and search engine optimization (SEO), including images or videos, creating an effective title, URL and meta description, and this quickly becomes a much more in-depth process.

HubSpot’s inbuilt tools quickly and continually scan your document for how and where you’ve used your chosen keywords or phrases, and provide you with guidance around the frequency of their use, how it interacts with other content pieces you have published, and essentially gives you the green light to publish only once you’ve satisfied the set criteria.

This might sound demanding, if you will, but it saves you having a 12 item checklist to manually work through to ensure your content is optimised to be found and read by your target audience once it’s published and available online. There is very little point publishing fabulous content, only for it to be next to impossible to find on a Google search! I’d estimate this feature saves me at least an hour per piece – that adds up quickly when you publish several pieces of content per week.

Another handy feature that could be easily overlooked is the free access to thousands of stock images for use throughout blogs and emails (basically wherever you’d like to place it!). This saves having an external resource to sift through and file and store your images. The searching, storing and integration of these images saves many fiddly steps and minutes at a time.

Keywords and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

sew-organic-rankingsNewer tools and updates have changed the way keywords are checked, lodged and used for optimisation in HubSpot. Rather than the previous iteration of single string keywords/phrases, it now allows you to build out content families and series, with multiple pieces centred around a primary focus topic.

This allows you greater control over which content pieces you want to highlight and direct traffic towards, and is proactive in suggesting how to physically connect and link other pieces in the series so your audience can arrive at one page and seamlessly navigate through to others – maximising the time they spend on your website, and depending on where they are in the buyer’s journey, their level of engagement and action.

While I still check Google searches myself for search volume and to check out which pages are ranking well, the keywords features have saved a lot of time with their guidance around search volumes, the difficulty you might face in ranking for term ‘x’, and relevant cost-per-click (CPC) prices for those who take that path!

Social Media and Monitoring

Social media’s reach and influence continues to grow and be a leading component in business’ content strategies. The ability to schedule and publish posts from one location for multiple social channels is a great time saver, and allows you to easily create and see the consistency or points of difference in your posts.

Monitoring tools are also included for an overview of views and engagements, and further complement the tracking and monitoring of other features (such as calls to action you might include in a blog post) to create an overall picture of the success of your content publishing.

Email Marketing

hubspot-marketing-emailThe other side of publishing and reaching contacts that I use HubSpot for on a regular basis is newsletter mailouts, and event invitations where required. The newsletters can be created, filled with images and highlighting relevant CTAs, direct readers to landing pages or forms, all within the one tool.

Sending the newsletter is as simple as adding the various contacts, either individually or as tagged/designated groups, and scheduling the best time to send it. I can quickly see who has received the email, who has opened it, who has clicked on any of the internal links, even how long people spend reading or scanning the newsletter.

This HubSpot feature was particularly useful earlier in the year when we organised a half-day workshop. I could email invitations to our relevant contacts, see when and how the emails were opened, and then share this information with my colleague who was making personal phone calls to contacts at a certain stage to encourage registration. Likewise, when he found another contact to invite, it was a quick process to add them to the list and have these engagement metrics instantly available to view and action on.

HubSpot Marketing Hub – One of the team…

Using HubSpot as our marketing automation tool easily saves me several hours each week across just one aspect of my role, and honestly I would struggle going back to completing each part manually to achieve the same level of detail and comprehensive overview of our content strategy. It allows sharing of knowledge and resources between team members in a way that no manual approach could cover as successfully for the same effort or time. HubSpot is really another hard-working and valued member of our team!


Find out more about how you could be further optimising and aligning your marketing and sales strategies using digital tools with a complimentary Digital Readiness Assessment


Click here to read 
An inside sales user experience of HubSpot marketing analytics

 

Organic rankings: How to improve your Google search rankings without paid SEO

At Alchemise, we haven’t paid for Google Adwords PPC campaigns and wanted to share how we have managed to get some SEO organic rankings for our core business services.

This purely is focussed on one strategy which might be effective for you but not for all and being mindful that Google algorithms are always dynamically changing and there is no one formula for SEO success. 

Can you afford the increasing costs across many paid campaign digital channels including Google AdWords without generating a solid return on investment? We have spoken to many SMEs who have spent in excess of $3,000 per month for 12 months with little ROI and sales leads or simply the wrong clicks or web traffic. This kind of ad hoc spend can be prohibitive to helping them to grow their sales where other digital marketing and sales strategies may be more effective.

Do you have a digital marketing plan and understand your customer behaviour?

Are you tired of paying expensive search engine optimisation (SEO) costs that promise to put you on the first results page? It seems like many SEO providers work seem to make this a black box approach where it gets harder to justify and see a tangible return on investment (ROI) for this aspect of inbound marketing and many without integrating this considering a broader  outcomes. 

I challenge the value of SEO services as there is a factor of human psychology and customer interactions that prevent people from converting with advertised listings. 

For those who remember the ‘old’ Yellow Pages advertising, people paid for first position, for example, AA or AAA plumbing services. If I think back to my selection method, I would typically pick the first non-paid ad to enquire to and call. Then I would select a second and third company in the first third of the directory for multiple quotes.

The same principal still applies when thinking about SEO, even aside from the cost. It’s purpose is to allow you to digitally list your advertisement and website as the start of a potential lead funnel where patience is still required.

Where is the sales ROI?

The purpose of SEO doesn’t directly help drive more sales qualified or quality leads to you. Often it’s just for brand awareness in the target market or segment where you wish to attract interest.

Even if you get SEO results, there are still many steps in the marketing and sales funnel process needed to progress from a marketing interest to first sales engagement. For us this has taken a carefully planned content strategy and about 6 to 9 months to unfold with patience.

keywords-seoWe have taken the time to closely monitor our use of keywords, competitive research and rankings using Google Analytics in conjunction with our marketing automation platform, our WordPress website and SEO tools to test for what generates optimum results.

We have had many customers complain about the lack of cost benefit once they are on a higher page ranking.

If you search any term, the typical representation of Page 1 will be a series of paid ads first at the top of the page and bottom of the page with only a handful of organic ranked listings in the middle. 

As a potential customer searching for information, I relate this to the old Yellow Pages directory where you will pay attention to the second or third ranking listings but not necessarily the first or the one which stands out more (if they have paid for top advertising space in BOLD).

There is no magic formula as this constantly changes in relation to Google search algorithms and what ranks, however you need to ensure you understand what you are paying for and what knowledge the SEO service provider adds in tangible value over a period of time with transparency.

There is no magic timeframe where results can be generated instantly. It does take time and organic progression or trial and error to find what works.

Our version of SEO in 2018 and how it’s worked for Alchemise Consulting

 

content-marketing-seoSee below the attached images of our Google rankings on a global scale and search rates (in millions), we have ranked in at least 8 search terms organically. 


Alchemise organic rankings SEO tips:

Here’s some tips on how we achieved organic rankings for some of our keywords and offerings, primarily through our blogs across a 6 to 9 month period: 

  • Change of KEYWORDS to TOPICS – this reflects Google search engine algorithms for search intent and related topics.
  • Are you using a global or localised domain name for your content approach? Our homepage uses a .com name and ranks globally.
  • Create relevant content across topics NOT just keywords – present themed content that touches on different aspects of an overall topic, rather than always using a narrow focus.
  • Build authority for your content.
  • Build relevance with your content.
  • Optimising existing blog posts and long tail keywords titles – this takes practice and skill but can make a big difference to the reach of your content.
  • Develop your content strategy in relation to your Google Analytics and SEM Rush research data.
  • Include external and internal links within your content that is relevant.
  • Use a Core topic and Pillar search for your content plan.
  • Consider what topic(s) you want to be known for…
  • Answer every question about those topics and regularly.
  • Link them to one another fit the topic.
  • Rank higher for related queries.

Here are some examples of where we have achieved a #1 organic ranking: 

As of July 2018, we have ranked organically #1 on google.com.au above some of the Tier 1 Consultancies and Corporates.

Sales and Marketing Consulting

seo-sales-and-marketing-consulting


Business Growth Assessment 

seo-business-growth-assessment

Sales Consulting Services – not #1, but two results on the first page.

seo-sales-consulting-services

Now that you have achieved organic rankings for keywords, what do you do now?

The organic rankings do not guarantee that you will convert business or leads.

Conversion of inbound traffic and leads is important and whether you engage a paid advertising campaign or utilize inbound or outbound analytics can help determine your target market segment – remember, people will be attracted to you if your content resonates with their pain point.

More SEO Tips

#1: Ensure you have the right SSL certificate on your website, as organic SEO rankings can be impacted without one.

#2: Google has, as of June 2018, highlighted that they prioritise mobile formatted content (i.e. AMP format) over desktop based content.

If you are not sure which SEO path to take or how much should you invest in digital or social advertising campaigns, consider our valuable Digital Readiness Assessment which will guides you through a checklist.

From obtaining our holistic recommendations to suit your objectives, we can advise you what has worked for us and how we can help you shape and create your SEO strategy to work organically and save you marketing cost and drive more organic lead and sales opportunities for you!

The purpose of a website: 4 step digital website design framework

I was thinking back to how the approach to website design used to be much simpler over 10 years ago, and before the constant disruption in technology platforms were accelerated since Web 2.0. I don’t proclaim to be a creative award winning web designer, however one of common themes our clients and businesses interviewed have shared with us which keeps coming up is how businesses can spend so much time and money on web design creative elements. It seems to occur largely in marketing silos without a solid holistic commercial view and digital strategy, particularly for smaller to medium sized businesses.

The desired outcomes for your website design and development can deliver measurable and tangible ROI to increase their sales revenue and profits. So how can you achieve this? The challenge is that the connection or linkage between business strategy, digital strategy, creative design, commercial and marketing aligned outcomes seems to be commonly amiss.

In today’s environment,  have people forgotten ‘what is the purpose of a website?’. This is more important when you have so many digital and social channels to setup your digital ‘shopfront’ online when considering e-commerce or creating relevant digital business channels. The simple business aim should be to use your website to increase customer profits and reduce operational costs.

Since completing my MBA unit (over 15 years ago) on digital marketing and e-commerce, one thing that has stayed with me is the about the fundamentals of having a website and I believe this is still valid and applies today at a foundation planning level. The ICDT model is framework for digital e-business which I want to revisit here and encourage businesses to apply this in their planning which is covered further below in this article.

The ICDT model, developed by Albert Angehrn at INSEAD, is a systematic approach to the analysis and classification of business-related Internet strategies. It serves as a basis for identifying how existing goods and services can be extended and redesigned to take advantage of the Internet, as well as suggesting the characteristics of new goods and services made possible through this new medium.

Source: Media Circus 

Many people think they need to be on social media and just build or rebuild their website and then incorporate SEO, however what isn’t often thought about in enough detail is commercial design aspect from website design or content development side of your website business profile.

We keep seeing examples of little effort in thinking or connecting commercial strategy through when working with creative marketing agencies on the commercial impact for client and business purpose. 

Most recently a leading IT services business spent $65,000 for a fairly average template website design without a digital marketing plan!  Being too busy or just ticking the box to get it done doesn’t warrant this kind of expenditure level with a silo approach without a holistic marketing strategy and commercial ROI considered.

If you are a business owner, ask yourself these questions first:

  • Why do I have to spend a significant amount of money building a new website?
  • If I cut costs with a low-budget website, what ROI will that provide?
  • Are you rebranding or is there a driving reason behind your website choices?
  • Have you checked what your competitors are doing, or are you going straight to spend on SEO?
  • Are you spending money on Google AdWords or social media paid campaigns for little tangible ROI?
  • Do you need to move from a static website to a dynamic website?

You need to establish what purpose your website needs to meet, and how that links to how you attract or engage your prospective clients online.

Example of typical technology and services sector websites:

I have viewed many technologies and business services websites.  Many of the look and feel of many redeveloped sites for the investment may not have strong commercial ROI or value attached to it.  The purpose doesn’t seem clear and they all look generic in terms of the menus and content flow structure. Your digital brand identity is more important than ever in today’s market.

The standard structure feels like this – Home Page, About Us, Our Services, Our Products, Contact Us, etc. Then there are Our Partners –which tends to be suppliers and vendors logos.

Alternative customer centric approach to consider:

This may seem obvious but your marketing manager or consultant should be talking to you first about who your customer is and how they buy from you.

  • Who are you trying to attract from a buyer’s journey perspective?
  • Have you planned out your customer focused content plan and approach?
  • Do you have subdomains or separate domains or webpage consideration for different audiences?
  • Can you address the actual problems you are trying to solve instead of just talking about your products?

Did you miss – Insights Video: Is your website brand or customer focussed?

I think any investment in website design shouldn’t be conducted in isolation of design and branding before a solid digital marketing strategy and customer profile is formed.

It should be an implementation activity once the business value proposition and go to market messaging is clear.

Who is your audience? Is it just B2B or B2C or does it need to be more targeted to certain industries or audiences.

Taking the lowest cost option isn’t always the best solution as it will end up costing more if you don’t develop a digital marketing plan and consider the content and context that suits your business products and services with your customers in mind.

We have seen many websites which are templated using Wix or other easy to use web creation tools or via WordPress.

Did you miss – Insights Video: How to turn your website into a customer centric approach

The ICDT model

In remembering the fundamentals of a website and its purpose, my opinion follows a basic website design framework based on the acronym of ICDT.

What does ICDT stand for?

  1. To provide Information to your online audience from your website.
  2. To be able to use to Communicate to your online audience through various digital channels.
  3. To be able to use for Distribution of relevant information or content to your audience
  4. To be able to be Transact through your website or other digital channels.

So what does this mean?

Our recommendation, whether you are planning or designing a new website or refreshing an existing one, is to consider the ICDT framework as part of your overall digital marketing strategy and website development approach.

  1. Information
  • To deliver appropriate content and information about your business services and products to your visitors
  • To provide your expertise and share knowledge with your prospective or existing clients
  • To publish blogs, articles or other content pieces relevant to your audience


  1. Communication website-communication
  • To use multiple digital channels to communicate inbound or outbound with your clients or prospective clients
  • Social Media – Instant Messaging, Facebook, Google Plus, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn channels
  • How can your visitors share your content or web pages to others or refer on?
  • How can you be contacted via phone, email, instant messaging, video call, or can customers come directly to your office?

  1. Distribution
  • To share information or communication – like email subscription list or newsletters with a one-to-one or one-to-many approach
  • To share price lists or descriptions about your services or products
  • To provide offers or specials
  • How do you distribute information to your affiliates or partners or clients?

Who are you trying to attract with your customer profile and does it resonate with your target audience?



4. Transaction

  • Data capture – To use as an exchange of information
  • CTA – Call to Action to register or click on something of value for your reader or visitor to take action or respond to your request or offer
  • Landing page – To drill down into a specific area of interest in exchange for contact details. i.e an email address or phone number
  • Tracking – To subscribe to obtain information about your clients buying habits
  • Forms – To register for events or seminars or to book a meeting 
  • Offers – To purchase online via ecommerce methods of credit card or ordering/booking process or to directly transact a sale. i.e subscription on a per month model where everything is managed online via your website.

These are just some basic examples of using an ICDT framework for considering t how you approach designing your website and considering the commercial elements and purpose to incorporate.


If you would like more information about reviewing your website design or how to create your digital marketing strategy with considering how to use the ICDT framework, please contact us.
 

We are offering a digital readiness assessment which will encompass reviewing how your web presence should be shaped.

Case study: Digital readiness strategy & web user experience review

Alchemise Consulting was engaged by a leading Australian independent cyber security consulting business to run a specific marketing campaign. Our objective was to generate new leads within the Enterprise and Government market and position the client’s IT security consulting services for more sales opportunities.

Business challenge

In preparation for the marketing campaign, the messaging and collateral required review and updating to ensure there was follow-up capability, and a quality digital strategy and content. The client’s static website hadn’t been updated for some time and wasn’t presenting their brand and offerings clearly to prospective customers.

The client had limited sales and marketing resources and expertise to grow the business with a structured go to market approach. Typically, existing business had stemmed from referrals and the vendor, however little new business development had been undertaken or invested in beyond this.

A strong part of this digital world and presence is a strongly presented website that resonates to the targeted audience of a professional and credible level. Brand awareness and user experience is key with establishing new contacts and first impressions counted – both existing and prospective customers needed to have their needs met as far as the website content goes in addressing their problems and challenges.

In order to run a successful marketing campaign and “go live”, we needed to ensure that the preparation material was complete.

Our solution

Alchemise understood what was missing from the marketing campaign preparation. The brand awareness and customer focus starts with online presence and messaging, and the best practices of the current digital design for website and content design and inbound marketing.

Our recommendations

Our digital customer experience consultant spent time reviewing the web presence around the formatting and editing of the current online content to reflect the desired purpose of the business services on offer and awareness to attract the right audience. The online web resources needed to be updated with current material and relevance to the market and vendor partnerships in place, in order to best demonstrate to customers how the client could address their challenges and provide solutions to their problems.

Although this comprehensive review pushed the lead generation campaign back, it was essential to demonstrate from a customer or user audience perspective how the client’s website content, presentation and formatting and branding drove customers to engage, or to not engage, with the website and ultimately the company itself.

For further reading of relevance and if you are ready for digital and what to consider for a digital assessment includes please read our previous blog article:  3 key elements of a digital readiness assessment

Outcome

After the comprehensive website and user experience review, we made a number of recommendations in order to ensure the website and digital resources were fit for purpose prior to campaign kickoff.

The primary focus, on the user experience front, was on text content and style in order to optimize readability for website visitors. We submitted revised text copy utilizing a more consistent use of language and style and an increased focus on the customers’ challenges to better project the client’s capabilities to prospects.

Navigation and page layouts were restructured for a clearer presentation of the client’s capabilities and expertise, and images and visuals were used strategically, not just for the sake of adding graphics to the page.

To further improve user experience we ensured that hyperlinks and click-through features were created and used purposefully for a more seamless site exploration by users. We also ensured that all of the client’s downloadable resources had their correct contact details, after the review highlighted that nearly three-quarters of resources listed outdated information.

Each aspect of this review and recommendation process was essential to create a web and digital presence that accurately reflected the client’s brand, offerings and value-adds to clients, and their positioning in the market.

Digital presence and marketing is becoming increasingly important and in a crowded marketplace where there is little allowance made for a poor and/or misguiding first impression when a prospect visits a website. The recommendations and changes that Alchemise Consulting offered were key to improving the impact and success of our client’s direct marketing campaign, and were the gateway to our client becoming fully digitally optimised.

For further information on how you can increase your client engagement from your digital presence and website, we can review this for you and share our recommendations as part of our complementary digital readiness assessment.

Contact us at Twitter@alchemise_cons,  email info@alchemiseconsulting.com or phone us +61(3) 9225 5022

How do you shift from a brand centric to customer centric approach?

This overview article is written with B2B companies in mind, for those who are in business services and professional services sectors who have high value services, or some level of complexity such as traditional technology companies or business services like lawyers and accounting firms.

If I am talking to a marketing professional they are generally already aware of the importance of digital presence and marketing strategies to drive more brand awareness. For a business owner or director or partner, the way you need to market your value and specific services should be focused first on your prospective client who is looking to solve a particular challenge and how to help them.

Commonly many websites have a standard menu and content flow along the lines of:

  • About us:
  • What we can do:
  • Our capabilities:
  • Why us:

This is what we call a brand or product centric approach which proves very challenging to differentiate your digital identity and presence from your competitors to attract interest and relevance from prospective clients.

Your competitors are also sounding and writing the same way within their website and content, so how can you present, be relevant and differentiate your services?

Times have changed with how buyers choose to buy and deal with suppliers. A brand and product centric approach that lacks the implementation of inbound marketing and the buyer’s journey may not be working for you as well as a sales approach and you’ll find it tougher to develop new business opportunities in a competitive, price-driven market.

If you want to drive a competitive advantage or find a way to differentiate, just take a look at your competitors and how they may be approaching their digital marketing with a customer problem centric approach.

Here is one example of a website content page which focuses on the customer first and their challenges:

customer centric

Reference: www.maxsum.com/your-potential

There is a clear distinction in the flow of your webpage content to focus on your prospective client and their challenges, and to be overall customer centric.

Why the buyer’s journey is so important 

It is evident that buyers are much more informed and smarter when they are progressing through the sales cycle and have already completed their research before wanting to engage in a sales conversation.

Buyer-Journey
If you think about the car buying experience and the use of the internet to research and collect all the data you need first before picking up the phone to talk to, or emailing, a sales person to negotiate the best price.

Before you buy a car you may well already know what model and type of car you want, what features and specifications you want, your budget range and the ideal price you would like to pay. All you need to do before you speak to a sales representative at a dealership is to know if it is in stock and can you potentially negotiate the right deal. Only then you will reach out to your preferred dealership when you are ready to buy.

If you look at the Tesla model, they don’t have any traditional dealerships or showrooms as you can do all your research online and virtual tours to be able to make an informed decision whether or not to buy.

Hence the role of the marketing function and sales function has shifted significantly in the way you interact with your prospective buyer.

Traditional approach –
Brand 
and product centric approach

Many people are aware they need to market their business online and have a digital presence with an ‘About Us’ focus on themselves with self praise and noting award wins and recognitions. Also when you look at their website, many still take a ‘Features and Benefits’ approach with their branding or product to try to attract and eventually sell to their prospect with a demo, and aggressively following up when the sales person is actually intruding on their prospect.

This is what we describe as a brand centric or product centric approach.

All about the customer –
Problem and solution centric approach

With a progressive approach, it should be about the prospective customers’ solution to their problems and how you can add value and help – being customer centric.

This is a fundamental shift towards how you can serve your customer not what you can gain from them. The same applies to referring or being helpful to someone you can’t help but recognising that someone in your network could help solve their problem or address their challenge.

What end problem is the buyer trying to solve with your product/services?

If you can reflect this in your sales efforts and even start in the way you market your business ability to help solve the kinds of problems your prospective clients are challenged with, then you will resonate with your target audience, whether that be a CIO/CTO/CFO or another key stakeholder.

It could be a technical, operational or financial problem you can solve. Once you identify it, then only you can progress to build the relationship in person and or online to provide them with possible solutions.

6 tips for customer centric marketing and sales

  • Identify the problem or challenge first that your ideal client is looking to solve.
  • Ensure you provide your digital content around the specific challenge and solution which might help the prospective client.
  • If you think you can help them solve this problem or challenge, you must be able to offer or add value first with the right information or thought leadership in your field of expertise.
  • Once you have built an online or offline rapport and earned the right for them to trust or see value in what you offer, then you can talk about solutions to their problem.
  • Your solution to their problem can be shared with them if it can provide value, whether it be a product or service to deliver they outcome they are seeking. 
  • The best outcome is when they come back to you for your advice, and the best way of acknowledgment is through a referral.

In case you missed our earlier insights video tip series discussing why you need to shift from a product centric approach to a customer centric approach, here are the links to view them:

Insights Video: Is your website brand or customer focussed?

Insights Video: How to turn your website into a customer centric approach

For further information on how you can increase your client engagement from your digital presence and website, we can review this for you and share our recommendations  as part of our complementary digital readiness assessment.


Contact us at Twitter@alchemise_cons,  email info@alchemiseconsulting.com or phone us +61(3) 9225 5022

Insights Video #2 – How to turn your website into a customer centric approach

Here is an example of how you can change your website to a customer centric approach from an Australian IT company website we found – Maxsum IT.

Did you miss Insights Video #1 – Is your website brand centric or customer focussed? Watch it here now.

Hear from our Marketing and Sales Insight consultant, Andrew McFayden about why this is our advice for people thinking of a website redesign project or content marketing campaign using an example of how to approach it.

 If you are tired of your content marketing campaigns failing with no ROI, find out how Alchemise Consulting can drive more effective leads for your business.

We are a boutique business growth consultancy based in Melbourne, focused on delivering high value business and sales consulting in APAC with an outcome based focus and shared risk approach.

For further details on any of these points above with a confidential discussion on how we can assist you for business partnership or growth/exit strategies, please contact us on info@alchemiseconsulting.com or register for free initial consultation.

Insights Video #1 – Is your website brand centric or customer focussed?

Hear our latest marketing insights from our Marketing and Sales Insights Consultant, Andrew McFayden, in this short video about why many business website designs and content are brand centric and NOT effective in attracting or engaging with your customers.

Stay tuned for our next video of an example IT services website that started the process of being customer centric, as opposed to brand centric – available to watch right now, HERE!


 If you are tired of your content marketing campaigns failing with no ROI, find out how Alchemise Consulting can drive more effective leads for your business.

We are a boutique business growth consultancy based in Melbourne, focused on delivering high value business sales and marketing consulting in APAC with an outcome based focus and shared risk approach.

For further details on any of these points above with a confidential discussion on how we can assist you for business partnership or growth/exit strategies, please contact us on info@alchemiseconsulting.com or register for a free initial consultation.

5 Reasons Why Marketing Campaigns Can Fail

As End of Quarter and End of Financial Year approaches again, perhaps you are thinking ahead to prepare yourself now for reporting season – and the questions that arise from EOFY trends and data from your marketing campaigns.

If you are a marketing manager now having to explain why the ROI on your recent marketing campaign has been so poor, or a business owner wondering why a marketing campaign hasn’t produced the expected tangible results, we’ve highlighted five key simple reasons as to why your marketing campaigns and efforts have underperformed or failed with expectations.

  1. Wrong target audience
    Is the audience you are targeting actually your target audience?

The aim of your marketing is to attract the audience – but if it is pitched at the wrong demographic, the message will be lost. For example, not many 35-40 year olds will be able to afford a $70K car when they have family commitments taking the financial priority.

  1. Trying to solve more than one problem
    Is your solution clearly addressing the pain points that your customers are feeling?

Using the above example, a customer looking to buy a car may have the problem of many cars being too expensive for them, or needing a reliable car that is not a lemon, or a larger car that can accommodate a growing family. Which is the most important to your buyer?

  1. Selling ice to the eskimos
    Are you trying to sell a product or solution that your customers already have?

This one is straight forward – if you are trying to sell a new car to a person that already has a new car, chances are that they will not be interested.

  1. Wrong communication channel
    Is your campaign even visible to your potential customers?

Know where and how to find your customers – don’t promote $15K hatchbacks at a $150K luxury car emporium… people simply won’t bother to look inside the hatchback.

  1. Wrong medium used to communicate your message
    Is your campaign presenting the message to your customer in the right format?

Are you using video format when you should be using white papers? The wrong medium can also sink the campaign before it starts.

___________________________________________________________

The lack of alignment between marketing and sales continues to be deeply problematic in so many companies, and taking action for the first steps to resolving this divide can provide vast improvements on marketing ROI and achieving sales targets.

For a more in-depth discussion around these areas of your marketing approach and how to take steps today to turn your failed or underperforming marketing campaigns around, just contact us below to discuss.

marketing-campaigns

If you would like to schedule a time to speak with us, please email us at info@alchemiseconsulting.com or contact us on +61 3 9225 5022.

 

Facebook News Feed Has Changed – What Does This Mean For Your Content Marketing?

In January, Facebook announced big changes to the way their News Feed operates. CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants to enable users to have “more meaningful social interactions”, by creating significant changes to their algorithms affecting which content Facebook users are presented with. The impact is already being felt, almost a month in, with users spending less time – on average two minutes less per person – on Facebook. Before exploring the affects this may have on your business page and content marketing, I’ll recap the changes for you…

So, what actually changes?

The gist of the story is that Facebook News Feeds will show more posts from family and friends and updates which spark conversation, and less public content posts (including videos) from publishers and businesses. Posts that are deemed to be engagement-bait, or click-bait, are continuing to be demoted in an attempt to stop pages ‘playing’ the algorithm in order to get their pages in front of users more often.

Facebook anticipates that pages will see their organic reach, video watches and referral traffic to decrease, especially for those pages whose posts don’t generally elicit many reactions or comments.

It’s 2018 – where does video content fit in? 

content-marketingLive video will become prioritized content as a result of these changes because,according to Facebook, they encourage engagement – live videos can attract six times as many interactions as standard videos. These changes are designed to bring back users back to connecting with each other in more meaningful interactions, so it’s only natural that a real-time interaction and discussion will suddenly be pushed to the top of the News Feed.

Do I need to change how I use my business page now?

In short, yes.

While the impact of these changes will vary from page to page, reach, engagement and traffic is likely to decrease. You’ll still be there, but you’ll have to work harder and smarter in order to get your page’s posts in front of your users.

Consider making live videos a regular part of your Facebook presence. Think about the users that follow your page – how do they typically use social media (time of the day, mobile or desktop), what sorts of content will engage them, and experiment around that. This content can all become a part of your broader digital marketing strategy, so don’t just think of it as a ‘Facebook job’.

Users can change their News Feed back to ‘the way it was’ but the new system has already become the default, so you’ll need to encourage your followers to add your page to their ‘See First’ list in their preferences.

With even more emphasis than before, aim to produce and publish content that your users will engage with – and please the Facebook algorithm – reactions and comments will contribute to your content being deemed ‘meaningful’ and increasing or maintaining your organic reach under the new system.

Does this impact paid advertising? 

Of course, paid advertising will still be an option as more of a guarantee of getting your content seen. Facebook’s revenue from paid ads has grown again by almost 50% year-on-year, so it will be interesting to see whether this grows further in the coming quarters, or if businesses choose to redirect their ad spend across other social media platforms. The anticipated drop in user-usage time does mean there will be less opportunity for your advertisements and paid content to be seen, so keep an eye on your metrics in the coming months.

Early signs – how has Facebook changed?

Almost a month into this changed News Feed algorithm, Zuckerberg’s predictions are proving accurate. Daily Facebook usage has dropped by an average of two minutes per user, but across 1.4 billion daily users, this equates to 50 million fewer hours of eyes on News Feeds and therefore page posts and paid content. How this trend continues is a valuable metric to follow, as we wait to see the long-term impacts of the changes.

For most businesses, Facebook marketing is just one component of an overall digital marketing strategy. If you’d like a deeper insight into how well set your business is for the digital component of 2018 and beyond, please click below to register for a free Digital Readiness Assessment.

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